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I am going to try and feature a book review related to birth/labor once a month.  ( I will hopefully get some books up here that you have not heard of yet. )

Monique and the Mango Rains: A Book Review

Monique and the Mango Rains
This book had two of my favorite topics in it: birth and culture. It is a sort of biography of a midwife in Africa, written by a peace corp volunteer that became friends with her.  This midwife was given 9 months of education to then become the village midwife.  She not only helped women birth their babies, but she also ran a health clinic for women and children.  This book gave a very good look at why it is important to take care of women and children and really made me feel blessed for where I live now.I also really enjoyed the look at birth in another culture.

So often, birth in native cultures are romanticized by the natural birth communities.  I appreciated the look this book gave of birth because it was real.  It did not tell of screaming women or women who could not handle birth like we are shown in our movies here, but it also shows some of the trials and difficulties that arise from true natural labor.There are a couple of observations I had:

  1.  Trying to combine western medicine with the native way of giving birth is not necessarily compatible as they do not have the education nor the emergency personnel available to deal with our medications that are introduced.
  2. Woman are strong and courageous.  Not just in giving birth, but in living their lives.
  3. A society that does not honor and respect the roles women play are bound to forever be weak.This was also a wonderful look at two women who became friends.  I love to see different cultures and how they interact, which this book showed, but it also showed the ability to love each other despite different cultures, ideas, religions, and languages.
Follow Rachel Leavitt:

Rachel has worked as a register nurse (BSN from University of Utah) since 2004 with a work history in Labor and Delivery, NICU and Postpartum Care. She is also the founder of New Beginnings Doula Training which she organized in 2011. When she's not busy being a mother and grandmother, she can be found reading research papers related to some aspect of childbirth.

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