Thursday, July 24, 2008

Another Little Miracle!

I went to bed about 10:00 pm, now normally I fall intently to sleep, but this night for some reason the thinking part of my brain would not shut down, so I finally got up about 11:30 and went into the other room to read a bit.  I read for a little over an hour and then decided to check my email.  It was 1:25 when my cell phone rang and it was an over-due, anxiously waiting, very patient mama.  She said her contractions had been going for about an hour and a half at 10 minutes apart, now they were about 8 minutes apart.  This was number 6 for this mom, and she has a history of pretty quick labors, so we agreed since she lives about 30 minutes away, I would be on the road soon.  I phoned my assistant and my apprenticing midwife to let them know it would be a good idea to head out also.

I arrived around 2:15 am.  Mom was truly as beautiful as she could be in a gauze nightgown, and smiling.  We were all so excited this day had finally come.

This is an example of how estimated due dates (EDD) are just that…an “estimate”.  According to first day of her last menses, she would have been two weeks over due the next day, but she has 35 day cycles, so when this is calculated into the EDD, she really is only 6 days over due.  This has been her experience with her other children also; she has gone 5-6 days over every time.  Some doc’s will not let you go over your EDD, in fact some want to start inducing at 37-38 weeks depending on their schedule.  For this mom, 38 weeks would really only have been between 36-37 weeks.  This baby was plenty big enough, and I have no doubt it would have been safe to deliver then, but was baby really READY to come into this world then.  I am grateful for patient moms who trust their body, and trust their baby to come in just the right timing for them.

When I arrived mom was worried she had called me out too soon.  I assured her that I would much rather get here sooner than be stressed about making it in time or even having to talk dad through it over the phone.  (Which I have done more than once).  It didn’t take long before contractions picked up and there was no doubt mom was in active labor.  This is when contractions are noticeably stronger, lasting longer, and closer together.  If I were to do an exam to check for dilation, which I don’t normally do, she would be at least 5 cm. 

I listened to baby’s heart rate through my Doppler, and baby sounded great!  A strong heartbeat means a happy baby.  I can tell it won’t be long now, so I start to set things up for the birth.

Mom wanted a water-birth; this was her first homebirth and her first birth without any medication for pain relief, so water is a great substitute for that.  I like to say that a water-birth is like a home epidural.  I’m sure this mom would agree.  She said the water made a big difference for her.  She got in the tub around 4:30 am; she was so relaxed it looked like she was sleeping in between contractions.  20 minutes later her water broke.  Her 11-year-old daughter wanted to be there when the baby was born, so my assistant woke her up and just in the nick of time, because 8 minutes later baby is giving a strong nudge that she wanted to be born.  Mom slowly with very controlled pushes reached down and received her own baby girl, weighing in at 8 lbs. 14 oz.  It was absolutely beautiful.  I have been to many births and each one is just as beautiful as the one before, and still another miracle.

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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Memory Lane... Tag You're It

Memory Lane... Tag You're It

Memory Lane.... the tag that gets everyone involved.  I  saw this on a friends blog and I thought I would play the game.  Here's how you play

1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together.  It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember.
2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory of you.  It's actually pretty funny to the responses.  If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you.  If you don't want to play on your blog, or if you don't have a blog, I'll leave my memory of you in my comments. 
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Absolutely Perfect Birth!

Mom calls at 12:25 am; she says contractions are coming regularly every 10 minutes, strong, but very short.  With her last baby we went out on a couple of labor visits with a similar pattern, and then after a couple of hours everything came to a halt, so we discussed trying to get some rest in between these contractions, and if they stopped, then great, get some sleep, and if there was any change, call back.  I lay in bed for about 25 minutes trying to get a feel as to what I should do.  My angels said, get up, get dressed and call her back, it won’t be long, you know when she does kick into full labor she will go pretty quickly, and she lives 30 minutes away.  So, with that, I get up and phone her back.  As we were talking, she had a strong contraction, lasting longer than they had been, with that contraction her water broke.  Needless to say, I was on my way.

I made my phone calls to my assistant who was about 50 minutes away, and my apprenticing midwife who was about 2 hours away.

I arrive at 1:30 am, contractions are very strong and every 2-3 minutes.  I was very glad I got there when I did.  These were extremely intense contractions, but mom was handling them great.  Dad was right by her side taking care of her every need, and supporting her through each contraction. 

I listen to the baby who sounds absolutely perfect, and set things up to get ready for the birth.  My assistant arrives about 30 minutes later, and together we continue to support mom through each contraction.

Mom is feeling a strong urge to push, so she gives a few pushes, and I give her some perineum support with ginger compresses.  This helps to keep good circulation as the head stretches everything pretty tight, so we avoid any tears.  She gives very slow, controlled pushes giving her perineum time to stretch, and baby’s head time to mold.  The bones actually over-lap a small amount to let the baby’s head fit through the pelvic.  This is a VERY intense time for mom, and it seems to last forever, but it really is not long at all.  I am always amazed at the miracle of birth and the things it teaches us.  This strong mom and dad welcomed their beautiful 7 lb. 14 oz. daughter into this world at 3:00 AM.  Two hours later mom and babe enjoyed an herb bath together. I still say, “Natural childbirth is one of the greatest gifts a women can give to herself”. 

When we leave, mom and babe are tucked into bed taking a snooze, the laundry is soaking in the washer, mom has eaten, the dishes are done, and we pack up and head home.  I love what I do.  °Ü°

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Monday, July 14, 2008


PEPPERMINT  For more than 100 years, physicians have understood this importance and have used pure Peppermint in the treatment of nasal congestion and sinusitis. Medicinally, Peppermint creates potent outcomes. There are more than 30 different compounds in pure Peppermint oil, each in varying amounts, creating many different benefits of health.

  • ·       Peppermint improves digestion and anti-inflammatory activity in the intestinal tract.
  • ·       Peppermint has analgesic effects even for soothing headaches.
  • ·       Peppermint is used to improve mental alertness and acuity.  
  • ·       Apply Peppermint to the back of the neck to help relieve stress and tension.
  •  Peppermint to help relieve nausea and morning sickness.
  • ·       Peppermint can be applied to the temples to relieve headache.
  • ·       Apply Peppermint to the bottom of feet, for a cooling sensation and may help to reduce fever.
  • ·       Peppermint's aroma is uplifting and invigorating and when used topically can be soothing to        tired, sore muscles.  (May want to dilute with Fractionated Coconut oil).
  • ·       Peppermint is a natural choice to add refreshment to any beverage.
  • ·       Peppermint's cooling sensation is perfect for fresh breath and opening the sinuses and airways

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Friday, July 11, 2008


Mom called me at 1:00 am, with contractions every 10 minutes or so, I expected this mom to labor pretty quickly from her past history.  Her last baby she went from 4 cm to baby in 40 minutes.  From her last baby to this one she moved and now lives about 1:20 minutes from me, so I decided to head out on the road, and pick up my partner who was about 30 minutes away.  

I arrive at moms house at 3:00 am.  Mom was still having contractions, and they were about 7 minutes apart.  She is handling them perfectly, with lots of support from her husband.  They quickly moved to every 5 minutes, but we hardly even knew when she was contracting.  In fact, the only way we knew is she would cuddle and smooch a bit with hubby.    She wanted a water birth, so we were filling the tub, and getting it ready for her, the water was a bit hot, so she didn’t get in right a way.  My two assistants went into the other room to get some shut-eye while things were slow, and I stayed in the front room with mom to keep an eye out and to check baby’s heart rate.  At 4:00 am. two of mom’s friends came.  They were there to support their friend through her labor, and take photos.  Contractions closed in at 2 minutes apart now, but still only because mom and dad were smooching did I know this.  Her friends were taking photos and mom even posed several times. 

She was absolutely beautiful, with a fabulous attitude; in fact, “fabulous” was the word for this labor.  Every time I asked her how she was doing, she said with great passion, “fabulous”!  She had waited 9 months for this, and was truly enjoying every minute of it.  I know that seems strange to those who have labored before, but I think for some it is just easier than for others, and attitude and lack of fear plays a large part as well. 

Time passed quickly, and at 5:00 am it was time to get another heart beat from baby, I was monitoring baby’s heart rate every 15 minutes.  I noticed this last contraction was a little more intense, and I mentioned that to mom, she agreed, and said she thought she might like to get into the birthing tub now.  She squatted down into the water, and I think, but not sure if she actually had one more contraction, it all happened so quickly, but she said, “my baby’s head is here”.  I jumped up, called for my assistant who was still in the other room resting, and realized the tub water was a little warmer than I like it to be, so my assistants bucketed water out while I ran cold water through the hose near where baby was coming out, to cool the water as fast as we could.  Meanwhile, mom is very gently pushing her baby out, not really pushing, baby is just coming out slow and sure.  I offer some perineum support and with no tear, this amazingly strong mom and dad welcomed their 4th son into the world at 5:05 AM.

This was probably one of the most intimate births I have ever attended.  Even though there was my team of three and two of her friends, this mom and dad were in their own intimate world.  Labor and birth was pleasurable, even ecstatic. 

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Monday, July 7, 2008


LEMON oil is sometimes referred to as Liquid Sunshine”!

This essential oil powerhouse is unique in that under extreme pressure, the rind reluctantly gives up the liquid sunshine in its untainted, wholesome form.

Lemon oil has many uses. It is a powerful antiseptic and can improve circulation. It is an excellent antibacterial agent. If  you are experiencing respiratory infections or inflammation, then Lemon may be the oil for you.

One of the easiest ways to receive the qualities associated with Lemon oil is to diffuse it into the air or utilize direct inhalation from the palms of your hands. Lemon oil can be applied to the bottom of the feet or added to a glass of water as a purifier and for a quick energizing boost. Lemon oil has also been known to be strengthening to the fingernails. Simply rub the oil directly on location.

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Tuesday, July 1, 2008


LAVENDER I love essential oils. For several years I have actively sought out the very best oils available for health, well being, and formulating my own custom blends. There are some oils that are just perfect for these varied purposes.  My favorite for health and healing is Lavender, specifically Lavandula angustifolia. Think of Lavender as the Swiss Army knife of essential oils. In fact, when in doubt, try Lavender first.

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Butter Birth

Mom phoned me at 5:00 AM, she said she had been contracting since 3:00 AM.  Contractions are getting stronger now and she says she wants me to come over within an hour.  I arrive at 5:45 AM.  Mom is staying very relaxed, doing most of her labor on the toilet.  This seems to be the best and most comfortable place.  We tried different positions, but the toilet worked the best.  I got everything ready for birth and when my assistants arrived we traded off giving mom some knee pressure and dad took care of their 2 year old until a friend could get there to help with her.

Mom was feeling a slight urge to push, but didn’t want to be on the toilet for the birth, so we moved to her bed.  Dad sat behind her to help support and give her a little cushion to lean back on.

Mom was giving some very gentle, slow pushes, and around 8:15 her water broke, she continued to push very slow and gently, at 8:23 AM we had a healthy baby BOY 6 lbs. 12 oz.  If only all our births could be this easy.  She had 3 hours of active labor, and 10 minutes of pushing.  I’m sure this mom would agree the second labor and delivery is much easier than the first.

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