I just wanted to say thank you for setting up the Spinning Babies website and the wonderful information that's contained within it.
I am currently 12 weeks pregnant with baby number 3 and having had two posterior births already, wanted to learn as much as possible about prevention 3rd time round with the aim of a completely natural birth.
I also thought my history might be interesting to you as both of my babies were anterior before I went into labour but changed position when my waters broke.
With the first baby, my waters broke as a first indication of labour (head not engaged) and by the time we had got to hospital had moved to a transverse position which the OBGYN was able to change to almost head down (diagonal-ish). Then at 4cm the baby moved to OP. The second baby also moved to OP at 4cm soon after my waters had broken.
BOTH times I was coping well with contractions until that point and after which they became overwhelmingly unbearably and seemingly incessant with the pressure. Obviously this fits with what Dr. Lieberman says in her article. Also, both times at that point I had an uncontrollable urge to bear down/early pushing which is obviously dangerous at that stage.
Although my first baby remained head down, he was born by c-section. But with the second baby, who was born naturally, I had an epidural at 4cm and there was no way I could have achieved the VBAC without the epidural, and the skill and constant care of the midwives. It is also interesting that these midwives were monitoring the position of the baby and by 8cm he was LOT but still at a -2 station. (No record after this although for number 3, provided he's not too big at least I know he can fit through the pelvis even widest part of head to smallest part of pelvis!!)
I have really taken heed of what you say about symmetry and ligament tension. In fact I saw my osteopath this morning and at 12 weeks there was already torsion in the pelvis (which had not been there before). However, I find this encouraging because I finally feel I understand what happens in my labours and that I can do something constructive about this (as much as I can including following Dr Gowri Motha's method).
Prior to finding your website I felt there was something missing in my understanding since people were only able to offer suggestions for turning OP babies prior to labour! Now I know that the problem exists prior to pregnancy (ligament relaxation)!
So thanks once again and keep up the good work. I am looking forward to membership and hope it arrives before my baby does!
On Fri, Nov 27, 2009 at 8:37 PM, Gail wrote back:
Thank you for your kind words. Your story does indicate what
may be a soft tissue issue. It can be also an issue of a smaller outlet than
inlet, but obviously, not too small. Eating whole foods and having plenty of
walking, swimming and stretching (yoga, if you like) can be helpful in regards
to growing a baby who is of healthy weight for your body and healthy in
general. I see that you have referenced methods that support you in healthy
lifestyle choices. That's wonderful you you and your baby!
Chiropractic and CST will help your ligaments which may, in turn, help your pelvis open more. The pain you describe usually goes with torsion, but can also be a size issue. I'd guess its not a size issue, based on odds, but I can't tell over the internet, of course!
We don't have the Bowen method here, but it sounds related to the methods I list, and I checked Dr Marie Gowri Motha's Jeyrani Way site. I will pass it on to one of our mother's who may really enjoy what she has to share. Excellent.
Have a wonderful birth!
Re our email correspondence below.. just wanted to let you know how I got on - I have written a testimonial for the chiropractor I used, see below, and also my birth story forwarded in the next email. A complete success!
I just wanted to say 'thank you' also because I think I really needed the Webster technique to solve this problem for me (I had previously done pregnancy yoga, active birth classes and been familiar with Jean Sutton's work) but to no avail. I would not have known to try the technique had it not been for your site. Actually there are very few practitioners in the UK trained but I was lucky enough to live near one (Well, nearish, it was a two-and-a-half-hour round trip so I was really serious about this! I probably would have had more sessions but had to weigh up the cost of sitting in the car and the general stress of running around. I am also fairly in touch with my own body and knew that a big shift had occurred.).
Also of interest is the fact that this was my biggest baby - 7lb 6oz (1st baby 7lb 2oz, 2nd baby 6lb 9oz) and that the last two times I had an anterior placenta, but this time the placenta was posterior.
So, please keep up the good work, i.e. spreading the word because, as you know it means a lot to a woman that she gets the birth she wants. Certainly this time I have been able to heal from the experiences I had before.
After two long and excruciatingly painful back-to-back labours, one of which ended in a c-section and one which was a 'near miss', when I discovered I was pregnant with my third child I decided to find out whether there was a reason for my babies' malpositioning and whether anything could be done about it.
Since both babies had turned back-to-back during the labour, I had experienced 'normal' contractions and found them perfectly manageable so felt sure that if I could just get the baby to stay in the optimal foetal position, I could have the normal, calm delivery that I wanted and was capable of.
Research showed that the chiropractic Webster Technique was effective in allowing back-to-back babies to turn so I consulted Dr Craig who confirmed that this technique would indeed help to correct some issues with my pelvis which had most likely pre-dated the pregnancies.
After only six sessions it was clear to us both that my body had resolved its major issues and all that remained to be seen was what would happen during labour.
FYI, here’s what's going on in Chiropractic over the pond!
The Birth Story
The cast :
Kath – My Stepmum
Lynda – Yogabirth Instructor
Rene – Independent Midwife, my saviour, recommended by Linda
Nic - The Daddy
Coleman – The Big Brother
Barnaby – The Medium Sized Brother
Luna - The Baby
a little mouse
Sometime back in January, Kitchen of United Reform Church, – Advice from Linda about the birth:
So Linda was quite ‘firm’ when she said that to get this baby out, I absolutely had to let go of my analytical brain, stop thinking, and instead just have a bloody good time. I thought about that one a lot...
Fast forward to Friday 28th May 2010
So Kath was quite ‘scary’ when she said this was the last day she was letting me run around doing inane jobs – said I was talking the talk “I have to ‘dumb down’ and relax Kath”, but not walking the walk (reminded me of Lynda, ho ho). But anyway, I needed to get a cricket hat for Coleman, needed some large sheets of black art paper for a project I’m doing, and couldn’t possibly give birth without getting my feet done first. Then we had to go up to the school because Coleman had casually mentioned that he had been picked to be the cat in the house music competition and could I come in and do his makeup? How could I refuse?
I got home just in time for my 4 o’clock appointment with Rene and was virtually asleep as I was talking to her. I said “It’s not that I’m desperate, I’m happy to be pregnant for another week but I would quite like to meet my baby – have you got any clary sage?” With that, Rene produced some clary sage from the car with the advice just to put it in my bra on a tissue because after a while, “It smells like wet dog (true) so you don’t want to be sprinkling it round the house...” I went off to bed and had a nice sleep but was (somehow) a bit surprised not to be feeling anything when I woke up. I had some dinner with Kath about 8pm and then started tidying the kitchen.
I didn’t want to say anything but by 9pm told Kath that I was getting tightenings (the best way to describe them – with more pressure than Braxton Hicks but not painful). She just gave me an odd look.
So while I was ignoring these sensations (™ Lynda Hills), somewhere in the back of my mind I must have been hoping because I started drinking a lot of water. Rene had said how important it was to keep drinking and weeing and I was enjoying the opportunity to keep trotting off to the loo, as I really wanted to ‘see’ something so that I could start to feel excited.
I should also say that I had been on a ‘Mongan Method’ hypnobirthing course and that one of the things about hypnobirthing is that you’re not ‘supposed to know’ that you’re in labour then you find your 10cm by the time you get to the hospital only no one believes you etc. So I’m waiting for period pains, looking for a show, wondering if I’ll have diarrhoea, but, nothing. In the end, the show came out with Luna’s head.
At 10pm Nic arrived home from Zurich (yes really!) wanting to tell me all about the trip. I tell him about these tightenings and say that I’m not going talk because I don’t want it all to stop again. (I had had seven hours of mild but regular sensations a couple of weeks before (enough to make me go out and buy nappies), and then, nothing and it had really thrown me.)
So I sat there with Nic while he ate his dinner in silence. Which was weird. Kath and I had been half-heartedly putting the boys to bed and half letting them stay up for Nic so I was a bit irritable with them to be quiet while they were going down. I still hadn’t finished tidying the kitchen, you know, scrubbing the hob, wiping the skirting boards, polishing the chrome light switch by the door. Later Nic said he knew something was up because I kept commanding him: “Take the bin out, use that granite spray, get the crumbs off the toaster!” (Such a parody of my pregnant self, funny really!)
Finally I though the kitchen was up to scratch and really fancied the idea of getting in the pool (which I hadn’t fancied until then). So we faffed around with various lamps getting the lighting just right (dark enough) and I timed a few surges (™ Hypnobirthing) which still weren’t painful and only lasting 30 seconds but were coming every few minutes. I really wanted to get in the pool so I didn’t have to keep going to the loo to wee (you wee in the pool), and so that I could be a wide mouthed frog which I didn’t fancy doing on land.
Rene had said earlier, could I try and not get in the pool until she was there because it would be better if she checked the baby’s position first.
So sod it, I called her. She said I sounded OK but what did I want her to do? I asked her to come over.
While I was waiting, I lay down on my bed with my ‘Meditate Like a Buddhist Monk CD’ which is supposed to have the knock-on effect of making you produce endorphins (hey, works for me..) I was quite zoned and Rene arrived at 11.40 just as it finished. She was looking ready for business with her hair tied back and one of those midwife thingies pinned to her top. That’s weird I *thought*, she thinks I’m going to have a baby!
Rene started doing her checks and I realised that I was shivering a bit, although not from the cold... I did wonder at that point whether this was the beginning of things.
Rene finished her checks and I literally flew down the stairs into the pool, taking my knickers off as I went... It’s always best to take your knickers off to give birth ;-)
I got into the pool, had a cup of tea, and was enjoying sniffing on a flannel sprinkled with clary sage. I put on the hypnobirthing CD with headphones and switched on the wobbly old woman who repeats the birthing affirmations I had been listening to for months. (God knows why they didn’t choose someone sounding vibrant and empowered but there you go.)
Off she went: “I put all fear aside as I prepare for the birth of my baby. I am focussed on a smooth, easy birth. I am relaxed and happy that my baby is finally coming to me. I feel confident, I feel safe, I feel secure.” And I did. I got into that for a bit but looked up to realise that Nic was sitting on the sofa with Rene (I don’t know where I thought he was) looking absolutely knackered. I still didn't feel sure that this wasn’t all going to stop again, so I sent him upstairs for a sleep.
I listened to the affirmations for one cycle (40 mins) and then put them on again but with no real awareness of time, or of anything else just breathing through the surges as they came and went and visualising 10cm. At some point I got sick of the stupid old bag on the CD player and flung the headphones off. (That reminded me of my first labour when I had declared the TENS machine to be shit and made Nic run off to get some new batteries for it...).
I start toning then and I’m surprised ‘cause it was really quite helpful and it sounds quite nice, a sort of multi pitch tone, getting lower - ah , aah, aaahhh. Then I start to feel really hot. I don’t want to get my shoulders out of the water but it was the only way to cool down so I stood up a bit. “Hot.” I said to Rene and she went off to the kitchen to get some cold water which she dipped the clary sage flannel in and sprinkled onto me. The clary sage flannel was now wet and it tasted nice (!) so I sucked on it for a bit which was very comforting apart from I was still feeling hot .
So I stood up, and squatted down, and stood up, and sort of jumped up and down on my toes for a bit, holding onto the side of the pool. (After I realised this was Lynda’s ‘yes, yes, yes” move but without my hands in the air.... Amazing really, that’s instinct trying to move the baby down, and Lynda, I can’t have been thinking because I didn’t realise what I was ‘doing’ although Rene recognised this as ‘something going on’.)
I’m standing up now and the contractions (let’s not mince words here) are hurting. I’m honestly still not convinced though that this isn’t all going to stop, or that, if we checked I’d even be 4cm because that’s been my experience before with a slow, back to back labour.
And, oh oh, my brain has kicked in and I start thinking about pelvic stations. I wonder whether the baby has moved past zero cause I’m looking at the shape of my bump and it looks the same. “Rene.” I say rudely, “Can you tell from there whether she’s moved down?” Rene just looks at me. “Why don’t you have a feel, can you have a feel from there?” No response. In the end I realise she’s not going to talk to me. Right! I think, I’ve had enough of this water. I’m getting out. “Please,” I say nicely to Rene “can you go and get my grey nightie – it’s on the cot?” Rene didn’t even bother to ask why (no point in arguing she said later), and just went up to get the nightie.
In my head I need the nightie because I’m GOING OUTSIDE to hang on the boy’s trapeze in the garden, in the moonlight. But in reality I can’t actually move from where I am and a weird thing is happening with the contractions, they’re intense but the intensity doesn’t last long and they’re taking ages to tail off but that tailing off is really nice... which is a pity cause I really want to get out of this bloody pool, and go outside and I’m really tired and I really want to go to bed and I want to go home!!!
01.14 Rene writes in the notes ‘Getting a little more vocal with contractions.’ Yes I was, they were more like Ah, AAh, AAAhhhrrrrrrrrrr. Then, true to form (for anyone who knows me), I try singing for a bit and that’s nice but it soon goes back to Ah , AAh, AAAhhhrrrrrrrrrr. Ah , AAh, AAAhhhrrrrrrrrrrIwantsomegasandair. I get the gas and air immediately (not like the bloody hospital) and no sooner have I taken a ‘swig’ I hear myself make an urrrgh noise. I was thinking here because I knew it was a pushing type noise and I was worried because in my other labours as soon as I made this noise they told me to ‘stop’ because I wasn’t fully dilated – actually both times it had been the pressure of the baby turning back to back and the start of all hell breaking loose.
But I know she hasn’t turned and besides, I’m having such a lovely long break in between this contraction now, it's the most peaceful place I've ever been to and I remember hoping that I’ll get another break like this when, SUDDENLY, it’s as though I’m being dragged backwards out of heaven by my ankles....
So I’m clinging onto the side of the pool for dear life and, Rene what are you doing? Let go of my bloody ankles, “Urrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggh!” Stops. Oh my God, this is really happening, Rene’s talking about getting Nic – “Rene, don’t you dare leave me to go and get Nic!” ... holds onto side “Urrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggh, go and get Nic!” Nic arrives and I don’t feel self-conscious at all – “Go and get Kath” – Kath arrives and it goes something like this: Ready, hold onto side, Urrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggh, (gets dragged backwards by ankles in Superman pose), Urrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggh, looks up at Kath “I’m OK, I’m OK, It doesn’t hurt!”
And that’s what the second stage was like, for me it should have been called PULLING! I was actually in froggy’s pose with knees wide on the floor and ankles wide at the back, and Rene was nowhere near my ankles but she’s telling me (with the use of her mirror), “I can see a lot of movement... Lots of membranes at vulva... Lots of baby’s head, she’s stretching you gently Emma, she’s doing exactly what she needs to do, you’re going to get HUGE.” Rene says that her nose is out and to just hang on and I say (I can’t believe I say this) “Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes yes!” until the next contraction cause I know there can only be one more and suddenly I feel the rest of the baby whoooosh out of me and I don’t even remember looking down to see her, she’s just there in my arms, wailing and it feels really natural to go and get the boys. It was 2.12 am.
The boys come down and I feel great but someone’s tickling me and I realize it’s the cord in between my legs, which is really the last thing I wanted to feel at that moment so I get out of the pool and Kath cuts the cord as soon as it stops pulsating. Coleman gets the first hold of the baby while I ‘deliver’ the placenta (it just plops out onto the floor). I get the baby back and she’s licking my breast which is so cute – Rene says it means she wants to feed and I discover I’ve forgotten how (tummy to mummy, nose to nipple) but we get there in the end and she stays there for ages, and the whole thing has been absolutely blissful. I really enjoyed it!
After, I have a bath and Rene checks me (the worst bit) and I’m absolutely amazed when she says I have a little tear (cause I didn’t feel anything) but as long as I absolutely promise to stay in bed for a five days (that’s how long it takes to heal), then she doesn’t have to stitch it. There are (Google it), two lots of opinion on whether to stitch or not to stitch but I had stitches in Hong Kong and by day 5 they were gaping open (Rene told me this can happen sometimes as the stitches actually push the two sides apart). So because of that, and since 5 days in bed seems like a no brainer, we don’t stitch. In the event it healed beautifully. It took 5 days.
I have since read that if you put two pieces of perineum in a room they will knit back together...
Luna is just over two weeks old today and everyone has been absolutely brilliant, especially Nic who’s been up with Luna, made me lots of delicious, nutritious meals (ask Tanya, she’s had one!) and generally run around after the boys making sure they didn’t feel left out. We even managed a 30 second hug the other day. Kath got very fit running up and down the stairs after me and Rene's love and support in the post-partum period has been invaluable. Most of all I can't believe how totally bonded I feel with this baby and I don't want to put her down at all.
As for the little mouse… we’ve been trying to catch him for ages. The organic peanut butter was left untouched on the ‘Big Cheese’ mousetrap (note to self – try Sunpat), and that mice like actual cheese is a complete myth, but he does love Lindt chocolate bunny which he is able to get off the ‘Big Cheese’ mouse trap without setting it off. Nic said that while I was in the pool he was happily chasing a bit of tin foil around the kitchen… seems a shame to kill him now…
A co-venture video experience with Spinning Babies and Blooma Yoga! Coming Soon!
Spinning Babies; Daily Essentials 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.
Daily Essentials includes tips for using Maternal Positioning around the house. Actual scenes in the bedroom, living room and even the bathroom. 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.
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).
See how to do these birth preparation techniques.
A companion to 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 techniques to help baby through the pelvis.
Empowering with practical skills.
Filmed in Minneapolis at Everday-Miracles Pregnancy Center. 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 to the exquisite music of Carin Vagle. Sarah's affirmations will carry you through labor with emotional strength and encouragement. Bring your hormones into harmony with the day. Cool down at night with a sleep enhancing stretch before bed. This video is all Blooma! Blooma's AM/PM Yoga
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 April 2014; for Spinning Babies Parent Class, Fall 2014.