Of course, there are a gazillion apps, blogs, and websites now to take new parents and parents-to-be through pregnancy. But nothing beats the comfort of a good book. It is like a good friend who has your back throughout the transition. Here are my top favourite books, based on my personal experience. Do note, my experience is limited, and I prefer wholesome and positive books that can be read by both parents (if applicable).
My top 2 books to help through pregnancy
Strong as a mother
Most books focus on the size of the growing baby, and the physical changes in the mother. Strong as a mother talks a lot about the emotional changes, upheavals and anxieties, and how to heal.
The Big Fat activity book for pregnant people
If you are a parent-to-be with a sense of humour, this is a must-have for you. With sections like things you cannot do now, practical pregnany shoot tips, it is interspersed with fun quizzes and mazes along with information. This book is a reminder to that keeping your sense of humour intact during pregnancy is the key to survival.
Top 3 books to prepare for parenting
Yes, we do find our parenting mojo at some point of time, but the following books definitely helped mould my parenting. I would highly recommend every pregnant woman reads these.
Understanding the Human Being
Definitely something like a bible for montessorians, this book talks about the child as a psychic being, and how to help them adjust to life outside the womb. Right from conception to the first year, it covers many important topics.
However, this one is very difficult to source in India ( I had the most amazing friend who lent me her copy). The Joyful Child is a decent substitute to this one.
The Child in the Family
This is undoubtedly the one book that I keep going back to, and keep gifting new parents. Written by Dr.Maria Montessori herself, this book is a great starting point for new parents on understanding and respecting their child from birth. It is a reminder that our child is a sacred being, and a part of the family. This one is not available on amazon always, and you can source it from here.
The Parent’s Tao Te Ching
One of the shortest parenting books I have ever read, which makes one re-think the pricing. But once you read it, you will know why. This is one book that applies to every parent- new ones to empty nesters. A reminder that parenting is a spiritual journey, I highly recommend this book for parents who are anxious if they’ve got this.
Top 3 books to prepare for everything else
My Child won’t eat
As an Indian parent, I understand how important food is in our culture. I also understand how through books and movies, overfeeding and a mother’s love has become seemingly interconnected. My Child won’t eat simply puts it all in perspective. I also recommend one joins the “Traditional Weaning starting solids India” group on facebook.
The Womanly art of breastfeeding
Although I attended antenatal classes that covered breastfeeding, I wish I had given it much more thought in my first pregnancy. This is a comprehensive book that covers the hows, whys and common problems one may encounter.
I would also recommend you join the Breasfeeding Support for Indian Mothers group on facebook.
The Whole Brain Child
I read this one during both my pregnancies, and this book may seem more explicitly for parents toddlers and upwards. However, the book’s undercurrents of gentle parenting and the importance of the early years stay with you for a long, long time.
Top 3 books to read to baby
I shall do a detailed post on the benefits of reading to your baby in the womb, sometime. But for now, documenting my most favourite reads, and believe me, I struggled to choose just three.
Any Nancy Tillman book
Nancy Tillman books are gorgeous, lively and full of love. Her words are poetic and stir just the right amount of calming love within the reader. It is impossible for me to pick just one title, do read the synopsis of the books and choose one that speaks to you. For me, it was this.
The Wonderful Things you’ll be
The wonderful things you’ll be is a sweet book about the dreams and hopes a parent has for their child. But this book gets extra points because it is diverse and inclusive, serving as a reminder for us, parents as well. The cute illustrations make it perfect for pregnancy right through preschooler days.
Can’t wait to show you
A beautiful book that fits real snug into the bump,this one reminds us of the wonderful experiences we get to share with our littles.
That is about it! I wanted to include my favourite books for postpartum as well, but I do not want this list to get overwhelming (If it does, you can just subscribe to my blog below 😉 ). I hope this helps. Whether you choose to read this, or religious texts or crime fiction, choose books that keep you happy and positive.