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#1 of 39 Old 08-22-2004, 01:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just wondering if I am the only April mama planning a UC? Anyone else? Just curious


 

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#2 of 39 Old 08-22-2004, 02:31 PM
 
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Maybe ...

though as far as dh is concerned he'll have to think it was an 'accident' LOL. His background is far too mainstream to accept UC ... it was hard enough the first time convincing him to have a HB ... though he became a very vocal HB advocate AFTER the fact ... maybe I can convince him ...ya never know!

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#3 of 39 Old 08-23-2004, 02:02 AM
 
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What is UC? I know that HB is home birth... am I just having pregnancy brain?

Pamela

Mama to ds (8 yrs), ds (5 yrs), ds (3 yrs) and ds (3 yrs).
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#4 of 39 Old 08-23-2004, 10:07 AM
 
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Unassisted childbirth-- foregoing any medical assistance.

Not I, but more power to you.
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#5 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 04:14 PM
 
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No way Jose!!! JMO but I think UC is cracked. And I'm not some mainstream birther, I'm having a homebirth this time even though we had a birth defect that required immediate emergency care the first time around. I know this is a support thread so I'll stop now, but what's so awful about having a midwife??? Please tell me you aren't having a UC pregnancy too. My SIL almost died from pre-eclampsia (turned into regular eclampsia) trying a UC

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#6 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 06:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So I guess I am cracked. I have been called worse :LOL

I am just a woman who chooses to take responsibility for her own health. I have a better track record in caring for myself than any doctor I have ever been too. I know MY BODY better than any outsider ever could, being that I spend so much time with myself and all.

What's wrong with a midwife? Depends on the midwife I guess. I just feel they are unnecessary a lot of the time. Of course there are situations that may call for a different approach, birth is not inherantly dangerous. Women all over the world have (and still do) give birth unassisted with much success. Death rates didn't start to increase until birth "professionals" got involved (poor hygene often contributed to maternal infection for example).

You don't have to agree with it if you don't want to. I wasn't asking for approval for MY choices, I was just wondering if I was the only UC'er around. To each her own and all that


 

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#7 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 06:58 PM
 
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The idea of UC is appealing to me, but I think I'd prefer to have the midwife here. DH would definitely prefer to have a midwife here.
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#8 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 07:05 PM
 
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It's just hard for me personally because my son was in such bad condition when he was born. If I had been alone he would have died. I was very low risk, no history of birth defects, no testing would have showed his defect. I know it's rare, but wouldn't it just suck to be that rare case where your baby had an undiagnosed severe heart defect and died because you didn't have someone experienced in recognizing infant distress and who had oxygen to supply until you got to the hospital? That's all I'm saying. And I'm a historian, I know that tons of women throughout the centuries have relied on midwives and those who were too poor and gave birth alone usually did not fare so well. I know this isn't the place to debate it, but I just have to share congenital heart defect awareness: 1 in 100 babies are born with a congenital heart defect, most to low risk mothers with no family history of heart defects and no risk factors during pregnancy, most undetected. And babies die of them. It came as quite a shock to me, let me tell you.

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#9 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 07:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, it is rare. It is also one of many, many RARE things that can go "wrong". There are just as many things that can go wrong in a birth that takes place in any other setting. There are no guarantees no matter what. Women still give birth unassisted all over the world, often midwives aren't (weren't) paid "professionals", just older women that had children of their own who helped out other birthing mothers.

I realize that this must be an issue close to your heart because of your experiences, but not all women go into birth with the same values and beliefs as you do. Not all outcomes would have been so successful even with a midwife or doctor, and not all UC's would have ended with an infant death. In birth (and life) there are no certainties like that. The wonderful thing is that we all have the CHOICE to do what we feel is best for oureselves.

FWIW my last UC would have ended badly if it was NOT a UC. Any midwife or doctor would have freaked out because I was in transition for 7 hours. Because I was alone with no outside interference I was able to listen to that little voice that told me deep down that everything was okay. That just would not have been possible in an assisted birth. My 1st birth WAS a hospital birth and they did far more harm than good. I just don't believe in attendants for MY births at all (unless of course I truly believe there is a danger, some UC'ers wouldn't get help regardless). What you choose and why you choose it is your business and I respect your choices even if you think my are "cracked".

Have a great day!


 

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#10 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 07:46 PM
 
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hi everyone. I am new to this site. wish i had known about it a long time ago. I had my daughter at home with a midwife in a birthing tub. I would like to respond to what you all are talking about if you don't mind. I am not fond of hospital births at all and do see where the woman having the uc is coming from. It is a personal choice. I personally loved my midwife and got a midwife that let me do pretty much anything i wanted. But I also know that every state and even every city has different types of care, midwifes etc. My only concern would be if you knew what you were getting into completely. IF you do and you have talked it over with you partner and you feel it is the best decision and you are willing to deal with the consequences than that is that. i would be interested in learning more about the laws that surround that though. Is there any info you can give me. Are you going to have a support system? Thanks forletting me chat. mommaof2
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#11 of 39 Old 08-24-2004, 11:46 PM
 
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Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama
Death rates didn't start to increase until birth "professionals" got involved (poor hygene often contributed to maternal infection for example).

I have to strongly disagree with this statement (in my previous life before being a SAHM/WAHM, I worked in infant/fetal mortality)

The Infant Death Rate has dropped DRAMATICALLY in the past years, mainly to better technology to keep babies alive. The Infant Mortality rate in 1950 was 29.9/1000 live births. In 2001 it was 6.8/1000 live births.

Maternal Mortality rates have also dropped DRAMATICALLY. In 1900 850 women died / every 100,000 live births. In the 1990s, it was less than 10/100,000 live births. To this day in Africa (where they obviously don't have the medical care we have here) the maternal mortality rate is 120-1800/100,000 live births!!!

As far as UC goes, I don't support it only because I know way too much about the bad things that can happen (not that bad things don't happen with doctors & midwives present, because they DO). I just feel like having a midwife present is like having a lifeguard at the beach. You hope that the riptide won't pull you out or that you won't get bitten by a shark, but freaky things happen & isn't great that you have the lifeguard there just in case. My 2 cents.
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#12 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 12:23 AM
 
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No, no UC here . . .hospital birth! I can see, though, how intervention of any sort can lead to more problems, so to a certain extent, I can see your POV. However, I know that childbirth is one of the biggest health risks (leading to death of the mom and/or baby) in other countries (where UC is the norm because of no $) . . .so . . .well . . .no, I don't fully understand this choice. But, that's not what this thread is about, so I'll be looking forward to reading more replies!

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#13 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 12:24 AM
 
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i'm kinda like CTdoula. i won't do UC because i know TOO MUCH. working in NICUs you see the worst of the worst, of course not the norm. but it scares you a lot. however, if you choose UC i can be supportive of your decision. i would NEVER put your decision down. I will say please, please, please, have an emergency plan. that way if you get into trouble you aren't just hanging there with no plan. i have seen it happen where mom's are so confident and are not willing to plan for the unexpected. their babes come into the NICU in a state of what is called a 'train wreck'. often they recover, but sometimes they don't . so, be happy and at peace with your decision to UC, but please be on your guard and make sure you know what you will do if the unexpected happens !!!!!!
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#14 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 01:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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ctdoula,

I was referring to furthur back than the 1900's, people have been meddling in birth for much longer than that. When the medico's started getting involved in childbirth they would often attend mothers after attending people who were ill. Sometimes vetrinarians and medical students would be the attendants. The importance of basic hand-washing was not known at the time. It was alarmingly common for an attendant to come to a birth immediately after attending a sick person or working on a cadaver WITHOUT WASHING HANDS!! This led to problems of infection (obviously). This is just one of many wrong turns that childbirth has taken.

On another note, the US is ranked 25th in the world for infant mortality, this is behind several countries that are LESS technically advanced.

My SIL worked in a hospital in Nigera for a short time. It is not surprising that they have some of the worst stats. The are copying the western "ideal" of hospital births, but they are not equipped for it. They lack supplies, staff, hygenic practices, and many, many other things. This has NOTHING to do with UC. The mothers are often poor, unhealthy, far too young, and under-nourished. This is the opposite of what an ideal UC would be all about.

I personally believe that on average a UC mother takes MORE responsibility than the average pregnant woman. That is because she knows that she is solely responsible for the outcome. There will be instances where that is not enough (4% of women ACTUALLY need csecs) and some of those UC mamas will transfer to the hospital either before, during, or immediately after the birth much like any homebirth. UC mothers are not ignorant or stupid. Quite the contrary in fact. Some of the smartest, most responsible people I have ever met choose to give birth unassisted because they see the stats for themselves. Walking into a hospital in North America today gives you a 1 in 4 chance (if not higher) of getting a csec. There is a much higher risk involved in UNNECESSARY major abdominal surgery (which will consist of the majority of those csecs) than childbirth ever could.

OTOH if all you see is the negative outcomes day after day it would be easy to forget about the majority of births that DON"T end that way. My beautiful 1 yo UC baby is living proof


 

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#15 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Mizelenius,

UC is generally only prevailant in places where birth services wouldn't be charged for anyway. Other places are copying a more "westernized" version of birth with under-equipped hospital or inadequatly trained "midwifes". The traditional folk-midwives are no longer existant in many of those places.

Also, the stats and such from 3rd world countries are not applicable to our society at all. An under-nourish young mother in poor health is not comparable to a healthy, well informed mother from these parts.

That said, I believe any informed decision a mother makes SHOULD be respected. Unfortunately not everyone agrees I guess


 

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#16 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 04:19 AM
 
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UC is a possibility for us. DH actually suggested it today. His statement was "why can't we just do it ourselves?" when we were discussing what to do for birth.

I'm another mom who "knows too much", but still has a fascination and interest in considering unassisted childbirth. I also have a faith that God designed me to birth my child and He's in control.

So we'll see how things go and keep watching the threads!
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#17 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 09:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama
Also, the stats and such from 3rd world countries are not applicable to our society at all. An under-nourish young mother in poor health is not comparable to a healthy, well informed mother from these parts.
I gotcha-- comparing apples and oranges. Like I said, it's not a choice I fully understand, but it's also one that I have not researched! So, my opinion on this topic is not an educated one. I'll be interested to continue learning about it!

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#18 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 10:51 AM
 
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Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama

Also, the stats and such from 3rd world countries are not applicable to our society at all. An under-nourish young mother in poor health is not comparable to a healthy, well informed mother from these parts.

So very true, and we so often forget how ludicrous it is to compare the two statistically. This is true for so many spectrums of topics, not just UC.

I applaud your decision, although it is not the right one for me. How fortunate for us both that we have the freedom of CHOICE.

One more thing and then I am done....wow, the word "cracked" is so strong! Don't forget to be kind.
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#19 of 39 Old 08-25-2004, 07:35 PM
 
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one thing you do have to consider when comparing the infant mortality rates in the US to other countries is that in the US micropreemies are counted in those statistics. so, if a 23 week gestation babe is born and treated but dies, that is considered one type of infant death, if that same babe is born and nothing is done, that is a separate type of infant death(fetal demise). in a lot of other countries they do not try to save micropreemies, so their infant mortality rates won't count the fetal demise babes. also, in the US we have a large amt of babes born and not survive due to being multiples, due to the use of some drugs that allow for high order multiples. again, other countries don't tend to have the high order multiples that the US does. technology helps and hurts all at the same time.

your comment about UC moms taking on MORE resposibility is true. because you know what ever happens it was your decision. i often tell people that as long as they are comfortable with the outcome, even if it not what they wanted or expected, then they should go ahead with their decision. i apply this to myself as well. if i do something or allow my children to do something that i know could have positive or negative consequences, i am assuming that responsibilty of being able to deal with either result. as long as i am ok with the result, i am ok with the decision.
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#20 of 39 Old 08-26-2004, 12:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, it is all about making EDUCATED, WELL-INFORMED decisions. It is unfortunate that many mothers are not aware of how their choices will affect their unborn children. I consider us a fortunate group of women for knowing to inform ourselves and make the choices we feel best about. I may take that information and choose to UC while someone else may have that same info and feel strongly that they want a hospital birth. Either way, it is personal choice and personal responsibility.

Wow, I never really expected this thread to take such a turn :LOL I am glad we can (mostly) discuss our differences respectfully (usually). As long as we are truly are okay with the choices (and possible outcomes) that we make we have done right by our unborn babies


 

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#21 of 39 Old 08-26-2004, 12:35 AM
 
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#22 of 39 Old 08-26-2004, 01:50 PM
 
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OK, I'm sorry I stated my opinion in such an inflammatory way, but please consider where I am coming from. I don't want ANY families to go through what we did, but mother nature has other ideas, and birth defects happen. And let me tell you, when it's you, all those statistics about how rare it is mean diddly squat.

Please, please, please, take an infant CPR class and consider having oxygen on hand. Please have an emergency plan and at least a friend there to call 911 for you. I'm serious. It CAN and DOES happen to low risk moms with NO history of birth defects.

And if any of you had experienced what I did--seeing your baby struggling for breath, then on a ventilator with an entire rack of IVs coming out of every limb, turning purple, and using every ounce of will to make that oxygen monitor go up, you would think that "cracked" was perhaps too generous.

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#23 of 39 Old 08-26-2004, 10:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama
I consider us a fortunate group of women for knowing to inform ourselves and make the choices we feel best about. I may take that information and choose to UC while someone else may have that same info and feel strongly that they want a hospital birth.
Sorry for derailing your thread again! I just wanted to say that I was just thinking about this . . .when I know that someone has researched their birth options very thoroughly, I feel "relieved" (not that it's my business! ) at their choice, even if it's one I wouldn't make for myself. There's something very wonderful about an informed and empowered birth!

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#24 of 39 Old 08-26-2004, 11:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sleepymama, I really do appreciate your point of view. I cannot imagine the pain and fear you must have gone through with your ds. I just cannot live in a place of "what if's". Especially since I KNOW my ds1's health was compromised by my "safe" hospital birth. There is no predicting the outcomes of these things. What if I went to the hospital and had a child who had a rare serious reaction or infection FROM the hospital. What if I hired a midwife who made a rare fatal mistake. There just are no guarantees in birth or in life. I know you said what you did out of concern and that concern is truly appreciated, but I don't live out of fear of the millions of rare "what if" scenarios that could happen at any birth (even the low risk one's). If I did I probably wouldn't give birth at all. Instead I make the choices that *I* am comfortable with and that *I* feel are the safest for my family. I know you do not agree with them, but that is okay. I know that regardless of the outcome I will feel at peace with the fact that I have made the choices I have will all the facts at my disposal and I knew they were the right choices for me.

Thanks again for having such a great heart to put yourself out there out of concern. I appreciate the sentiment even if I disagree with your point of view


 

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#25 of 39 Old 08-26-2004, 11:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Mizelenius,

I couldn't agree more!! I really believe in making informed decisions. We all have different beliefs about life, birth, and everything in between so of course we will all make different choices. If those choices are made out of knowledge and not fear they will empower us, otherwise we cheat ourselves and limit our ability to learn something new.


 

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#26 of 39 Old 08-28-2004, 10:08 PM
 
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And if any of you had experienced what I did--seeing your baby struggling for breath, then on a ventilator with an entire rack of IVs coming out of every limb, turning purple, and using every ounce of will to make that oxygen monitor go up, you would think that "cracked" was perhaps too generous.
I've experienced what you have Sleepymama (not because of a heart defect however). I'm lucky to have my son today. I still choose to UC. I know of the responsibility I have taken on.

(FWIW, the first thing I question when I hear of pre-e and eclampsia is how well the mother knew of maternal nutrition. Just my two cents)
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#27 of 39 Old 08-30-2004, 07:06 AM
 
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I'm a little - no ALOT - shocked at some of the responses on this thread. Wow. I'm really disappointed, too.

UC is not "forgoing any medical assistance". There are plenty UC mamas who listened to their intution and bodies and went to the hospital for medical assistance or called a supportive midwife.

What is so funny to me - and maybe a bit tragic - is the shocked responses here remind me of responses to those who post on REALLY mainstream sites about having a mw-attended homebirth. They're exactly the same type of responses. Just a different slant.

FWIW, I wholly and completely support UC. I have never learned more about birth and how to be a mw than from the women who UC. Never.
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#28 of 39 Old 08-30-2004, 08:00 AM
 
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I'm glad you drew the parallel between the response to UC and midwife-assisted birth, Pam. That's just what I was thinking as I read this thread. On another site, announcing plans for a midwife-assisted homebirth might garner lots of shocked replies and "I could never do that!"s. I never expected a mention of UC here to be regarded as so out there! It's funny how normal and 'mainstream' a plain old homebirth seems to me now... I forget how strange and brave a lot of people think it is when they hear I had Lula at home with "just a midwife."

It's good to hear most people here say that they are supportive of the choice to UC even though they wouldn't choose it for themselves. But even then, it's clear that they don't really understand or know anything about it. I know there was a point where I had never even considered it; now, after all I've learned, I can't imagine having this baby any other way.

But maybe we spend a lot more time on the MDC homebirth board in general, and the UC threads in particular. Maybe some of the people on this thread haven't read a thing about UC in their lives (it sure sounds like it.) We have heard the experiences and been privileged to get the information that the UCers (and you! ) are willing to share so freely. So we get it. Well, it's there, for anyone who wants to avail themselves of it.

FWIW I had a midwife for my last pregnancy and birth, and I loved her. But I need a different experience this time, for a lot of reasons. Someone asked why a woman would not have a midwife "just in case". I would feel hindered, even by having a midwife in the other room. I know I'd ask for reassurance that everything was going all right if she were there, and what I really want is to listen to myself with every cell in my body. I want to trust myself; I want to let this experience unfold and be everything it can be for me. And I want to share it fully with my partner. Having a professional with us would break the sacred circle of our family.

DF and I have learned so much about the process of birth since deciding to UC. Probably much more than if we didn't "have" to because we were abdicating responsibility to a doctor or midwife. We know what's normal and what might be a problem. We have strategies to deal with complications that may come up. As a last resort, we'll dial 911. That's what I'd do in any true emergency, not just while birthing. That's what they're there for.

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#29 of 39 Old 08-30-2004, 08:29 AM
 
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So true, Kristi. I don't view my presence at a birth as being "just in case", but as a partnership with the parents to help empower them and provide them with information that I have. It's such a fine line - I expect my clients to be responsible for their choices, definitely.

What a compliment it is to my practice when clients feel empowered enough to go UC with their next birth. Isn't that, after all, the goal of having a midwife? Empowerment? Assuming responsibility for your birth?

I can completely understand the attraction of UC birth. Birth as an innate knowledge is not rocket science. I dont' hold some secret mysterious knowledge that is unattainable to the "common" person. I have some skills, sure, but I find that many times it's when we use these skills (especially interventions) or assume the power in birth as midwives that it facilitates further use of our skills. Does that make sense?

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#30 of 39 Old 08-30-2004, 11:02 AM
 
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