Most of you probably read the trilogy Call the Midwife years ago. I am a little late, but I just finished all three books. The stories of people, mostly from the East End of London, seem more unreal than fiction, yet they are all true, according to the author, Jennifer Worth. She writes about the midwifery services, mostly homebirths, provided by the nuns at Nonnatus House for 99 years—from the 19th and through most of the 20th century.
The most important event in many women’s lives is giving birth. It is so pivotal that most moms can remember it in great detail their entire life. I met a woman in Japan who was in her 80s and could recount every detail of her birth. Her father-in-law had been her support person.
Every woman is different and every labor is different. In this editorial, Jan shares some of the ways labor can be experienced by different women.
I believe that doulas need to have some preparation for handling emergency clinical situations: not to take them on, but to be ready in case of an emergency. This is a somewhat unpopular view. However, doulas can never know what kind of situation they may find themselves in. For example, you may be the first to arrive at a homebirth, when the midwife gets a flat tire or, for some other reason, does not arrive in time for the birth.
Continuity of carer is key to a normal, physiological, and empowered birth. Midwifery is about relationship which develops in the course of prenatal care.
It is important to realize that the health of the mother and baby are deeply dependent on what happens in pregnancy, birth and in the hours and months after birth. These are life-altering days often referred to as the childbearing year.
Midwifery Today’s editor-in-chief celebrates MT’s 30-year anniversary by honoring 13 of the magazine’s most loyal contributors and gentle birth advocates.
Babies should be treated with the utmost respect, dignity and love. Their first birth minutes are their welcome to the planet. This is where they will first learn what being on earth is all about.
Mother of Midwifery Today, Jan Tritten, shares her thoughts and experiences with waterbirth.