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Resources for the Childbearing Year



Heart Centered Pregnancy Journal by Nikki Shaheed

Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering: A Doctor’s Guide to Natural Childbirth and Gentle Early Parenting Choices by Dr. Sarah Buckley

Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy by Genevieve Howland

Ancient Map for Modern Birth — Pam England

Transformed by Birth — Britta Bushnell

The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth by Henci Goer

Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn by Penny Simkin, Janet Whalley, Ann Keppler, Janelle Durham, and April Bolding

The Complete Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth by Sheila Kitzinger

Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth – Ina May Gaskin

The Natural Pregnancy Book by Aviva Romm – full of herbal remedies for common concerns in addition to typical pregnancy and birth education

Birthing from Within — Pam England

Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year by Susun Weed

Natural Hospital Birth: The Best of Both Worlds by Cynthia Gabriel

Active Birth – Janet Balaskas

Spiritual Midwifery – Ina May Gaskin

Mindful Birthing: Training the Mind, Body, and Heart for Childbirth and Beyond by Nancy Bardacke


The best book to get your partner or other support person:

The Birth Partner – Penny Simkin



Newborn Care


7 Easy Exercises for an Optimal Pregnancy and Labor (6 minutes)

Did you know that you can do prenatal exercises to help your body and baby be in optimal shape for a quicker, easier natural childbirth? Watch this video to see seven great ones.

The Business of Being Born

Birth: it’s a miracle. A rite of passage. A natural part of life. But more than anything, birth is a business. Compelled to find answers after a disappointing birth experience with her first child, actress Ricki Lake recruits filmmaker Abby Epstein to explore the maternity care system in America.

Birth By the Numbers (20 minute short video)

Join Gene Declercq and the rest of the Birth by the Numbers team to explore how the United States is doing on a number of maternal and child health indicators. Are we doing better? Worse? Tune in to find out this answer and more!

Reducing Fear of Birth in U.S. Culture

A great TED-talk by Ina May Gaskin.

Why Not Home?

Why would doctors who attend birth in hospitals choose to have their own babies at home? What do they know about birth that others don’t? Join Jessicca Moore, filmmaker and nurse practitioner, on a compelling journey through maternity care in the United States. Told through the lens of doctors, nurses, and midwives, Why Not Home? examines the latest evidence on risks and rewards of different birth settings. The film presents a balanced and accessible view on the latest research, along with moving personal stories of medical practitioners faced with big decisions for their own growing families. Viewers are challenged to move beyond preconceived ideas, and to envision a fresh future for maternity care in America.

Orgasmic Birth

85 minute award-winning feature documentary that has aired around the world. 7 women and their partners invite you to share their most intimate moments. Joyous, sensuous and revolutionary, Orgasmic Birth brings the ultimate challenge to our cultural myths by inviting viewers to see the emotional, spiritual, and physical heights attainable through birth.

Internet Resources

Pregnancy & Birth



Light Footsteps ebook: Herbal Remedies for a Peaceful Postpartum

Postpartum Plan PDF (DONA)

The Fourth Trimester aka Why Your Newborn Baby is Only Happy in Your Arms

James McKenna’s Sleep Laboratory — Lots of evidence-based information about safe cosleeping,  bedsharing, and breastsleeping.

Forward Cross Carry — This is the babywearing wrap technique that I’m most likely to show you at a postpartum visit.

Why use a doula?

Cesarean Section


Tackling the First 24 Hours – A helpful guide to understanding the first 24 hours of breastfeeding and setting yourself up for success

Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine Protocols — Evidence-based briefs for a wide-range of breastfeeding concerns. Great to share with your pediatrician.

La Leche League

International Breastfeeding Center

Kelly Mom

Breastfeeding your newborn — what to expect in the early weeks

Childbirth Classes

Essential Oils in Pregnancy/Postpartum



Delivering Strength Podcast — Real Talk about pregnancy, birth and postpartum health.  (Locally made Cleveland podcast!)

Listen to Light Footsteps on Delivering Strength here.

The Birth Hour –Birth Stories from women in all types of birth situations! Check out a collection of all birth stories on the Birth Hour here.

The Expectful Podcast

Birth Allowed Radio

Evidence Based Birth

Taking Back Birth

Women’s Health / Fertility / Mensturation

Natural MD Radio

Fertility Friday Radio


Gentle Sleep

Isla-Grace  : Courses, handouts, and community for learning about normal sleep patterns and how the whole family can get more sleep.

What is normal infant sleep?  An anthropologist discusses what we can expect from our infants as biologically normal for sleep.  It might be different from the popular narrative at this time!

Parenting Support Podcasts

Mindful Mama

Authentic Parenting