Birthing Power, Who Owns It?

Birth is the ‘quintessential’ expression of the Feminine, learning to ‘dance’ with her is how a man prepares.

We need to support the women we love to WAKE up to their power to choose what they want!!

She, with you are the power holders. I Just used the words ‘power holder’ and realised that this still ‘points’ in the wrong direction. She isn’t ‘holding’ power, she is ‘channelling’ Power from the INSIDE OUT!

Birthing women are not ‘power holders’, they don’t need to be ‘given power’ or ’empowered’. The Power is RESIDENT within. They are conduits of birthing POWER.

Resting Or Waiting?

Waiting or Resting?

There is a ‘feeling’ that comes with both of these ways of being.

There is a sense of movement implied inside ‘waiting’.

The momentum in ‘waiting’ obscures the ‘Resting’ which is present now.

Resting is still.

I know the difference between the two in myself, I feel it.

‘Resting’ is Who I Am.


Breastfeeding After a Cesarean Birth

Supporting Breastfeeding

Mothers who have a cesarean-section often discover that a surgical birth also has an impact on breastfeeding.  If the mother has her c-section prior to going into labour, or has had labour induced, she will not produce the same cascade of hormones that a natural labour start creates. These hormones influence not only the birth process but also set up the conditions to produce a good supply of breastmilk. Medications given during labour and delivery can influence the baby’s alertness in the early days and intravenous fluids have been shown to increase breast engorgement. Some studies have suggested that women who have c-sections have delayed lactation. It is unclear whether the delay is due to the physical stress of a surgical birth or due to the delay in first feedings and fewer early feedings.

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The news isn’t all bad however. Other studies have shown evidence that mothers who have supportive…

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The Unfolding Life

The ‘unfolding’ life flows, while the ‘constructed’ life seems to require ‘pluming’.

Who is controlling life?

When our thought created meanings drop away,what are we left with?

Life as an unfolding,flowing,happening.

Complete Now. Nothing to do. The Clear Screen of Who I Am, non judgemental, unconditionally accepting of ALL.

The Screen and the Film, with its sets and actors, are Who I Am. The indivisible One.

Phew, Nothing to Do.


Tears For An Anonymous Midwife

I have been recalling a time when I wept. It was about 3 years ago while listening to radio 4 interview with a midwife.

She was talking about her long career working in the NHS (through an actress due to a fear of being bullied).

As I think about her, and my tears, I notice the sadness remains and little has changed.

In the stilted words of the actress I recognised my own experience of an environment ‘over’ managed by deeply flawed managers, true embodiments of the ‘Peter principle’, promoted beyond their level of competence, desperately struggling to keep their heads above water as the rising tide of audit paper threatens to drown them.

Over the years I have been told that things will get better, there will be more midwives (nurses etc) and in truth nothing really seems to change in terms of the raising demands upon the service not really being met with increased resources.

So often the governments response seems to be to ‘inspect’, or ‘audit’. When will we wake up and realise that culture and moral can not be managed from the out side in.

The values that took most of us midwives into the work are a long way from the profit driven motives of the market.

We didn’t do it for the money and we still don’t, we just want to make a difference to the birth experience of those women we are with.

Yet I have heard midwives speak in horrendous ways to labouring women, I have seen managers seem to turn a blind eye to desperate staff shortages, I have talked to newly qualified staff who are leaving within a year of graduation to pursue different work.

Some thing is desperately wrong and appointing a new hospital head of ‘Inspectors’ is definitively not the way forward.

Some one told me that some universities screen their applicants for the midwifery course with a maths test, the pass mark can be as high as 100%!

That got me thinking, maybe we have created methods for whittling down the thousands of applicants that leave those with the empathic skills required to ‘be with woman’ unable to proceed to interview?

My humble suggestion, first ask those who applied because of watching ‘call the midwife’, get rid of those who raise their hand.

Then ask, who thinks ‘one born every minute’ show good levels of communication skills and care? Those who say yes, we say good bye to, and finally any one who gets over 80% in the maths test are on their bike as well.

I know some people think Odent is extreme when he suggests that only women who have had a good experience of the birthing process should be midwives and obstetricians, but he could have a point.

At least let’s discuss how we can attract and recruit compassionate people with values that underpin our age old commitment to be with women as they birth.


Tripping Up Meaning In The Street

I was at work, ‘patients’ were listening to our conversation.

‘Im very bored’ says my colleague. ‘How are you boring yourself’? I asked.

‘Im not boring myself’, ‘it’s working here that’s boring me’.

‘Have you ever tripped up a lump of ‘boring’ in the street’?
He looked at me for a moment, before acknowledging that he hadn’t, why hadn’t he, I pressed?

Because there is no boring out there it’s in there, he is creating the experience he callers boring through his thoughts from the inside out.

To underline the point, I explained that we were both at work, doing similar things, he was living inside an internal conversation about how boring he was feeling and I was just enjoying the company.

Kind Praise From @DoulaUK.

So, then we moved on to unknown territory. Mark Harris from Birthing for Blokes. A practicing midwife. A male midwife, who seeks to help guys out in the unknown realm of their pregnant partners, the birthing process and how
to support them.

He proclaimed he was nervous. He said
he’d never done this before. Within moments, he had the audience laughing, within minutes there were glances between us all and before we knew it, he had thrown his script away and the room was full of head tilts from impressed and eagerly listening doulas and midwives.

We all discovered that here we have a male midwife with incredible understanding of the birthing process, for women, and a desire to help guys find their way and how to be a fully present part of it; without fear.

In Mark Harris we all found a professional with great insight and who delivered a profound and wise speech to us all. The questions that followed were endless!! If you weren’t there. Look him up.