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Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos: 04/04/19

Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos

Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos by Lucy Knisley is the latest graphic novel memoir. From the cover and title it's obvious about her venture into motherhood. The cheery cover is inviting. But this is a heavy hitting, anger inducing, emotional rollercoaster. The book covers miscarriage, pre-eclampsia, eclampsia, C-section, maternal mortality, and dismissive male obgyns.

Lucy Knisley opens not with her first pregnancy, but with her sex education and her experience with different kinds of birth control. Straightaway there are frank warnings about different side effects, that while many women won't experience, some will.

Then she describes her first two pregnancies which ended in miscarriages. This section brought things home, as I went through two miscarriages before my son was born. Her experience though were different, in that she didn't have a DNC (but probably should have from how long she ended up suffering and bleeding.

Now in her case, her miscarriages could be traced to something that could be fixed with surgery. But she mentions that most miscarriages aren't so easily traced to something that can be fixed.

And then she gets pregnant a third time and this one covers most of the remainder of the book. It's an emotional rollercoaster, first because of the natural worry that comes with a pregnancy after miscarriage. But there is also the extreme morning sickness, the fatigue, the swelling, the warning signs of pre-eclampsia that get ignored.

This memoir also includes photographs of her post delivery showing just how poorly things went for her. The good news is she and her son survived. The infuriating truth is, it didn't have to this bad. Her delivery and recovery could and should have been better if her ob-gyn hadn't been so dismissive.

Anyway, this memoir is as well written as her previous ones but it covers the most sensitive and emotional subject yet. I recommend reading it, but if you have recently gone through a miscarriage, a rough pregnancy, give yourself time.

Lucy Kinsley has two more books in the works: Wocks and Stepping Stones, both scheduled for sometime next year. Wocks will be a picture book about "the search for the perfect rock." Stepping Stones will be the first of a middle grade trilogy based on her life.

Five stars

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