Its often alluded to that what is hardest teaches us the most skills for life. This mother shares her skill and perspective from her challenging birth experiences with you and I here on the Spinning Babies Website. I so appreciate her honesty. Visitors who have also had difficult births will feel validated. Not all posterior labors unfold this way, but a few are this challenging. Gail B. used a variety or resources to navigate her labors. I don't promote the use of gas and other medications for labor, but I also recognize that any of us who have experienced something of her type of labor, whether as the laboring woman or as a support person, will find a broader compassion for her choices than the ideology of a drug free labor.

The birth at hand has its own demand


2nd labour birth story

And notes / thoughts on being overdue and birth knowledge / skills

Gail B., 2008

I had a home birth with my second baby, who was 10lb 8oz baby and was 17 days overdue. It’s possible that some of the things I learnt about positioning babies and being patient with going overdue helped the labour to go relatively fast (7.5 hours compared to 40 for my first labour).

My second labour story cannot be separated from my first because that experience had such a profound impact on my psyche, body and approach.

The story of my 2005 labour with Daniel is appended. I was pleased with what we achieved, though it wasn’t the labour I dreamed of. I sometimes picture me braving the strong, lashing waves of the East Indian coast, at first upright, later on all fours, finally washed up on the sand, broken! I’ve never experienced such levels of exhaustion both physically and mentally (and I have put myself through some mills in the past!)

On the one hand I had some faith that having gone through that and managed a vaginal birth (with nothing stronger than gas and air) I was in for an easier time. Daniel’s birth took 40 hours and I believed the physical work we did the time before would pay off this time (but to what extent?). On the other I knew that I could not muster the psychological strength to brave anything like that again.

The analogy that comes to mind (and it’s somewhat extreme) is thinking about political prisoners such as Alan Johnson. I imagine that having been there once they are very unlikely to set their lives up to risk being imprisoned again (though they wouldn’t necessarily regret their past life). Also, if they did find themselves imprisoned again, the knowledge of the lows they had experienced would mean their spirits would be broken much faster. Anyway, having done it once before you would have nothing to prove in doing it again!

Some people said to me before the labour “at least you know what its like”. But for me that wasn’t didn’t seem entirely useful! I found it tricky to totally let go of the past and believe this time could be vastly different, whilst at the same time balancing a desire to learn from the previous experience and build on it.

For my analytical brain, I needed to think through how to have this go better and I believed there must be more information that would be helpful. At the same time it is so important for a birthing woman to connect with and have faith in her birthing power on an intuitive level. It was a tricky balance in the build up to the birth and I think may have confounded me, my midwife and friends sometimes, but everyone hung in there.

Going overdue

Depending on dates Daniel was born 11 or 13 days overdue. My due date for Jacob was April 6th but he was born on April 23rd, 17 days over. Going to 14 days over felt a bit tricky, but beyond 14 days (an artificial line in the sand) it felt like navigating fairly unchartered territory.

I wanted to be patient and did not want to labour till things were ready. Perhaps a cause of a prolonged labour last time was non-optimal positioning of the baby and trying to get into labour because I felt under pressure. This time I also had a sense that it was important to hold a candle for other women by going beyond 14 days and showing it was ok. I planned to let myself go to May 2nd before a drip to induce, all tests being ok. This was based on:

•    Thinking that it was best to help baby into the optimal position and let my cervix efface whilst not actually contracting, so that labour might be shorter.
•    Information from my midwife on risks
•    Thinking that if 37 weeks + 1 day is not premature then maybe you don’t need to worry up to 3 weeks over either (I hadn’t had chance to investigate the truth of this)
•    Baby’s weight not being huge (it turned out the scan underestimated this by 2lbs though!! However head size wasn’t unduly large and I guess that’s the most important aspect.
•    Baby’s skin drying out in the womb and him being sore when born, so I didn’t want to leave it too long for that reason.
•    I had had a show so would anticipate a labour shortly, why would that happen and then labour be delayed for much longer?

Build up to the labour

My friends did a “baby shower” that was based on “The blessing way” . That was a lovely way to ground myself and feel prepared. I also found useful information on “having a second” regarding feelings around baby number 2, tandem feeding and presence of first child at the birth etc.

I had done all the usual tips, curries, sex, pineapples, reflexology, etc. I had also had three stretch and sweeps and several “shows”. My cervix was thinning but wasn’t fully ripe and was away from the baby’s head. Baby was head down, but on the right and I think moving from the side to close to back to back sometimes.

Heart monitoring and a scan showed no reason to be concerned around day 15 / 16 over.
I had a sense that the baby’s position was an issue and I could use this time to help him position better without being in labour. It was suggested I ask my baby what he needed. I’m not that much an esoteric type but I did this and I heard “arm” (which did come out bruised). If it was stuck the positioning work may have helped.

I was looking for information about anatomy, birthing and baby positions. Spinning babies and the Pink Kit seemed relevant (I give more notes on them below).

A turning point seemed to be two sessions with an osteopath   (on day 15 / 16 over) which felt fabulous, followed by the Spinning Baby rebozo and inversion techniques. I did that a few times along with abdominal lifts to help the chin tuck in. At the very least it felt positive to do something anatomically based in case there were blockages, it may well have been very practically the right things to do. Baby did move to the left hand side after one attempt.

I did some visualizations the night before I went into labour which included welcoming of the baby / encouraging him to come, some time to connect as a mother to be, with candles and my Buddha. I read a poem I find very meaningful (appendix below!). I did this practice last time and went into labour the next day.

I also hammered with a massage machine some acupressure and reflexology points

I have to say despite all of these efforts I didn’t “feel” I was about to go into labour. I had a nagging worry I was going to try everything then still have an induced labour which ended up in interventions and possibly a c-section.

The labour

I woke around 1.30am with contraction type feelings and timed them after half past 2. They were 20 minutes apart till about 3am and around 5 minutes apart by 4am. So no long pre-labour, but were the contractions being effective?

I focused very actively on relaxing in my abdomen, much more than just relaxing through breathing. I also used some masturbation and snogging early on. An orgasm was followed by a really strong contraction which kind of puts you off!

At 5.50am I was sick. I used the bramari buzzing breath early on, but it ran out of use after a while. Mandy my midwife came just after 6am. I had called my support people Zoe and Gordon earlier than I thought I might but it seemed important to get some help. John was bustling round getting stuff ready and waking my mum to help look after Daniel when he woke up .

I had a fantasy that I would get Mandy to check me and she would say I was already more than 5 cm’s dilated. At 7.20 Mandy estimated I was 7-8cm dilated. I was absolutely triumphant with that news.

John was putting up the birth pool and I was using the tens, Gordon and Zoe were coming to help with the pressure points. I used lots of noise which changed from vowel noises to howling type noises (but not tense noises). I was circling my hips and my arms, drawing and asking for energy and support from the universal whatever! The pool was so lovely to get into at 7.50am.

Now the other things that happen in my fantasy birth are that you get a rest in between contractions (I believe this is usual!) and that you get in the birth pool after 6 cm’s and speed up towards 10 very quickly . Unfortunately these aren’t what seem to happen for me.

It is apparently possible to have little pain in labour (without modern medicine) and I tried Hypnobirthing and was using the cd’s to help me relax for a lot of the labour. I think it helped a lot but didn’t lead to less pain. Sections of the labour did feel faster (one of the hypno suggestions that time should feel speeded up!). I thought I did much better on relaxing this time.

The one time I had no mid contraction pain I had a deep sleep for 30 seconds- what bliss! Apart from that I felt pain throughout and that really gets you down some times. You’re in an achy nagging pain with backache and then you contract. You don’t get a chance to relax fully and gather your wits properly. I had a right moan about it at times, saying I really wasn’t up for it, couldn’t be bothered, etc!  Not getting a break in between was really hard and discouraging and also told my analytical brain the position of baby may not be optimal.

I also had a sense labour was slowing down (not speeding up in the pool as hoped). Not cool around 8cm when pain is strong! Mandy said at one stage there was nothing more we could do. I was determined to try things though. I did pelvic floor releases and had been doing lunges (I got out of the pool). At some stage I also tried an inversion.
I also asked for exams quite often because I wanted to know what was happening, though they weren’t often possible because a contraction would come or I would be vaguely waggling my bottom in Mandy’s direction within the pool (like she could figure it out that way!)

The acupressure points, two above your hip bones, were again essential parts of pain reduction. Zoe and Gordon did a great job in pressing as hard as possible and the effect is notable.

Around 9am, high on gas and air and a surge of endorphins, I had a fun time in between contractions dancing to very loud “shamanic” dance music and declared I was going to be one of those women that had an orgasmic birth!

At 9.35am Mandy felt a rim of cervix was stuck and had a go at pushing it over the baby’s head, the waters broke during this process. I thought afterwards it may have slipped back over.

At 10am I felt very pissed off and started wining and asking for help in a very pathetic way, at the same time my brain was thinking “ooh I hope this is transitional behavior and not just me being pathetic!”

At 10.10 Mandy pushed the cervix over again and active second stage began on the birthing stool. It was only 17 minutes long and concluded with John on all fours and me over his body. Mandy did her best to work with me to slow it down to minimize tearing. Man it was sore. I proclaimed “Ring of fire!” at the worst stage (the term used to describe the feeling of your vagina and perineum stretched to the max). It was much worse than my first labour, but then baby was 2.5lbs lighter!. (I did have a second degree tear but it was at a skin level and expertly sewn up.) I didn’t have an urge to birth in water.

My birth helpers and John said it was amazing seeing so much baby come out [10:27 am]! We got in the pool shortly after the birth and delivered the placenta in there.

Jacob had some boob and then was wrapped up to keep warm. He seemed very calm but I agreed with him- it was all a very silly system this birthing business.

Birth skills and knowledge

Although you read and are told a bunch of things that might help get labour going and help whilst in labour; it’s often not clear what to do when and why! For example “go upstairs sideway”: when?! Which side!? “Squatting” when?! etc.

Perhaps we could do with a clearer set of information on this for parents to be, birth supporters, etc. Some exists in the Pink Kit and Spinning Babies and there may be much more out there. Below is what I learnt that was relevant to me.

I have heard “The Pink Kit”  is quite challenging to work through in parts. I wasn’t able to get the information fast enough- you need to order their DVDs from New Zealand and it costs money (£60). I was hoping to find someone with a copy or the knowledge but didn’t find either. Their download on pre-labour was helpful .

Spinning Babies  had more information on it than I have given below (for example it tells you what is useful to know for 4th labours and beyond). Spinning Babies is free (donations accepted) and the info was a bit overwhelming / repeated and jumps around. The woman (Gail Tully) behind it deserves a lump of cash to have someone edit it well and I did find it was worth digging through it.

A collective or individuals around Stroud may wish to develop this knowledge and thinking. Thinking about these issues may be right for some pregnant women and their partners / supporters, for others focusing on trust and instinct alone: “getting into your birthing body” may feel more important and be more helpful.

Spinning Babies + other information

I give some pointers below of what was useful but don’t repeat it all here-

Pre- labour / non-active labour vs “not effective” labour: The download from The Pink kit ( on not getting tired out in “pre-labour” describes how getting too focused on early contractions, which can go on for a long time but not be bringing about much dilation beyond 3cm’s, can emotionally and physically tire a birthing woman before the much harder work to come. It’s good to read. They suggest this pre-labour may be helping to thin the cervix and / or position the baby.

They [who? was this quote from The Pink Kit?] say “active labour is always progressive” – within an hour or two there is a notable change.

Here’s where I have a problem!

I have had long periods in labour, where contractions were spaced about 5 mins apart or less and no changes have apparently occurred over several hours. This occurred both in “pre-labour” and well established labour. I don’t know if it has a name but it seems like some elements of labour are “not effective” but calling them simply “pre-labour” may not be appropriate. Its not a niggling pain- it’s more than that, but not much seems to be happening!

A response to this can be to trust, go with your instinct and let labour take its course, something positive may be taking place: it is labour after all, it’s supposed to be a job of work!

Another response is to think about what is slowing things up and see if any skills can be brought to the situation to move things on. If you had a protracted first labour you might be more keen on this! Information below may be appropriate.
The Spinning Babies Lady  (Gail Tully) suggests 15—30% of posterior babies need active help to get through. {Also, we've found that stalls in any phase may have to do with either a need for rotation or molding (a stall for molding may occur between 7 -10 cm and during 10 cm before active pushing, but can be preceded by a stall for rotation]. By the way, she also says having your waters broken early to get labor going can be a mistake- the cushion of water can help the baby to get into the right position.

Reading previous labours, baby’s position and your pregnant body; from Spinning Babies:


These kinds of indicators suggest further work with a number of techniques (below) may be helpful:

-Baby is posterior, breech or transverse.
-Regular aches and pains around abdomen, back and hips
-Previous labours with lengthy early labour phase or pushing stage.

There is a more detailed check list of indicators (several of which I found relevant such as painful spasms and baby having an unsettled position)

3 Principles of Spinning Babies

“Spinning Babies explores how baby's position effects the natural birth process.
Mother's job is to dilate; Baby's job is to rotate.
How a baby is positioned in the womb is not random. The position of the mother's womb is very influential. Uterine position can be influenced by maternal posture, but is more likely to be influenced by tension or laxity in the soft tissues (muscles, ligaments, fascia).

The 3 principles of Spinning Babies are:

1.    Relaxation of the Soft tissues
2.    Gravity by maternal posture. and
3.    Movement of the mother's pelvis before and during labour”

Gail suggests that relaxed breathing is only the start of relaxation; that it is important to ensure relevant parts of the abdominal anatomy is relaxed and techniques and body work can help with this. Although pelvic shape itself can be a factor and some information is given, there are other anatomical factors that can cause issues.
A section on Belly Mapping helps you to picture how babies can position. [The first principle was changed to Balance.]


Some of the techniques and suggestions

Clearly these need more information from the web [...try Spinning Babies!] before you try them and observing the suggestions to discuss with your midwife before trying certain ones.

Osteopath / chiropractor work: These are the suggested work you could ask for- release sacrotuberous ligaments, psoas muscles, fascia, pelvic floor, sacral release, diaphragmatic release, Webster maneuver, pelvic adjustment.

“Resting Smart”: create a donut shaped ring of pillows to put your belly in and have a rest / sleep to help the baby settle into a good position.

Walking, yoga, birth ball circles and swimming are simple ways to help abdominal release to occur.

Pelvic tucks: go on all fours and tuck your pelvis in by arching and straightening your back many times- repeat several times a day.

Rebozo sifting:  To help relaxation of mind and body. A rebozo could be any long piece of material. You place it around the bump and use it to jiggle the woman’s tummy, this releases the broad uterine ligament. It is shown on the web in movie form.

Pelvic floor release: To help later stages of descent. This basically involves laying on one side and relaxing one leg over the other (best to get detailed instructions from the web). I also tried simply pulling the inside of my pelvic bones whilst in the birth pool, as my osteopath had shown.

The Lunge: To help asynclitic head, OP baby and stalled labour in later stages. You are facing forwards with your leg to the side raised on a firm surface. You rock towards your knee and back again.

Abdominal Lift: To help tuck baby’s chin in. Do with early labour contractions (I did with Braxton hicks too). Cross your fingers under your belly, lift it up and draw it in whilst doing a pelvic tuck.

Inversion: To help the baby come out of the pelvis so that she can move and descend into better position. With the help of an assistant in the later stages of pregnancy you go upside down for a minute, twice a day. You can use a sofa to start on with you knees on, lower your forearms to the floor and relax with your head off the ground. We found it helpful to have dad brace his legs against mum’s shoulders. The web has images / video footage.

Summary of techniques to use at different times:

To encourage labour to start through techniques to position baby

These are all suggestions Pelvic tucks, rebozo sifting, osteopath work, inversion, swimming, walking, hoopla circles on birth ball, create a nest for sleeping in, also abdominal lift (suggested for pre labour) I used this during Braxton hicks.

I went to the osteopath, had a session, then came home and did a series of pelvic tucks, followed by rebozo sifting and then n inversion- I felt I wanted to do the inversion for more than a minute as suggested. Then I lay in the nest of pillows for a relaxation session listening to the hypno birthing cd (affirmations and rainbow relaxation).

In pre labour and labour up to 6cm you can do abdominal lifts to tuck the chin in, if chin up is suspected and contractions not achieving much.

When moderate to strong contractions appear to have no effect;

Use a lunge as a mid pelvis opening if things slow up, to help baby rotate, do with contractions.


 During labour, between contractions:

Do rebozo, inversion and pelvic release in that order, between contractions to help position baby.

In labour around 8-10cm and second stage:

pelvic releases if things are slowing up.

Is there something to learn / do?

It’s fine for these notes to be shared. I wonder if its also worth convening a meeting of interested Stroud area (+) doula’s, midwives, birth educators, practitioners and parents to discuss how to support those going over due, collate information, share relevant skills and set any direction forwards collectively if felt useful. I’m happy to organise if it’s seen as valuable.

Topics that could be covered include:

•    What do we already know about going overdue and what else do we want to know?
•    What do we instinctively / anecdotally think may be important: psychological reasons for delay in labour, baby just not ready, baby needs help positioning, there is something “wrong”? etc
•    What support / information do parents to be need when going overdue?
•    What birth skills could be developed and shared more widely to encourage easier births (these may be relevant to going overdue).

APPENDIX 1 Gail B. Birth Story 2005- Daniel

OK, so imagine a two day drug party in your house (involving your mum, partner, various midwives and a friend or two). It’s a very bad trip in parts, its pain and its rushes of emotions including extreme loved up ones. It’s like running three marathons one after another, involving pain all the way with heightened pain at least every ten minutes, but generally more regular than that. Yet it’s surreal, through natural causes and also laced with the high from entonox (gas and air), when you get to needing that. At the end of the marathon someone gives you a good kicking round the abdomen and takes a knife to your genitals.

You’re figuring out your reserves, your coping strategies, what is real negativity that needs to be expressed (a good time to announce things like, “I am going to die” “I am going to break in half”- things you heard that labouring women say and you imagine they say them at that point- good you know that, so you know they aren’t actually facts).  And also negativity that is probably based in fact and needs to be considered- I am exhausted and I may not make this to the end, what will we do if the baby gets stuck?  when is it best to go to the hospital? You navigate around negativity that won’t serve you- “when will this be over”, you have to stay in the present moment. You boss your team around and get what you can that you need. You call on your reserves using howling and determination. You feel broken and desperate; at times you feel your deepest power.

It was amazing, and then I got my baby. Wow. He was distressed at the end so we both ended up totally covered in baby poo (meconium). I had done most of the labouring at home, some in an ambulance and the final pushing at hospital. It seems likely my pelvis has a particular shape meaning the baby came out awkwardly with a wider presentation of his head (not that birthing an 8lb baby with his head pointing in the right direction is a walk in the park). This slowed things down and created an ongoing pain. I had fainted twice and fallen asleep under water.

After the birth my blood pressure dropped hugely and I had to stay in hospital to be monitored. I was in exhausted. I needed a catheter, two canular and sutures (for a second degree tear), all medical terms for being poked and prodded painfully when you have totally had enough. Daniel was with his Dad, both looking beatific. I had a night with him in hospital and various checks and procedures. We did breast feeding and cuddling and some snoozing together. We managed to get home and meet up with my team who got down to sorting things out, feeding us, helping with the little one. He was gentle and calm, patient with us. The moment of birth wasn’t as gentle as I’d hoped but I know it went as well as it could. Before and after were good and gentle and I think he’s thriving on that.

There was a moment when my mum and John were doing his nappy and I was in bed listening to music  and finally reconnecting with myself. I sobbed. I had a chance to notice where I was; transformed. My past sloughed away from me in all its insignificance. I felt the power and love of motherhood coursing through my body, vibrating in my cells.

I wouldn’t say “you can’t prepare”, you can. I wouldn’t say “well you forget about it once it’s happened”, you might, but maybe it was a vital event for taking you to a new place and something you had the privilege to experience.  Yes its brutal, but the beauty is manifest in your baby.

Details of the events are next:

Weds 30th November.
I’m 8 days over according to the medics and 11 according to me, but chill about it having read research conclusions on due dates for first babies. I’m determined not be induced and not get panicky about it. Perhaps I’m a little too chill, having enjoyed time out of fast paced life, I’m telling the baby to come whenever, perhaps too much ambivalence.

I see my midwife Ruth and she tells me if I go beyond 14 days I can’t have a home birth. I go home distraught and crying, eat hot chilli and speak to an NCT advisor who says to do some visualisations to encourage the baby and let him know you are ready. I book an acupuncture appointment and read up again on everything you can do to get things moving naturally.

Thurs 1st December,
I am woken up with pains beyond Braxton Hicks, I’ve had the odd one before.
I start timing them and realise they are regular and that Ruth has played the oldest trick in the book. I’m happy I fell for it.
3.30 – 7am
The pains are between 8 and 20 minutes apart and I spend the gaps in between them doing stuff on the computer, wrapping presents (a good way to be on all fours for positioning) and eating. It’s a bit like a hard period pain, but more sore around my lower abdomen. Longer gaps mean a more painful experience to come.

I was letting people know its happening- mum on her way from Yorkshire, Zoe from Oxford and Serena in Swindon all on their way over to be part of the team. We phoned the midwife- someone would come round later. I could do things in between contractions so I cooked lots of nice food.
I did a ginger compress and had a shower but I think it slowed things and I managed a very short power nap.

4.30pm – 10.30 pm
Midwife came round- I was barely 1 cm dilated, my cervix quite far back, she did a “stretch and sweep” which might speed things along. She observed a couple of contractions which were getting stronger.
Friends went shopping, mum arrived and we started using the TENS machine. I think TENS helped get the endorphins flowing and gave me something to do, so it may have been psychological as well.  By midnight, the frequency of contractions meant I was considered to be in active labour. I’d been sick and was having a lot of pain in between contractions- which I tried to ease with hot water bottles. We now think that was the baby squirming around trying to find a best way through, but not making much progress!

Friday 2nd Dec
2.30am-9am – Midwife came round, baby fine but I’m only 2-3cm dilated. My instinct is saying there is something a little different here. The Midwife came back around 6.30am and was relieved by my main Midwife Ruth at 9am. It seemed it must be time to get in the pool- it felt lovely to get in.
9am -2pm
Contractions were more and more painful. I started on the gas and air (entonox)- not using it to its full capacity to start off with. The exam at 1pm said only 5-6cm dilated- this was going very slowly and I was getting exhausted. I said I needed to be in hospital- my calculations said I might not make this through. The team rallied round. Time seemed to go so slowly too!

I was sucking on gas and air heavily and had some very trippy moments. It does really help you to cope. A second midwife came and more gas and air was ordered. My waters broke around 3.30.
I was asking to go to hospital, John was defending the water birth plan (which included hospital as a last resort) and helped me to focus on breathing. I was worried I would not have the energy for the pushing phase and he would get stuck- I thought more interventions might be needed than could happen at home. But I wasn’t very coherent, bossing everyone around (Zoe’s massage- acupressure points at the base of my spine helped hugely). I felt for my mum, seeing her daughter in so much pain and re-living her own labours, still she mucked in with gas and air and drinks. Ruth, the midwife, was amazing- completely present for me and I could see how much she was thinking about me and the best things to do. I was out of the water a lot- I need to be more upright and using gravity- exhausting.

I asked for another exam- still only 8-9cm dilated and with an anterior lip- I really began to panic about getting through this. I tried a snorkel under water to relax and actually fell asleep under water, which freaked us all out. I felt completely done. I tried pushing but it wasn’t the time. I asked for another exam and was still only 9-10cm dilated and the baby had turned back to back- a less optimal position. He was presenting a much larger section of his head to be birthed.

The ambulance was called and the pushing phase began. I had huge contractions in the ambulance and it was thought the ride helped to position the baby. I was screaming.

I was taken to a deliver room and told baby on his way, I fainted and came round demanding he be pulled out. They told me to concentrate on pushing. When he didn’t come out straight away I was pleading for ventouse [vacuum]. John reminded me that would hurt the baby and wasn’t what I wanted. I thought to myself “he won’t come in one or two pushes but he might come in just a few more, try to do it”. I summonsed whatever I had left and pushed with each contraction, his head moved in and out. I felt the tear as he came and he sprayed us both with meconium (poo) because he had finally become distressed. I had him in my arms and was done, in all ways. I fainted and told them I felt faint. My blood pressure was through the floor. I was put on a drip and tested. I was kept in hospital till 2pm on the Saturday.

On reflection we stuck to my birth plan, which had hospital as a last resort. I would have been taken there in any case because of the state I finished in.  We went at the right time so I didn’t end up with further interventions. I had hoped for a water birth, and was glad I did most labouring at home, but the reality meant I needed more back-up. I felt really proud that I managed to birth Daniel in the way I did, I gave it everything.

Women do this everyday- wow!

Appendix 2

Quoted in Gowri Motha’s Book “Gentle Birth Method” (she also says “I have always been bemused by the fact that many pregnant women spend longer preparing the nursery for the baby than their bodies”)

The Beginning – Rabindranath Tagore
“WHERE have I come from, where did you discover me?” the baby asked its mother.
She answered half crying, half laughing, and clasping the baby to her breast,– “You were hidden in my heart as its desire, my darling.
You were in the dolls of my childhood’s games; and when with clay I made the image of my god every morning, I made and unmade you then.
You were enshrined with our household deity, in his worship I worshipped you.
In all my hopes and my loves, in my life, in the life of my mother you have lived.
In the lap of the deathless Spirit who rules our home you have been nursed for ages.
When in girlhood my heart was opening its petals, you hovered as a fragrance about it.
Your tender softness bloomed in my youthful limbs, like a glow in the sky before the sunrise.
Heaven’s first darling, twin-born with the morning light, you have floated down the stream of the world’s life, and at last you have stranded on my heart.
As I gaze on your face, mystery overwhelms me; you who belong to all have become mine.
For fear of losing you I hold you tight to my breast. What magic has snared the world’s treasure in these slender arms of mine?”

Appendix 3

An Ode to faith- Patrick Overter
When you have come to the edge
Of all the light you know,
Into the darkness of the unknown,
Faith is knowing that
one of two things will happen,
There will be something solid to stand on,
or you will be taught how to fly

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Hi Gail, 

I want to say thank you! A first time mother's posterior birth went well [with] a short labor. Membranes ruptured about 8am. Her labor started about 6pm: 3cm dilated; LOP station -1; cervix soft and effaced. 

We did rebozo sifting, sidelying release, abdominal lift and tuck, standing sacral release, Dip the hip, circling on the birth ball, lunge and she birthed at 9.58pm in sidelying position with hands around the husband's neck.

Baby's head showed more molding on the right side. What you taught in the workshop and website made a difference!

Chiew Gin, Doula, Singapore