Winter News!

Upcoming : New permanent location for childbirth and breastfeeding classes as well as Breastfeeding USA monthly chapter meetings! Childbirth Refresher workshops and Comprehensive classes are now posted. See Events for details.

News for 2015

With 2015 just around the corner, I’m very excited to be coming off maternity leave after having our third child in March! For me this means offering 12 hours of birth education and 4 hours of breastfeeding education per month (in addition to the monthly Breastfeeding USA chapter meetings). I also have a permanent location for Breastfeeding USA chapter meetings in Tacoma. Finding the right space to allow both has been difficult as our attendees were outgrowing the small (free) spaces I had been reserving.

Beginning in January my classes and Breastfeeding USA chapter meetings will be held in the Community Education room at Puget Sound Family Health in Tacoma. The space is used by various practitioners in the community–including yoga! It is a lovely space with a bit of a courtyard (great for spring/summer when the toddlers attend meetings).

The first class offering in January, on the 10th, is the first half of the comprehensive birth class “Biological Birth”. This is the last class I am offering at a reduced rate–Part A will be $75 and the full 8-hour class (Part A and B) is $45. Beginning in February, my classes will resume regular pricing with the exception of women who are awarded my monthly scholarship. I have a waiting list already accumulating so the new dates may fill quickly.


Random Musings: How Pitocin Fooled Me

Random Musings: How Pitocin Fooled Me

Pitocin: an artificial form of oxytocin administered to women intravenously to either induce labor or augment labor. It works to strengthen labor contractions. Oxytocin occurs naturally in a woman’s body. It is the hormone that triggers the uterine contractions throughout labor. As with any drug used in labor, there are side effects with the use of Pitocin including: redness, cramping, nausea, shaking, vomiting and altered heart rate.  There was also a recent publication on the adverse effects on infants.

Aside from what the manufacturers of Pitocin have listed as side effects, it also changes the labor experience for women. In an unaltered birth one might find that contractions were sometimes perfectly rhythmic and other times, not so much. Some contractions may have the same duration but have uneven spacing for a while and then resume a near perfect pattern. This imperfection can be altered with the use of Pitocin. When a provider wants to see full-force contractions that last a full minute and are evenly spaced–Pitocin is the perfect drug.

What effect does this actually have in labor? It obviously eliminates the body’s natural design of contractions. There will be no gradual increase in intensity until the peak, where a woman almost feels like she can’t tolerate the pain anymore but can; because as soon as the thought enters her mind, it vanishes as the contraction passes. Without the natural ebb and tide of the contraction intensity, many women opt for pain relief in the form of an epidural.  True, biologically designed, labor contractions are not nearly as painful as the Pitocin augmented contractionl.

During my first labor, my midwife explained that Pitocin would just make sure my contractions came frequently enough and it would speed my labor. I, like many other mothers, was never told that it would make the pain last as long as the contraction. It wasn’t until my completely unmedicated homebirth that I realized exactly what Pitocin had done for me (to me) previously. Even as I, unknowingly, neared transition in my unmedicated homebirth, the intensity of the contraction never became so unbearable that I even considered that I wasn’t capable of continuing on. I mumbled to my birth team that the pain wasn’t “bad” enough for me to actually be in labor/nearing transition/about to have a baby. Sometime near the end of my labor it hit me. I realized how Pitocin had damaged my previous labor experience. Contractions are amazing when they are allowed to be as strong, long and close together as they want to be. Your body and baby design your contractions.

This realization was monumental for me as both a mother and childbirth professional. Any woman who has ever labored with Pitocin will be pleasantly surprised in her future, un-augmented births. The body is perfectly designed. Birth is perfect when it is left alone to be what it is meant to be.


Fall Plans for Mama, Birth and Babe

I'm so excited to get back into the swing of things with breastfeeding and birth support this fall! I will be sharing my latest birth story in a future post but I figured I should get my fall plans posted first. On Breastfeeding:  Breastfeeding … [Continue reading]