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mans guide to birth esali birth

Man's Guide to Birth is member's only resource; a guide for dads and birth partners through pregnancy, birth, and the first months of parenting. This short and to the point guide for men will help you to better support a pregnant and laboring woman and understanding your needs as a birth partner and father.  The Man's Guide to Birth is easy to navigate on your phone and makes a great bathroom reader for pregnancy.

Man's Guide to Birth Includes:

  • Fertility and Conception Tips
  • Nutrition and Wellness Tips
  • Pregnancy Discomfort Relief Tips
  • Emotional Guidance for Dads
  • Emotional Guidance for Dads supporting Moms
  • Birth Partner Tips
  • Labor Comfort Tips
  • Unassisted Emergency Birth Tips
  • Breastfeeding Tips
  • Newborn Health Tips

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WOW - what a weekend.  Fresh from a Spinning Babies workshop and I have to get these thoughts out of my head.  I wanted to attend the workshop to put all the pieces together from their intense website.  I wanted to see how much were we already using, maybe simply not calling it the same thing, how much we needed refined, and how much was new.  It was a great workshop.  It was fun and educational.  Much of it was techniques that have been around for ages simply pulled together.  But, overall it was creating a larger network of people we can ask questions to and discuss.  It was intriguing in ways I didn't expect because I found the networking more valuable than anything else.  However, mostly it empowered my perspective of birth that there is still soooooo much of a medical mindset in even the birth advocacy world that needs to melt away.  We have to support our women now in their situations now, absolutely, but we have to continue striving to bring birth back to the basics whenever possible - especially in the way we share knowledge.

Releasing Tight Ligaments to Bring Baby Earth Side

Releasing tight ligaments to bring baby earth side. Prevent this tension in pregnancy, remedy this situation during the birthing phases.

If the information isn't there to support your idea of birth, the techniques won't make a difference.  A doula can't save a birth choice that doesn't support biology.  A birth class can give you the information, but unless you make the choices that support your body, the information isn't going to help you.  We can physically support your baby and body, but without the understanding of a quiet, calm, and dark birth space AND the choice to allow you to birth in a space like that - your body may have a hard time moving from physically laboring to emotionally birthing.  We need to reduce that fear and reduce too much in the birth space.  ALL of these techniques need to work together.  ALL of these ideas need to be pieced logically into place for YOU and YOUR BIRTH.

Release the tension, Move the Baby

Tight muscles, tight ligaments, and misaligned body make baby misaligned. We know this. Now, let's get baby moving.

For too long, women have been hiring support for labor - separating that roll of educational support and labor support and expecting the hard work to be done during the birth.  While taking it easy during pregnancy and enjoying this beautiful emotional time is a goal we need to work towards - ideally we want all this education and physical work to be done prior to the oxytocin-heightening time of labor.

This focus of what a doula is and does needs to change. They are so much more than "labor support."

Want a smoother birth?  Do the work NOW.  Whatever now looks like to you - whether you're 16, just married, TTC, early pregnancy, or 37 weeks - NOW is the time to start reducing the amount of work your body needs to do when baby is ready and your mind is ready to bring baby earth side.

What does this work look like?  Well, it is different for everyone.  It is a lot of birth industry navigating.  It is independent perinatal education - not just a "what to expect in birth" or "what to expect in the hospital" sort of crash course.  It is a lot of wellness counseling, birth trauma processing, relationship building, and likely optimal fetal positioning.  It is navigating the birth industry.  It is discovering what YOU want and what YOU expect from your birth team and birth location.  When you discover your options, you learn how to make choices that support those options.

Mid Pelvis Release

Where's the Baby? A provider that palpates can help a mom a lot during pregnancy to prevent issues arising in birth. When was the last time your provider palpated? When was the last time your provider touched you other than for a vaginal exam which is typically unnecessary at best. Providers that are only watching monitors won't know. Providers only getting feedback from a middle-person over the phone, won't know. Providers only focused on numbers, won't know. Providers never seeing a mom move during her labor won't know.

Want to know more?  Schedule a session with me and let's get started with mentoring sessions that go far beyond "labor and delivery."  Let's get to the root of your previous birth experience.  Let's get to the root of your fear or misunderstanding of your biology and how a previous birth doesn't have to be this birth - even if you "did it all right."  Let's figure out how your baby is working with YOUR body.  Let's talk about your health and your relationship.  Let's talk about your birth location and your care provider and how that is playing into something like muscle tension, birth pain, and a smooth birth.  Let's talk about how all of this influences breastfeeding, PPH, and depression.

Let's talk about how amazing this time can be!  Get in touch!   You're never too far away!

Most new childbearing families feel a sense of comfort birthing in the US from a perceived belief that our developed status makes us less prone to less than ideal outcomes.  Reality, however, is not quite so...

What we know:

  • The U.S. has the worst maternal health statistics of ALL developed countries (we rank 61st). Yes, even though we spend more per capita on health care and many [hospital] births are off the charts expensive.  Home births can be expensive, but relatively they are much lower costs.  Many women find that the cost of a home birth is lower than insurance deductibles.
  • 99% of births are in a Hospital, attended by nursing staff focused on monitors and obstetrician that are not present for labor.  Shouldn't this increase our safety if women are birthing in a hospital believing they are receiving the best care?  However, it can be quite difficult to really tell what is happening in labor if someone is only focusing on monitors, "observing" a laboring mother from a completely separate room, or getting feedback from phone conversations.  This does not happen at a typical home birth, I can assure you.  Quietly knitting in the corner, possibly - but ever listening, observing, noting, and providing calm energy.
  • Countries with better health statistics have midwife-attended labors and births with home birth as an accessible option supported by obstetrician.
    Yes, European countries have a model of maternity care that encourages midwives for normal healthy births collaborating with obstetrician for higher risk births and surgical birth.  Only 8% of births are attended by midwives in the US, and many of them have also never seen a home birth but rather learned from Obstetric and medically managed births.
  • Studies show home birth is as safe as, with less interventions, than hospital birth.  We have to start with the idea that providers actually understand the biology of birth.  If they've never seen a normal non-intervened birth, then they can't adequately compare what is normal and what is managed.  At most home births, a quiet and calm midwife with experience in home birth will watch and let mom do her thing in peace and love with her family.  She may support emotionally, palpate, suggest positions, and listen to heart tones - but she starts with a perspective that birth takes time, mobility, and love.  If we go to medicine every time something isn't matching an outdated and limited-study chart, then we're seriously diminishing the birth safety for mothers from the get go.  Once that first intervention starts, it often snowballs into many others and sometimes, walking out the front door is that first intervention because moms no longer feel calm and confident.
  • Hemorrhage is the leading cause of maternal death. This is true just about anywhere, but what people don't realize is how much a medically intervened birth increases this risk.  Environments that don't support biology such as taking baby away from mom, medications surrounding birth, and anything that decreases oxytocin such as bright lights, noise, chaos, too many people in the birth room, and staff demeanor, will increase adrenaline which is an antagonistic hormone to oxytocin.  Oxytocin is the hormone that contracts the uterus.  A contracting uterus after the birth (which is also increased with baby being skin to skin and nuzzling the breast) clamps down on the capillaries and stops bleeding.  This is only ONE influence, which happens in practically all hospital births, that increases risks of hemorrhage.  The other significant issue is postpartum care which is virtually nil in hospital births.  With a home birth, midwives see the mom multiple times after the birth, call often, and meet with mom 2-3 times within a 6 week period for a normal birth.  Most moms birthing by cesarean only have one appointment after 6 weeks.  A lot can happen during postpartum such as hemorrhage and eclampsia.  Care needs to continue for moms with adequate breastfeeding knowledge and support and postpartum healing care.  This would also decrease postpartum depression, which brings us to our next point.
  • 10-20% of US women suffer from postpartum depression.  This doesn't cover prenatal depression... but why is this happening?  We've created a culture that believes baby blues are a normal part of postpartum, for one.  That many mothers are sad that it is literally believed to be expected.  This is ridiculous.  When a woman is designed to have a flood of happy hormones pour over her throughout birth, immediately after birth at higher levels than orgasm, and every single time she breastfeeds - what in the world would make postpartum such a depressing time?  Let's think about the fact that 42% of women are induced and another 47% are augmented (sped up) both often with synthetic oxytocin (pitocin or syntocinon) which doesn't cross the blood-brain barrier and as such doesn't have the same psychological effects as natural oxytocin.  Let's think about the 99% of women birthing in environments with bright lights, a lot of noise, and often chaos immediately after birth all of which decrease natural oxytocin.  Let's think about all those babies whisked away, screaming like crazy, handled like a rag doll, and jammed with all sorts of needles and suction devices and touching people that have no business touching the baby before mom.  Let's think about the majority of hospital birthing women that receive a routine injection of pitocin post birth to "prevent" postpartum hemorrhage (never mind the fact if the prior labor care was biological, natural oxytocin and immediate bonding/skin to skin would work as it should).  Let's think about all the supplements and pacifiers not only at home, but given away in the hospital to reduce breastfeeding.  Let's think about all the providers that know next to nothing, or completely wrong, breastfeeding information.  Let's think about all the moms that go home and are expected to do it all, even some going back to work in 3-6 weeks before they're ever physically healed, let alone psychologically.  Let's think about all those women that are expected to milk their breasts with a machine instead of having their baby with them as nature designed.  Let's think about the lack of support women have during these stages when other countries literally pamper the mom for 4-6 weeks with food, love, and most of all encouragement to lie with her baby and rest and nurse.  Let's think about what we're causing, not what to expect because we're unwilling to change practices.  Let's think about the 33% of women birthing by cesarean, likely 1/2 of those being preventable through proper care, that have doulas and dads holding their baby on their breast to nurse because they're so medicated and tired they can't hold their arms up.  Let's think about these cesarean birthers that are healing from birth trauma and major surgery that are told, "all that matters is a healthy baby" who are not just suppressed on telling their story, but never routinely counseled to process their birth.  Home birth midwives STILL meet with their hospital transfer patients during postpartum when their care was transfered because they get what a mother needs.  Where is this care for most of that 33% of women?
  • More women are birthing unassisted because of their fear of trauma from birth attendants and hospital policies. While I am among the few that support unassisted birth because I support autonomy and I believe in the body's ability - I am appalled that many women are choosing this not because they feel empowered to do so and are truly at peace with all birth scenarios, but because our maternity system is failing.  It is increasing their fear of harassment, bullying, birth rape, safety for mom and baby, and ultimately parental confidence.

 

Now, make no mistake - all of this is real and true, but in most communities, we are certainly blessed to have the ability to choose home birth with experienced attendants.  Likewise, the relative risks are overall low in childbirth - not at all like it was when birth first moved into the hospital and providers were increasing risks of birth by causing illnesses simply from not washing their hands.  We've come a long way and have a lot of methods available to us to make birth safer.  The key, however, is to use those methods when needed and not as a form of defensive medicine or our of fear for lack of biological understanding.  There are so many great resources to help you learn more about birth in the US such as www.improvingbirth.org, www.primalhealthresearch.com, and www.childbirthconnection.com.

Feeling confused?  Looking for options?  Seeking the desire to free your mind of birth fear?  Schedule a mentoring session with me and let's talk about your situation and your options.  Let's talk about your health to maximize your birth options and let's talk about how to navigate this birth industry for the happiest birth possible, because a happy birth is a healthy birth.

induce labor naturally Esali Birth

Are you curious how to induce labor naturally and safely at home?  This is probably one of the biggest questions in the maternity industry... 

How do I Induce Labor Naturally?

In most cases, mom is either trying to avoid a medical induction that has been coerced on her by her providers or she's ready for the baby to come out now for various reasons – some medical, most personal.

Well, if you've stumbled upon this post early in pregnancy, wonderful - you have time to comfortably make the choices for provider and birth location that support the biology of birth.  On the other hand, even if you're late in pregnancy - you still have plenty of time to politely say, "No thanks" or any other rendition of that statement that allows you to practice your legal right to make your own decisions for your body and birth.  Oh, and of course, time to read this post and see how you can encourage baby into this world.

STEP 1 – How to Induce Labor Naturally

Learn what your body and baby need to move from the gestating phase of the childbearing year into the birthing phase.  What is that?  Well, beyond the obvious need of the baby to be fully developed - which takes somewhere around 37-43 weeks... give or take depending on your luteal phase of your cycle, when you conceived, and simple biology - there is an immense need for moms to feel safe.

If you don't feel safe, supported... i.e. RELAXED... then your mind is basically the one telling baby, "Stay in, it isn't safe to come out yet."  So, get that support.  Relax.  Take a bath.  Take a walk.  Listen to happy music.  Get a massage in all the tense places, including your uterus.  Most of all, TALK to someone about ANY questions you have.

While ideally your provider AND educator/doula would have prepared you so well during pregnancy that darn near all of these questions and concerns are ancient history, that may not be the case or there may be new questions that have come up.  You need to talk with your TRUSTED birth team about all of these - or you need to speak with the individual that these concerns are hinting.  If there is stress at work, take some time off... or ask for a different task... or ask for help... or take some meditation music to work with you and use all of your breaks to listen, pray, and just breathe.  YOU can MAKE this WORK.  You having gotten here in this life, you can get to the next step, too.

Step 1 Recap to Induce Labor Naturally:

  • Learn – Join a Birth Series or Schedule Mentoring Sessions (online or locally)
  • Relax
  • Reduce the must-do’s and want-to’s

STEP 2 – How to Induce Labor Naturally

Build oxytocin.  This goes along with relaxation, in a sense, but let's think about this a little deeper for a moment.

During your pregnancy, building oxytocin is THE relaxation "method" that I encourage here at Esali Birth.  It is the safest most natural and productive relaxation method.  Why?  Because not every technique works for every mom and because it is with oxytocin that our uterus will contract and progress labor (provided baby is ready).

Keeping STEP 1 in mind, do more eye-gazing, skin to skin touching and abdominal massaging, flirting with/loving our birth partner, building a RELATIONSHIP with our birth team. Stay intimate with your partner throughout pregnancy and in the end.  This doesn't have to mean sex - it just means keeping that relationship strong - or making it stronger - so that it is enhanced during birth and mind blowing through the parenting stages.  At the same time, intercourse does increase oxytocin - especially when it includes breast stimulation and results with orgasm (high levels of oxytocin are created to orgasm) and ejaculation internally.  Semen is an incredible prostaglandin (i.e. something that "ripens" the cervix, or makes the cervix soft and stretchy to encourage dilation) and orgasm creates the highest amounts of oxytocin in our body, apart from the moment after a biological birth.  Yea... biological birth is that amazing.  This does NOT mean just go have sex.  This is more about the connection - the relationship - the joy - the trust that you're creating with this person you've chosen to spend your life with and be a 50/50 partner on parenting.  You NEED that trust and building this relationship now makes you that much more confident to bring a baby into this world.

Therefore, we are increasing our oxytocin naturally by the trust.  THEN, we are getting adequate sunshine (for Vitamin D and all that hormone-balancing and happiness it creates as well as building stores for our baby during the first year of their life).  We are eating balanced wholesome and whole foods meals and snacks that have been properly balanced.  We are getting enough water and of course enough physical activity.  We are going to bed at a decent hour and ensuring we are sleeping well.

You see, oxytocin isn't the only player in the labor game.  There are so many hormones, but particularly with this contracting-hormone, we need dopamine (our happy hormone) and melatonin (our sleep hormone) to be at their peak.  These hormones are at their correct levels with all of the mentioned above.  Yes, yes, this is often why we see so many labors peaking at night.  Sometimes this is because the only time a mom relaxes is during the night.  This brings me to our next step.

Step 2 Recap to Induce Labor Naturally:

  • Build Oxytocin
  • Be Intimate & Connected
  • Get sunshine
  • Eat wholesome whole foods with a variety of colors
  • Stay hydrated
  • Move
  • Sleep

STEP 3 – How to Induce Labor Naturally

Your gestating and laboring body craves a quiet, calm, and dark space.  Dark allows those labor hormones to work.  Dark mimics your night - relaxed - state.  Dark makes everyone walk a little quieter and speak a little softer.  Quiet allows your logical brain to rest and your instinctual brain to take over and work with your baby.  Sometimes most importantly, calm, allows you to feel safe which is key to reducing adrenaline.

Adrenalin and oxytocin are antagonistic hormones.  When one is high, the other is low.  So when stress and particularly caution, question, and distrust is high then adrenaline will be high and labor will not progress.  I don't know how many moms I've talked with that have convinced themselves that they're "such a calm person" or "totally relaxed" or any rendition of being at peace with birth when their actions, schedules, and questions clearly show otherwise.  A kiss can be "stressful" - as stress is not simply a negative feeling, it is the body exerting more energy routinely without balanced rest that causes hormonal stress - whether you're happy with your life or not.  The great thing is, though, they're talking about it.  Sometimes, it does help to admit that to your birth team, however.

When a provider scares you, questions your birth, changes your EDD because of an [often inaccurate] ultrasound scan, or has routine practices you don't agree with - adrenaline will constantly be higher than it should be, even if you aren't feeling completely stressed.  Whether hospital or home, don't convince yourself your choices are the best when they aren't jiving with your birth view or you're not receiving support from your birth team.  This is especially prevalent in births where many moms may actually be friends with their birth team, used that team or provider for a previous birth, or in the case of home birth they assume "home" and "midwife" actually mean they're receiving the best care they should simply because of the title - same goes with an obstetrician.  Titles are irrelevant here.  You have to be honest with yourself.  Every ounce of question, concern, or confusion might be one more day baby stays in when they're actually ready.  But all this has to come naturally  - you can't stress yourself into relaxation!  Let it be.

Likewise, any projects that are ongoing, filled-schedules, and various things that "need done" will not allow this progression.  Get away for a bit.  Put the screens away.  Put the work down.  Let it all go for long enough to feel a sense of release.  At some point during pregnancy, closer to 41-42 weeks for most, mom's brain does tend to override these thoughts and goes. "OK, enough of that, get all this stuff together we need to have this baby."  This is otherwise referred to as the nesting instinct.  Often in our culture with all of our modern technologies and house cleaning help...etc., this is seen in mom as having a surge of energy where she feels amazing and totally different from the last few weeks of complaints and ready to be done with pregnancy thoughts.  But, those little thoughts of complaints - that little doubt that someone may be giving you in the back of your mind is saying, "Stay in there baby."  So, if this is the case, refer back to STEP 1 and read a little about the Art of Relaxation.

Step 3 Recap to Induce Labor Naturally:

  • Be quiet
  • Be calm
  • Be in dark spaces (keep it balanced, of course) – but definitely during labor
  • Be honest about your comfort level and make decisions that support it

 

STEP 4

Get baby and body aligned.  Now, ideally we would be doing this constantly through pregnancy with our physically-oriented lifestyles.  Our shoulders would stack over our hips and our hips would stack over our ankles and our pelvis wouldn't be tilted and... and... our entire body would be aligned.  Our core would be toned and ligaments flexible and myofacia supple to properly support our body structure and uterus and growing baby.  We wouldn't have a lot of back pain because of this physical health.  We wouldn't be sitting at a desk 20-40 hours a week rocking our pelvis in the wrong position and shortening our leg muscles causing pelvic tilt.  We wouldn't be leaning back on the couch with our feet up.

We likewise wouldn't be overworking ourselves physically in any way.  We would naturally walk a lot, maybe gathering foods or just for relaxation.  We would have quality social time with positive people in our lives that help us feel empowered and don't add stress to our body.  We would be barefoot and squatting (with our glutes, not a tucked pelvis) in the garden and the woods pulling [edible] weeds and nurturing our growing plants.  We would be eating well and feeling energized.  We’d also be receiving abdominal massages that encourage oxytocin release comfort and baby’s position while enhancing the tone of the uterus.

Whether we've been doing this or not, making sure baby is in a good position for birth and our body is aligned to allow this good positioning will help us not only to encourage spontaneous labor but also create a smoother labor and birth for you and baby.  Often when all of the above is good to go but labor still isn't happening, doing optimal fetal positioning, seeing a physical therapist, visiting a massage therapist and maybe a chiropractor helps us to realign our spine and pelvis and get baby in the optimal LOA position.  There are of course so many births that are wonderful and smooth and amazing without this optimal fetal position, and that is typically because mom feels safe - which is why I place this down a little further on the list.

Step 4 Recap to Induce Labor Naturally:

  • Get aligned
  • Move aligned
  • Stay aligned
  • Stretch
  • Bellydance, get abdominal and whole-body massages and move the pelvis
  • Work with a doula prenatally for optimal fetal positioning, like spinning babies techniques

 

Final thoughts

 

There are incredible amounts of information for various herbal or OTC "natural" induction methods.  Though, the internet, particularly blogs, and most western medical providers are not always the best place for this information sharing with so much misinformation being shared.  But let's remember, an induction is an induction whether you do it at home or your midwife at home does it or your midwife or OB does it in the hospital or birth center.  Induction of any kind increases the risks of birth for you and baby.  In many cases, baby and mom aren't physically OR mentally ready for labor and herbal induction methods just cause some pretty significant uncomfortable side effects at best and increase risks like meconium staining for instance.  Take castor oil, for instance, which might work because it is a very strong laxative that causes diarrhea which can stimulate uterine contractions.  Not only would diarrhea be uncomfortable to experience during labor - but would also increase infection risks especially with a birth team really focused on vaginal exams.  At the same time, it often just causes diarrhea but not labor because in fact, mom and baby aren't ready.

Now, there are some herbal "tonic" teas that you may see around encouraged to be used as induction agents, such as Red Raspberry Leaf (RRL).  While we're not going to go into specifics here - I do want to talk about what a tonic herb means.  People think of RRL as "the" pregnancy herb.  If they don't drink it during pregnancy, they often drink it at the end.  The thing with tonic herbs is they don't actually contract, rather, they provide immense amounts of nutrients.  They are toning because they are a true statement of "let thy food be thy medicine."  If a mom has used a tonic herb to "induce" labor - it likely had nothing to do with an "induction," rather, she was likely providing her body with necessary vitaminerals like calcium, magnesium, and b vitamins to name a few that many of these tonic herbs contain.  Without adequate levels of [properly assimilated] vitamins and minerals in the body (which don't come from most Rx or OTC supplements), the body can't work as intended.  This is another common reason for prodromal labor aside from misalignment and stress (see above steps).

Now, this is not to say that herbs are not used to induce - they most certainly are, but these are herbs categorized as emmenagogues, abortifacients, and more specifically oxytocics - otherwise known as uterine contractors/menses promotors and strong uterine contractors.  Some oxytocic herbs like Black & Blue Cohosh, and various formulas from Wish Garden Herbs and other Midwifery supply stores should NEVER be used without the guidance of a knowledgeable herbal midwife.  Others, like castor oil, can pose a number of risks, such as hemorrhage, that I would especially discourage you from using at all, and especially not without the guidance of an educated herbalist midwife.  Likewise, you've now made your birth a medical event which now has no place at home (whether you were planning to birth at home or planning to avoid going into the hospital for a medical induction).  Remember that reading a list of "this herb is good for this" is nowhere near being an herbalist and often not at all explaining the way it should be used or if it would work with your situation and body type.  There is an incredible amount of misinformation about herbs on the internet and also in books.  From "do this" with herbs that need more caution to "this herb is poison" for herbs that have hundreds and hundreds of years of safety and herbalist usage but modern medicine extracted one constituent out to study it alone in copious amounts and often on animals, instead of with the other constituents in typical amounts with humans - and this totally changes the way something works.

So, if you're considering induction…  Remember that induction doubles your risk of cesarean.  If your risk of cesarean is 30%, for example, just by having a certain care provider or walking into a hospital - how could an induction change the course of labor for you and baby?  Have you researched induction and whether it is necessary and do you know that studies are pointing to the safety of cesarean over the long-term risks that induction may cause, like ADHD?  Is this induction actually necessary and do the risks of induction exceed the risks of not inducing?  Is your induction scheduled for days later or are you going in right now?  If it is scheduled days later, do you think this is really a true medical need or is waiting a good idea?

Lastly, I would love to talk to you!  If you have questions, concerns, or even a possible previous birth that you haven't quite worked through yet - I'd love to chat with you through my mentoring sessions - online or local in the Mid-Ohio Valley.  Just send me a message at mdbergum - at - esalibirth - dot - com.

Well, hello there!  While we've seen a lot from each other through "Esali Birth," I wanted to take a moment to say a personal hello from me, Danielle from the Mid-Ohio Valley, and share a basic service and price list for all of you looking for perinatal support through the childbearing years in the Mid-Ohio Valley.

If you're new to Esali Birth you may not know my story which I love sharing throughout the many times we may meet on your journey.  Mostly, I am a modern gal living in rural WV that loves to intertwine instinctual, historical, knowledge with only the most beneficial parts of our modern world.  I wear many hats in my family and life and love the diversified options I have in this beautiful world.  I also love supporting families during the childbearing years from the most basic loving hug to the scientific ins and outs of childbirth.  Whatever you need in this moment is what I strive to provide.  Sometimes that is advice, sometimes it is research, sometimes it is nutritional guidance, and it is always understanding of your personal journey which is ever changing.

My services range from pre-conception counseling to childbirth education and doula support.  I have a variety of herbal blends available and custom blends that can be created for your specific needs from soothing foot soaks and beverage tea blends to body balancing while transitioning from medicinal birth control and perinatal support.  See my service menu below for a basic list of options in the Mid-Ohio Valley.

While I do require services be paid in full, I provide my NPI number and guidance for my clients to submit claims to their insurance to help cover doula education and support fees upon request.

Want to learn more?  See me chat with Marilee Marrow on Moms Everyday and visit my Support Page.  Find me on Skype @esalibirth for my online [free] "Office Hours."

Have questions?  Get in touch!

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Make choices that support your birth. If you want to be treated like you’re at home, then stay home. If you want medical support, go to the hospital. If you want a biological birth, don’t hire anyone to “take care of you and give you suggestions.”

Bottom line, remember that everyone has the birth they need for their own spiritual journey. There is a rhyme and reason for all things. Births are life changing for the mom and baby, and we all want this experience to be as healthy and happy as it can be – but ultimately, no matter how this plays out, this event is significant to challenge you in your faith and relationship with God. Maybe you are becoming a stronger mother, a more loving care giver, a more patient person, a more carefree individual, understanding for the next phase of your life, meeting someone that you’ll impact in the future… the reasons are endless. So, let’s join together in our advocacy and not fight with one another for the sake of which one has it right. They are all necessary – let’s just work to make birth normal again for everyone and the birth experience empowering.

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