A succession of events in my previous pregnancies and births, led me to realise the importance of continuity of care. I entered into my 6th pregnancy (4th birth) with much hindsight and was extremely determined to give this birth the best I could offer. My belief is birth is a special event. Our bodies and babies have a profound instinctual ability to orchestrate a cycle of events that gives rise to new life in the world. To enhance and protect this wonderful cycle of events, it was essential I create a support team (ie husband, midwife, doctor) and establish a positive natural birthing environment. I had total trust in my body and baby (much credit to Ina May Gaskin’s books), it was my support network and environment that required planning. Continue reading
Period late? Feeling tired? Sore breasts? Over emotional? These are all signs of pregnancy. Most mothers choose to further confirm such physical symptoms with a pregnancy test. Once you have a positive pregnancy test then a world of choice presents itself! Where will I have my baby? Who will look after me? How will I find out how to give birth? Should I breastfeed? For the first time mother the choices seem overwhelming and endless, and what makes it all the more confusing is that everyone seems to have a different opinion on what you should do! Continue reading
As my baby boy was due just before the legendary Ina May Gaskin’s appearance at the Home Birth Association conference in 2012, I was hoping he would be four or more days late. My daughter was born 6 days after her estimated due date (EDD), so I fully expected to reach 41 weeks or so of pregnancy. Although her birth had been a positive and empowering experience in hospital, helped by using the GentleBirth programme, I knew I wanted a home birth next time. Continue reading
Your experience of labour and birth should be just that — yours. Every birth is unique as each woman will approach childbirth in her own way. It is important that you have the information you need to decide what is right for you and your baby, and that your experience of labour and birth reflects these wants and wishes. Knowing all your care options and your rights, asking questions and, ultimately, finding a supportive care team, you can combine the ingredients for a healthy and a positive birth experience. Continue reading
Before I had my first child, I remember asking my 90 year old grandmother if she remembered giving birth. Her reply was: “I remember it clearly as yesterday”. She explained how there was no epidural or any medical option for pain relief as she had her children in 1944 and 1945. She said it was a life changing experience and she reassured me that I would be able to handle whatever birth ended up being for me. She also told me about the supportive midwife who attended her first birth – almost 70 years ago. Continue reading
I have found it very hard to put into words the gratitude and love that I feel for the midwife who took care of us the day my son was born.
She was the midwife I needed – and my husband needed – that day. We had both taken an instant fondness to her on our first antenatal appointment with her and we were delighted that she was the midwife on call when I went into labour. Continue reading