Midwives Make a Difference

NMW2013_BustMyth

Not only is this International Babywearing Week, it's also National Midwifery Week! Both of these weeks of education and celebration are something Pagans can get behind.We don't have a whole lot of social scientific data about what Pagans want, choose, or experience in birthing, but we do know that they favor midwifery care. According to Kimberly Hedrick's Pagan Health Survey, "The majority of Pagans would opt for natural childbirth attended by a midwife, with less than 20% saying they would … [Read more...]

Birth Guardians: Leslie Stager RN, LMT

photo courtesy of Leslie Stager RN, LMT

Today’s profile of Leslie Stager, RN, LMT is part of our series profiling people who work with pregnancy, birth, or the postpartum period (prenatal massage therapists, childbirth educators, OB/GYNs, doulas, midwives, lactation consultants, labor & delivery nurses, pediatricians, etc.) and are Pagan or work with a Pagan community. Check out the previous Birth Guardian profiles. If you would like to be a part of the series please send an email to paganfamilieseditor@gmail.com.   Now here’s Lesl … [Read more...]

August link round-up: home birth, cesarean birth, body image after birth and more…

Birth Art Goddess Sculptures From Talk Birth http://www.etsy.com/shop/talkbirth photo courtesy of the author

I love putting together these monthly link round-ups because I get to revisit my favorite articles and websites from the previous month. In August we celebrated World Breastfeeding Week (Aug 1-7) and we observed "the Day of Hope and Healing, a national remembrance day for families who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth, infant or child loss." Then we read articles about home birth, cesarean birth, body image, raising Pagan children, rites of passage, and more:From Witch Mom - Teaching … [Read more...]

Rituals for a 5-Year-Old

photo courtesy of the author

(This was originally posted on Niki's personal site, My Own Ashram.)Last week my son had his 5 Year Old Rituals. What does that mean? Let's start at the beginning.My son was born prematurely and spent the first month of his life in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit). It was easily the worst month of my life. Son, B, was born healthy and strong, though very, very small. He has grown to inherit both his mother's and his father's emotional intensity, so while he's a bright, healthy, … [Read more...]

Birth Warrior?

photo courtesy of the author

After the birth of my daughter in 2011, I received a small package from a Birthing from Within mentor friend. In it was a sweet little t-shirt imprinted with the words, My Mama is a Birth Warrior. The words on the shirt surrounded a labyrinth image, which I love as a metaphor for birth and life. Written on the enclosed card was the following: Imagine a tribe in which a woman is prepared for childbirth in the same way warriors are prepared for battle. Imagine a Ceremony for this woman b … [Read more...]

Birth as a Spiritual Experience (Thesis Project)

“Here is your sacrament Take. Eat. this is my body this is real milk, thin, sweet, bluish, which I give for the life of the world… Here is your bread of life. Here is the blood by which you live in me.” --Robin Morgan (in Life Prayers, p. 148)“…When I say painless, please understand, I don’t mean you will not feel anything. What you will feel is a lot of pressure; you will feel the might of creation move through you…” – Giuditta Tornetta in Painless Childbirth“I am the holy mot … [Read more...]

A Mother’s Nest

photo courtesy of the author

“Although pregnancy and birth is a richly intuitive and instinctive process, a woman will prepare her ‘nest’ and birth according to the style of her culture, in the same way that a particular species of bird will build its nest with whatever is available.” –Pam England I am planning a mother blessing ceremony for a good friend in September. In addition to fun plans like a belly cast and henna, she asked for something a little different than our usual "roster" of blessingway activities, in that s … [Read more...]

A gallery of birth altars

Jacquelyn shares, "This is my birth altar for my third baby. At the center is a Frigga doll by the lovely Dancing Goddess Dolls. A picture of me while pregnant with my 2nd, various birth goddess statues, candles (fire), a fan for labor (air), seashells (water), a decorated gourd rattle (earth) and birth jewelry I made for the journey. "

I posted a call for birth altar photos on our Facebook page and you guys came through with a whole bunch of beautiful, inspiring, individually intimate birth altar photos. Here are the ones that I've gotten permission to share on the blog. Aren't they lovely? Thanks to everyone who shared!    Also, check out Molly's photo-packed description of building a birth altar and Lily's ideas on how you can build a birth altar. … [Read more...]


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