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

26 pregnancy article submissions by the Mothering community.

"But, isn’t home birth unsafe and totally insane?"

  When my wife and I first contemplated a home birth, many folks we knew asked, “But, isn’t home birth unsafe and totally insane?”   I don’t think it is. If we look historically, home birth has been practiced in 99.999 percent of the births since humans began walking upright. Jimmy Carter was actually the first US president not to be born at home.      What about safety?       In the UK, the very reputable National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence reports that mortality during home births is the same as it is for hospital births. And Holland reports... read more

The Lies We Live With

By Sheryl Paul Around the sixth month of my pregnancy with my second son, my hip locked up to the point of debilitating pain. I had experienced something similar in my first pregnancy, but the second time was more extreme and I knew I needed help. I booked an appointment with a bodyworker and hobbled my way to his office. He asked if I was enjoying my pregnancy and I said, “I love that I’m pregnant but I hate being pregnant.” He laughed and said that when his wife was miserably pregnant he conducted an informal poll asking pregnant women everywhere if they enjoyed it.... read more

The First Birth Matters (More Than You Think)

  Birth is sacred.  It is the transition from couple to family, from woman to mother, from one to two.   Birth is also, for most of us, a touch scary.  It is still, after all these millennia, a mystery in many ways.  And so, it is somewhat natural to dismiss the first birth.  People often say things like, “Well maybe with the next one I will…(try to go natural, have a home birth, take a birth class, hire a doula, etc.) but with this birth we will just see what happens.”   While I understand the sentiment I must issue a warning cry against simply dismissing the... read more

Optimal Cord Clamping Gives Your Baby A Boost!

By Jessica Williams for kidsinthehouse.com   From the moment Daddy or your birth partner cuts your newborn’s umbilical cord, your infant begins her life as an autonomous being. Both symbolically and literally, your baby will now seek nourishment as a being separate from you. While the act of cutting the umbilical cord can be filled with meaning, there are practical elements to consider.   Dr. Alan Greene, author of Raising Baby Green and Feeding Baby Green, is at the forefront of a movement called TICC TOCC, which seeks to educate parents about the importance of... read more

Ten Must-Haves for Your Home Birth

  There’s a lot more to prepare when you are planning a home birth. It isn’t a matter of having your hospital bag packed. You need to have your space prepared.   I’ve created a list of things that I found helpful during my labor and delivery at home.   1. All supplies recommended by your midwife This is probably obvious. I ordered all my supplies from Precious Arrows. Look over the list, though. You may want more of some things, for example: those mesh panties that you can toss after you wear them. Some moms love them, others hate them. I loved them and was sad I... read more

Birth in the 1950s and 60s: Interview with My Grandmother

                       Almost three years ago, I took a doula training workshop through DONA. As part of the preparation for this workshop, we were required to interview a mother from an older generation about her birth experiences. I'm not sure I ever would have thought to do this if it weren't for this assignment and I am infinitely glad I did. I interviewed my maternal grandmother, Mary Kay, about my mother Susan's birth and about my aunt Barbara's birth as well. She was eager to share her experiences, and I, in turn, am eager to share them with you.   Susan's... read more

The Lifelong Power of Birth Imprints

I cannot let Empowered Birth Awareness Week close without reflecting on the fact that birth leaves powerful lifelong imprints. Our empowerment lies in becoming aware of them and from understanding that these birth imprints are always available to be revised, renegotiated and healed. In a moment I will share for the first time ever the story of my son's birth imprint and its powerful healing.   Birth Imprints Birth is one of our most momentous embodied experiences. And even though we don’t consciously remember this huge event in our lives, each of us carries the story... read more

What to Buy Before Baby Arrives: 25 Truly Useful Items for Infant and Postpartum Care

  Recently a story about Baby Boxes given to new moms in Finland hit the news and struck a chord. The concept of one box packed full of everything a new mama needs for herself and baby is a great one and we wondered -- what would Mothering mamas put in such a box? What would really be useful to a new parent?    So we went ahead and asked our readers and here are the results -- the ultimate Mothering baby box packed full of helpful, safe and natural items to grab before the little one arrives!   Clothes and Baby Care   Under... read more

Empowered Birth: What is YOUR Story?

My first birth didn't feel very empowered. My OB seemed distinctly uninterested in having an empowered birthing patient. I felt meek and under his power. I evolved, my power grew, I switched OBs, and by Baby #2, I had what felt like a very empowered birth. Details in a moment.   When a baby is born, a mother is born. Even if she already has children, each birth experience unfolds new facets of a woman's being, having to do with feeling powerful, capable, supported -- or helpless, incompetent, insignificant. These primal feelings will weave their way through her ongoing... read more

Has The Natural Birth Movement Become Too Obsessed With Moms' Rights?

               I consider myself a natural birth advocate.  I believe women have a right to choices in their care and in their birth.  The phrase, "All that matters is a healthy baby," is one that I find sadly dismissive of the experience of the mother.  I am often reminded of the tragedy that ensues for both the mother and her child when a woman is treated as though she doesn't matter and is merely a vehicle in the delivery of a child.   In reaction to this dismissal of the mother and her role in the birth process we have the modern natural birth movement.  We work... read more

Mothering › Pregnancy Articles