The subtitle of The Girlfriends' Guide to Pregnancy, by Vicki Iovine is "Or Everything Your Doctor Won't Tell You." That's exactly why I liked it so much!
When I put out the call for pregnancy book recommendations, you ladies came through in a BIG WAY with this book. Just as the title promises, the book is full of straight talk and advice on every aspect of this pregnancy thing. Iovine rarely sugar coats, though she is very much like a supportive and encouraging friend. She's also not going to blow sunshine up anyone's ass. Does labor hurt? HELL YES! Is it hard to take off the weight? Sorta, but it does come off! Is your male other half freaked out? Yep, probably.
Iovine herself has four children (mostly grown now), and shies away from nothing in this book. Not only is it honest, it's hilarious. One section titled "Multiple Personality Disorder" which relates to pregnancy and sex really appealed to me, and I insisted on reading it aloud to Chuck through my giggles:
The thing that amazed my Girlfriends and me about the emotional life of pregnant women, particularly where sex was concerned, was the intensity of all the emotions you feel and the rapidity with which they change. You may spend the entire day fantasizing about wild animal sex with your partner, to the point where you chew off all your fingernails waiting for him to meet you at home. Then, when he finally arrives and starts going through the mail instead of studying the ultrasound photos that you just got, without him, at your morning appointment and have loving placed on the front door, you start screaming that this is one more undeniable sign that he is indifferent to you and the baby. By the time he has calmed you down and you go whimpering into the bathroom to refresh yourself and consider whether you're still horny, you've fallen asleep in the tub and he's pulling you out before you drown.
Hilarious, not just in regards to sex, but the emotional roller coaster in general. Chuck and I woke up earlyish for a Saturday in order to go look at a potential rental property with more bedrooms than we have now. I was smiley and nice to him this morning, and I assured him that I really was in a good mood. "For how long?" he laughed. "At least 20 minutes," I replied.
That pretty much says it!
While the more medical of the pregnancy books are great--especially those like The Joy of Pregnancy that have a good deal of technical info and are broken down into the baby's developmental stages--it's necessary to have a good mix of soothing and straightforward. This book reminded me a great deal of talking to my mom (complete with her smartass sense of humor) about pregnancy if my mom could remember any of it. Apparently she was never morning sick, never overly tired, and got to skip out on some of the other unpleasantries of pregnancy. Or she's lying. Or she's blocked it all out in the last 28 (almost 29!) years.
Iovine's life is a little unrealistic to most of us. She lives in California, has a good many model and actress friends, and a maid, but on the whole I didn't find her too pretentious. She keeps the richer-than-thou talk to a minimum, but I do wish I had that cleaning lady and no need to work sometimes. Dream a little dream! *plays the world's tiniest violin*
If you're expecting or expect you might be expecting soon, read it! If you just want to giggle with the rest of us, read it for that, too.
- Still nauseous (all the time).
- Still sleepy (all the time).
- Still cranky, I mean happy, I mean cranky, I mean tearful. You get the picture.
- Still REALLY excited!