The Carnival of Chaos shares the stage this time. We have wonderful contributions in all categories. But this time around ……..
The first week of September is Empowered Birth Awareness Week (3rd -15th). A week devoted to child-birth at home or in birthing centers with midwives or doulas. Natural and gentle outside the artificial confines of the hospital. Child-birth and pregnancy are not diseases and should not be treated as such.
This week is devoted to telling the experiences of those that in the taking back of a woman’s and her family’s experience in the birth of a child. My family are some of those and this is part of our story.
When I was very young I was appalled at the films of animals giving birth. It looked horrible to me. Yuk! I vowed to never have kids. My parents laughed.I was one of six children, the fifth in line. When I was curious I would ask Mom about her births of us. She told stories of doctors, hospitals, drugs, nurses and of Dad dropping her off. She could remember the start of labor but was given spinals and that would be the end of the labor memory. When asked about breastfeeding she said she tried it once but it hurt too bad.Actually, she said I bit her! She never questioned that this was the way to have children. So, I asked where she was born…. Her answer?
At home on the couch!
These memories stayed with me. When I was in my twenties my roommate got pregnant. Together we went to doctors appointments and childbirth classes. Talk about stares! Two girls, not a husband or boyfriend, were a strange sight in class. But I couldn’t let her go through this alone, she wanted me there and I was happy to help.
When the big day arrived off we went to the hospital. I remember a cold environment. No doctor was around. The nurses were professional but not what you might call warm. We were strangers in a strange place. As labor progressed my friend was confined to the bed. we did our best breathing. Remember to breath!
In hard labor the nurses helped, measured and instructed. Then suddenly the doctor appeared. Legs up, a quick (big) cut,baby out and bye, bye doc!
I think the man was there a total of three minutes. I did not know anything about child birth then, but I knew that what I was experiencing with my roommate was NOT right.The baby was put under lights,measured and wiped. Not for about 20-30 minutes did the new mom touch her baby. The whole feeling of everything that happened was wrong.
Fast forward a few years. It is now me that is pregnant. Luckily, through the years I had met people who had home births andI now lived in Austin ,Texas, a progressive, hippy friendly, midwife loving city. Still uneducated in the nuances of , the midwife that returned my call
was surprising and wonderful. Her first words were of congratulations and concern for me. This stranger, over the phone, conveyed such love and understanding that I could not wait to meet her. Not once was money or payment a concern.
Melanie’s office was her home, complete with children, babysitters, guinea pigs and assistants.The exam room was a spare bedroom. The first appointment was not only about me but about her. How long has she been a midwife, how many babies did she deliver, how she became a midwife, types of deliveries,opinions and facts. What did we expect? about the birth? Of having a child? Of her? All this in one appointment, lasting over an hour.
I knew in my heart this was right. The little girl that couldn’t watch birthing films and vowed to never have kids was embarking on the amazing journey of natural childbirth at home!
My pregnancy was healthy and my baby grew and grew. Melanie helped me appreciate the growing human inside. We talked to our little spirit and oohed at every kick and turn. As my belly grew, so did my anxiety. But this too was quelled by my wonderful midwife. All my fears of a baby too big, labor too hard, pain and more were either explained or given the up to the domain of nature . You might be wondering ‘what about hubby’? Well, he did his best, which was quite a lot in the realm of husbands. But a midwife. who is also a mother, can ultimately give more reassurance than a man. My husband was at appointments and all the classes, he would be my birth partner. He was indispensable.
My first labor pains came in the middle of the night. Following Melanie’s advice, I took a warm shower, did not wake my husband and went back to bed. As my husband got up for work, I informed him of my labor. He said ” Call me when you need me.” I said ” I am in labor, you are staying home!” Ooohh, now he got it.
We called Melanie that morning and she said to make sure to eat well and keep moving. When the contractions are closer call again. By mid afternoon they were closer, Melanie and her assistant arrived.
My hard labor came in the early evening. With every contraction and push words of encouragement and soothing touch enveloped me from everyone. They literally held me open for the baby to begin to pass. As the baby crowned, Melanie asked if I wanted to touched my child’s head before entering this world. “No!” said my inner child! She didn’t listen. With the mirror positioned for me to see, she took my hand and had me touch the head of my, as yet, unborn baby. A truly once in a lifetime experience.
With a few more pushes out came my child and up into my arms he came. Two seconds before I had felt sleepy, tired from the days labor. Now I felt like I could run around the house. My son did not cry, He was warm, moist, and velvety. He was 7 pounds and 9 ounces. Not bad for a girl that was about 105 and a size 1 prior to pregnancy!
My husband and I couldn’t have planned it better. He got to take the newbie into the kitchen, while the midwife attended to me, and cook me a Mexican omelet. No where else but at home could all this be so comfortable. To me, and my husband would agree, babies born this way are more at ease, they know, and feel the love they are being birthed into. There is is no sanitized environment devoid of any feeling, no extra bright lights nor machinery. We opted for no video nor photos. A private moment for us to remember thoughtfully.
I have since had five more children. all with midwives and no intervention. Two were at a birthing center in a hospital, one at a motel and two at home. (One of those was in the dark!) But those are stories for another time. So, I say take charge of your body, your birth and your family. Your family, your children will thank you. Look for a midwife that you like. Don’t ask your doctor. And run from those that tell you it is crazy to use a midwife or doula!
And now on to the show!
Laura Grace Weldon presents Making History Relevant posted at Laura Grace Weldon, saying, “History is always relevant. It’s the quiet reminder found in old buildings, tall trees and important decisions. Here are 25 unexpected ways to make history come alive for your family.”
Shiloh Stone presents Story in a Bowl posted at everydaygameplan.net, saying, “This game gives kids a chance to show off what they know, while you have the chance to assess their grasp of information. It’s a great way to “test” completely unobtrusively.”
In youth we learn, with age we understand. Vehling is still young.
Laura Grace Weldon presents Five Ways Frugal Living Benefits Kids posted at Laura Grace Weldon, saying, “Living more simply can give our kids advantages that last throughout life. The benefits include greater self-reliance, improved impulse control, even a boost in happiness!”
Laura lights the candles of many.
“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
Tracy Rosen presents Questions about tech and children posted at Leading From The Heart, saying, “Love the idea behind this carnival – if you are looking for a host I’d be happy to host at Leading from the Heart!”
I think that is a great idea, Tracy !
Israel Baline presents 30 Amazing Sites for Free Lesson Plans posted at Becoming a Teacher, saying, “You can get help with your lesson plans. While you can spend money for subscription services and materials, there is no need. No matter your salary as a teacher, you can afford some of the resources found online — because they are free.”
Charles Chua C K presents 10 Essential Things a College Student Should Learn posted at All About Living with Life.
What I do for Eden
I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~Anna Quindlen, “Enough Bookshelves,” New York Times, 7 August 1991
Tracy Wayne presents 10 Tricks for Finding ANYTHING on Bing posted at Dial Up, saying, “A search engine is a search engine is a search engine, and Google is the search engine, or so people think, but there are some features that Bing utilizes that can be used to augment, if not replace, the Google search. Bing touts itself as being a more “intuitive” tool, and uses logical connections to broaden or deepen capabilities. The following points are both for people who have never tried Bing as well as for those people who already use the engine.”
Thanks for all the submissions and HAPPY READING! That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of carnival of chaos using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.