Food for Thought..

You are constructing your own reality with the choices you make...or don't make. If you really want a healthy pregnancy and joyful birth, and you truly understand that you are the one in control, then you must examine what you have or haven't done so far to create the outcome you want.
-Kim Wildner-Mother's Intention: How Belief Shapes Birth

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Women in the Scriptures: The Importance of Birth

Women in the Scriptures: The Importance of Birth: "As I delve into this topic I first need apologize to those of you who aren't LDS or who aren't familiar with LDS doctrine. This piece is wr..."

Friday, November 12, 2010

Birth as a Bowel Movement

*The author is unknown, so if you happen to know who it is, please email it to me so I can give them the proper credit! :) Enjoy!

Imagine if you will, that about a hundred years ago, people began having great difficulties having bowel movements (BM for short). It all came about because of some very unhealthy lifestyles. People weren’t eating correctly because they were desperately trying to be thin and beautiful. They had malnutrition and took a lot of pills and other drugs to help them become and stay thin. People were so concerned with looking good that they put their health aside to get there.
As a result of this lifestyle, many people had a terrible time having BMs. Some people even died. Something had to be done to save these folks. So instead of changing their lifestyles, people flocked to the doctors to have their problem fixed. The problem became so prevalent that people became fearful of having BMs. Everyone dreaded going to the bathroom because of all the horror stories of pain and death. This normal, natural bodily function was labeled dangerous and hazardous and needed to be monitored and controlled to save lives.
Over time, it became the ‘norm’ to go the hospital whenever someone had to have a BM so that doctors could monitor the process and intervene if they needed to. This continued through the years and is still practiced today. An onslaught of new life-saving technology and machinery was invented for us in aiding people to have a BM. It has become such a common practice to go to the hospital to have a BM that people have become uninformed. They don’t trust their own bodies to have a BM on their own. People are scared to have a BM that having one anywhere besides a hospital is considered irresponsible, dangerous and risky. Even though the old, unhealthy lifestyles, which caused the problem in the first place are no longer practiced, having BMs is no longer considered a normal event. Even the healthiest of people go to the hospital to have BMs out of fear that something might happen. The go ‘just in case’.
So, you have to have a BM and even though you are a healthy man and having a BM is a normal, natural physiological function that your body was designed to do, we go to the hospital. We grab the hospital bag and head out the door in a hurry. During the car ride you get very tense because the cramps are coming on strong and you can’t get comfortable. You try breathing through them but this only helps a little with all the stop and go traffic and bumps in the road. Not to mention that you just wish you could be at home and have privacy. Upon arrival at the hospital, you are wheeled up to a room and instructed to put on a gown with nothing else on (it has a large opening in the back which will show you rear end if you get up and walk anywhere). You are told to lie down so that a nurse can examine you. Then a strange female nurse comes in and explains that she is going to have to insert 2 fingers into your rectum to check the progress of your feces. You obviously feel humiliated because someone you don’t know has just touched a very private and personal part of you.
Then the nurse straps a monitor to your belly to measure the severity of your cramps and stick an iv in your arm. This is very distracting and makes the pain of the cramps even worse. Soon, your cramps become stronger and you are getting very uncomfortable. At this point, the nurses change shifts and new nurse comes in. She says she needs to check you again since it’s been awhile and you don’t seem to be making any progress. She inserts 2 fingers again and shakes her head from side-to-side and gives you a very disapproving look. You have not made any progress. You want to try so badly to relax so you can make progress but with the iv, the strangers, the fingers in your rectum and the negative attitudes of the staff, there are just too many distractions and you can’t. By now your cramps are very painful and it takes all you’ve got to just stay on top of them.
The hospital team decides to insert a wire up your anus to determine if, indeed, your cramps are as bad as you say they are. They again insert 2 fingers to check the dilation and fecal decent. They tell you that if you don’t make any progress in the next 30 minutes, they may have to cut the feces out. This causes you to be even more tense and you have a hard time trying to relax just knowing what may happen if you can’t push it out yourself. After another hour of laying in bed, the female doctor comes in and does yet another exam with 2 fingers because he says he wants to be sure the nurses were doing it right. He feels it is time for you to begin to push. So you are in bed, flat on your back with your feet up in stirrups trying to have a BM and pushing with all your might while the strange nurse and a doctor intently watch your anus. The feces is not coming down fast enough so the doctor decides that your anus must not be big enough for the feces to pass through so they make a large cut in your anus to make it bigger. They also need to use a vacuum extractor to help pull the feces out.
You finally manage (with the help of a large cut and vacuum) to push the feces out. You are in a lot of pain, you’re bleeding, exhausted, spent and humiliated. You feel like something in your body is broken and didn’t work correctly. This must be true since you needed all this help for a normally natural bodily function right? The nurse then pushes on your abdomen to make sure all of the feces has been expelled. This is VERY painful but thank God you were in a hospital or else something bad might have happened. Someone stitches you up and are given instructions on how to aid your healing.
So, you made it through. You’re alive and that’s what really matters right? Is it though? What about your pain? What about the humiliation? What about the violation of privacy? What about the anger you feel towards the whole damn thing because your experience could have been completely normal and uncomplicated at home?
Now, this scenario is absolutely and utterly ridiculous right? It seems absurd to go to the hospital for something that could have easily, and much less painlessly, been done at home. The same is true of birth. This scenario is exactly what happened to birth (the ‘unhealthy’� habits were obviously a bit different) and many women are suffering, needlessly, as a result. I can attest to the fact that this scenario is VERY common in hospitals today – I have even experienced it with my own hospital birth.
People have been raised to fear birth and to think that it needs the medical community to make it happen. Birth interventions have become so common that people accept them, and every side effect that comes with them, as necessary for a good outcome. And most don’t believe it when someone tells them that it can be so much better if those things weren’t done routinely.
A healthy, informed woman who is knowledgeable in birth had just as slim a chance of dying in birth as someone does while having a BM. All you need to have a safe birth is to be informed and to listen to your instincts (something that is very difficult to do with people watching you – just like it is difficult to have a BM with people watching you!). Birth is safe and simple. Just like having a BM is safe and simple. I need as much assistance while birthing our children as you do while having a bowel movement!
—Author unknown.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Lets talk about PPD

Afternoon Readers, I have been thinking alot about PPD lately.. With my first baby I had it.. It was awful and pretty much all the things on this list below are things that were said to me by friends, family and even the occasional stupid stranger.. Postpartum Depression is something that is a serious problem, it's not something that is "just in your head" its a very real thing.. And no not everyone has the "murder my family" type, but the sadness, lonely, not feeling supported where its needed.. THAT is whats ignored.. I kept everything to myself, I didn't like talking about it to anyone, my husband was in Iraq, and I was in all these situations I didn't want to be in.. I felt completely alone..
Ladies, do what you need too, to find help! Being miserable is not "part of motherhood"I am now expecting my next baby.. And the memories of that first year are flooding back in waves of nightmares, I've thought long and hard about how things will go once baby gets here.. And people aren't going to like it, but this time I just don't care! I tried to please people, I "didn't know what I was doing" as a new mom, its something you SO don't need to hear.. Well now I'm a veteran mom! I've gone to school, attended countless births and helped moms during their PP time, and being a Doula I am ready to put all those things to work for myself!! You just need to take the stand! Talk to those who are supportive, whether its a family member, close friend, whoever, but make the choices of your support team, and know your not alone in this.. And don't let anyone tell you, your feelings aren't valid!
The list of 25 things is from the blogher site, and I felt I should share it..
Please, share this knowledge with the moms you know, and anyone else who may not know how or what to say to moms going through this.. Even if you don't know if a mom is suffering from PPD you still should know how to handle it.

"I can't emphasize enough how much trauma that adds to an already miserable situation, and how it can slow or even block recovery.

I think it's important to let people know what not to say, so I'm combining the input from my readers to give you the 25 things you should NEVER say to someone with or at risk of getting postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety, postpartum OCD, postpartum psychosis or the antenatal (during pregnancy) version of any of these:

1. Just [go for a walk/go out with your friends/have a drink/take a vitamin/go shopping/go back on the pill] and you'll feel all better.

2. Women have been having babies for tens of thousands of years, and they got through new motherhood just fine. Toughen up.

3. Yeah, I had a few bad days there after my baby was born. I know what you're going through. Or ... I just finished my [album/thesis/marathon/political campaign]. I know how you feel.

4. Maybe postpartum depression is God's way of letting you know you don't have enough faith. I think you should pray harder.

5. Stop making this about you. This is about the baby. You should be thinking about him/her rather than yourself.

6. Quitting breastfeeding is selfish. The baby's health is so much more important than yours.

7. I know breastfeeding is really important to you, but you have to quit so you can be treated for PPD.

8. This is the exact medication and dosage I took for my PPD. Just take that and you'll be OK.

9. I would never take antidepressants. You shouldn't need that stuff to be a mother.

10. You're just mad the baby is getting all the attention.

11. PPD is just a fad. Only spoiled, Western women get it, and now that it's "popular" on the blogs, everyone is jumping on the bandwagon.

12. Can't you see how lucky you are? You have a beautiful baby! You should be grateful.

13. This will probably go away on it's own, so don't worry about it.

14. I wouldn't talk about this with anyone. You don't want them to think you're crazy.

15. You don't need to worry about your symptoms unless you're having thoughts of harming your baby.

16. You're just using postpartum depression as an excuse to get out of the hard work of being a mom.

17. Once you go back to work you'll probably feel fine.

18. Why can't you just talk yourself out of this? I don't think you're trying hard enough.

19. Do we need to take your child away from you?

20. If you would just try _______ (fill in the blank) parenting style I think everything would be okay.

21. You have [a supportive partner/wonderful home/great family/good job/food on the table/healthy baby]. You should be happy.

22. All of this crying is bad for your baby, you know.

23. We all have days where we don't want to get out of bed.

24. Did you think motherhood was going to be easy? What did you expect?

25. Postpartum depression isn't real.

Women who have perinatal mood and anxiety disorders didn't do anything to cause them, and require medical help to recover from them. They deserve nothing but patience, love and support. Period.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Educate Before You Vaccinate!!

Now just to state, I'm not totally anti-vaccinations, but seriously, parents just nod and do what doctors tell them. Its really sad to see so many parents not educating themselves to give their kids the best possible start in life.. And I'm not saying that parents who choose to vaccinate aren't doing what they think is best, I'm saying that people don't learn more BEFORE making choices.. Homework is the best way to learn.. ;)

1) If vaccinations are so effective, why have there been hundreds of documented outbreaks and epidemics in populations either fully immunized or exceeding herd immunity standards? Including 4,200 cases of measles in fully immunized (state mandated and enforced) Texas schools?

2) If vaccinations are so safe, why do 6,000 infants a year die from vaccine reactions?

3) If systemic (injected) vaccinations work so well at preventing disease, why is modern science scrambling for a mucosal (oral or nasal) alternative? Could it possibly be because the mucosal system is necessary to confer humoral memory immunity?

4) Why was it that the Hepatitis A vaccine brought about a 26% increase in the disease in the US the year after it was added to the childhood immunization schedule and universally implemented?

5) Why is that when we had a flu vaccine shortage in 2004 (we had less than half the normal amount available due to contaminated batches) that there was not a massive increase in influenza deaths? Why was it, in point of fact, that there was actually a 30% DECREASE in influenza deaths that year?

6) Why do we recommend a vaccination for which children have virtually no likelihood of contracting it's assigned disease unless their pregnant mother had it (Hepatitis B)?

7) Why would our government allow the second most toxic substance on earth (mercury) to be put into vaccinations? And why is it still in the Hepatitis B and Influenza vaccines as of 2009 when it was supposed to be "banned" in 1999, ten years ago? Mercury is linked a humongous number of neurological disorders, although autism which is the only "unproven" one gets the media attention (go figure).

8) Why did the US government reclassify the name of Poliomyelitis as viral or aseptic meningitis or coxsackie virus the year after the vaccine was introduced?

9) Why is the ACIP (advisory committee for immunization practices), who are responsible for approving new vaccinations and adding them to the immunization schedule in the US, approving vaccinations in which: the safety trials never tested children of the appropriate age that are actually given the vaccine (hepatitis b), only tested 31 trial participants who were only observed for adverse reactions for 3 days later (influenza), did not conduct placebo controlled safety trials (nearly all of them), had an exorbitant amount of deaths during the safety trial (rotavirus), etcetera?

10) Why does the US recommend around 20 doses more (18 to be exact) from birth through five than the World Health Organizations top 30 countries for birth through five mortality in the world? Compare to any other well developed nation even and we recommend between 17-25 more doses just in this age range, guaranteed. Since we place 34th in the world for birth through five mortality, it's not exactly putting us ahead of other nations in terms of saving our children's lives.

Pro vaccine individuals think that anti vaccine people are some sort of wacko conspiracy theorists. The truth is we're knowledgeable and informed parents who don't just blankly nod our heads to every word our doctor (who is NOT God), says. If you are pro vaccination, think about these questions, allow yourself to absorb a concept you may consider to be unusual or even straight up crazy. If you know the answers and can prove me wrong using actual fact and data ("scientific consensus disagrees with you", or parroting doctors and the FDA or CDC's opinion based statements does not count), I'm always open to new information!

(Shared information from a fellow Doula!)

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Fertility & Frustrations..

I found this site that was really helpful in learning more about natural conception. And also some information on the alternative methods when "natural" is just not working.. TTC (Trying To Conceive) is hard, no matter how you look at it, for some women its fast, and so to those who it takes much longer, are thinking "well why not me? Whats wrong with me?" and countless other negative thoughts that you just can't help thinking.. And the want is just so strong it can throw your hormones into a downward spiral, making cycles crazy, and life just down right miserable for you, for your partner and everyone around you.
From personal experience I understand this frustration, the pain, and constantly thinking about, babies, pregnancy, cycles, ovulation, testing, etc.. I've read hundreds of books, gone to countless physicians, naturopath, midwives even counseling. Just to figure something out! For some women you have a diagnosis, you know why, and there is a way to change course to shoot for your goals. Others its unexplainable infertility.
Patience is a big one, it can be so upsetting to be told that, or to just relax.. Sometimes its just not that simple.. For my husband and I we had no diagnosis, no medical reasons.. The Doctors and midwives were baffled by my case. Without cycles for almost a year, but I still would conceive but soon miscarry.. Several times this happened. We had no reason why my babies kept dying.. Well this went on for almost two years.. My husband was deployed during this last year and I went to a specialist to see if we could figure out something.. And to no avail.. My midwife however suggested I change my lifestyle, change my diet, (I'm striving to "go green") and start going to the gym. So for 7 months my husband was gone, I went to the gym 6 days out of the week.. And by the end of the deployment I had lost almost 50pounds.. My cycles returned, 28 days exact!! (which is rare for many women!) 2 cycles after my husband was home we conceived!! And have been growing strong ever since then!
Here is the point to my story, I wasn't vastly over-weight, but for some reason the way I carried my weight was affecting my fertility, and some reason the doctors could not figure that out.. I'm not saying go join a gym and you'll get pregnant.. I'm just stating that making lifestyle changes that may hinder fertility can be a huge factor. Babies are precious cargo to begin with, and their start in life should be at its best, I was really happy to have lost the weight for many reasons, but when I found out I was pregnant the relief of knowing my body is prepared to handle pregnancy was beyond happy. The heavier a woman is, the risk of complications triples..
I felt compelled to share my story, and I pray it gives hope to you TTC'ers out there.. Sometimes the hardest thing in the world is change.. Its scary, not knowing what is ahead of you.. If something will work out or not.. But I finally reached the end of my rope, I believed that perhaps I wasn't meant to have more kids, that our daughter was it. And I came to terms with that and began enjoying life again.. I know life is never perfect, but for me? In those first few months of my husband being home from Afghanistan, and me finally not being depressed over not having another baby, I felt my life was perfect.. I was happy. I am happy.. And then I found myself being blessed with this gift..
The picture below is of "cyclebeads" it is a very old tell-tale way to remember your cycle, count days, etc.. But its also a great tool for tracking ovulation! Along with purchasing a Basal Body thermometer at your walmart for about $8 and together these two can be a really great help to TTC!

Don't give up, scream, shout and cry.. But don't give up.. Doubt is what tells you to quit.. Hope is what whispers; give it one more try.. Baby Dust being sent your way in your TTC journey..

Here is that natural fertility and conception site;

And here is one of many that are extremely helpful and available to you at your local barnes and noble or other book store;

Friday, July 16, 2010

Birthin' Comics!

This site has many of THE funniest and OH SO TRUE comics! From how you choose to birth, to breastfeeding! Which I get a kick out of them! I've even paid for a few! This one below is one I purchased, its one of my favorites! :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Tummy Tubs

I'd like to share a neat site I found, I've heard of Tummytub's and had several clients who use them! Check out their site for many more neat things they have!

TummyTub® was designed in the Netherlands by childcarers to ease the transition from the comfort of the mother’s womb.

Babies naturally adopt the fetal position and it is amazing to see how quickly they calm and relax.
# Bathing in the familiar fetal position – helps babies feel reassured and relaxed
# Stress free bathing for both baby and parent – excellent for colicky babies
# Anti-skid base and low centre of gravity for safety and stability
# Compact size – takes less space and less use of water
# Especially useful for premature babies
# Ergonomic hand grips and extremely lightweight
# Made of environmentally friendly materials
# Ecological
# Less surface area of water – temperature stays warmer for longer time
And here's the site! :) enjoy!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Mammal Lessons

Childbirth lessons we can learn from our "lesser" mammal sisters
-by Gretchen Humphries and Gloria Lemay

Cat: birth where you feel comfortable- if that's in the lap of someone you love, go for it, if you prefer the back of a dark closet, that's good too. A drawer full of old wool sweaters is paradise. Don't be afraid to get up and leave and don't be afraid to move your baby if it isn't safe anymore.

if it doesn't feel safe, don't do it. As nice as you might be normally, it's ok to be a real bitch when your baby is involved.

Cow: head first, butt first, feet first, two at a time, babies come out. If it's your first calf, you'll probably be pregnant longer than the other cows but that's normal.

Giraffes: all newborns are designed to work with the Mom's body. In this case, a fall of seven feet to the dusty earth is just part of the usual birth experience.

Llama: sing to your newborn.

Horse: the middle of the night is a good time to have a baby, but a watched uterus doesn't contract. Hard hooves and fast legs are a good protection against meddling humans.

: have the other females in your matriarchal lineage form a circle around you with their bums pointing toward you and their trunks facing out to the plain so you can give birth to something very large without having to worry about lions.

Dolphins and whales: being in water is useful to keep the helpful humans away. Your midwife dolphins and whales should gently nudge the baby to the surface once its cord has snapped. The cold water will stop the bleeding. If your baby is to survive, it must drink your colostrum.

Monkeys and apes: watching other mothers birth, feed and raise their babies is the best way to learn how to take care of your own. Privacy is everything. Leaving the placenta dangling off the newborn for days is perfectly all right. Grandmothers are the most ferocious protectors of the mothers and newborns.

But hey... we are more advanced than animals, so obviously we can rise above our limitations and birth unnaturally...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Start of Something Beautiful!

Welcome to Birthin' Knowledge! Here is a bit about me, I am a Birth Doula, a Doula provides various forms of non-medical support (physical, emotional and informed choices) in the childbirth process. Based on the Doula's training and background the doula may offer support during prenatal care, during childbirth and/or during the postpartum period. A birth doula is a care provider for labor. The doula may attend any form of home birth or attend the mom during labor at home and continue while in transport and then support the birth at either the hospital or birth center. Where ever the mom so chooses to birth a doula may be present, from unassisted homebirths to planned c-sections.
My personal Doula website for my business is
If you have any questions just email me there and I'll get back to you as soon as I can! This blog will be an attachment to my site, but used for educational purposes. I'll be posting my essays and birth information that I learn and find for your viewing pleasure, enjoy!!
Happy Birthing!