"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

Monday, April 27, 2009

"Ecstatic Birth--Nature's Hormonal Blueprint for Labor"

This is by far the best article I have read explaining the complex interplay of hormones during labor, birth, and the early postpartum period. Written by a doctor (Sarah Buckley) it also details the damaging effects of commonly used drugs during labor on these hormones and the birth process. As I read and reflected on my own 7 labors and births I realized that my experiences totally confirmed what she was saying. I feel sadness and remorse for the births where drugs were involved and gratitude and joy for the births that were allowed to happen drug-free and relatively undisturbed. How I wish every woman would read this without having to make the same mistakes I did with my first 4 births. The sad reality is that close to 80% of women in America are using these drugs during their labors and births and being mistakenly assured by the medical profession that they are perfectly safe for them and their babies. The article ends with this well-said summary by Dutch professor of obstetrics G. Kloosterman:

"Spontaneous labour in a normal woman is an event marked by a number of processes so complicated and so perfectly attuned to each other that any interference will only detract from the optimal character. The only thing required from the bystanders is that they show respect for this awe-inspiring process by complying with the first rule of medicine--nil nocere [Do no harm]."

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Midwife’s Experience with Hypnobabies

I just had to repost this here as some great examples of how wonderfully well Hypnobabies helps moms have faster, easier births and also how empowering natural childbirth and home birth can be.

"I have been a Hypnobabies instructor for a year now and would like to share some of my experiences. I have taught three classes (actually in the middle of one). I am a home birth midwife and all of my Hypnobabies students have been my clients, except for one couple planning a hospital birth.

First class:
One hospital couple, the other two couples were my clients, planning a home birth. All of them were first time mothers,and all of them had good experiences using Hypnobabies. The hospital couple used their hypnosis and avoided all medications.

One of the home birth mothers used hypnosis during 24 hours of pre-birthing waves. By the time she was 3 centimeters, she was well rested and nourished. That was at 10 pm. When a mother is 3 centimeters, I ask them to get some sleep if they can. I remind them to put their Hypnobabies CD on, and this is what this mother did. During the night, I got up a few times to check the baby’s heart tones. The mother was resting well. She got up at 9 am the next morning, and when I checked her she was 8 centimeters. She had her baby two hours later.

The second home birth mother was also able to rest through the night using Hypnobabies. In fact, I missed the birth. She had called me at 1:00 am with pressure wasves every 10 minutes lasting 30 seconds. I reminded her to listen to her CD, use her hypnosis and get some rest. She was asked to call me as soon as things changed. Her husband called me at 6:30 am and told me the pressure waves just started to be 5 minutes apart, lasting 60 seconds. I was on my way when he called back 25 minutes later and said he saw the bag of waters bulging. I then heard the mother pushing. Five minutes later, she pushed her baby out. She pushed for a total of five minutes. When I arrived, I asked her if she used Hypnobabies during the night. She said, “Oh yes. It helpd me rest and relax really well. I even slept.”

Second class: Three couples, all home birth.

The first mother didn’t practice her hypnosis much, so she did not use it during her birth. Though, she did fine (VBAC).

The second mother practiced a lot (first time mother), and she used it through 24 hours of pre-birthing waves to help her rest, relax and sleep. By the time I saw her, she was 3 centimeters. She went from 3 centimeters to 8 centimeters in 20 minutes, and had her baby soon after that. She felt that Hypnobabies helped her tremendously through the prebirthing waves.

The third mother (third vaginal birth), who just gave birth today, used her hypnosis throughout her birthing time. She relaxed beautifully.

I have 5 couples in the third class, an we are half way through. They are all first time mothers. I can’t wait to see how they do.

I have been a home birth midwife for over 25 years now. Hypnobabies is amazing for these women! The big difference between teaching home birth couples versus hospital couples is that home birthers already feel empowered, educated and well informed. They don’t have to fight the system. Also, they don’t seem to like the bubble of peace very much. When people approach them with negativity about home birth horror stories, they WANT to say something. And, they do. They feel empowered doing so.
It is such a blessing to be involved with strong, powerful women!"

Carolyn Drake

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Rixa's blog

I just can't say enough good about this blog. (It's "Stand and Deliver" in my blog list.) She covers some really important issues regarding childbirth in America. Her latest posts: "Cesearean Section and VBAC--Again" and "Cesearean Section and VBAC--Yet Again" contain links to some very well written and thorough articles on the VBAC and cesearean issue. Rixa, herself is very well spoken and well-read. I'm enjoying her dissertation although it's taking me a while to get through it.

The VBAC issue hits very close to home for me--my 3rd child was born by cesearean section because of an artificial pitocin induction at 38.5 weeks. It changed my future options for all subsequent births and was the catalyst for my research into homebirth. Very important reading for anyone of childbearing age!!!!