Sunday, September 22, 2013

2013 Books in Review #11: Maternity Rolls

Maternity Rolls came through on a search I was doing on disability issues so I borrowed it from the library and read it very quickly once it was in my hands.
Maternity Rolls is written by a woman who was in a car accident at the age of 6 years old and was left with paralysis from her breast level down. She had to learn to live life in a wheelchair and with a plethora of health issues that stemmed from her paralysis and it's effects on her body systems.
She married her high school sweetheart and they decided to have a child together, and then 8 years later, they had another. She discusses in detail the physical and emotional challenges of pregnancy for her, as a disabled woman, with the acknowledgement that although her voice is just the voice of one person who is disabled (and therefore not representative of all persons with physical disabilities that wish to have children), it is at least one voice, which is more than she was able to find in print when she was looking as a prospective parent, and then pregnant woman, and then mother.
Her book resonated with me on many levels. While I am an able bodied person, my spouse has a physical disability (unable to use his left arm, and walks with an altered gait because of lingering effects of a stroke on his left leg). Her discussions of parenting with a disability were what I was expecting to find, and were indeed interesting to me, but also deeply interesting for me were her discussion of how people treated (and treat) her. How people responded to the notion that she may even *want* children because of course she was an "other" as a woman with such an obvious physical difference from the typical. How medical professionals treated her as a patient. How society views her when she is out with her children. Those discussion of policy and social construct have always been interesting to me, but now to my family they are deeply personal and important.
I'd highly recommend her book to anyone facing disability and pregnancy/parenting. I'd also recommend it to anyone wishing to learn more about these subjects.
This was my 48th book of the year, and my 37th library book.

No comments:

Post a Comment