What’s On Your Bookshelf?

by Bonita Katz, BA RN ICCE ICBD IAT CLC

When I visit someone’s home or office, one of the first things I notice are the books. Books tell you not only a person’s interest, but their range of interests. They may appear worn because they are well-read or perhaps because they are a treasured gift or remembrance from someone special.

So, here is a peak at what is on my desk – or nightstand or end table, depending on where I am! Please note: I haven’t completed any of these books, but they have captured my attention. If they capture yours, please pick one up and let me know what you think.

Real Food for Pregnancy by Lilly Nichols, RDN, CDE

I don’t remember the last time I read such a well-researched book on nutrition for pregnancy. (Maybe from the previous generation: Adelle Davis’s “Let’s Have Healthy Children”?) So far in this book I have found common sense, good research, and well-rounded perspective on a healthy lifestyle for pregnancy. Although Nichols addresses specific individual nutrients when necessary, she most often looks at the entire picture of how nutrients interact with one another. That’s real life – no one nutrient performs a function all on its own. In addition to nutrition, the book includes brief chapters on exercise, common pregnancy complaints, and mental health (stress).

Reproduction on the Reservation: Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Colonialism in the Long Twentieth Century by Brianna Theobald

This book has been a difficult read – not the vocabulary, but the content. Did you know that there was a six-year period in the 1970’s during which approximately one-third of the Native women of childbearing age were sterilized – with no informed consent? “The long twentieth century” refers to the injustice that continued for that entire century. Although such injustice has not been eradicated, many Indigenous peoples are working to improve healthcare for childbearing women. Difficult as this book is to read, it is necessary to know this history so that we can work toward quality healthcare for everyone.

The Female Pelvis: Anatomy & Exercises by Blandine Calais-Germain

This is not a new book, but one that I refer to often. Call me simple-minded, but I love the illustrations! More than almost any other book I’ve read this helps me understand how female reproductive anatomy works. This is an excellent resource for anyone teaching childbirth classes, working as a doula, or training others to do so.

To mimic a current commercial – What’s on your bookshelf? ICEA certified professionals are required to continue learning to keep their certifications. But I have talked with many of you – I know it is not just a requirement, but continuing education is how you feed your passion for helping childbearing families. Let me know what you are reading. Email president@icea.org. Or post your favorite book on ICEA Certified Professionals Support on Facebook. Let’s see what’s on your bookshelf!