Its just not helpful to think of fetal position as being anyone's fault.
In a long labor, a mother may ask “Why doesn’t this baby come out?” A helper might joke, “This is a stubborn baby.” But the baby is trying their best to fit the design of birth.
A baby will take the most optimal position possible. Some babies can be repositioned more readily than others, depending on how low they are in the pelvis or the size and shape of their head in any direction. A mother does her best given the the baby's position and the time and support available. Some providers know how to help reposition baby and some do not. The same puzzle solution doesn't work for every situation.
After a long labor ended in a cesarean, a mother may ask, "Am I broken?" Sometimes its a matter of the baby's head being wrong way in. The pelvis would have birthed the baby with the chin tucked and crown first, but perhaps couldn't fit a baby whose chin was up or head was tilted.
We do the best we can given the variables of the day.
Every woman wants the best birth possible. How was she to know that the common postures of our culture, the common furniture designs, might effect her childbearing? She does the best she can in the world she grew up in.
Mothers are often blamed for birth complications when the lack of support in a birth-phobic society has left her neglected, lacking in the knowledge she desires to have and from access to wise care. The mother, too, is doing her best in the situation she lives in. See the general birthing information section to learn about wise care.
But, Gail, my friend's doctor [it could have also been a midwife or nurse] didn't let her get out of bed, and she had a cesarean for a long labor. Isn't that the doctor's fault?
It isn't the doctor's wish to have a mother suffer. Doctors also practice in a dynamic interaction of hospital administration, colleagues, and limits to training in natural birth solutions. Perspectives in what makes a cesarean necessary or acceptable may differ.
A woman who feels that she had a cesarean for a less than absolute necessity sometimes comes to feel mislead by her sense of trust in routine medical care. Assumptions are exposed painfully. Anger is an appropriate emotion when we are forced to change our plans beyond our expectations, especially without our voice in the decision.
We can prevent the blame and shame spiral if we take time to find three things,
- Empowerment: Information about best maternity care practices is important, and so is serenity and relationships of trust within the birth team.
- Equality: A care provider who is comfortable in a cooperative relationship sharing responsibility with the woman giving birth. Women have a dynamic role in thier own maternity care (and society's!).
- Voice: The clarity and the courage to state needs and desires in a way that recognizes the worth and roles of those needs and desires as well as each individual in the birth team.
A mother may be told her baby is in a good position for birth only to find out later that head down is not enough. Learning about fetal position is something the mother, herself, must pursue. Relying on medical and midwifery helpers, even body workers, who are so praised in this website, may not serve every mother's needs.
As humans we are, well, human. Everyone is doing the best they can with the knowledge, emotional safety, and time they have within the culture they live and move in.
A co-venture video experience with Spinning Babies and Blooma Yoga! Coming Soon!
Spinning Babies; Daily Essentials For Pregnancy Video.
Together Sarah Longacre, international prenatal yoga instructor and birth doula, and Gail Tully, yours truly, created a unique instructional video for flexibility and comfort in pregnancy and to support better fetal positioning in time for birth.
Here are daily activities for stretching and balancing a pregnant body. Start early in pregnancy to prepare to make the most space for baby's best birth position and the most ease for mother's opening during the birth process.
We begin the program for women of average flexibility (or just plain stiff to start with) and beginner tips. But soon, you'll be ready to move freely! That's when Sarah brings the stretches all together into her easy to follow, playful, sensual, and flowing "Blooma Style" daily routine.
Sarah's "dance of opening," moves joints and ligaments to come alive under the delightful melody and percussions of Carin Vagle. This isn't about core strength; its about freedom of movement and creating space in the body.
Sarah plays along with Gail's little game of "Flashlight" to show pregnant women how to evaluate their own posture and positions. Smart Maternal Positioning helps baby snuggle their backs into the front of the womb for Optimal Fetal Positioning.
The Daily Essentials For Pregnancy includes tips for using Maternal Positioning around the house. Actual scenes in the bedroom, living room -and even the bathroom- gives practical instruction like no other video. You will be sleeping more comfortably immediately when using these tips. Within a week or two many pregnancy discomforts of the pelvis and lower back may be reduced when all these nurturing techniques are integrated into your daily lifestyle. Spinning Babies and Blooma Yoga-- a natural collaborative!
Spinning Babies Childbirth Preparation Class.
Soon pregnant parents around the world can take a Spinning Babies class from their own monitor! Join six couples as they learn the reason why Spinning Babies works and how it can enhance your labor and birth.
See techniques to do daily or weekly. Actual, real consultations with two couples right at our class location, one with a breech baby (head up) and one with a baby in a transverse lie (lying sideways).
Couples do the techniques together and show you how to do these at home.
Used alone or with the Daily Essentials, Spinning Babies Childbirth Preparation Class goes beyond the basics. Simple props show complex concepts sweetly. Little-known anatomy is linked to childbirth and the role of fetal positioning.
The section on labor discusses two labor patterns- the one "promised" in other books and the unexpected one associated with the posterior labor. Learn the common causes of long labor and techniques to help baby through the pelvis.
Be empowered; be prepared. After using this video throughout your pregnancy, while we can't promise, of course, you may not need the tips for labor progress. You can use that knowledge to help your neighbor. This video is all Spinning Babies.
Blooma Yoga Prenatal Yoga for AM and PM.
Warm up in the morning and cool down in the evening in two 30-minute sequences. Sarah Longacre shares her own blossoming pregnancy, Blooma style, to the exquisite music of Carin Vagle. Sarah's affirmations will carry you through labor with emotional strength and encouragement. Play this video when the others become too basic and you just want to dance and have fun. Wait, dance? Isn't this yoga? With Blooma and Carin Vagle, your spirit won't know the difference. Soar to greater freedom of movement. Bring your hormones into harmony with the day. Begin your day with serious play. Cool down at night with a sleep enhancing stretch before bed. This video is all Blooma!
Sarah's video is ready for you now! Get Blooma's AM/PM Yoga here
All three videos are professionally produced by Melissa Koch of Grey Duck Productions, with stills by Tanya Villano Photography, each of these three videos are dynamic on their own. Together they will enhance your pregnancy and labor experience with fun and empowerment in the most practical manner. Feel hope for your birth abilities, this is support for your journey. Gain the confidence and flexibility to fully bloom. I believe these videos carry the potential to bring your best birth dreams into the gentle reality.
Compassionately priced. Estimated Due Date for Daily Essentials March 2014; for Spinning Babies Parent Class, Fall 2014.