Posts Tagged ‘labor’

Surrender: A Potent Power for Parenting

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

As I essentially take off this next couple weeks to hunker down and get tax prepped (ayyeeee!), I’m using it as an opportunity to share some cool folks with you in my absence.

Meet Tamara Donn, founder of Woman to Mother in the U.K., and creator of the Birth Art Café,  which invites pregnant women and new mothers to gather and explore their journeys through drawing, painting and sculpture:

Trust & Surrender: A Powerful Pair

Trust is one of the 7 principles upon which my book Parenting for Peace is based. I define trust as  “calm reliance upon processes outside of your immediate perception and control.” (more…)

The Lifelong Power of Birth Imprints

Saturday, September 7th, 2013

C-SectionSpotlightI 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 of our birth etched on our body and psyche. We care unconscious traces of somatic memory that can keenly influence our behavioral and personality patterns. {Read the rest at mothering.com}

Cesarean image by: Robert S. Donovan through a Creative Commons license

More Principles for an Empowered Birth

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

I believe that all women, consciously or not, participate in a collective knowing about the empowerment we might claim in birthing our babies. But instead of empowered birth, as birth anthropologist Robbie Davis-Floyd has so thoroughly researched, the majority of women have a birth experience that is demoralizing and dispiriting. And that gets parenting off to a less-than-peaceful start!

So to add to the first batch, to further enrich Empowered Birth Awareness Week, here are yet more ways to engage Parenting for Peace principles to up your odds of having an empowered birth.

Principles for Empowered Birth: Part II

WSLaboringCoupleNurturance – Fathers and partners, this is the golden hour for you to express this principle magnificently!

  • You now act as her womb: it’s up to you to cocoon her from phone calls, texts, tweets, visitors, and all other contact—anything characteristic of the modern human, especially lights and language. All such stimulation brings adrenaline to her system. You yourself should use the very minimum of softly spoken words with her—again, so as not to call forth the labor-slowing adrenaline.
    • Rather than humanizing birth, as some reformers call for, Michel Odent suggests we need to dehumanize birth, or rather, mammalianize it—by taking away everything that distinguishes humans: rationality, speech and technology. Cameras are big culprits; the camera-face a woman feels she must put on will right there interfere with the process! Odent confidently declares, “Go ahead, let everyone into the room, chat, watch TV, run the cameras—and she’ll give birth after thirty or thirty-six hours of labor. If you respect the physiology, that same baby will be born in less than five hours.” {Read more ideas at mothering.com}

Image:
Jason Lander, through a Creative Commons license

Practical Principles for An Empowered Birth

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

As we reach hump day of Empowered Birth Awareness Week, how fitting that Step 4 of my Parenting for Peace roadmap is actually entitled “Empowered Birth”! The book is based on 7 principles, applied through 7 steps in time — beginning pre-conception and going through adolescence. In honor of EBAW, here is a collection (in 2 parts) of practical ideas of how to engage each of the 7 Parenting for Peace principles in specific ways to up your odds of having an empowered birth.

Principles for Empowered Birth: Part I

LaborWaterMeditativePresence – I can think of few more potent opportunities to discover and practice advanced dimensions of this principle than during labor and birth. Birth anthropologist Robbie Davis-Floyd, in describing how she charted a new rapport with presence during her second labor (a home VBAC), compares it to swimming a marathon, noting that the champions “don’t count the distance. They enter a timeless dimension, where this stroke is all there is. This stroke, and this one, and then this one. I am in that timeless world. I quit wondering eons ago when the baby will come out. There is only this contraction, and this push, and this pause, and then this contraction, and this push, and—Then the midwife’s Voice, summoning forth my consciousness from its burial in the depths of sensation.” {Read the rest at mothering.com}

Image:
Jason Lander through a Creative Commons license

Induced Labor & Autism Risk

Friday, August 16th, 2013

A new study linking labor induction to increased autism risk was this week’s big birth story. This isn’t about blame, or guilt. With new awareness comes an understandable tendency to veer in the direction of feeling angry, ashamed, and similar negatives that keep us stuck. With new awareness also comes power, which is worth us taking a deep breath, steadying ourselves, and taking our heads out of the sand about autism risk and how we do birth in America.

My colleagues like Michel Odent and Sarah Buckley have been writing about this concern for years, and I reported on it in Parenting for Peace (see excerpt below). Dr. Odent cautions us (with respect to our tendency to anguish over these reports) that when reading about such studies, you cannot be thinking of your own family, your friends, or your neighbor’s cousin’s autistic son. In his latest book Childbirth and the Future of Homo Sapiens, Odent emphasizes that these are population-based (epidemiological) studies that reach conclusions in terms of tendencies, risk factors and statistically significant differences amongst huge numbers of people. It is not appropriate or valid (although it is always tempting) to apply these autism risk findings to specific individual cases! {Please read the rest at mothering.com} (more…)