Tuesday, September 29, 2009

First Births

It's been a while since I have written. I have had a number of wonderful births and just needed some time to work through getting busier, paperwork etc. My topic today is the first time birth.
The joy & accomplishment of the first birth is something I had forgotten. I had been thinking I would be very selective and take very few first time moms, knowing there were enough moms working on their second or more babies. and leave the first-time moms with their longer labors for hospital midwifery. But a few wonderful, persuasive moms have reminded me of the incredible strength, determination, and wonder of the first birth. My first time moms have been incredible, so centered, in working through their labor, so focused on bringing their healthy babies into the world. All of these new moms have learned to find their strength, whether they were laboring in the tub, lying on their beds, or walking in their living rooms ( or hotel rooms, in one case). The joy of these couples as they welcome their baby after their hard work, to know it actually paid off, and they are holding their crying, suckling baby! It's incredible! Different than moms bringing their second or third... they already know about the hard work, they know it will end, and they are focused on their family, introducing their toddler to the new baby etc. It's more straight forward for my moms birthing again, except sometimes they are working through or healing from issues from their first births. Now, the great news is, my first-time moms will not have any issues to work through, they are amazingly strong, powerful, smart women who know what they are capable of accomplishing. They will continue this as they raise wonderful children...and so the world changes for the better!

Monday, August 17, 2009


Got home around 4:30am this morning after a lovely birth of a beautiful baby boy. Their third baby, their biggest baby! A great family affair. Attending the birth besides the Dad, was baby's Grandmother & his older sister. Downstairs was his great-grandmother, his great aunt, and his older brother. Mom had previously been induced twice, so this birth was a great learning experience to trust, to believe in her own body to accomplish this act of labor. And of course it all worked beautifully, gradually increasing in intensity, until just when you think, Enough... it's over, and you get to hold your beautiful baby. And then he frowns with his brows, and purses his lips, and finally lets out a great cry, reminding us of his story, his experience through labor!
I also watch Dad caring for his partner, as she goes through this labor of love, and her mom, also helping and caring. There is such love & trust & peace in the room. Everyone trusting in the process, of a new life coming into the world. The family had recently lost a loved one, and yet I know that his presence was also there, watching the cycle of life being continued, in his own home, as grief and love blend.
After the birth of one of my babies, I was resting, breastfeeding, and I dreamed my husband's grandfather stopped in our house. He said he just wanted to see the baby before he left. I told my husband about the the dream, and of course, shortly there after, my husband's mom called to say that his grandfather had just passed away.
And so today's blog is about Trust. Trusting in own bodies to accomplish the tasks we are created to accomplish. Trusting in the cycle of life; birth, love, death. Trusting in letting go... as I get ready to take another daughter off to college. My fourth child I have had to let go of...trusting that she is ready, or maybe that I am ready...?

Monday, August 10, 2009


Today, I have been thinking a lot about patience. I have two multip moms ( one expecting #3 and one #2 ) who are ready to go now, and I have 1 more for the following week. My moms are learning about patience,...desiring for their labor to hurry up and get started, so it can end. They are tired of carrying the weight of baby around in their uterus, instead wanting to hold baby in their arms. They want to be patient, know they should continue to be patient, but are so ready to begin with their new baby. These moms know how hectic and tired the first few weeks of baby are, but still want labor to start now! I also learn about patience, as I wait with my moms. Who will go tonight? or tomorrow? As much as I try & plan, it is out of my hands, I will be patient and wait with them, and know it will all work out.
I attended my first sweat lodge yesterday, and again for me, the lesson was patience. To know my future, my business' future, is not possible, instead I'm reminded to stay grounded, to have trust & faith, or once again patience. One of my moms was admiring my ease with life's lessons, but I know we are all being taught lessons along the path we each travel. My prayer for my moms is patience, all lessons become easier with patience, with time comes grace and acceptance.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


One of the concepts I always try to address during a consult visit is the significance of birth. My parents know how significant the birth is to them, they await eagerly for their child and are preparing their homes & attending classes, essentially counting down the days; but it is also significant to me. I have always felt slightly voyeuristic at a birth, I am a witness to the love shared between partners, the loving touch & kiss, the shared awe in their eyes as they gaze at their infant; it becomes a moment out of time. I do consider those moments a privilege that I was asked to share with them. So even though I am working, and perhaps thinking of the next thing to do for the baby... is the cord still pulsing, the placenta coming, listening to baby's cry etc; I am also aware of the sanctity of the moment, I become part of the family also. So I wish to thank all my moms & dads out there, for allowing me to share that time with them. There are some families that I have been able to attend the births of all of their children. There should be a Auntie Midwife title, I feel. I wish I could celebrate with them all their birthdays, but it would be endless.
Sometimes I feel like I get a glimpse of their futures in those special moments after birth. I can see the love surrounding these infants... will they be artists or musicians, bankers or lawyers, doctors or carpenters? The future is ahead of them. But I know they received the best start in their life. Born into their mom's loving hands, with their father and family around to welcome them!

Friday, August 7, 2009


August 6, 2009

I’m 4 months into my new home birth business, Gentle Birth Care, and I’ve been thinking about writing about it as a blog. I think people are very interested in birth experiences, either because they are pregnant and desire reassurance about having a beautiful birth for themselves; or because they have given birth or seen a birth recently and want to review and recapture, or perhaps looking for ideas to improve their future birth experiences. Giving birth is one of the most fundamental and important events in any woman’s or man’s life.The power and energy involved in this monumental task can’t help but have a profound effect on all.
So I thought reviewing and talking about my births, sharing stories and ideas, discussing alternative remedies & techniques might help all my moms and families out there, as they either get ready to birth, or as remember their own birth stories.
As a quick overview or recap, since I left West Suburban Midwife Assoc., I have mostly delivered some wonderful moms expecting their 2nd child. Most had had great 1st births either with me, or other midwives and were looking now for the ease of delivering in their own homes, their own beds. The idea of not having to leave their toddlers behind or of including their toddler in their birth experience played a big part. Most were desirous of not having the hospital regimen disrupt the power and beauty of giving birth. Most of my moms had a water birth. Several of my moms have reached down with their own hands to help bring their babies into the world. All my babies have been stunningly beautiful, some with or with-out hair, all with that wide-eyed alertness as they gazed into their mothers’ or fathers’ faces. All have greedily learned to suck at their mother’s breasts, with their hands unconsciously getting in their way. I’ve had a few more girls than boys, so far. With the second or fifth birth, my moms still are so thankful that labor is tough but manageable. There is pain or discomfort, but they know it will soon end and they will hold their baby. The end goal is in site, and they know already that it is well-worth it. Most can’t believe how quick and relatively pain-free the birth was, but also how intense at times it was.