I’m currently reading (and having a bit of a love-hate relationship with) Reclaiming The Spirituality of Birth.
In the “love” category: There is some really interesting research quoted in this book. It has encouraged me to look up some new authors, like Allessandra Piontelli.
Here’s one example of information that I’ve never seen mentioned elsewhere. The author, Benig Mauger, is discussing how babies in the womb develop relationships and socialize.
One twin (a boy) was observed to be consistently more active in the uterine environment than his sister, who generally slept peacefully curled up in her corner of the womb. Every so often he would wake his sister, by stroking the membrane between them, encouraging her to play. She would wake up and the twins would play together in their mother’s womb, moving around behind their respective membranes. They would have gentle boxing matches and tickle one another….(pg. 53)
Isn’t that so cool? Each of my babies have enjoyed kicking and playing with those of us outside of the womb. I think it is really fascinating to consider the way that twins interact in the womb and how much of a baby’s personality is already in place before they are born.
But then, in the “hate” category (and perhaps “hate” is too strong of a word), there is some information in here that is flat-out WRONG. For example, the author says that “the umbilical cord connects the baby to the placenta and within it are two major blood vessels, one taking oxygen to the baby and the other removing all waste products.” (pg. 39) Actually, a typical umbilical cord has 3 vessels — two arteries and one vein. About 1% of babies will have a two vessel cord, but that is not typical. The fact that such a basic fact could be incorrect makes me really cautious about believing anything that the author writes.
I’m going to continue reading it, because the gems in it are really good, but I think that the typos and obvious errors make it especially important to fact-check anything you learn in here. I looked up the information about the twins in utero, and it seems to be accurate.