Book Review by Rachael Boterhoven
Ten Moons. The inner journey of pregnancy – preparation for natural birth. Author: Jane Hardwicke Collings
Why is it so good:
I found Jane Hardwicke Collings book, Ten Moons a great way to prepare mentally going in to a home birth following two previous hospital births. Jane is a former midwife and mother who has experienced a birth by caesarean section, a VBAC and a home birth. Her knowledge and experiences written throughout this book are honest as she shares her techniques and tools on how you too can prepare and succeed at having a natural birth. Another reason that I found this to be a good book (coming from a non-reader), was that it was easy to follow due to it containing real stories from women who were empowered to question the medicalisation of childbirth, educated themselves by becoming informed and learnt to trust their bodies and to trust other women.
What did you get out of it the most:
One of the things I enjoyed the most about this book is that it contained real stories from real women, including first time mums, mums who have experienced previous birth trauma, mums who were home birthing for the first time and stories about childbirth as a rite of passage, all the things that I resonate with, I am passionate about, and what drives me to want to home birth myself. The stories have given me clarity and drive to pursue and find strength, to follow my intuition and do what feels right for me in overcoming my previous trauma and obstacles.
I found that Jane validates the need to honour yourself, and to be honoured as a birthing woman. She identifies the importance of releasing fears, practicing meditation, creating visualisations, affirmations and connecting with the baby inside of you.
How will this book be of benefit to women:
Due to the stories from real women, I believe this book will be of benefit to women who wish to birth naturally, whether it be at home, birthing centre or hospital as it provides the power and inner strength to reconfirm that you CAN do it. Jane explains what happens to your brain, mind and body when you are pregnant and giving birth, that fear can negatively influence the progress of labour, and that trust and calmness can promote positive progression. She delves in to pain and the role pain plays during labour, how to manage pain (medically and naturally) and the effects fear plays on pain.
Chapters throughout this book cover “so-called” high risk births such as VBAC, Breech and twin births which include stories from women who have had experiences with them as well as chapters that include tips for partners and support people during pregnancy, labour and postpartum.
Why are you recommending this book to women:
I recommend this book to anyone who is planning a non-medicalised birth, women who want to overcome fear or previous birth trauma, and women who need reassurance or a boost of confidence/empowerment that this way of birthing can be done.
A section of this book that played on my mind for a while was “The Butterfly Story” and how a man believed that the butterfly was struggling to emerge (slow to progress) so he helped it by cutting away a bit of the cocoon. The man did not understand that by interfering with the process resulted in the butterfly not being able to ever fly. Due to the struggle required for the butterfly to get through the small opening of the cocoon was natures way of forcing fluid from the butterfly’s body and in to its wings so that it would be ready to fly once freed from its cocoon. Stories like this reinforce my belief that the women’s body, together with baby, know what to do. It shouldn’t be rushed and it shouldn’t be interfered with.
The last section of the book contains information on breathing techniques and their benefits during labour, relaxation and meditation, positions and poses, the importance of voice during labour and birth, nutrition, recipes, homeopathics, essential oils for pregnancy and labour as well as a beneficial reading list for birthing women, children, midwives and doulas.
All in all, I did not find this book overwhelming or pushy. I found that the way it was written was easy to navigate and enabled you to take what you wanted from it and leave what you didn’t. It has definitely provided me with the reassurance and confidence I didn’t know I was still seeking.
My name is Rachael Boterhoven and I am a student Doula who is training at the Doula Training Academy. If you would like more information about my doula services, please contact me.
0433 605 792
Currently on Maternity Leave – Back May 2022.