Wednesday Wisdom: Thunder

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A weekly Wednesday Wisdom post -- two or three quotes on a theme related to Paganism and childbearing, inviting us to meditate.  This week: when we see ourselves in the Goddess, we claim our thunderous power.   "The image of the Goddess inspires women to see ourselves as divine, our bodies as sacred, the changing phases of our lives as holy, our aggression as healthy, our anger as purifying, and our power to nurture and create, but also to limit and destroy when necessary, as the very force t … [Read more...]

Threshold Moments

Just over the threshold!

“Labor is all about finding your threshold and learning you can go beyond it.” –Rose St. JohnI think one of the powerful lessons of birth is about one’s own immense capacity. Each of my births has had a “threshold” moment and, indeed, I have some notes taken for a possible future article about being, “At the Threshold: Pivotal Moments in Birth.” With my first son my threshold moment occurred during pushing when I realized I had to just do it, I had to push him out even though it was sca … [Read more...]

Happy Mother’s Day!

“Blessed be all the mothers of mothers. Blessed be all the daughters of daughters. Blessed be all the daughters of mothers. Blessed be all the mothers of daughters. Now and forever, wherever we are.” –Diann L. Neu In Uganda there is a special word that means "mother of a newborn"--nakawere. According to the book Mothering the New Mother, "this word and the special treatment that goes with it apply to a woman following every birth, not only the first one. The massages, the foods, the care, 't … [Read more...]

Cesarean awareness month

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April has been Cesarean Awareness Month. Why is there an awareness campaign for a common medical procedure? Because it's way too common!The World Health Organization (WHO) and medical studies agree that the best outcomes happen in places where the cesarean rate is 5 - 10%, but in the U.S. nearly 1 in 3 mothers delivers by cesarean. That's cause for alarm.It's important to understand that this crisis is not caused by mothers in any way. Researchers have identified several causes within … [Read more...]

Birth Story: Alaina

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The Birth of Alaina January, 2011 7lbs, 8oz; 20 inches. Short version of her story is here, longest version is here, and labor pictures are here.I had a restless, up and down night, getting up at 3:00 a.m. and even checking in with my online class. My husband got up with me and we talked and speculated. Waves were four minutes apart and then kind of dissipated unenthusiastically away. He went back to bed at 4:00 and I listened to my birth hypnosis CD. At 6:00, I was feeling trapped lying … [Read more...]

How to support someone who’s having a miscarriage

The Amethyst Network

I just finished reading the second of my required books for getting listed as a loss doula with the Amethyst Network. Miscarriage: Women Sharing From The Heart is a great book for anyone who wants to understand the normal range of emotions around miscarriage, which includes everything from barely noticing the event to feeling painful and traumatic loss.The book is especially validating for mothers who experience powerful grief. One of the women quoted in the book expresses something that … [Read more...]

Celebrating Doulas

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This is the last day of World Doula Week. Doulas provide physical, emotional, informational, and spiritual support during reproductive experiences.Traditionally that's meant birth, where there's good evidence that continuous support improves birth experiences and outcomes. But increasingly doulas are providing support for all kinds of reproductive experiences, like miscarriage, abortion, adoption, and the postpartum period.Doulas often do very practical tasks, like bringing you water to … [Read more...]

Creating a Birth Altar, Part 2 (Unexpected Wisdom)

I recently described the birth altar that I created before my last birth. Some of the elements included on the altar came from quotes from a page-a-day calendar from a $1 Shop and some were parts of a t-shirt tag from the tag on a shirt I purchased from WYSH at an LLL conference in 2009 (why keep a t-shirt tag from 2009, you might ask? Because it had lots of cool things written on it! And, behold, it became a source of birth altar wisdom for me. Wisdom lurks in unexpected places!)I am struck … [Read more...]


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