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Reviewed by Heather Osborne for Readers' Favorite
Push: Labor and Delivery from the Inside Out by Catherine Stack, N.D., C.N.M., is a brilliant non-fiction look at the life of a labor and delivery nurse. She lays out at the very beginning who this book is for, and is immensely candid about her feelings on what goes on in the labor ward, including crazy requests women have while in labor to epidurals. From admission to unexpected births, and even to the sadder parts of the job, Stack fills every page with hope and optimism. As a mother, I always find it fascinating to read about what nurses and midwives might be thinking of the women in their care. I personally loved the part about birthing plans. It really made me consider what I would write next time I give birth!
I was pleased to read that Stack didn’t shy away from talking about the more heartbreaking moments of her job—lost babies, surgical emergencies, and even down to the relationships between the mothers and fathers she saw in the ward. It must be immensely hard to wonder what happens to a lot of the people one sees after they have their babies. I really enjoyed the casual, reassuring tone Stack took with her experiences, and even when discussing the types of nurses on the ward (she says they are everywhere, and now I will look for them), she was wholly appreciative of everyone she worked with. I would definitely recommend Push: Labor and Delivery from the Inside Out by Catherine Stack, N.D., C.N.M, for a mom-to-be because it gives that hidden insight to what labor nurses experience on a day-to-day basis, and provides a reminder that, even in the heat of a stressful and wonderful experience, we are all human.