Archive for the ‘birth work book’ Category

I accomplished one of my goals for midwifery studies, a goal I can only fulfill in the States, and that was attending a Midwifery Skills Lab (MSL) put on by my school.

I actually hosted the event, which was only possible because of my lovely, hospitable church and its amazing members. Not to mention my awesome family who perceived we were in need and took over all childcare and meal prep!!!

Skills we learned and practiced: taking fetal heart tones, palpating, giving IM injections and taking blood, internal exams, how to “massage” (or touch) the uterus in case of blood clots or hemorrhage, how to do nipple stim, taking BP, determining blood type on Eldon cards … much more. And this hands-off, birth-trusting midwife gave us honest ideas about how rare doing any of these things is.

We discussed: informed consent, transport, taking notes during birth (yes/no, what), creating forms for parents, working alegally or illegally or being licensed. … and much more.

We formed relationships as students and midwives and talked about: family relationships, being non-egoist in the birth world, finishing our curriculum … and more.

Now I need to take my handouts and notes apart and file them appropriately, and add some to my Birth Notebook Client Education Notebook.

Overall, it was awesome. On a personal level, …. I had stopped all birth work (doula, childbirth ed, etc.) because I was so disturbed by how undisturbed and even cold I was becoming toward hospital birth routine practices, giving up emotional attachment to clients b/c it hurt too much to watch their birth choices, integrating all these responsibilities with family life, etc. And some of our discussions gave me ideas how to get past this and re-invent my involvement in birth so I can be personally and “professionally” (as if those are two different things!) satisfied with how I’m serving people. (More to come in that area later.)

So, if you are a midwifery student, I highly recommend Ancient Art Midwifery Institutes’ Midwifery Skills Labs.


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A few months ago, I was contacted by the large, european fertility center/birth house here in Kiev. They had a new director and he wanted to hear my experiences with their facilities and any concerns I had.

I contacted two other american doulas who’d done stuff like this before and they came too. In our pre-discussion, one asked me what topics we wanted to mention. So I quickly wrote up a one-page deal with a nice greeting, then the good and bad points I tell clients about their birth house.

At the end of our meeting, he took that little made-at-the-last-minute paper. He showed it to the investors he had visiting that day. He later translated it and handed it out to all the department heads.

Moral: be careful what you put in writing ūüôā

About discovering unforgiveness. This meeting showed me that there was unforgiveness in me toward these medical personnel. I started imagining what I would be like if we were actually going to be talking to doctors. And I was having physical reactions of anger just thinking about it. And honestly, I didn’t want to forgive them. I just wanted to be angry.

Then God had mercy on me, his little child. And I want to testify why it is important to go to church and be scripturally encouraged in the faith by others of God’s people.

That Sunday, I wanted to go to church, then leave. I had had almost no me-time the last few days, and I desperately wanted to be alone. I was there at church, and I thought, oh, the girls are in sunday school then they’ll go to awana, and andre is so fussy I can’t really enjoy the preaching, having to walk in and out of the auditorium with him, so I’ll just put him in the stroller and walk to the mall and sit and read my Bible while he’s asleep. And pray about this unforgiveness I want to keep.

That’s what I wanted to do.

But I also knew that I needed to get out of the vanity of the world and come back with God’s people and be reminded and encouraged. So I stayed.

And there was one moment, God’s Spirit just released me. “Just let it go, Anne. Your anger will only hurt everyone–the moms, the doctors, yourself.” And he gave me the freedom and power and desire to do that.

I was reminded of this moment tonight as I listen to this song. A line in it says “The broken Bread, Jesus, You teach us to forgive.”

I testify that it is true.

You’re Alpha & Omega



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Three threads came together in my life about this topic:

First, I need to think through what are wrong reasons for choosing a home birth (for one of my midwifery assignments). So, is money a valid factor?

Second, I read a great explanation by David Stewart in the book The Five Standards of Safe Childbearing¬†(“Appendix A”).

Third, financial considerations did play a part in my last birth.

Initially, I used to think, well, wow, of course finances shouldn’t be an issue at all when it comes to something as important as birth!

But . . .

My last birth was unattended (we did have some verbal/informational assistance at various points), and honestly, I didn’t want to pay $1000 to go to the birth house/dr that would be my only possible institutional-birth consideration–why would I want to pay when I don’t want any of their services? Nor did I want to pay $700 to a mw to come when I really didn’t want anything done. . . .

So, finances did have a factor in my decisions, and I was very relieved to read a great ¬†explanation of this, as I mentioned in #2 (above). Stewart’s points gave me clarity, for myself and for serving clients. The whole discussion is found on pp. 412-414 of The 5 Standards book.

1. Finances are a legitimate concern in any area of health care.

2. It’s normal and even good to not want to pay for services or procedures that are¬†unnecessary (at best) or even risk-increasing (at worst).

3. Financial concerns as a factor in choosing health care is responsible, as long as financial concerns don’t become the controlling issue over the concern for safety.

So, if you find yourself thinking about finances, it’s normal! Don’t feel guilty. Warning signs are if money becomes the controlling factor over safety.

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