jump to navigation

looking for birth stories to be included on my website December 7, 2007

Posted by guinever in birth stories, birth story, doula, family, health, home birth, homebirth, homeschooling, midwifery.
1 comment so far

I am looking for more birth stories for my website. Since I have only birthed five children, I am limited in the number I have to offer, so I’m asking for yours. I will be choosy in the birth stories that I publish. This is a natural birth website. This fact doesn’t rule out births where drugs and surgery were involved if you were well-informed during your pregnancy and labor and made decisions accordingly.

  • What I’m looking for: It doesn’t matter where you gave birth– home, birth center or hospital. Things to include would be what you did during pregnancy to prepare yourself for a natural birth, what techniques helped during labor and what things didn’t. If you chose medical intervention, tell me why and how it helped you (or not.) I’m looking for birth stories that will inspire other women to birth naturally. Keep it positive and upbeat.
  • I’m also looking for HBAC and VBAC stories. If you don’t know what that is, then it doesn’t apply to you. In other words, I want to hear about your journey to vaginal birth after surgical birth.
  • What I’m not looking for: standard induction, epidural hospital births. There are plenty of other places on the web who publish those. I don’t want to hear about how painful or unbearable your labor was until you got the drugs.
  • Do not include the name of your hospital, doctor or midwife
  • Guidelines for submission: Use a spell checker. Have someone else read it for grammar and clarity of thought. I don’t have time to do a lot of editing. Do not type in all caps. There is no word limit. It can be as long as you want provided that everything you include adds to the story and isn’t redundant. Absolutely no swearing or crass language will be accepted. Common birth language like “vagina” is perfectly fine when used appropriately.
  • How to submit: You can cut and paste your story into the comment section at the bottom of this article and it will be sent to me via e-mail (it will not appear on the website here). If accepted, it will be posted on this site in a separate article and be listed with other birth stories.

I look forward to reading your birth story.

the joy of natural childbirth: a birth in pictures November 28, 2007

Posted by guinever in birth, birth stories, doula, health, home birth, homebirth, labor, midwifery, pregnancy.

With permission from the couple, I am pleased to share with you a birth in pictures. I include these on my website so that you can see the joy of natural childbirth. I have decided not to caption the pictures below, but rather describe them here first.

The mom had been pushing for awhile and moved to the bathroom. Birth was close when I started snapping these photos. In attendance at this planned homebirth of a first baby, were a certified nurse midwife, the midwife’s assistant who is a midwife in training, and me–the couple’s friend, doula and childbirth educator.

The photos begin with the quiet stillness in between contractions, with mom blowing out. Notice how she has her jaw, open and relaxed. The next is the determination of pushing during a contraction. Instinctively, she holds her breath and puts her chin on her chest, pushing until she needs to breathe. She takes a breath and then pushes some more. The baby crowns and is about to be born so she stands up. The father looks on in eager anticipation as his baby is about to born. The midwife supports the baby’s head, protecting mom’s perineum. There’s a little bit more blood than usual because the baby has a compound presentation, meaning an arm is coming out with the head.

The baby is born into the hands of her daddy and lifted into the arms of her mother. See the joy, the adoration, the exhilaration of both parents. This is a tiny peek into the intimacy of the moment of natural birth.

This photo story ends with the babe wrapped in a towel, the new family still in the bathroom. Not pictured: the couple climbs into bed where the baby nurses and the placenta is born.

Enjoy. You are about to witness a birth in pictures.




these women show their doctors CPD was a farce: a video November 17, 2007

Posted by guinever in birth, health, home birth, homebirth, midwifery, pregnancy.
Tags: , , , , , ,

Many cesareans are done because the doctor diagnoses CPD which stands for cephalopelvic disproportion. This means that the pelvis is too small to birth the baby or the baby’s head is too big for the pelvis or a little of both. The problem with this diagnosis is that it is proven incorrect when the woman goes on to birth a baby vaginally, often a bigger baby. Here is a slideshow of women who had a c-section for CPD and then later had a vaginal birth. For more information on this topic, read the article Can my baby be too big for my pelvis?

Let’s give a big thanks to icanvoices for posting this. For more information about cesarean, and vaginal birth after cesarean, go to International Cesarean Awareness Network.

for trial of labor’s blog tag: your homebirth questions answered September 21, 2007

Posted by guinever in birth, health, home birth, homebirth, midwifery, pregnancy.
1 comment so far

Dear Trial of Labor blogger: I’d love to answer your homebirth questions!

Have you considered homebirth as an option for labor and delivery with a previous/upcoming birth?
Yes, I have had 2 homebirths after having had 3 hospital births. My birth stories are linked below.

Why did you (or did you not) consider homebirth?
Before ever being pregnant, I always thought I would have a birth center birth then a home birth. Well, when I was expecting my first baby, there were no birth centers around, so I opted for a hospital birth with a CNM with my first two births. For my third birth, I looked into homebirth, but ended up switching midwives and hospitals (traveling nearly an hour) instead of having a homebirth. It was a lot cheaper for us to have the hospital birth since insurance covered it and finances in the end were the deciding factor for me. After that birth, I started attending births as a doula and decided I never wanted to have a hospital birth again. So my fourth and fifth babies were born in the comfort of my living room.

What do you see as the major advantages for homebirth, and what are your justifications? I don’t know where to start. Labor and birth are so much more comfortable at home. I don’t have to worry about when to go to the birth place since I’m already there. I don’t have to experience active labor in a moving vehicle (that was always a drag for me especially for my second birth when I did transition in the car). At home, I’m in charge. No one takes my baby away to the nursery. Labor doesn’t slow down because I’m at the hospital. No paperwork (well, there’s a little, but it’s not reams). Only people I want at my birth are there. (no never ending parade of nurses and residents) I can birth my baby where ever I want–in a tub, in the kitchen, in the living room, bathroom, outside–and I can be in whatever position works at the time–standing, squatting, sitting, lying down, on all fours. Pretty much, anything goes. No stirrups. No bright lights. No threat of an episiotomy. No drug pushers disguised as labor nurses. My chosen midwife looks at me, the laboring mothering, listens to me, watches my body language for an indication of where I’m at in labor instead of looking to the EFM and pushing for constant cervical checks. No beeping machines, no IV’s. My midwife quietly and gently checks baby’s heart tones where I’m at. (I don’t have to go lie down in bed for the nurse’s convenience) No shift changes. My midwife and doula are here for me. They won’t go home because they’re off the clock.

What do you see as the major obstacles for homebirth? For me, it was the legality for the midwives. Technically, in my state, only licensed midwives can do homebirths, but the state stopped issuing licenses in the 1970s. Very lame. Legally, CNMs can do homebirths, but most don’t. Some malpractice insurance companies won’t let them or they would lose their policy. There’s only a few doctors who will backup midwives who do homebirths. So I think this is an obstacle.

Was your husband “on board?” Definitely. In fact, after our first homebirth, my husband said, “Why didn’t we do this before?”

That’s the answer to all your questions, but I did want to add that for me, part of having a safe homebirth was having a back-up plan in case transfer was required. My husband and I met with a doctor who knew our plans for birth and he was willing to take care of me if I needed to go to the hospital. He said his main concerns were shoulder dystocia and hemorrhaging after the birth. I didn’t tell him that I was prepared for either option. We would do the Gaskin maneuver (not many docs know about this, but it works everytime for getting those big shoulders out!) And for possible bleeding, I had an herb on hand to use for my first homebirth and for my second, my midwife carried pitocin. Also, my hematocrit was right where it should be so bleeding out was unlikely. I was all set! We also had oxygen.

I’d also like to address the common concern that many people have. So many who aren’t familiar with homebirth say, but what if something happens and you’re not at the hospital? Shouldn’t you be in the hospital in case something bad happens? My answer is that its not safer in the hospital. Most birth “emergencies”occur because you’re at the hospital. One intervention leads to another. If you’re at home, you’re less likely to have a mom or baby in distress. If something does happen, all you have to do is call the hospital and they can prep the OR and be ready for you. They’d have to do this even if you’re at the hospital. Maybe you’re going in because you’re just exhausted and want the pain meds.. most women have to wait about 45 minutes for an epidural, so its not like the instant a woman wants drugs, they’re being pumped into her back. So it doesn’t really save anytime if you’re already there.

advocacy for homebirth: a video August 5, 2007

Posted by guinever in babies, birth, doula, home birth, homebirth, kentucky, midwifery.

Thanks to the Kentucky Midwifery Taskforce for putting together this video to promote homebirth and midwifery. KMT was formed to pursue legislation to license Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs) so they may practice legally in the state of Kentucky.

To read about the midwifery laws in your state, please refer to the citizens for midwifery website.

This video was created for the purpose of educating consumers and legislators on the need for out-of-hospital birth providers in the state of Kentucky.

Current Kentucky law allows for licensed medical caregivers to attend homebirths but the state of Kentucky has not granted licenses since the 1970’s to direct entry midwives and does not recognize the certified professional midwife license. Only certified nurse midwives are recognized by the state of Kentucky. Most certified nurse midwives work only in hospitals, although some also do homebirths. The Kentucky Midwifery Taskforce’s goal is to have the state recognize certified professional midwives so they may practice legally in the state of Kentucky.