Doin’ it with a doula–a birth coach makes a difference

Making it through the long hours of labor with your motivation intact can be a bit dicey.  Hours of pain and concentration can lead to even more hours of even worse pain and pushing (doesn’t that sound fun), but gives way to the most glorious moments in any mother’s life.  Getting through each contraction and being ready to face what’s ahead is more easily managed if you don’t have to do it alone.  Finding trusted, supportive partners, friends, or even professionals to help coach you through even the most powerful emotional and physical moments. Continue reading “Doin’ it with a doula–a birth coach makes a difference”

Doctor, doctor…picking the right provider and hospital

No doubt you have seen your doctor several times during this pregnancy.  And I would suppose that you like him or her fairly well, or you wouldn’t go back. At least, that is what I would hope. Do you know who will be delivering your baby? It’s important to at least partially get to know the staff at your doctor’s office as well as their roles.  Could you, and do you want to be delivered by a midwife, an obstetrician, or a primary care/family doctor? Do you even know what yours is?  It’s important to ask these questions and find out the answers before it’s time to say “push!”.   Continue reading “Doctor, doctor…picking the right provider and hospital”

Why the birth plan blows up in your face

I was in a certification training course just this week for labor and delivery and nursery nurses.  Our instructor smiles during one of the lectures and says “Who knows what a birth plan really means?” and we all smiled and yelled “C-Section!” Which, I am afraid happens more often than it doesn’t for many moms who come in packing that dreaded sheet of paper… Continue reading “Why the birth plan blows up in your face”

Learning to cope when your baby is born sick

This is  never an easy subject to broach, but I feel like eventually we might need to discuss it.  No parent ever wants to think that their new baby may be sick after birth, but the truth is, that it happens on occasion–and there’s usually not a thing you could have done about it. Especially if you have no warning of an illness or medical condition, it can be startling to take an already stressful event (though a happy one) and make it more stressful.

Statistics show that one in ten babies born in the U.S. will require some form of resuscitation after birth.  It may not be a full-blown CPR event, but sometimes babies need a little “jump start” to get going.  Thankfully, the resiliency of newborns makes them respond almost instantly to the assistance given by skilled doctors and nurses, and they bounce back quickly with no problems.  For you as a parent, you probably will never even notice the quiet whispers being passed between your nurses as they work to help your baby.  I have handed beautiful, healthy pink babies to mothers only minutes after I had been scrambling to help them breathe–and their mothers have no idea.  It’s the way it is. Continue reading “Learning to cope when your baby is born sick”

The benefits and risks of prenatal massage

For some women, the aches and pains of pregnancy seem to start as soon as they conceive.  Some women never complain and feel like they could run a marathon when they are expecting–others, well, not so much.  Trying to make due with a warm bath, and maybe even a maternity belt to help support your back and growing belly all work to a degree, but when you need more, many women turn to prenatal massage.  I never have been much of a massage gal, though I know that many people love it.  I have to say though, that I might have welcomed it during my pregnancies.   Continue reading “The benefits and risks of prenatal massage”