Tuesday, January 27, 2015

What Makes A Good Birth Story?

I love reading birth stories. I love hearing how empowered women become after going through the act of giving birth. The victory they have achieved allows them to know they can do anything.

Some birth stories tell of endless hours of labors and triumph of delivery.
These are the stories where the mother has a very long prodromal or latent stage with contractions spaced out just far enough to keep her from sleeping well but not close enough together to be effective for dilation. She may speak of the people supporting her, bringing in food for her family, helping take care of other children, rubbing her back and wiping her brow.

Some birth stories are of fast and furious labors where the mom barely makes it to the birth center or hospital or the midwives barely make it to her home...or not. These stories often tell of a frantic husband who is relieved to turn the responsibility over to the care provider and take a moment to breathe for himself. She is often shocked and bewildered that it is all over.

And then there is everything in between. Fast labors, textbook labors, sorrowful labors, joyous labors.

What makes a good birth story? The ones that are told. Women need to tell their stories and they need to be heard. Women are resilient. They can handle the good, the bad and the ugly. They can effect change when their expectations are not met. They can make the world a better place for their daughters, daughter in laws and grand daughters to give birth.

Tell your story. Allow others to learn. Help us as caregivers to learn what was important to you.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

5 Easy Steps to Bonding

The wait is finally over; your new baby is going to arrive today. You have done everything in your power to have a healthy pregnancy and birth. You want to be the best mom for your precious gift.

A crucial part of this is bonding.

Bonding is the connection between the newborn and family or other humans. Babies who bond well are happier, healthier and better adjusted.

5 Easy Steps to Bonding

1. Skin to skin contact: Immediately after the birth, your newborn should be placed in your arms. This contact allows you to groom and clean your baby. You gently touch, explore, massage, and smell your newborn. This act allows you to release a chemical in your brain called oxytocin also known as the “love” hormone. You fall in love with your baby and your baby falls in love with you.

2. Eye contact: You baby will be alert and awake the first hour after birth. Your baby’s eyes will be searching for yours. Your baby knows you. He has heard your voice, your heartbeat and felt your rhythms. Now he is ready to see you. This contact allows new pathways to form in his brain that will impact him for a lifetime.

3. Talk to your baby: You baby knows your voice. Hearing it brings calmness to his world. Birth is a difficult event for your baby. Your voice brings back normalcy. Sing to your baby if that is what you have done during your pregnancy. The human voice is powerful. Let your baby hear YOUR voice first and above all others in the room.

4. Listen to your maternal voice: During your pregnancy you have bonded with your baby. Your nurturing brain has changed and grown. You know how to care for your new baby. Listen. Your brain will tell you what to do. No website, magazine article or book can replace your maternal instinct. Love your baby and trust yourself.

5. Spend time with your new baby: Don’t allow your baby to be separated from you. Often babies are taken away for baths, screenings and evaluation. Ask that these procedures be done in your room. Ask for rooming in, so that your baby is not taken to a nursery. This allows you to get to know your babies needs so that you can be responsive without relying on someone else to make that observation and then respond.

Under the Old Tin Roof: Make My Blog Pretty

Under the Old Tin Roof: Make My Blog Pretty