An Unnecessary Cut-3 Solutions to Support a VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean)

You can find the link to the article and video by clicking below:

An Unnecessary Cut

Let’s talk about c-sections. VBAC’s in particular. Here’s what we know: The c-section rate has escalated in the last 40 years from a lowly 5% to our current 32%. This means 1 out of every 3 woman are getting their babies surgically removed from their bodies. All the while costing 50% more for each c-section in comparison to a vaginal birth. How did we get here? What has taken place to lead us to this point? Some of those questions are answered in the documentary above.
Real operation for cesarean section with new born infant in operating theater.
Real operation for cesarean section with new born infant in operating theater.

I’d like to take the opportunity to discuss why VBAC’s aren’t more prevalent among our nations birthing mamas?
First, what is a VBAC? Vaginal Birth After Delivery. Which means…..you have 1 baby, most likely your first baby, via c-section your likelihood of having another c-section delivery goes up by 90%. WHAT? I almost couldn’t believe this statistic. That means only 10% of woman after giving birth surgery go on to have a normal vaginal birth. Why is this happening? What is taking place in our current society that we are labeling c-section woman to the mantra of “Once a c-section, always a c-section.”
I’d like to be clear that I believe c-sections to be very needed at times and a lifesaving mechanism that can help a mama and baby in crisis deliver healthily and safely. The largest concern I have over this matter is with the rate of c-sections and truly weighing the options of who really needs that c-section and who doesn’t.
Here’s 3 of the main problems that I can see that are preventing women from having a vaginal birth after a c-section. I must add here that I believe EVERY woman chooses her birthing options mostly based in what she believes will be safest for her and her baby. What she is taught and educated upon particularly by health care providers, carries the BIGGEST weight on what options she will inevitably choose. To be clear, I don’t believe any woman would choose a birthing option that might harm her or her baby.
  1. Because of the mantra “once a c-section, always a c-section, woman are placed into a space where understanding they have options or choices is lost. This belief has seeped into her psyche in such a way that it can feel almost impossible to let herself believe otherwise. This type of thinking is a common social fallacy that is currently being passed from woman to woman through all forms of professional or otherwise relationships. She can believe it so concretely that she struggles to let herself even consider a VBAC, especially when she believes the risks of a vaginal birth now outweigh the risks of a c-section.
  2. I think it’s almost near impossible to find a medical care provider that will support a woman’s choice to have a VBAC. There are potential liability issues at stake for each doctor or obstetrician. I believe every care provider entered their profession with the intention to care for the safety needs of every delivering mama and baby. Unfortunately, we tend to live in a very sue happy nation and for a doctor, I can only imagine the demands placed on them to not make a mistake. There quickly can become a very fine line between what the recommended protocol is to follow and what actually might be best for mama and baby. Let me tell you, I wouldn’t want to have to make that choice.
  3. Most often, once a woman has had a c-section, especially an “emergency c-section” (which is 98% of the time) she is left with an experience that can feel mild to severely traumatizing. Often woman leave the hospital carrying the weight of a broken heart and broken body that couldn’t afford them the birth they truly longed and hoped for. These physical, psychological and emotional wounds can bind a woman to the same future birthing fate only to have the pattern repeated until she is told by her care provider her body is officially broken and can no longer handle major surgery for delivery. Even if she wanted more children, that option is no longer viable. The psychological/emotional aspects that aren’t professionally and properly dealt with can leave lifelong scars.
With all this being said, how does a woman find the education and support to follow through with a VBAC? Here’s 3 solutions to those problems.
  1. The internet can be a great resource for educational materials about c-section, the emergency benefits and the risks. The website www.childbirthconnection.org has a wealth of current research, resources and educational materials. There are written sources as well. One book called “Cut, Stapled and Mended” written by Roanna Rosewood speaks of her travails after her c-section and how she went on to accomplish her goal of a VBAC. Educate yourself on your options after a c-section. Know the risks and benefits. Make an informed decision that will ultimately give you the birth experience you are wanting.
  2. I’m a firm believer in doctors and obstetricians and their ability to save the lives of mamas and babies. What a blessing! Though why not consider the option of a midwife? Midwives have comparable safety outcomes when it comes to VBAC’s. Midwives approach and philosophy of birth also feeds the understanding and empathy a post c-section mama might need to work through the trauma of her previous birth experience while giving the physical means and knowledge to help prepare her body for a safe VBAC. OR if you feel a midwife is not for you, find a doctor who will really listen to your desires while striving to work with you. Know the questions to ask your doctor in order to feel safe and comfortable enough to make the needed requests for your birth. Stick to your guns and don’t let down until your find the RIGHT person for YOU!! Always remember Rachel’s birth mantra…….”You do not work for your care provider, your care provider works for YOU!!” You pay the big bucks to have the birth that you want. Without education, you are doomed to be disempowered to repeat the same situation. Your voice matters, SPEAK UP!
  3. Just get a doula!! What is a doula? If you still don’t know, it’s time to enter 2016. ;) Google it! This is the NEW revolutionary way to give birth that has been around for 100’s of years until it’s crept back from almost extinction recently. A doula is a person, most often a woman, (I’ve actually never met a male doula) who helps a laboring woman achieve her birth goals. Doulas are taught and trained to foster, educate and empower a woman and/or couple to give comfort measures and labor support throughout pregnancy, labor/delivery and postpartum care. A ACOG report from March 2014 states, “Published data indicate that one of the most effective tools to improve labor and delivery outcomes is the continuous presence of support personnel, such as a doula.”

 


You Are Already Perfect-Just As You Are

Accepting our perfection and divinity is part of our path to healing and happiness.  Watch below.  Have an AMAZING weekend! Be LOVE...... for that is all you already are!!

https://youtu.be/vMeEKBaiPbg


The Healing Benefits of Blessing Ways

A blessingway in progess

Today I wanted to talk about blessing ways and how they can be used, not only in pregnancy, but at any transformation and transition time in your life. A BLESSING WAY is a Native American ceremony that has been used as a safe space for healing and celebrating the coming of a new life.

During this sacred ceremony, a mother with the support of friends and family, can open herself to the challenges and joys that lie before her as she approaches birthing and mothering. In this setting, the mother-to-be can gain the confidence, power and love she needs to move forward in her new role with peace and understanding.

Pregnancy is a birth and cleansing time where all physical and emotional toxicity are being purged from the system so as to not pass any unwanted or unneeded ill health onto your fetus. A blessingway moves and shifts a woman’s energy in such a profound way that she feels a draw to listen more to herself and her own intuition in the future weeks before the birth and the months that follow after. By listening to her own inner knowing, she then is guided through the steps to create a beautiful pregnancy and birth experience.

You don’t have to be a Native American to be able to hold a blessingway for you or a loved one. The ceremony, in and of itself, is designed is a very meaningful and fulfilling experience for the mother to be while respecting her own personal beliefs.

Blessingways truly are a transformative experience where one communes with the Divine within and outside of themselves. Each women gleans new insights and inspirations from the experience that can bring more happiness and bliss to her life.

Click the link below to read more about blessing ways outside the birth arena.

Below is another article about The Birth Ritual of the Hopi Indians.  It's a beautiful story.  Take the time to read it.

I believe the lack of ritual and ceremony regarding conception, pregnancy and birth is currently negatively affecting our future generations.  With ritual and ceremony, we find a place where one feels supported and loved along with finding healing and hope.  These opportunities to unite friends and family as we change, grow and progress in our world can be invaluable to our own health and happiness and integration of the changes we are making.

My blessing way with my Mabel, 4 years ago, was one of my most memorable experiences.  It was an atmosphere where I felt, though bringing into our family this new little life was a bit scary,  that I was supported by all and was shown how powerful I really am through that love, compassion and understanding.  Click the link below to read more about my blessing way.

Lastly, below is a book which is all about blessing ways and a CD with some healing, beautiful music for your blessing way.

In Peace,
Rachel

A Book About Blessing ways!
Songs for your Blessing Way!

 


Birth or ANY Trauma (for that matter): It CAN Be Healed

Trauma is a subject you'll find I talk a lot about on here.  Birth trauma can set the stage for how we choose to perceive and integrate love in our world.  We all come here longing to be and experience love while in a physical body.  Whatever we feel during gestation and then at the time of birth and onto the first weeks, months and years of our lives, imprints and distills itself into our systems as love.  Though in actuality, we soon learn as adults that the traumas we felt as children weren't love at all but rather perspectives and ideas we carry about us and the world around us.

Once the system recognizes that the traumatic sensations and feelings are not really love, our system then sets out to feel and understand love.  It the proceeds to replay the same patterns over and over again.  It does this so we can have trigger points to stimulate those untrue thought patterns of what we've been taught love looks like and dispel the lies that we carry that are no longer serving us.

Long ago, when I saw how I was replaying life patterns over and over again, even though I was surprised each and every time because those life's lessons can feel VERY hard at times, I wanted to know if I could heal the pain that I was carrying.  I have worked in the emotional/energy healing world for 12 years now and found rather quickly in my search that, yes indeed, you could heal EVERYTHING!

Most people don't want to buy that belief.  It's ok....they don't have to.  I like believing that I have the ability to help heal not only my physical body but my emotional/psychological body as well.  I knew I had many traumatic experiences as I child that I needed healing from and felt ECSTATIC when I realized that I could heal anything within myself that I wanted.  What an empowering thought for me!

I starting doing several things to help in my healing.....going to retreats, sitting in ceremonies, working with medicine men and shaman, reading and educating myself on the REAL benefits of alternative healing.  I was shocked.....really, to begin with.  I thought so much of what was being done back then was just strange and abnormal.  I quickly learned that the effects of loving yourself enough to try and heal......that not only did you release and let go of old baggage.......but I found new and deeper levels of understanding, insights and peace I'd never felt before.  It was and still is a mind blowing yet subtly magnificent way to find wholeness.

Read the article below so as to understand the emotional/sensational process a fetus might go through in the birth process.....And read about one women's experience to help heal herself from her own birth trauma.

"Recently I had encountered a spiritual talk on Spiritual Rebirther called Minood. A very interesting topic as it relates to birth. Though I did not sign up for the workshop. Later found out from a lady who attended the rebirth session...."

Another great article below which shows the link between emotional traumas and physical ailments.  Please READ!

Scientific Proof that Your Childhood Traumas are a MAJOR Factor in Your All Your Illnesses

"The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study is an ongoing research project which is perhaps the largest scientific research study of its kind. Its purpose it to analyze the relationship...." 

I have spent the last 10 years working out my own traumas, whether birth related or otherwise, and I have helped many others heal themselves from their own pain as well.  You can read more about EMOTIONAL HEALING on my page.

Also, I will be putting together a rebirthing ceremony, along with a breath work ceremony, sometimes in the next month or so.  I will be posting it on my website so check back!  You might want to consider joining us in a healing retreat that is happening in just 2 weeks. You can read more about it at SHIFTINGTOSOLACE. It will be quite the AMAZING experience for all involved.  I have no doubt.  Read the information below for more details.

In Peace,
Rachel

 


Science Shows Vitamin D May Help Prevent MS In Newborn

I'm a big fan of sunbathing.  I always have been.  I believe the sun and the nutrients it provides the body are very needed.  Vitamin D specifically is a VERY needed nutrient for the human body.  Our main source of Vitamin D is from the sun.  But.....there are other ways you can get Vitamin D as well.  I'll talk about that below.

First read the article below.  It discusses how having your baby certain months out of the year lowers their risk of MS.  As they researched it more, they realized that higher levels of Vitamin D in pregnancy help to prevent gene shifts toward MS tendencies.  

Month of Birth Impacts Immune System Development

"Newborn babies' immune system development and levels of vitamin D have been found to vary according to their month of birth, according to new research."

Because we live in a state where the sun isn't always shining, I've found a Vitamin D3 supplement during pregnancy can help to thwart any potential Vit. D deficiency during pregnancy.  I'm also a fan of getting out in the sun in a nice bikini even when it's cold outside but the sun is shining.  You actually get two wonderful things happening by your doing that.  First, your, of course, getting the Vitamin D from the sun.  And second, your immune system is getting stronger by the cold against your skin and body.  In fact, in Russia, pregnancy women will swim in freezing cold water to boost and build their immune system for themselves and their babies.  Watch the video below.....

For the Vitamin D supplement that I think is the best on the market......Click on the "img" below the image to understand more about Vitamin D and it's AMAZING health benefits.  
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In Peace,

Rachel


Ways To Make Birth Harder in EVERY Way Possible

I am a huge proponent of complete undisturbed birth.  In leaving birth alone.  In stepping back and just letting and watching the process unfold.  In leaving the mother BE! In giving her the ability to trust her in systems and psyches own abilities to birth in utter bliss and trust the same in her baby.

I believe in Moms.  I believe in babies.  What I do not believe in is the systems or peoples that in any way tells a women how, when and where is best for her to birth her baby.  To think that we have any right to do so is ignorant and destructive in many forms.

A woman's body is built to have a child. Babies bodies are built perfectly for birth. I know, we have all kinds of doctors and specialists stating that some women just CAN'T have babies via the vaginal route.  I don't buy it.  I've seen too much.  I've seen tiny tiny women deliver large large babies.  It's hard to even compute at moments when you see it but it happens.

Knowing that why are we ever thinking that disturbing or disrupting birth in any way can ever be good?  It can't.  That's the answer.  It's that simple.  BIRTH IS SAFE!  INVENTION IS RISKY!! That's the fact, folks.  Once, we tell a women what her birth should look like....or tell her that birth is a very scary experience.....or that she can't or shouldn't do it.....or that someone else knows better than her what her pregnancy and birth should look.....we COMPLETELY disempower women.  Not only that but we pass on that sense of disempowerment onto future generations through the imprinting that is now on the newborn.

We have taken the very sacred process of pregnancy and birth out of the hands of the responsible and VERY capable parties (Mothers) and put that process into hands that should not have taken on a responsibility EVER.  Teaching mothers to trust themselves and to trust the birth process is a opportunity like none other.  To watch a mother feel empowered and peaceful in her pregnancy and birth experience brings such hope for the whole of humanity.  It then teaches each infant that, they to, can trust themselves and their world around them....

Excellent article below.  Just on how to disturb birth and mess it up in every way possible.  Give it a read.

6 Ways to Make Child Birth Longer, More Difficult, and More Painful

"Here are top 6 ways to make birthing more difficult.  If you are accompanying a woman in a birth coming up be sure NOT to do these things.  If you are a pregnant woman make sure you don’t go to a place where these ways are the norm when assisting a birthing woman – unless you want a longer, more difficult and more painful birth:"
In Peace, Rachel

C-Section Trauma at Birth Can Last A Life Time

 

Since I've already been on the subject of epigenetics so much lately, I thought I'd stay in that vein and post more.  Just wrote an article about it a week or so ago.  You can read it below.

Can You Change Old Negative Belief Patterns to Help Your Baby Change The World?

After you read that article, you should have a better idea of epigenetics and how they work.  Or to learn more.....read the article below I posted a bit back.
It's exciting to think that now we see the long term effects of imprinting and epigenetics in the world of cesarean sections.  I work with people to help facilitate emotional healing.  I have found there are dozens of emotional triggers and traumas surrounding their birth experience because of being born by c-section, than just working with a client with "normal" birth trauma.
From my experience, one common psychological trigger that adults born c-section have is a need to control their world beyond a balanced way.  They tend to feel out of control regularly and often wonder why since they can't see a logical, foreseeable reason why they would feel that way.
Read the article below to learn more about how c-section are effecting life long emotional and physical health.
"Despite the increase in surgical intervention at birth, we don't know the effect on the baby, writes Hannah Dahlen

The increasing use of obstetric interventions during birth could be having an impact on children's health. Photo / Supplied
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The increasing use of obstetric interventions during birth could be having an impact on children's health. Photo / Supplied
Despite efforts to reduce intervention rates during labour, vaginal births without medical intervention are becoming increasingly rare in Australia and overseas: nearly one in four births in New Zealand are by caesarean..."
To learn and understand more about how you can heal from trauma from you birth experience, read my EMOTIONAL HEALING page.
In Peace,
Rachel

Early Cord Clamping- It's Illogical and Irrational: Here's Why

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Delayed cord clamping.  This subject seems to be on the up and up lately.  I think it's really good that it is.  I believe delayed cord clamping can truly give needed oxygen and nutrients that baby might not get from cutting the cord before pulsation stops.

Early cord clamping has no justifiable bases.  No rationale.  But most hospital struggle with rationale, in any regard, when it comes to birth.  As the article below states, Dr. Jose Tolosa and colleagues write, “Although without clear benefit and no rationale to support it, early cord clamping remains the most common practice among obstetricians and midwives in the western hemisphere” (Tolosa et al. 2010).

I still remember right after my sister delivered her daughter, Regan, that Regan was screaming so hard, that is was painful to listen to.  She has been lying in the warmer so I proceeded to walk over to pick her up and wrap her with the hopes of calming her down.  As I approached Regan to get her, the nurse gave me the dirtiest look and started to question why I would even think it was ok for me to pick up the baby.

I went on to state that Regan was screaming so loudly it was painful for us and her.  I stated that if I could wrap her up and give her to Mom, everyone in the room would be happy.  Most importantly, the baby.  The nurse went on to tell me that the baby had to reach a certain body temperature before I was able to take her out of the warmer.  I argued the point that if I just was able to take the baby out of the warmer and wrap her in a blanket or even better yet, put her on my sister's chest covered in blankets......how could she not be warmer in that environment instead of the current one?

The nurse still fiercely disagreed with me.  I decided it was time for someone in the room to use logic and love and I then swept my niece up, wrapped her tightly and handed her to my sister.  The crying stopped immediately upon my even picking her up.  Wow, who knew that picking up a baby and comforting them could stop crying and give comfort and peace to the baby?  (Note the sarcasm here)

I only tell the story above to show a small example of how lack of logic can be seen in an hospital environment.  For all of you who think I'm saying there is no logic used in the hospital, I'm not.  So please don't get upset.  I'm simply stating I believe their over use of technology is creating a situation where technology has become believed more than personal intuition.  I find the latter being more true and believable than the former.

Read the articles below on delayed cord clamping.  Watch the very educational video below on delayed cord clamping as well.  I'm sure I've posted these before somewhere but I can find where.....so here they are again.  :)

Delayed Cord Clamping: An all of human history practice (20th century exempted)

"There are many things that help our children to be as healthy as possible during their first minutes, hours, days, months and years. If the findings of some new research are correct, then ensuring that our babies get their full volume of blood as they are born might be one of the more important steps we can take for the well-being of our children."


Below is a story of a natural hospital waterbirth with delayed cord clamping.  Here's what your birth can look like in a hospital that uses logic and science.  

"I had been having pre-labour pains and contractions since 37 weeks, so by the time Arya’s due date rolled around, I was well and truly ready to have her."

First, Penny Simpkin explaining the physical aspects of delayed cord clamping and why to do it with your baby.  



LOVE Robin Lim.  Amazing midwife and sister to many.  :)  Listen to her share about delayed cord clamping. 



In Peace,
Rachel


Pitocin- The Pitfalls

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Let's talk about pitocin for a bit here.  Pitocin is synthetic oxytocin.  Oxytocin is the hormone that stimulates contractions within the uterus.  Whether during orgasm or while delivering a child.  Pitocin tries to simulate the same type of contraction that oxytocin does but, sadly, it cannot.  Pitocin instead can make contractions erratic and MUCH stronger than the strength of each contraction  stimulated with oxytocin.

Pitocin is also used when a hemorrhage is taking place.  This is when pitocin can truly be a lifesaving drug.  But....when pitocin is used in the wrong way and without the right reasons for use, then serious damage can be caused.

Please do your homework and know the facts about pitocin.  Ask all the questions to know how or if it is truly safe for you and your baby.  I believe a baby knows how long to gestate and when is the time for it's birth.  Your fetus actually creates the hormones to stimulate your endocrine system to start producing oxytocin.  I have seen Moms deliver babies at 43+ weeks.  Of course, we always take precautions.  We send them to doctors.  We get ultrasounds, if need be to check fluid levels.  We still do our homework.  And if baby is, at all, in distress by all mean do what is necessary to help baby be born safely.

But.....if everything looks healthy and normal and good......why force a Mom to deliver her baby BEFORE that baby might even be ready, all in the name of litigation?  That's the ONLY reason for the choice of induction if all looks well with Mom and baby.  If we could help Moms see that the "seduction for induction" can be so subtle that unless they have educated themselves on all the risks of pitocin and choose to stand up for her and her baby, they will inevitably fall and have potential consequences they may not like.

Please read both articles below.  Both are informative and can help you on your path to understanding pitocin and the pitfalls it can and does create in the birth experience.  The second article is a personal story of a women's allergic reactions and negative response to pitocin.

By the way, EXCELLENT book on the subject of what pitocin really is.  "Childbirth In The Age of Plastics" by Michel Odent. I've mentioned it before and I'm sure I will mention it again. Not a drug to help induce labor.  It a hormone that replaces the bodies natural hormone production.  We are giving women hormone placement.  Nothing less.  Now that's something to really think about and let roll about a bit.

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Be empowered in your birth.  Educate!

In Peace,
Rachel

P.S. I almost forgot.....Just have your baby at home.

"The question I’d like to explore in this article is not whether induction with Pitocin is sometimes necessary – which I believe it is – but whether the frequency of its use today in hospital birth is justified. "
"Pitocin is a synthetic version of Oxytocin, a hormone naturally created in the body. Oxytocin is released naturally during kissing, intercourse, and birth. It reduces the stress hormone known as Cortisol and assists the mother in bonding with her baby. Oxytocin also helps stimulate lactation. Using pitocin reduces the body’s production of Oxytocin. This can create difficulties with the bonding and breastfeeding process after birth."


Raw Foods Class: Crunchy Pea Casserole & Sweet Corn Lettuce Wraps

Presents

Crunchy Pea Casserole & Sweet Corn Lettuce Wraps
Information for the class below!

When: Tuesday, April 16th 
Where: Pleasant Grove
Time: 7 pm
Cost: $10

PLEASE RSVP if you are interested in attending.  I make copies for my classes and want to make sure I have enough to hand out! You can email me at rachel@livingmom.net  :)

In this class you will learn:
  • How to make 2 raw dishes that can feed the whole family!
  • The benefits of raw foods and why more raw foods creates increased health and happiness in your LIFE!
  • Why spending money on your health INSTEAD of your disease just makes logical sense.
  • Learn how easy and EXTREMELY tasty raw foods can be to make.
  • Understand more about each ingredient in what I make and why your body desperately needs them for nourishment and healing.  
  • Come to taste everything I make so you can try it for yourself before you go home to make it.  :)
  • Learn how to make a SCRUMPTIOUS raw sour cream along with the pea casserole and corn lettuce wraps.  
  • I will have my Smokey Spicy Seeds, Chocolate Nut Bars, Kale Krunchers, Sweet Nut Brittle for sale the night of the class.  Look for upcoming emails about the DELICIOUS food I will now be selling.   
Please come with ANY questions!  Below is my bio for those who may not know me.  I have been in the nutritional/herbal world for 14 years now and am always EXCITED to help others on their path to health and wholeness.

In Peace,
Rachel

*I am a homebirth midwife, an herbal practitioner, a raw foods educator, emotional healing facilitator & placenta encapsulator. I have received training in many healing modalities. In 2000, I became certified as a Nutritional Herbologist and soon thereafter began teaching classes on nutrition where I taught such subjects as whole foods, raw foods, vegetarianism, veganism, cleansing, supplementation and overall physical and emotional health and well being. I also teach an INSPIRING childbirth course called "LivingMom Childbirth Education Courses." I have since spent the last 14 years researching and educating myself in many matters relating to all forms of alternative therapies. I have worked with many people to help them facilitate their own personal healing and progression. Nine years ago, I was introduced to Native American healing & spirituality . In 2007, I studied with James “Flaming Eagle” Mooney who, soon thereafter, gifted me as a water pourer and medicine women. In 2009, I spent 18 months studying with & have been gifted as a pipe carrier by Richard “He Who Has the Foundations” Swallow, Spiritual Leader of the Eagle Clan of the Lakota Sioux . I have been married to my LOVING husband for 17 years and together we have 5 BEAUTIFUL children, all born at home. I, along with my husband, still participate regularly in Native American teachings & ceremonies.*

Healing Fears Women Have With Childbirth

I wanted to discuss the article called "Top Fears Women Have With Childbirth" and put my 2 bits into it.  I have discussed fear many times.  Click on the links below to read a few articles that I've written on the subject.  I believe fears are a HUGE factor as to how your birth experience takes place and exactly what happens.

Fear is truly the determinant as to whether your birth is horrible or even better, a beautiful blissful experience.  Just like the photo above states, when women release fears and phobias surrounding birth they move out of their comfort zone.  Once that movement takes place, they really can find "where the magic happens" in birth.  Their whole perspectives can and do change once they feel safe within themselves, as pregnant women, and in the birth experience.

Click on the link below to read an excellent article on fears women carry in childbirth.  I have posted below some of my comments to the article.  The article is great, in and of itself, but I wanted to add my own perspectives because I'm they will create more of a thoughtfulness before making a concrete decision on how you might like your birth to do.

Let me know what you think.  My hope is that women will reclaim their bodies and the birth process and know they, ultimately, are the ones in control and their feelings, beliefs, opinions and perspectives do matter.

In Peace,
Rachel

Top Fears Women Have With Childbirth

  • A fear of not making it to the hospital in time or arriving too early in labor.
Hopefully you have already discussed with your care provider what active labor looks like.  This should be talked about WAY BEFORE labor begins.  Google active labor and know the signs. Also, hire a doula! She has been educated on normal birth processes and should have enough experience to know when is the right time for you to head to the hospital or call the midwife.  If choosing to deliver in the hospital, but hoping for a natural birth, staying home as LONG as possible can make a big difference as to what your birth will look like.  Going to the hospital too soon can create more inventions that can potentially create problems on their own.  
  • A fear your doctor or midwife may not be available when labor starts and you end up with someone different.
I wholly agree that knowing all the care providers that could be at your birth will definitely help with fears.  You might want to even consider finding a practice with fewer options for care providers.  By choosing a home birth, most midwives merely partner together.  So, meeting and knowing only 2 people very comfortably can be an actual possibility.  And yes, make sure your provider will and is available for your birth.  
  • A fear your birth plan will not be taken seriously or totally disregarded.
Great advice and a HUGE MUST for creating the birth you want in a hospital is putting together a birth plan.  When you choose to birth at home, your situation will most likely be VERY different.  Most home birth midwives already have a very natural and holistic approach to birth.  Which means there is no fighting or being torn away from labor (which is so hard in and of itself), that your birth experience can inherently be EXACTLY what you wanted without even having to bat an eye for it.  
  • A fear of feeling unbearable pain.
Childbirth classes can really help release and remove many fears in regards to labor and birth.  I highly recommend them.  I think courses which discuss ALL the aspects of labor and birth instead of just some, can really aid in your understanding and education of the birth process.  And in this situation, the MORE you know really does matter.  You can read more about my childbirth classes at LIVINGMOM CHILDBIRTH EDUCATION.
Hypnobabies has been quite the lifesaver for many of my clients.  I have found it to be very effective in helping with relaxation and finding comfort within your body and the sensations of labor and birth.  I like what she states about the victim feeling, hence the reason I believe looking at fears and doing consistent emotional work during pregnancy can REALLY help a women create the birth experience she wants.  You can read more about the emotional work at my EMOTIONAL HEALING page.  
  • A fear of being confined to a hospital bed unable to stand or walk.
She's right on here! Home birth really is an safe, healthy option when you just want what you want in your birth environment. 
  • A fear of having accidental body function such as urination, bowel movement or vomiting.
I have found that my clients who work through the fears of pain or other issues while pushing find that A) Either they don't experience either problem during birth or B) Those things no longer bother them nor are they afraid of it, so if it does happen it's really no big deal.  
  • A fear of the umbilical cord being around the neck of the baby.
I have worked with women who have had cords around the babies neck in an ultrasound only to have their baby born without a nuchal cord.  They worked hard to help their baby feel safe and at peace while in the womb.  This, they believe, helped remove the cord.  I know it sounds a bit different but if I hadn't seen it, I might not believe it myself. 
  •  A fear of receiving interventions that will lead to fetal distress.
Another reason to consider homebirth. 
  • A fear of death of the baby during labor and birth.
I cannot reiterate enough the vital importance of a Mom working through any and all her fears surrounding her current life experience and her own birth experience.  Those these fears above can be seen as very "normal", they don't have to be present within a birthing women's psyche.  I have seen women after women enter the birth environment only feeling peace, comfort, joy and bliss BECAUSE they faced their fears BEFORE their birth which then helped to stimulate a GLORIOUS birth experience.  One in which they helped shape and create by taking responsibility for themselves, their pregnancy, birth and life thereafter.  
Charlotte Sanchez (CPM) is a Certified Professional Midwife and
Childbirth Educator of over 20 years.



The Birth Of Grant Ellis

I just recently returned from a trip to Colorado to visit my sister and to wait for the delivery of her son Grant.  I absolutely adore in EVERY way watching and being part of my little sister's birth experiences.

I find it interesting that, though I love all my mama's I work with very much, I found I carried a bit of a worry at my sister's birth.  This is not the norm for me.  I did not worry because I felt, in the least, anything might go wrong.  But instead, my worry was carried by the love I have for her.  To watch someone you love, as much as I love my Kimmy, go through the process of pregnancy and birth, brought tears to my eyes because of the love that overflowed from my heart.

With her first pregnancy and birth, she did quite a bit of preparation.  (How could she not?  She has an annoying midwife for a sister who was always bugging her about how to prepare.)  She ate VERY well in both of her pregnancies.  She exercised and even prepared her body BEFORE conceiving.  She worked on emotional issues, though she struggled a bit to do so. 

When labor finally hit, after 2 weeks overdue, it was long and much harder than expected.  Labor lasted about 18 hours or more.  Kim stayed at 8 cm for over 7+ hours.  It was very arduous and overwhelming for her.  Once it was finally time to push her sweet daughter, Jane out, some of her fears stepped in the way and her baby sat in a crowning position for 45 minutes before finally being born.

I was so excited and anxious for Kim to have a different experience with her second pregnancy and birth.  She, again, took care of herself extremely well.  The only big difference with this pregnancy was that she understood more deeply how to take the opportunity of pregnancy to release any and all emotional issues that might not have been cleared from the previous pregnancy and birth experience.  
Let me just say, she was AMAZING!!!  When labor finally started after only being a week overdue this time, she was relaxed, open and ready for it.  She felt fully prepared and even accepted that birth itself might bring up more anxieties and fears but she was ready for the challenge and found peace in it.  Something that had been hard for her to experience and relax into in her 1st birth.
Labor and birth lasted only 5 hours long.  It was short, quick, peaceful and IMMENSELY blissful.  She concentrated on loving her baby by talking to him throughout the whole birth experience. Telling him how good he was doing and how WONDERFULLY excited was she to see him.  I was in awe of my dear baby sis showing such courage and strength in the face something that can be so intense and even overwhelming at times.
She listened to her hypnobabies.  She cried.  She laughed.  She completely opened herself to the sensations, the feelings and whole of the experience.  When it was finally time for her to bring her son into the world, it was only 2 pushes.  Then her and her sweet husband, Jeff, reached down and brought their baby boy to Kim's chest.  We cried some more as we watched the glorious entrance of a new life.  Kim softly spoke to him telling him how much she loved him and how happy she was he had finally come.

I was and am honored to be part of any birth.  To be in the presence of 2 worlds colliding where every single time......my breath is taken away.  To watch women enter their own selves and listen and heed the guidance of their own knowing, along with babies who hear the symphonies call, is something you can put no words to.  Nor should you.  Inspiring. 

Thank you, Kim and Jeff.  Thank you for letting me come and cry.  Thank you for letting me share your home and feel the love each of you have for each other.  Thank you for all of it!  I will miss my Jane.....and wait patiently till I can see you all again.

In Peace,
Rachel

Support Sergei's Green Smoothie Documentary

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The video below looks SUPER fun and like something I think everyone should support!  I still remember the first time I saw Sergei, here in Utah, at a class him, his sister and their parents were teaching 12 years ago.  It was my VERY first introduction to raw foods.

The dietary changes that Sergei and his sister, Valya, made at such a young age were inspiring.  Both kids were still in elementary school when they choose, of their own free will, to stop eating all the s@*$ that was making them sick.  They then started introducing organic, fresh, raw fruit and vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds.....and found the health and healing they were looking for.

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Sergei is gifted at many things and I believe making this documentary would be one of them.  If you click on his KICKSTARTER PAGE, you can scroll down to the end and see other videos he has made.

Not only do I believe this film he's making would be great because he's doing it but how even more AMAZING to make a film about green smoothies.  Green smoothies are PHENOMENAL and have helped my personal health in a wide variety of ways.  From helping to heal my Hashimoto's Thyroiditis to healing my bowels, to giving me the energy to function at an optimal level each and every day.

I advise all the Mom's I work with to incorporate green smoothies into their diets daily.  The greens can give Mom and baby volumes of needed dense minerals to help with fetal growth.  Just like I have discussed the imprinting that can take place on baby through emotional stresses and triggers placed on Mom, I also believe we create food imprints on our children.  Babies will enjoy eating and have the physiological make up for whatever food Mom is eating and digesting in pregnancy.

So....if you want your babies to eat and LOVE green smoothies, then PLEASE drink them daily in your pregnancies and they will, I promise.  I ate horrible diets with my first 2 kids and started changing to a healthier diet in my 3rd pregnancy.  With my last 2 children, my diet was EXCEPTIONAL and the foods they now enjoy eating are the VERY same foods I ate while pregnant with them.  It really does make a difference.  Click on the link below to read more about my perspective on raw foods and nutrition during pregnancy.

"I am a HUGE fan of raw foods and the raw foods diet.  I have been eating a raw foods diet for 10 years now.  I believe how we eat stimulates an life long imprinting on our unborn babies on how they will eat.  Raw foods, because of the high enzymatic factors...."

Watch the video below and then jump on over to SERGEI'S KICKSTARTER PAGE and DONATE!!!  This is going to be an EXCELLENT documentary, I know it! I believe what the Boutenko family is doing and has done up till now is a VERY NEEDED work that we all need to support so we can to part of creating a healthier and happier world.  
In Peace,
Rachel


Keep Baby Healthy From Conception On & A Man Having a Baby

Sperm swimming in the direction of the egg cell
Sperm swimming in the direction of the egg cell

Just found a GREAT article on Dr. Mercola's site.  Though I'm not a big fan of his stuff, necessarily......I thought I'd pass along his article as most of the information really is educational and worth reading.

"Children's health and full potential are being limited before their lives have begun, starting in the womb and continuing through birth and the early years."
Knowledge and understanding of how to prepare for a new life can make a HUGE impact, not only on your baby but on FUTURE generations as well.  As discussed in a earlier post, shown below, the study of epigenetics is now showing exactly HOW it does effect future generations.  Read below.

Education BEFORE conception can be vital for the health and well being of your baby.  By taking care of your body thru making healthy lifestyle choices and by taking care of stresses and past wounding, a mom can truly prepare herself for conception.  Preparation is a MUST as to not pass onto baby all our ill health or unwanted emotional baggage.

Lastly, a man having a baby! Well, he's not really having a baby, of course, but it shows is experience with a simulated process of what labor might feel or be like for a man.  Watch and have a good laugh!

Happy Friday!

In Peace,
Rachel


Unassisted Childbirth- Can It Be Really Safe?

Let's discuss unassisted birth today....or FREE BIRTH as many people are calling it.  I happen to be a midwife who actually SUPPORTS unassisted childbirth under the right circumstances. Yes, you read that right!  I believe in a women's RIGHT TO CHOOSE how, when and where she delivers HER baby.  Wow, in our day and age it's such a strange concept to let a women take ALL the responsibility and ALL of HER baby that she created WITHOUT the help of a professional. (Are you staring to really feel my passion on the subject?)

Birth is about PARENTS....mothers and fathers and babies.  Not doctors or midwives.  For some reason, we've got it all backwards.  We think that without doctors and midwives that birth can't or won't or shouldn't happen the way it's supposed to.  Yeah, that's totally wrong.  I could go down the list of births which I have attended where I did almost NOTHING but help Mom and Dad catch their baby.

Now, I'm not an idiot either.  I know complications in birth can and do happen. But....just like Gregory J. Whits states in his book "Emergency Childbirth" any 8 year old child can deliver a baby.  I actually believe what he says.  We have put SO MUCH FEAR into childbirth that we've convinced women their bodies and their babies are ill equipped to know how to deliver a child.  This could be FARTHER from the truth.

I'm not saying either that pregnancy and childbirth doesn't have it's potential complications and problems.  But, I believe when a women is taking FULL RESPONSIBILITY for herself, her conception, her pregnancy and her birth, complications are much less likely.  Why do I say that, you ask?  Because when a women feels that what happens in her pregnancy and birth is completely up to her, her perspectives of the experience and how to care for it completely change.

Laura Shanley discusses her experiences and the experiences of other women in her book.....UNASSISTED CHILDBIRTH.....and how preparation and education can create a wonderful and safe birth environment and experience.  Below is a video with her explaining WHY unassisted childbirth can be safe and right for certain mothers and families.

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As Laura states above,  FEAR is the prime issue when it comes to having the birth experience you hope for.  Fear stymies all the bodies processes from functioning appropriately and as they should. Removing the old beliefs and thought patterns of fear can truly create a pain free and blissful birth experience.
Below is an article which discusses unassisted childbirth and the perspective of doctors on the subject.....which, of course, are negative. But how women ar still choosing to listen to their intuition, their bodies and their babies.
"But when the Calgary woman decided to have her next two children at home, without the assistance of a doctor or midwife, her own mother told her a hospital is the best place to have a baby."

In Peace,
Rachel