Moving and eye-opening

Sophie is a midwife. And she is also infertile. This moving memoir follows Sophie’s quest to become a mother. She experiences some terrible lows. It’s hard to imagine how anyone can experience traumatic pregnancies whilst also helping mothers bring their new-borns into the world. I’ve read a couple of memoirs which explore similar themes. One from a father’s point of view and one from another midwife. They have all been eye-opening and, while they each have very different stories, I admire them all for sharing their stories. In doing so they will no doubt help others feel they are not alone when going through something similar.

Sophie is incredibly open and honest about her physical and mental health during this period. I felt very connected to what she was going through, just from reading her words and despite having no personal reference to most of what she experienced. She uses the memoir to highlight ways the health profession could better support vulnerable mums. She is a catalyst for change because her perspective, as both midwife and mother, is invaluable.

I’d recommend this book to anyone who has experienced infertility and baby loss, but also for those supporting someone going through it. And, for anyone who is curious about the world around them. I enjoy reading books that give me a different perspective. I will remember Sophie’s experience, and have added it to a list of life experiences I have never gone through but now know something about. It might one day help me to connect with someone who is going through an unbelievably tough experience.

Similar memoirs I’ve reviewed that you may also be interested in:

Frontline Midwife by Anna Kent – tales of a nurse and midwife who works in war-torn and poor countries. Reflects on the differences between countries, but also the strength of women which is common in all locations.

Low Road – historical fiction, which follows the path of a child whose mother is born after she is raped, and the baby dies.

Trigger warning: The book explores themes such as baby loss and infertility which may be triggering for some people.

Hannah is the author of The Cactus Surgeon, a nature & health memoir. Living in London, Hannah suffered burnout and was diagnosed with a functional neurological disorder. With no information available to help her, she found her own way to get better.

Growing up in a garden centre, her childhood was full of nature and plants. This was in stark contrast to the concrete of the capital, where she became unwell. In searching for the answers to her illness, she wonders whether being torn from her pot and replanted in a more hostile environment was the reason her body started to malfunction. After seeking out alternative therapies, and moving to the countryside of North Essex, her ‘green recovery’ continued. It’s a book of mindful moments, savouring the small wonders of nature.

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