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Arrival Stories: Women Share Their Experiences of Becoming Mothers

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A wide range of women--actors, athletes, academics, CEOs, writers, small-business owners, birth workers, physicians, and activists--share their experiences of becoming mothers in this multifaceted, moving, and revealing collection. Throughout her difficult pregnancy and following her frightening labor experience, Amy Schumer found camaraderie and empowerment in hearing birt A wide range of women--actors, athletes, academics, CEOs, writers, small-business owners, birth workers, physicians, and activists--share their experiences of becoming mothers in this multifaceted, moving, and revealing collection. Throughout her difficult pregnancy and following her frightening labor experience, Amy Schumer found camaraderie and empowerment in hearing birth stories from other women, including those of her friend Christy Turlington Burns. Turlington Burns's work in maternal health began after she experienced a childbirth-related complication in 2003--an experience that would later inspire her to direct and produce the documentary feature film No Woman, No Cry, about the challenges women face throughout pregnancy and childbirth around the world. It is through Schumer and Turlington Burns's conversations that the idea for Arrival Stories was born. By sharing their experiences, the contributors to Arrival Stories offer an informative and deeply affecting account of what it feels like when a woman first realizes she is a mother. This beautiful collection features essays by: Serena Williams - Alysia Monta�o - Abby G. Lopez - Amber Tamblyn - Shilpa Shah - Christy Turlington Burns - Emily Oster - Emma Hansen - Leslie Feist - Amanda Williams - Angel Geden - Adrienne Bosh - Latham Thomas - Rachel Feinstein - Ashley Graham - Jill Scott - Jennie Jeddry and Kim DeLise - La La Anthony - Shea Williams - Sienna Miller - Katrina Yoder - Amy Schumer Intimate and urgent, Arrival Stories offers a panoramic view of motherhood and highlights the grave injustices that women of color face in maternal healthcare. It is the perfect book for any expectant or new mother, or for anyone who knows and loves one.


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A wide range of women--actors, athletes, academics, CEOs, writers, small-business owners, birth workers, physicians, and activists--share their experiences of becoming mothers in this multifaceted, moving, and revealing collection. Throughout her difficult pregnancy and following her frightening labor experience, Amy Schumer found camaraderie and empowerment in hearing birt A wide range of women--actors, athletes, academics, CEOs, writers, small-business owners, birth workers, physicians, and activists--share their experiences of becoming mothers in this multifaceted, moving, and revealing collection. Throughout her difficult pregnancy and following her frightening labor experience, Amy Schumer found camaraderie and empowerment in hearing birth stories from other women, including those of her friend Christy Turlington Burns. Turlington Burns's work in maternal health began after she experienced a childbirth-related complication in 2003--an experience that would later inspire her to direct and produce the documentary feature film No Woman, No Cry, about the challenges women face throughout pregnancy and childbirth around the world. It is through Schumer and Turlington Burns's conversations that the idea for Arrival Stories was born. By sharing their experiences, the contributors to Arrival Stories offer an informative and deeply affecting account of what it feels like when a woman first realizes she is a mother. This beautiful collection features essays by: Serena Williams - Alysia Monta�o - Abby G. Lopez - Amber Tamblyn - Shilpa Shah - Christy Turlington Burns - Emily Oster - Emma Hansen - Leslie Feist - Amanda Williams - Angel Geden - Adrienne Bosh - Latham Thomas - Rachel Feinstein - Ashley Graham - Jill Scott - Jennie Jeddry and Kim DeLise - La La Anthony - Shea Williams - Sienna Miller - Katrina Yoder - Amy Schumer Intimate and urgent, Arrival Stories offers a panoramic view of motherhood and highlights the grave injustices that women of color face in maternal healthcare. It is the perfect book for any expectant or new mother, or for anyone who knows and loves one.

30 review for Arrival Stories: Women Share Their Experiences of Becoming Mothers

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kaity

    I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I'm a sucker for birth stories and anthologies about motherhood. I loved the intention behind this collection and the focus on addressing maternal health outcomes, particularly for women of color. That being said, I struggled a little with some of the stories. Nearly all of the women featured have significant wealth and/or celebrity status. The financial ramifications of birthing a child were bare I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I'm a sucker for birth stories and anthologies about motherhood. I loved the intention behind this collection and the focus on addressing maternal health outcomes, particularly for women of color. That being said, I struggled a little with some of the stories. Nearly all of the women featured have significant wealth and/or celebrity status. The financial ramifications of birthing a child were barely discussed, which I find to be a crucial missed opportunity. For someone to lament about the trials of motherhood (legitimate as they may be) in the same sentence they share that they had a night nurse and nanny was pretty unrelatable and not reflective of the "typical" parenting experience. All of that said, I did like that the multitude of ways in which a person can arrive at motherhood were spotlighted and no two stories were alike.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    This was a fairly diverse, impactful read. I wish something like this had been around when I was pregnant. Most of the stories included are coming from people with immense privilege, but it felt to me like that factor was regularly acknowledged in a way that supported the liberator work of counter-storytelling in the face of so much stigma and taboo. Reading this feels more meaningful given the atrocious socio-political ramp-up of anti-Roe legislation in the face of the Supreme Court's leaked op This was a fairly diverse, impactful read. I wish something like this had been around when I was pregnant. Most of the stories included are coming from people with immense privilege, but it felt to me like that factor was regularly acknowledged in a way that supported the liberator work of counter-storytelling in the face of so much stigma and taboo. Reading this feels more meaningful given the atrocious socio-political ramp-up of anti-Roe legislation in the face of the Supreme Court's leaked opinions.

  3. 4 out of 5

    joyce w. laudon

    I would have loved a book like this before and/or after my first child was born. One thing that struck me at the time (call me one with too much ego)was how all of the attention focused on my daughter. She was lovely/amazing but I was also thinking about myself and the complications of my delivery. At the time I thought, if it had been my appendix, people might have asked about what I’d been through. So, as I began in this paragraph, I would have liked to share my story and know those of others. I would have loved a book like this before and/or after my first child was born. One thing that struck me at the time (call me one with too much ego)was how all of the attention focused on my daughter. She was lovely/amazing but I was also thinking about myself and the complications of my delivery. At the time I thought, if it had been my appendix, people might have asked about what I’d been through. So, as I began in this paragraph, I would have liked to share my story and know those of others. Therefore I truly thank the authors of this book for the collection. Here readers will find essays by some they have heard of (Serena Williams, Amber Tamblyn, Christy Turlington Burns and others) and those they don’t already know but will come to know in these pages. There are many experiences and points of view. Each story is unique and an engaging read. I especially enjoyed the entry by Jill Scott. I remembered watching her in the adaptation of the No.1 Ladies Detective Agency. Who knew that she was pregnant then? Also, loved the one by Serena Williams. She shares what was a difficult experience and that for someone who was an athlete in peak shape. This book is the perfect gift for the right recipient. I very much enjoyed and recommend it. Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    I found this to be a beautiful and enjoyable book about a variety of experiences on the road to motherhood. My son is a tween but it brought me back to birthing him into the world and early days of motherhood. On another note, this should be required reading for anyone who is trying to roll back abortion rights. In (almost?) every story, there is trial if not trauma as well as beauty and joy, another reminder that no one should be forced to carry a child to term by out of touch politicians.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Cassidy

    This audiobook was such a unique and awe-inspiring experience. Every one of these arrival stories are raw, brave, emotional, and life changing. If you are a mother, or find birth fascinating, or are interested in the stories women have to tell, I guarantee you will enjoy this collection.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    I saw this book was edited by Amy Schumer and thought I would be in for a fun read. I also saw this book at the local bookstore recommended as a good Mother’s Day gift. Both were wrong. While this was a very interesting read, it’s not light and fluffy. Instead it is a collection of birth stories that were often traumatizing and sometimes sorrowful. The book also focused on the stories of women of color and the difference between the birth experience for them as compared to white women. It was an I saw this book was edited by Amy Schumer and thought I would be in for a fun read. I also saw this book at the local bookstore recommended as a good Mother’s Day gift. Both were wrong. While this was a very interesting read, it’s not light and fluffy. Instead it is a collection of birth stories that were often traumatizing and sometimes sorrowful. The book also focused on the stories of women of color and the difference between the birth experience for them as compared to white women. It was an interesting read, and I’m glad I read it. But now I’m looking for another light reading.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jennie

    2 stars for most of the book, but Amy Schumer's essay earned the book a third star all on its own. And to be fair, the low rating for the rest of the book is basically just my baggage talking. A pretty good collection of interesting stories, but I found it frustrating how most of the women became easily or accidentally pregnant, and then had fairly uneventful birth experiences. (Obviously this wasn't true for everyone, but it was for many/most of them.) Disclosure of my baggage: IVF veteran, survi 2 stars for most of the book, but Amy Schumer's essay earned the book a third star all on its own. And to be fair, the low rating for the rest of the book is basically just my baggage talking. A pretty good collection of interesting stories, but I found it frustrating how most of the women became easily or accidentally pregnant, and then had fairly uneventful birth experiences. (Obviously this wasn't true for everyone, but it was for many/most of them.) Disclosure of my baggage: IVF veteran, survivor of a high risk pregnancy with a condition that required a c section.

  8. 4 out of 5

    John Sevin

    Unfortunately, this collection falls into the realm of 'not writers attempting to write' without any of the benefits of an editor that isn't just slapping their work together because their collective fame is thought to be enough to sell copies. Unfortunately, this collection falls into the realm of 'not writers attempting to write' without any of the benefits of an editor that isn't just slapping their work together because their collective fame is thought to be enough to sell copies.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kimber

    A great collection of stories of women entering motherhood in all fashions. It helps you remember, as a mother, that we're not all that different. I liked this a lot! A great collection of stories of women entering motherhood in all fashions. It helps you remember, as a mother, that we're not all that different. I liked this a lot!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    + - The coverage of discrimination in healthcare by doctors… because THIS needs to be talked about more. It boggles my mind sometimes meeting a doctor and seeing how they lack basic social skills and etiquette in a profession where it’s so needed. - I loved Sienna Miller’s story because 1. it humanizes celebrities 2. I enjoyed her writing style and 3. it shows what it feels like for many women post birth. - - Many of the birth stories are from celebrities. Yes, they are human too. However, they ar + - The coverage of discrimination in healthcare by doctors… because THIS needs to be talked about more. It boggles my mind sometimes meeting a doctor and seeing how they lack basic social skills and etiquette in a profession where it’s so needed. - I loved Sienna Miller’s story because 1. it humanizes celebrities 2. I enjoyed her writing style and 3. it shows what it feels like for many women post birth. - - Many of the birth stories are from celebrities. Yes, they are human too. However, they are also extremely privileged and do not represent the majority of women who don’t have access to the same care. With that said, I appreciated that Amy Schumer recognized this as she was telling her own story. -I was most interested in the other stories— the ones from a doula’s perspective and women who clearly were more representative of the general population. I felt there could’ve been more varied perspectives— inclusion of midwives, nurses, lactation consultants, etc. Overall though, I’m grateful that more birth stories are being surfaced.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Deja Roden

    “In the process of becoming a mother, I tapped into this larger sense of purpose that I couldn’t have done any other way.” -Christy Burns What I liked: I really appreciated the honesty that it showed about what can happen in hospital births, especially when you have low quality insurance or no insurance all together. Many of the stories expressed how sometimes doctors and nurses are not listening when the mothers feel that something is intuitively wrong. This book really showed the importance of “In the process of becoming a mother, I tapped into this larger sense of purpose that I couldn’t have done any other way.” -Christy Burns What I liked: I really appreciated the honesty that it showed about what can happen in hospital births, especially when you have low quality insurance or no insurance all together. Many of the stories expressed how sometimes doctors and nurses are not listening when the mothers feel that something is intuitively wrong. This book really showed the importance of midwives, doulas and lactation consultants. What I didn’t like: Some of these women have wildly different world views than I do. When they say “empowering” it reads to me “selfish.” Also, I’m thoroughly confused as to why abortion is discussed in an arrival stories book…the miscarriages are understandable because the baby was wanted and it can definitely be apart of a mother’s journey, but abortion is not in that camp. Overall: I give this a 3 out of 5 because I was reading this leading right up to when I gave birth to Jubilee and finished this on Mother’s Day 2022. So it has significance to me. But if this was just a regular short story collection, that had nothing to do with birth, I would give it a lower score and definitely sell this to HPB.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lauren Gail

    This book is a great read for anyone who has a mother! Honestly! You do not need to be a mother to read this - I think if anything, it encourages the connection between mother and child, as well as women in general. There is great representation in this collection: it’s not just stories from a bunch of privileged actresses and models. There are stories from all types mothers and real healthcare professionals. I personally suffered from postpartum depression and didn’t have an instant connection This book is a great read for anyone who has a mother! Honestly! You do not need to be a mother to read this - I think if anything, it encourages the connection between mother and child, as well as women in general. There is great representation in this collection: it’s not just stories from a bunch of privileged actresses and models. There are stories from all types mothers and real healthcare professionals. I personally suffered from postpartum depression and didn’t have an instant connection with my child. There are examples of that in this book that probably would have made me feel a little better about what I was going through if I had read them! There are some traumatic birth stories in here, there are examples of how family is not a one-size-fits-all, and examples of your birth plan going completely out the window. There are several examples of how women of color are not treated the same as their white counterparts during their birthing experience. I’m sad that this is still accurate in 2022, but I’m hoping this book will help bring more awareness. Overall, this is a diverse & rich collection of stories of amazing women, and I hope you all have the chance to read it at some point!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kristi Kasper

    What a wonderful collection of essays about childbirth! I really like the term “arrival stories” as it seems much more inclusive of every type of arrival than more traditional terms. I personally had three very different arrival stories for each of my children and it is such a broad spectrum for everyone. Amy Schumer and Christy Turlington Burns came together to share the stories of how their children arrived but also to highlight other women’s stories. From Serena Williams and Sienna Miller to What a wonderful collection of essays about childbirth! I really like the term “arrival stories” as it seems much more inclusive of every type of arrival than more traditional terms. I personally had three very different arrival stories for each of my children and it is such a broad spectrum for everyone. Amy Schumer and Christy Turlington Burns came together to share the stories of how their children arrived but also to highlight other women’s stories. From Serena Williams and Sienna Miller to many other celebrity and non-celeb mothers - many powerful stories are recounted. This book is a celebration of the experience one has in bringing life to this world. However, this book also illuminates the challenges that mothers’ face including the much more dire circumstances women of colour face when they interact with the healthcare system. Specifically the fact that black women suffer from many more complications and experience poorer outcomes in maternal healthcare due to racial bias in the medical system. This book was wonderful - enlightening, celebratory and powerful. It would be a fantastic gift for any mother in your life.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    This ARC was provided to me via Kindle, Random House Publishing Group-Random House and by #NetGalley. Opinions expressed are completely my own. Quite relatable for many. It does a fantastic job shining a light on injustices women of color face giving birth. The disconnect in maternal healthcare between race, economy is gobsmacking. Doctors don’t listen, it doesn’t matter what gender the doctor is either. They assume to know best. Listen to your patient. This book highlights the battle women figh This ARC was provided to me via Kindle, Random House Publishing Group-Random House and by #NetGalley. Opinions expressed are completely my own. Quite relatable for many. It does a fantastic job shining a light on injustices women of color face giving birth. The disconnect in maternal healthcare between race, economy is gobsmacking. Doctors don’t listen, it doesn’t matter what gender the doctor is either. They assume to know best. Listen to your patient. This book highlights the battle women fight with the healthcare system during pregnancy and childbirth to be heard. Wealth, class, religion, culture, aren’t the issue it’s the healthcare system. Women of color suffer even more unfortunately.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Susie Stangland

    I pushed all aside when I was given an advance copy of Amy Schumer’s & Christy Turlington’s book Arrival Stories which is a compilation of women’s birth stories. I have four grown children and have had three miscarriages, and each has their own story which taught me to never take motherhood for granted. Our oldest has twins so her story is unique from mine. Reading the experiences of each of these women who become mothers is a uniting experience. Turlington’s advocacy for better health care duri I pushed all aside when I was given an advance copy of Amy Schumer’s & Christy Turlington’s book Arrival Stories which is a compilation of women’s birth stories. I have four grown children and have had three miscarriages, and each has their own story which taught me to never take motherhood for granted. Our oldest has twins so her story is unique from mine. Reading the experiences of each of these women who become mothers is a uniting experience. Turlington’s advocacy for better health care during pregnancy and in childbirth on behalf of women globally with her non-profit and documentary is to be admired. To confirm how compelling this book was, I read it in one sitting until late at night. Thank you Amy and Christy!!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Paige

    Really enjoyed reading this collection of arrival stories from mothers and those in healthcare. I appreciated the diversity of stories—ages, ethnicities, religions, sexual orientation, complexity of pregnancy, adoption, infant loss (which was particularly difficult to read), termination, planned vs unplanned, etc. I do wish that they included a surrogacy story and a later adoption story as well because those perspective were missing. I loved that hyperemesis gravidarum was highlighted and descri Really enjoyed reading this collection of arrival stories from mothers and those in healthcare. I appreciated the diversity of stories—ages, ethnicities, religions, sexual orientation, complexity of pregnancy, adoption, infant loss (which was particularly difficult to read), termination, planned vs unplanned, etc. I do wish that they included a surrogacy story and a later adoption story as well because those perspective were missing. I loved that hyperemesis gravidarum was highlighted and described so well—that particular story resonated with me. Very fast read that has me feeling all the emotions. Beware that not all stories end happily and there is ample discussion of loss and grief so keep that in mind

  17. 5 out of 5

    Chrissy

    What a book to be reading at the exact time that women’s reproductive rights are so fiercely threatened by an imminent Supreme Court ruling. Pregnancy and childbirth are often traumatic, even when they seemingly go well – and women tend to stay mum about it. Bear the difficulties, keep their heads down, take care of their families, smile. It makes people uncomfortable to hear when everything isn’t “good.” That shouldn’t be a reason not to speak up. I appreciated that these women shared their sto What a book to be reading at the exact time that women’s reproductive rights are so fiercely threatened by an imminent Supreme Court ruling. Pregnancy and childbirth are often traumatic, even when they seemingly go well – and women tend to stay mum about it. Bear the difficulties, keep their heads down, take care of their families, smile. It makes people uncomfortable to hear when everything isn’t “good.” That shouldn’t be a reason not to speak up. I appreciated that these women shared their stories and experiences. They were eye opening. They were reminders that becoming a mother just might be the most dangerous, risky thing a woman can choose to do in her life. And that our first-world hospitals and medical systems are FAR from perfect.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

    This collection of personal birth stories (including stories from caregivers who witnessed births) from celebrities to women globally is powerful and appropriate for Mother’s Day Weekend. The stories in this book give a wide swath of “arrival stories,” from c-sections to natural births, home births, and everything in between. It addresses the disproportionate care received by Black and Brown women. It shares “horror” stories as well as beautiful moments. Don’t let the glossy, pretty cover fool y This collection of personal birth stories (including stories from caregivers who witnessed births) from celebrities to women globally is powerful and appropriate for Mother’s Day Weekend. The stories in this book give a wide swath of “arrival stories,” from c-sections to natural births, home births, and everything in between. It addresses the disproportionate care received by Black and Brown women. It shares “horror” stories as well as beautiful moments. Don’t let the glossy, pretty cover fool you. This is anything but a “light” read. It battles systemic racism, inadequacies in health care, the failures of America health care, harrowing birth stories and aftercare, and so much more. In the end, I found it powerful and empowering, but it was also incredibly eye-opening.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Michele Holzinger

    I loved hearing the birth stories of celebrities that I knew and some that I didn't. The only thing that was always on the back of my mind was how privileged they were: night nurses, nannies, doulas, acupuncture, one of them even talked about going on retreats right before having the baby. So some of the stories were a little off putting and I was not able to relate to. I was able to relate to the struggle of pregnancy and how much your life changes, even with all those extra hands, when you hav I loved hearing the birth stories of celebrities that I knew and some that I didn't. The only thing that was always on the back of my mind was how privileged they were: night nurses, nannies, doulas, acupuncture, one of them even talked about going on retreats right before having the baby. So some of the stories were a little off putting and I was not able to relate to. I was able to relate to the struggle of pregnancy and how much your life changes, even with all those extra hands, when you have a baby. And I think listening to the stories and having different narrators helped the stories to be more relatable. I would recommend just to know that motherhood is a struggle for everyone some times and that helps me feel less alone.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lacie

    Arrival stories focuses on the stories of how people arrived at motherhood. Each essay was written by a collection of comedians, athletes, authors, doulas, business owners. Some stories I found so beautiful and heartbreaking they brought me to tears. Others were so steeped in privilege I almost had to skip over them. (Specifically Ashley Grahams about renting out a spa a week before her due date to relax, umm huge eye roll!!) Others I found so inspiring and resonated with so much so that was com Arrival stories focuses on the stories of how people arrived at motherhood. Each essay was written by a collection of comedians, athletes, authors, doulas, business owners. Some stories I found so beautiful and heartbreaking they brought me to tears. Others were so steeped in privilege I almost had to skip over them. (Specifically Ashley Grahams about renting out a spa a week before her due date to relax, umm huge eye roll!!) Others I found so inspiring and resonated with so much so that was comforting! It’s hard to rate a book with so many authors and collaborators! Some were 5 stars, others lower but it was a great read. I read it in audio book version and each person narrated their own essay which I loved!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    I enjoyed this collection of personal essays from mothers. The women in this book represent diverse cultures, backgrounds, and professions. All types of relationship statuses are also covered. Miscarriages and abortion appear, as do fertility treatments and a variety of labor situations. There is an adoption story, a same sex couple, twins, and stillbirth. Some of the stories cover reasons for wanting children and planning, others have surprise pregnancies. I feel like the overall message is that I enjoyed this collection of personal essays from mothers. The women in this book represent diverse cultures, backgrounds, and professions. All types of relationship statuses are also covered. Miscarriages and abortion appear, as do fertility treatments and a variety of labor situations. There is an adoption story, a same sex couple, twins, and stillbirth. Some of the stories cover reasons for wanting children and planning, others have surprise pregnancies. I feel like the overall message is that women are amazing and becoming a mother is a deeply personal, powerful event that alters you in many ways. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Madison Herschberger

    This book was an interesting compilation of motherhood stories. Some focused on labor and birth, others focused on postpartum, and some focused on the child and life in general. It was interesting to read a whole spectrum of stories, noting the similarities and differences between different stories. In addition, it’s a raw look at motherhood, speaking on topics people find too taboo to talk about, such as labor. Women are superheroes, and especially with the Roe v Wade case going on right now, i This book was an interesting compilation of motherhood stories. Some focused on labor and birth, others focused on postpartum, and some focused on the child and life in general. It was interesting to read a whole spectrum of stories, noting the similarities and differences between different stories. In addition, it’s a raw look at motherhood, speaking on topics people find too taboo to talk about, such as labor. Women are superheroes, and especially with the Roe v Wade case going on right now, it’s so important to stay educated on everything related to reproductivity and reproductive freedom. Also, this book will make you want to hug your mom. ☺️

  23. 5 out of 5

    Shannon

    A great collection of personal birth stories from a variety of women. Gathered by Amy Schumer, this collection contains experiences from incredible women (some famous, some not) who share the ups and downs of their birth and post-partum stories. This collection just further reinforced for me how strong women are and just how varied every person's experience with motherhood truly is. Great on audio with a full cast of narrators and highly recommended! A great collection of personal birth stories from a variety of women. Gathered by Amy Schumer, this collection contains experiences from incredible women (some famous, some not) who share the ups and downs of their birth and post-partum stories. This collection just further reinforced for me how strong women are and just how varied every person's experience with motherhood truly is. Great on audio with a full cast of narrators and highly recommended!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Pat Buzby

    A quick read. I enjoyed it. Made me laugh. Made me cry. Even though I had my children a hundred years ago, I remember quite a bit of it, as if it was yesterday. Pain has no memory, or people might not go back for second or third...baby. I used to tell my Child Development students that we spend a lot of time teaching how to parallel park, but not much about caring for babies/children. And you don't need a license or have to pass a test to have a baby. Interesting read. A quick read. I enjoyed it. Made me laugh. Made me cry. Even though I had my children a hundred years ago, I remember quite a bit of it, as if it was yesterday. Pain has no memory, or people might not go back for second or third...baby. I used to tell my Child Development students that we spend a lot of time teaching how to parallel park, but not much about caring for babies/children. And you don't need a license or have to pass a test to have a baby. Interesting read.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Amanda BenDor

    As a mother who in the past year gave birth, I still am connected, inspired and interested in hearing other “arrival stories”. Especially since my son’s birth was so traumatic and nothing like I ever thought it would be. Listening to this book and these stories took me back to his birth but with a different, stronger, more resilient perspective, which I needed. Over ten years ago I received my masters in Public Health with a focus on Maternal and Child Health, and sadly, many of the causes of mat As a mother who in the past year gave birth, I still am connected, inspired and interested in hearing other “arrival stories”. Especially since my son’s birth was so traumatic and nothing like I ever thought it would be. Listening to this book and these stories took me back to his birth but with a different, stronger, more resilient perspective, which I needed. Over ten years ago I received my masters in Public Health with a focus on Maternal and Child Health, and sadly, many of the causes of maternal morbidity and mortality that I studied over a decade ago, still persist today. I appreciated how the women in this book told their stories and raised important social issues such as the inequities for African American and Hispanic women in the United States. All of these experiences shared were different. All of the storytellers so brave. I can’t recommend this enough and a thank you to Amy and Christy for collecting these inspiring stories.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Alice

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Idea decent, execution bad, but, re: “women don’t tell their birth stories enough”….. have they ever seen Reddit, literally ever???? Also, didn’t love how basically every story included having a night nurse or similar. Like yay you acknowledged it but 99.9999% of us cannot relate… “There is such pressure to have as ‘natural’ a birth as possible, and then to breastfeed until the kid is fifteen.” made me actually lol tho

  27. 5 out of 5

    Chrisreadsbooks

    Don’t read this book if you are planning to have kids. You just might change your mind. Some of these women had horrific experiences, all written about here in great detail. I did find it very fascinating though - amazing what women can go through for sure. And made me think of my own prenatal experience with my pregnancies which were slightly awful in their own way, but nothing like what some of these women went through.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    This collection of essays about women becoming mothers was kind of all over the place. Most of the essays were written by famous, affluent women and while I appreciated the emphasis on including stories from varied races, sexualities, and family structures, I felt like it left out the perspectives of “normal” women. My favorite essay was by Rachel Feinstein (she gave birth during the pandemic too and I related so much to her experience).

  29. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    This book is good-but-not-great, a collection of essays (some better than others--Serena Williams's was the most insightful and affecting, from where I sit) from famous women detailing their (incredibly varied) stories about motherhood generally and the delivery process in particular. I'm past that stage now, but generally I think putting more voice to this experience is good and helpful...although I'm also not sure that I would've wanted to read this book before getting pregnant! This book is good-but-not-great, a collection of essays (some better than others--Serena Williams's was the most insightful and affecting, from where I sit) from famous women detailing their (incredibly varied) stories about motherhood generally and the delivery process in particular. I'm past that stage now, but generally I think putting more voice to this experience is good and helpful...although I'm also not sure that I would've wanted to read this book before getting pregnant!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kristina Rogers

    My own labor and delivery was nightmarish and reading about others' struggles was a therapeutic endeavor. I enjoyed the various voices in this book, but agree with others that the authors were almost entirely rich, famous and connected. I was offended by some stories that act like we all share these homeopathic choices for labor and delivery... Those are not covered by most insurance and never in my experience did I feel like I had a choice. Anyway, I want more stories like this! My own labor and delivery was nightmarish and reading about others' struggles was a therapeutic endeavor. I enjoyed the various voices in this book, but agree with others that the authors were almost entirely rich, famous and connected. I was offended by some stories that act like we all share these homeopathic choices for labor and delivery... Those are not covered by most insurance and never in my experience did I feel like I had a choice. Anyway, I want more stories like this!

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