"Giving birth is an ecstatic jubilant adventure not available to males.

It is a woman's crowning creative experience of a lifetime." ~ Dr. John Stevenson



"The Road Less Traveled..." of Parenthood

Following your instincts instead of the crowd

"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood...I took the one less traveled by and that has made all the difference."

Robert Frost

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Trailer to The Business of Being Born

video

This film is a must-see for every expectant mom in America. It does a great job of exposing what's really going on in US labor & delivery rooms. I do wish they had shown a Hypnobabies birth so people could see that birth doesn't have to be painful. But there are more films in the making, so here's hoping. . .

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Homebirth Slideshow

video

This isn't my homebirth, but pics of several others. It also has some interesting statistics. My favorite line: "Homebirth: Safe, Empowering, Gentle, Powerful, Normal."

Sunday, January 25, 2009

More links to check out.

I added two links under "Great Links" to movie trailers I loved to watch while pregnant. I'll post them here as well in case you have a hard time finding them.

http://www.birthasweknowit.com/trailer.html

This one does have a heartbreaking scene where some uncaring doctors roughly handle a baby during a c-section. But then the contrast between that "birth" and the one where a mom calmly and peacefully gives birth in a water tank is pretty profound. I love the music in this film. I read some Amazon reviews on the film and it seems like it gets a little too new-agey for me, but the trailer is great!

http://www.orgasmicbirth.com/

Word of caution: if all you've experienced or heard of before is medicalized hospital birth--be prepared to be blown away. =) I love this film. It starts out with a few scenes that may make you blush (it's discrete though) but then goes on to show lots of great interviews with knowlegeable, qualified health professionals. It depicts the births of 11 couples. Great stuff!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Obstetrician Song

This is hilarious. http://www.compleatmother.com/audio/

New link to check out

I added this new link (over on the left under Great Links). It is a document written by doctors for the purpose of educating other doctors about the myths and truths of circumcision. Every parent of a boy and every expectant parent of a boy should read this.

The more I educate myself about common medical procedures in this country, the more I realize how uninformed and misinformed we are in this country--a country that considers itself more enlightened and educated than most of the rest of the world--when in reality we are some of the most ingorant people on the planet. I believe it stems from a medical community who is educated and funded by those with an agenda (Big Pharma with profits to make) and a gullible people who worship those misinformed doctors as though they are gods.

Do I sound angry? Well, every time I read about circumcision, I'm saddened and angered that I ignorantly consented and allowed doctors to circumcise my two oldest sons. Thank heavens I learned the truth before giving birth to my next two sons. I just wish everyone would take the time to educate themselves and stop relying on the mainstream organizations who have obvious conflicts of interest for their info!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

So hard to say good-bye. . .

OK, I know I'm 43 and I know 7 kids is a lot, (granted only 4 are still at home) but how does a woman who has come to love the pregnancy/birth/babymoon process say "I'm done. I will never experience that again?" My last three pregnancies/births have been the most incredible wonderful, life-changing experiences of my life. It makes me sad to say I'm done. Yet I know I'm done--my family now feels complete.

I will miss the excitement and joy of that positive pregnancy test, the first stirrings of life within me, the later constant but delightful kicking and moving while I'm trying to fall asleep at night, the look of surprise and the delighted laugh of a toddler when they feel the baby inside my belly kick their hands, the wonderful feeling of having another spirit, pure and innocent, constantly with me, the INTENSE, exciting sensations of labor and birth, and especially those first magical moments when I get to meet the little person I carried inside me for 9 months. I love the motherlove hormones, the altered state of consciousness when I am totally absorbed in working to bring forth my baby, the sweet smell of my newborn baby's head, holding my baby tummy to tummy while feeding them at my breast and marveling at the incredibly soft skin and the sheer beauty of their tiny perfectness. I love the quiet, yet supreme knowledge that I am a partner with God in the creation of life. Can anything else in the world compare to all this??

One thing allows me to say good-bye to all this--It is the faith and hope in this scripture:
"Those who are sealed in holy temples and who faithfully keep their covenants will receive God's glory, which 'shall be a fulness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever' (D&C 132:19)."

I don't have to say good-bye forever, only for "a little while."

Lotus Birth

I've been thinking about lotus birth lately, mainly because of a Hypnobabies email. Someone had links to these articles: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/321368/lotus_birth_a_gentler_way_to_come_into.html?page=2&cat=52
http://www.sarahjbuckley.com/articles/leaving-well-alone.htm They and the subsequent HB posts by moms who actually had lotus births totally changed my thinking on the issue.

When I first heard about Lotus birth, I thought "These women have taken the natural childbirth concept one step too far. Yuck! Why would anyone want to do that?" The articles answered that question and a little more research totally took away the "ick" factor for me and made me wish I had done a lotus birth with Talita.

I had wondered why with each one of my children born at home I hesitated when it came time to cut the cord. My initital reaction was "No! I don't know why, but don't do it!" Then I would always remind myself that it was okay because the cord had stopped pulsing. What else was there to wait for?

Well, how about it doesn't need to be cut at all? The cord will shrivel up and fall off on its own, usually within 2 days (much faster than cutting even after pulsation stops.) The umbilicus heals better and faster and the baby receives all the blood and fluids nature intends them to have while they make this transition from the womb to the outside world. This amazing organ came from the same cells that formed the baby's eyes, heart and brain. It is part of her! It makes sense to wait for it to naturally separate from the baby when he or she is ready to let go of this lifeline they have known for 9 months. The placenta can be treated with salt and essential oils, etc. (after letting it drain well) so it doesn't smell and then it can be wrapped up well so no one even has to see it if they don't want to.

The advantages? Well, for starters, babies born this way rarely lose any of their birth weight. (Mine all took nearly two weeks to get back to their birth weight.) There are many other advantages I won't go into here, but the one that is the most compelling for me is that a lotus birth virtually ensures that at least the first hour after the birth belongs all to the mother to enjoy bonding and loving her baby with absolutely no interference or separation!

Talita's birth was amazing and wonderful, but if I had any regrets it would be how I let the midwives handle the third stage. If I had it to do over I would have tried for a lotus birth. Even if we decided because of logistics to cut the cord after an hour or two, I would have had my baby all to myself during that wonderful, magical time when the motherlove hormones are flowing the strongest! (In all fairness, though, it was her Dad and brother who were holding and admiring her in the other room while I delivered the placenta--not some nurse who had no emotional connection to us.)

I believe I would have had an easier time birthing the placenta--when it was ready--not when the midwives thought it should be ready. Care providers, to be fair, just want to finish things up and go home and get some needed sleep! This is where an unassisted birth has another advantage--no one is there to rush your body to do something before it's ready to.

Anyway, what I've learned (perhaps too late for me, but not for others) is that even in homebirth settings you need to know exactly what you want and BE ASSERTIVE! The other thing I learned is that here is yet another example of how wise God and nature are. If we would just stop interfering and learn to trust in the natural process everything would go a lot better for mom and baby--just the way it was intended it to be!