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Pregnancy

Pregnancy is normal. Birth is safe in any setting. Discover your choices.

568 pregnancy article submissions by the Mothering community.

10 Things No One Tells You About Pregnancy

1. Your feet may get a half shoe size bigger, and stay that way. 2. If you travel on an airplane, your husband’s ankles may get swollen during the flight. That’s what happened to my friend Emily and her husband when they took a trip during her third trimester. 3. Your hair might fall out, like my friend Annette’s did. She thought she had a terminal disease but actually she was pregnant. 4. Or your hair might get thick and shiny and gorgeous. But it’s not yours. Once the baby comes you will start losing it in clumps. 5. You may not... read more

A Baby Born on Wednesday: The Story of the Unassisted Birth

Author’s note: Our new baby was born at home in our bedroom a week ago this Wednesday without a birth attendant present. This is the last installment of the story of how we came to choose an unassisted birth. If you’re visiting the blog for the first time, the story begins here. When you’re expecting your fourth child and you’re past the due date, you become convinced that the baby will be a full-grown adult before coming into the world, which is why I pretended I wasn’t in labor for about 12 hours of regular but light contractions. My uterus had been... read more

A Baby Born on Wednesday, post 4

Author’s note: Our new baby was born at home in our bedroom this past Wednesday without a birth attendant present. This week’s posts are the story of how we came to choose an unassisted birth and about the birth itself. The first installment is here. The second installment is here. The third installment is here. The final installment, about the labor itself, will be posted on Friday. “So, who’s your midwife?” A friend asked. “Oh, someone from out of town,” I heard myself lying into the phone. “Have you chosen a midwife?” A mom from my... read more

A Baby Born on Wednesday, post 3

Author’s note: Our new baby was born at home in our bedroom this past Wednesday without a birth attendant present. No name (yet). No weight (we don’t own a scale). No midwives. This week’s posts are the story of how we came to choose an unassisted birth and about the birth itself. The first installment is here. The second installment is here. To read the rest of the story, please check back daily. The not-yet-certified midwife we chose for our second home birth, M., had dreadlocks down to her ankles. She didn’t have an office. Instead, she brought her... read more

A Baby Born on Wednesday, post 2

Author’s note: Our new baby was born at home in our bedroom this past Wednesday without a birth attendant present. No name (yet). No weight (we don’t own a scale). No midwives. This week’s posts are the story of how we came to choose an unassisted birth and about the birth itself. This is the second installment. The first installment is here. To read the whole story, please check back daily. When Athena was born I got an unnecessary tear “We both started at the same place,” James explained during another “conversation” about unassisted birth. He... read more

A Baby Born on Wednesday, post 1

Author’s note: Our new baby was born at home in our bedroom this past Wednesday without a birth attendant present. No name (yet). No weight (we don’t own a scale). No midwives. This week’s posts from Monday to Friday will be the story of how we came to choose an unassisted birth and about the birth itself. To read the whole story, please check back daily. “The thing is, I don’t know if I really want a midwife,” I said to James when I was nearly five months pregnant and still had not chosen anyone. “Oh God.” He furrowed his brow and looked... read more

Guest Blogger Simone Snyder: A little destiny in the Mothering library

I tell pretty much every pregnant woman I know to come check out the Mothering lending library. It has an extensive collection of books and other materials ranging in topics, from natural parenting to childbirth preparation to medical texts. Knowing that at any given moment there could be someone rummaging through the books, I should have been more prepared when I was confronted by that book. I was astounded to find What to Expect When You are Expecting lying on the floor. Thinking my co-worker, who is a midwifery student, had selected the book, I shouted my... read more

Why Gloves?

I snuggled in bed with my 6-year-old son Etani last Saturday and we decided to watch some home birth videos on the Internet. In order to feel prepared for this labor, I’ve been reading everything I can about home birth, practicing breathing and vocalizing, visualizing the kind of birth I hope to have, and talking to my kids a lot about what to expect. Etani wants to be there. He says he doesn’t want to be involved but that he’ll peek around from the door and watch. My daughter Athena, who’s eight, also wants to be at the birth. My oldest daughter, who turned... read more

The Waiting Game

Peggy and I were talking the other day about how we need a new way to describe when a baby is due. Due “date” is something of a misnomer, since a healthy baby can safely be born two weeks (or more) before that date or two weeks (or more) afterwards. Some women gestate longer than others and often labor is unnecessarily induced by artificial means that lead to a cascade of iatrogenic problems. What should we call it? Due season? Due time? Due month? One blogger suggests calling it a “due window.” It’s easy to be mistaken about the date of... read more

Liberated From Prenatal "Care"

After almost every prenatal visit when I was pregnant with my first child I would cry. The midwives in the only practice our student insurance would pay for were so mean that we ended up switching to the doctors. When I refused what I considered nonsensical testing, they would look at me sternly and say things like, “You’re going to buy yourself a C-section if you don’t do the glucose tolerance test.” Without telling us why, my favorite doctor in the practice (a young woman with two small children herself) ordered an “emergency ultrasound” when I was eight... read more

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