Book review – What does it feel like being born? A memoir of maternity activism by Jodie Miller.

It’s a memoir (remember that).

Good ole Mum managed to push one more book at me this December…

What does it feel like being born? A memoir of maternity activism by Jodie Miller.

Miller invites us on her journey through the past twenty-two years where she goes from promising her husband to start trying for kids by age thirty, to then having four children (three natural bath births, and a home birth) and becoming a maternity activist.

It’s her story.

And it’s a good one.

We all love hearing beautiful birth stories, but Miller also doesn’t hold back on the graphic details of bearing down, feelings of POP, and of course the pleasant poo experience that every mum worries about.

But really, it’s a woman’s journey as a volunteer midwifery advocate fighting for the voice of women; fighting for our right to be heard during our pregnancy journey and to have services in place to provide safe action to those voices.

However, the reader could be easily swayed to feel judged. I do not believe this is Miller’s intent.

It is clear that Miller lives a particular lifestyle with particular beliefs and is a strong advocate for natural births, breastfeeding, and home remedies. Respectfully, her birthing experiences were textbook and almost fairytale like.

I really enjoyed reading Miller’s story, and her birthing experiences, despite how different her natural bath births were compared to my emergency and planned c-sections. Her story of midwifery advocacy is inspiring and informative and it’s great to know there are women fighting for our voices to be heard.

I’m personally not a fan of some of the forums/groups/magazines mentioned in the memoir because in my experience with them, I’ve found them to be divisive and judgmental, causing more harm then good. But they hold a place for a certain type and everyone deserves a village. Everyone.

I recommend this read to women who have already had children, be it one or three or more. (Not the soon to be first time Mums).

I recommend this book to the self aware women that are confidant in the birthing choices that they made, or have made peace with the way their births resulted when aiming for a natural birth but ended up with a c-section.

If you are someone who feels like you failed by having a c-section, then this book is not for you, I don’t think it will make you feel any better about yourself. And P.S, there is no such thing as failing when it comes to bringing a baby into this world. It’s tough no matter what.

Miller and I have had different journeys. She has had four natural births, and I am about to have my third c-section. Miller breastfed successfully, I have yet to breastfeed any of my children without mix feeding. Our journeys are different. Our reasons and experiences are different. Neither right or wrong. I get this because I’m confidant in the choices I’ve made to bring my healthy babies into this world. I’m not easily judged and I truly believe the intent of this memoir is not to judge others, but to remind us that our voices can be so easily hushed by medical professionals and by the system.

I recommend this book to a very particular audience, because it’s thought provoking.

Tomorrow I have a midwife appointment, and there are a few things I’ll be voicing because after reading this book, I’ve realised that concerns I’ve had throughout this pregnancy, have not been heard or answered. Tomorrow I’m getting my voice back, and people are going to hear it.


As a reader and an author, knowing that your book has given someone back their power, is pretty special.


Find out more about Jodie Miller at

T x


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