Labor & Birth

De-mystifying Cervical Dilation Examinations

by Eva Martin, MD When I speak to women in their first pregnancies, they usually have no idea what cervical dilation is. But, ask any mom who has gone through labor, and she can tell you it’s very important. The cervix is the doorway from the womb (uterus) to the birth canal. When a woman

How Freestanding Birth Centers Make a Difference

by Paula Meyer, DONA certified birth doula   As a doula, I often get approached because expectant parents want extra guidance and information regarding important childbirth decisions. However, I typically interact with them after the first trimester – after many people have already made THE most important decision regarding their birth. Wait, there’s actually a

Preparing for a Natural Birth with Birth Boot Camp

by Vanessa Stepan   Having a natural birth is not an unrealistic goal if it’s something you really desire and commit to preparing for. Just like you would need to train before running a marathon, you will want to prepare both mentally and physically for having a natural birth. Taking a childbirth course from an

What is a Birth Plan Exactly?

by Becca Gordon   Pregnant folks, have you all been told to write a birth plan? Have you seen funny mock birth plans on the internet? Does it seems strange to you to try to lay out a plan for something as unpredictable as labor? Did your hospital or birth center provide you with the

Conscious Birthing: What is it and how do I do it?

By Britt Fohrman   In my practice as a Birth Doula, Prenatal Yoga Teacher and Birth Educator, I am devoted to helping women prepare for a conscious birth. I used to focus more on “natural birth” but after years of attending all sorts of births, I started to see how limiting that focus was. Any

Labor and Birth Practices

by Neri Life Choma   Did you ever hear the analogy between childbirth and a marathon run? Many of us are familiar with this analogy, but I wonder what comes to mind when you hear it, or think about it: Is it the many hours of physical strains? Is it being in pain? Maybe you

Preparing for Birth With Love: Tapping into Your Sexual Energy…

…For a More Enjoyable Pregnancy and Birth   Want to have a pleasurable birth? Or at the very least, a manageable birth where love, joy and embodied power surround you and your baby? Have you ever considered that birth is sexual and that tapping into your sexual and sensual energy might help you birth your

Some Tips on Circumcision – Pun Partially Intended

“Why don’t they tell us? I would tell you! If I had an extra flap over my clitoris I’d give you a head’s up!” –Amy Schumer, Mostly Sex Stuff   By the way, even the description for this video clip from Amy’s stand-up special I found on YouTube simply says the following one-liner: “Unfortunately she

The Placenta and Milk Production

A few years back while in lactation educator training, I learned that it was the birth of the placenta that signals the body to begin the milk increasing process; and I was like “Woah” – Keanu Reeves style. Once again and continually, the placenta inspires me as a doula, mother, woman, and mammal. The cross-cultural

Adeline’s Birth Story

I found out I was pregnant immediately after returning from my honeymoon. We had spent several weeks in Bali gazing at various well-endowed fertility statues, whispering wishes for my future children into the ears of the stone figures in the Sacred Monkey Forest, and we had bought a carved palm leaf etching of Dewi Sri,