The cover of Heather Armstrong’s It Sucked and Then I Cried is on the edge of being cute. It features a very sweet bear looking innocently back at the observer. However, once your eyes fall from its tiny face, you are confronted with a belly…a large, pregnant belly. Without any further thought, my first reaction to this is one of intimidation – this person has experienced something that I cannot even conceive of (no pun intended), but am supposed to, on some level, regard with a sense of endearment. I mean, the idea of caring for a baby seems reasonable – I have a cat, and she’s very healthy, even happy, if you don’t touch her too much. However, the idea of growing that baby inside of my body, and then of delivering it out into the world, is terrifying.
At S&S Canada, we have a lot of books to help mothers and fathers to be work through this sense of fear, as well as the enormous responsibility that follows. YOU: Having a Baby, and Eat, Sleep, Poop are just a couple of the informative and useful books we offer. However, unless I were actually expecting, I wouldn’t choose a pregnancy or parenthood book as a nighttime read.
Heather Armstrong’s book appealed to me because it’s not just a book about the health and lifestyle considerations of being pregnant. It’s a blog-style account of the battle she fought with herself and with her body, to overcome a shockingly difficult experience, mentally and physically. She writes in a clever voice about the truths of being pregnant that she wished she had been warned about before finding out first-hand. She also talks about the incredible support and patience of her husband, who willingly dodged flying objects to remain in a room with her – something that I think anyone in a relationship should consider their willingness to do.
So, regardless of your interest in pregnancy itself, this book is a good read for anyone who is drawn to an honest account of a human experience, in all its pain and eventual joy.
You can take a look at the blog that started it all, here.