I do not empower women. I recognize that they are powerful. And it is my job to honor that or sometimes show them the mirror. I would love for every woman I work beside in pregnancy to come away with a new approach to the rest of her dealings with caregivers. She is the wisest when it comes to her body, and she is in charge. Our job as caregivers of any kind is to help where we are needed, not to be the boss and authority… not to give the power to the woman– it is already hers! Women should participate fully in their care, from home monitoring to monitoring in prenatal visits, catching her own babe, the newborn exam… The pregnancy, birth, baby, experience belong to the family. However, I am willing to be a servant in the journey as much as needed or desired. I hope that feeling stays with moms through the rest of their relationships with caregivers. Accept no less than someone who respects you and your family’s needs and encourages your participation. And most importantly, one who has belief in your own wisdom about your body.
“Midwife” is a word that comes from the old English words mit wif, literally “with woman.” A midwife in our culture today is a person who is “with woman,” especially during the period of pregnancy, birth, and caring for the newborn. Midwives vary greatly in their philosophies according to setting, training, and personality! Our time together in pregnancy will prepare a trusting bond and expose you to my philosophy and style while monitoring your health and that of your baby. Often the title of attendant or witness is most appropriate.
My core goal is to support and honor your space and expectations surrounding pregnancy and birth. Safety is of the utmost priority at all times; evidence based practice is respected alongside the wisdom of many mothers before us. Nutrition and healthy mental, physical, and spiritual activities are our first and best defenses against complications; therapies like chiropractic, acupuncture, massage, and herbs come next, and western medicine is the option for when simple steps don’t resolve a problem.
A visit will look and sound like…
- A visualization of what normal, ancient birth would have looked like and how we can apply that to now. We talk about the many variations that are all perfectly normal for mama and baby as well as much time is spent talking about informed consent in standard models of care. What is the origin of the questions asked in prenatal visits? Why are all of the tests considered standard? What’s the source of this theory? What happens in variations and what are the possibilities of benefits, risks, alternatives, and declination?
- You will never be asked to show me a written copy of what you eat. We might talk about what you ate yesterday or in general… in fact we do this at every single visit. What are you craving? What kinds of things are unappealing? I find that most of my clients are amazingly versed in nutrition. Sometimes adding to this a bit in relation to the specific added needs of pregnancy are a goal of this common conversation. Many women are overwhelmed by the contradictory information available on what is best for their diets when not pregnant and even moreso when eating for a wee one too. Sorting through all that information and bringing it down to the crucial, the practical and and the implementable can eliminate dietary stress.
- Often we will review intricacies of what previous pregnancies and birth experiences were like… processing these can help understanding or ultimately healing.
- The use of positive language in the experience of birth and mothering is of great importance! Reemphasizing this at each appointment is a goal!
- Many mothers feel the need to process their previous experiences with newborns too. Each baby is different and there is no standard manual, but understanding newborn rhythms and what are truly normal parameters (not what most of us have been taught!) can leave everyone with more acceptance and peace about the adjustments in a household with a new member.
- Education, use, and practice of meditation techniques such as drumming and dancing, as well as guided imagery.
- quiet; the mother is the one with the birthing song, and the rest of us in attendance should be listening.
- extremely, exceedingly gentle care of the unborn and the newly born. We should all do our best to remain sensitive to how fresh and brilliant each little being is, without exception. We should help keep the environment and transition one that isn’t unnecessarily harsh. Babes communicate so early through looks, touch, sound. Each one is ready to tell you what they need– sometimes they just aren’t sure themselves what the answer is!
- intervention should be avoided unless it is sincerely NEEDED or requested, and there is a valid reason… interventions can include words…not only actions.
- It’s a little overdone and cheesy, but I advocate using your BRAIN at a homebirth just as at any bodily event where procedures may be offered… b— what are the benefits of this procedure? diet? advice? r– what are the risks? a– what are the alternatives? i– what does your intuition say on the matter? n– what happens if we do nothing? USE THIS FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE! when deciding on procedures or suggestions from a practitioner (professional) or a layperson.
Please contact me personally for pricing and details; a copy of initial contracts and intake forms can be emailed. withwomanwithchild (at) gmail (dot) com