Pumping and donating milk after a loss

Last fall, I had the profound privilege to companion my friends through the pregnancy, death, and birth of their daughter, Lyddia.  *ETA: The story of Lyddia’s birth can be read here and here.*  Kara, Lyddia’s mother, made the decision to establish her milk supply following Lyddia’s death and birth and donate her milk to a milk bank. At the time, the resources online to help a...
read more

Perineal Massage: Yes? No? When? How Long?

To massage or not to massage?  That is the question. If yes, when? And for how long?  As always, in health care, one question leads to others. Many women giving birth worry about their perineum tearing or being cut. This is probably one of the top two concerns expressed by mothers in the childbirth classes we teach. Perineal trauma is less frequently discussed as a birth outcome, but it can have...
read more

Coming soon: portable tub

Strong Mama Birth Services is proud to announce that at the end of May, private childbirth education clients and doula clients will be able to utilize a popular method of easing discomfort and inducing relaxation:  a folding, portable tub that will fit in most hospital bathrooms! Many families do not have showers in their homes, or their bathtubs are not deep enough to feel fully submerged in...
read more

The evidence suggests

Are you a logical, numbers-focused person?  Do p values excite you? How about multiple regression graphs with obviously sloping lines? Multiple regression analysis with orthogonal contrast coding? I was never a great math person, but statistics in grad school made sense to me.  It was like I could visualize numbers in a way that I couldn’t with multiplication and division.   The patterns...
read more

From wildlife to moms and babies

When I first decided to attend a DONA doula training, I did it with the thought that I might make a little extra money attending a few births here and there, every now and again.  I had just relocated to Auburn, AL, with my family, and I had a 10-month-old baby and a 3-year-old preschooler.  I had no idea it would grab hold of me, this idea of helping women give birth and helping women find...
read more

Birth in joy, relaxation, and comfort…with no epidural?

Yes, you read right. Wait, you might be thinking.  Isn’t pain in labor protective and productive?  Isn’t that what what I learned in childbirth class? Don’t I need to move around in response to my pain and change positions to help labor progress? Yes, those things are true under this circumstance:  when our brains interpret the sensations of birth as painful and when we respond...
read more