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It has been a while since I did a post on Pregnancy, birth and Mama-hood and what better way to kick start again than by informing mums to be about a movement I truly am passionate about.  A lot of the times when women get pregnant, it’s just tick tock tick tock till it’s time to push.  Not many take the time to educate themselves about pregnancy, birth, birthing techniques, doulas, cesarians, pain reliefs and so on.. they just listen to the Dr and take everything face value.   Read the rest of this entry »

my oilsHere is just a snippet of my doTerra Oils (how do you like my little travel bag kit I made?:))

It is beyond crazy that it has taken me 2 years to write this post! There’s a few reasons why it has taken me so long. Firsly I wanted to make sure that I really did believe in the stuff.  Secondly; I fell so deeply passionately in love with the oils that with so much to say about them, I had no idea where to even begin.  I am going to make this post brief because I have decided that I will need to keep posting about these oils and the benefits of each etc. so a short post here as an intro should suffice.  For those of you who are new to the blog, I am BIG on natural home remedies.  I clean my home with natural products and my go to meds are always my homeopathic remedies and now my MUST HAVE oils.  I used to eye doTerra and wonder whether it actually lived up to the hype.  I watched the youtube videos and I read all the posts.  I believed in the concept and hoped that it could deliver it’s high quality oils as it claimed. Read the rest of this entry »

Ok, so most of you know I am a natural mama advocate from breastfeeding, birth, cleaning products and a whole lot more so when my friend Alia Almoayed sent me these videos I literally LOL- laughed out loud!! I follow and read the Natural Mama regulary and these videos are just too good not to share! Not everyone will “get it” so for the minority in my camp- this is for all of you natural mamas out there! These videos have been inspired by “Shit Girls Say” and “Shit New Age Girls Say.” I’m still laughing thinking of some of the lines in the video; I have been in many of these situations myself.. Enjoy!

This is such an amazing article that I just had to share it!! One of the million reasons why breast feeding is so important.  I got goosebumps just reading this and then kissed my baby over and over 😉 Subhan’Allah ( سبحان الله is an Arabic phrase often translated as “Glorious is God.” our body is a creation to be marveled at.  There is so much we do and don’t even think about or take for granted yet there is so much wonder behind it.  Enjoy your babies, breast feeding can be difficult for some, know you are doing your best and for however long you are able to nurse your baby (it isn’t a competition) know that you are nourishing him/her with precious goodness that benefits both baby and mum.

WHY MOTHERS KISS THEIR BABIES

BY: Judie Rall

After a baby is born, it is natural to see the mother kissing the baby. One would think this is simply because of the emotional bond that has formed between mother and child. While this is true, there are also other very compelling biochemical reasons why it occurs.  These reasons reinforce the understanding that our bodies have inner wisdom which we seldom recognize or trust. Just as our bodies know how to give birth even if we don’t have intellectual knowledge of the process, our bodies’ biological systems also have reasons for the complex social interplay between mother and baby. It just goes to show that, more than ever, we should trust our mothering instincts.

Five Senses

When an animal gives birth, you will notice that the mother spends a lot of time licking her young.  This exposes her five senses to the young so that she knows the taste, smell, feel, sound and sight of her new baby. In this way, a mother claims her child as her own.

When a human mother births a baby in an environment which allows her immediate and free access to her child, you will notice that over a period of time she performs certain behaviours called “claiming behaviours.” She will caress the child, explore the softness of the baby’s skin, and probably count and fondle the unique little fingers and toes.

She probably marvels visually over how much the baby looks like her or her husband or another family member. She will notice the colour of the hair and eyes and other physical features. She hears the baby’s cries and learns to distinguish them from all other cries.  As she leans down to kiss the child, she undoubtedly smells the scent of her new baby and through the actual act of kissing; she comes to know the taste of him or her.

Just like an animal mother, she has now exposed her five senses to the baby so she attaches to him or her. She now feels he or she is her own. It is not unusual to find that women who are deprived of the privacy required to create this immediate bonding right after birth often say they feel a distance between them and their baby.

Health Benefits

Claiming behaviours such as kissing provide not only emotional, but biological attachment. There is a very real health benefit for the baby who is kissed.

“When a mother kisses her baby, she ‘samples’ those pathogens that are on the baby’s face. Those are ones that the baby is about to ingest. These samples are taken up by the mother’s secondary lymphoid organs like the tonsils, and memory B cells specific for those pathogens are re-stimulated. These B cells then migrate to the mother’s breasts where they produce just those antibodies that the baby needs.” says Lauren Sompayrac, author of How The Immune System Works.

We talk a lot about breast milk and how it conveys antibodies to the infant helping to prevent illness. However antibodies made for the mother while pregnant are not what the baby needs. He or she needs antibodies for the environment around them that they are in constant contact with now. Kissing her baby is a very important activity beyond its obvious pleasurable and attachment- promoting value. It helps mother claim baby, and helps her body determine the antibodies baby needs in the breast milk.

So mothers, kiss away on those babies!

Copyright 2001 by Judie Rall of Unhindered Living. Reprinted with permission in the Winter 2007 issue of Birthing Magazine.

shared post from http://www.birthunlimited.ca/parenting/92-why-mothers-kiss-their-babies.html

When I was pregnant with my daughter I was on the hunt all over the island for a doula.  This being 4 years ago, there was no doula available and no one knew what a doula was at the time.  Flash forward 4 years and just as I was looking for a doula again (incase my mum who has been my doula didnt make it on time) I heard of Jasmine who is a doula in Bahrain! I didn’t get to have Jasmine with me during my birth since my mum made it in time and Jasmine just got back from her holiday.  However I did get to meet with lovely Jasmine and got to ask her a few questions since I wanted everyone to know that there is a comfortable way of having support for the mum during pregnancy, labor and birth.

What is a doula?

The word “Doula” is Greek for ‘caregiver’ and now we use it to describe a trained and experienced labour companion.

A doula is a woman who gives support through pregnancy, labour, and birth empowering women to have faith in their own bodies and encouraging them to view labour positively.

Doulas do not make decisions orproject their own personal prefernece s; they do help you to get the information needed to make well informed choices.

A doula’s goal is to help the mother have the birth she desires.

What are the benefits of having a doula?

The presence of a doula duringlabour can significantly reduce:

  • the length of labour
  • the need for epidural
  • the need for a cesarian

Why did Jasmine decide to become a Doula?

Jasmine is a mum of two little boys. She had a doula with her first birth and she believes if she didn’t have one she probably would have to have a cesarian.

When Jasmine was pregnant for the first time she just assumed you go to the hospital to have a baby and that’s it. She never questioned it until she had an experience where she had go to the hospital and be monitored for 24hr. That was the worst experience. No one considered what she wanted at all and no one discussed  what they wanted to do. She felt completely uncomfortable and that was when she decided she wanted to have a home birth, to avoid being in that situation and atmosphere again.  That was the beginning of her research of home birthing and the type of support available.  Jasmine contacted the NCT (National Childbirth Trust) who got her in touch with a home birth group and through them was introdued to doulas.

When Jasmine was pregnant for the second time in Abu Dhabi, there were no doulas available then in the GCC. She met a lady who was running refresher NCT classes (antenatal classes) and asked her if she would be willing to be her doula. Around that time is when that lady facilitated a doula course and arranged for  a doula company (Nurturing Birth UK)to come and train a group of ladies who were interested in being qualified. Jasmine was the one of the first doulas of 16 women to emerge from that course in 2008

Jasmine has been trained by both Nurturing Birth UK and DONA Int’l the USA equivalent. She is a British and has a good experience in the Middle East having worked in AbuDhabi as well as the UK and Bahrain.

If you would like more information, or if you are thinking of having a doula, you can contact Jasmine : doulajasmine@gmail.com and visit her here.

I did a post a short while ago on the importance of delayed cord clamping.  Here is a great video by Penny Simkin why not to cut the cord immediately after the baby’s birth.

Very powerful video! We all need to remember that we have little eyes watching our every move when at times we forget they are even around.

It’s funny how you learn new things no matter how many times you may have done something.  With my first two pregnancies I never questioned or even thought of cord clamping and natural delivery of the placenta.  I actually never even thought of the placenta and don’t quite remember when it came out.  Little did I know.. I am not a doctor or a health expert but I think it is important to not take everything at face value just because it is done, we should research procedures on our own to make informed decisions. We all know how important the placenta is for the baby but have you ever really stopped to think for a sec.. when you’re pregnant youre body creates a whole NEW ORGAN to connect you to the growing baby inside of you (subhan allah).  There is so much about the placenta but I will discuss that in another post.  Back to the precious cord!

When a baby is born almost all over the world immediately the cord is clamped and the mother is injected with oxytocin to then deliver the placenta.  When you clamp the cord before it has stopped pulsating you are ridding the baby from all the rich source of blood supple that it still gets from the placenta.  Delaying the clamping also helps the baby transition into breathing since the blood supply it still gets is rich in oxygen.  Stem cell collection at birth has started to rise which may be a good thing (if a family member is ill, family history etc .. )but if you stop and think about it you are actually taking away those stem cells from the baby when the baby can benefit from those stem cells there and then at the time of birth if you delayed the clamping of the cord.  There is a concern that delayed clamping can cause jaundice, however there is researchthat shows that jaundice can be an important “oxidant/antioxidant defense system in newborn infants, exposing them to potent oxidative stress.  It is totally possible that physiological jaundice with a natural third stage is a normal part of developing a healthy system.”

Now obviously you can have this in your birth plan but the questions boils down to whether your hospital/Dr will be compliant.  I was lucky that my midwives are British trained midwives and were aware and comfortable with my choices.  When I birthed my son the midwife happily obliged and waited for the cord to stop pulsating.  Now if your Dr/hospital is not willing to wait till the cord stops pulsating (mine pulsated for about 10mins, some can go longer) then ask them how long they would be willing to allow it to pulsate for to get max. benefit (anything is better than an immediate clamp). This is all  assuming you will then be delivering the placenta naturally because if they inject you with oxytocin they will need to clamp the cord in order that the baby does not receive it.

Now below is a Delayed Cord Clamping Agreement that I had found online which I had attached to my birth plan the only problem is I can’t remember where I got it from to source it.  So I’m sorry for not being able to give you the source of the agreement but here it is anyways to benefit from it.

Delayed Cord Clamping Informed Choice Agreement


Delayed cord clamping is waiting to clamp the umbilical cord until after the placenta is born or after the cord stops pulsating. 


PROS:


Delaying the clamping or cutting of the umbilical cord after the birth of the baby allows the baby to have full access of the blood supply in the cord and placenta. Having access to this blood supply is an excellent source of oxygen especially when resuscitation is necessary. 


Delayed clamping/cutting also allows the baby more time to adjust to it’s new outside of womb environment. Many babies are born and do not breathe right away and slowly adjust to using their lungs. If the cord is clamped or cut right away it may force them to attempt to breathe without any gradual change to their  circulatory system.
  

There is a decreased risk of anemia as babies get an estimated 50 mg more of iron when they receive the extra blood in the cord and placenta. Iron is an essential mineral which facilitates the transportation of oxygen in the body. Iron is also important for neurological development. Many believe that this blood normally does belong to the baby and if they do not get this it is equivalent to a hemorrhage.


Leaving the cord intact also assists with proper detachment of the placenta later because the placenta is able to reduce it’s blood volume by draining through the cord to the baby approximately 90 mLs of blood. Uterine contractions will also continue to squeeze more blood to the baby and the cord will continue to pulsate while that blood is being transferred.


The baby also receives increased levels of maternal antibodies and things like stem cells. 
Studies have shown an increased strength with leaving the cord intact which can help with breastfeeding soon after the birth.


CONS:


Increase in jaundice about 3 days postpartum. Jaundice is a normal occurrence in newborns but is not usually seen in hospitals due to immediate clamping and cutting of the cord. Cords are also cut early in hospitals due to labor drugs used and not wanting those to reach the baby.


Reasons for early clamping and cutting:


1. Nuccal cord. If there is a tight cord around the baby’s neck that does not allow birth.


2. If family is desiring cord blood banking.


3. If the mom is on drugs, including labor drugs used in hospitals.


4. Short cord.


5. An emergency with mom.

*image source

If you follow my blog you would know by now how I am a huge FAN of homeopathy! This kit was recommended to me by a friend. I just wish I knew about it sooner since it’s great to have right from the start of your pregnancy to help with all sorts of symptoms.  The kit contains remedies for pregnancy, pre labor, during labor and post labor.  I used this kit in my last trimester since I only receieved it then and used it for different symptoms such as nerve pain, feeling despair, contractions, for stitches, for healing, swelling  and a whole lot more! I don’t know what I would have done without it. I really recommend everyone to get this whether you are having a natural birth or cesarian, because I truly feel it helps with post labor healing! The remedies are in 200c potencies and are not exclusive to just childbirth but have been put together as a kit for it.  Therefore these remedies can be used for other treatment and symptoms too.

If you are interested in homeopathy, I blogged a while a go about a great kit that comes with a book to help you treat different symptoms and illnesses.  Click here to read more on that and here is another post on homeopathy and your kids.

You can purchase this kit here.

A birth plan is guide of detailed information which allows your OBGYN, Midwife, Doula.. to understand the type of birth you are “hoping” to try and achieve.  I say “hoping” because at the end of the day anything can happen and some things may be out of your control and therefore not go according to your plan.  At the end of the day this is just a guide not a written in stone type of plan but you can learn a lot from having a birth plan.

Why do I need a birth plan?

I cant speak for everyone but for me it helped me to focus on what it was that I wanted and didn’t want.  It helped me to put everything down on to paper and when it came time to explain to my Dr. what I was hoping for it was all clear in black and white and we could go through and discuss each point step by step.  It also helped me focus my attention in my last trimester on a “task” rather than waiting for something to happen and staring at my due date on a calender.  I personally like to have everything clearly written and noted down it gives me some sense of feeling I have some sort of control.

Below is a copy of what my birth plan this pregnancy looked like (I had a birth plan in all 3 pregnancies).  If you have any questions re. why I may have mentioned a certain point etc.. plz comment below and I will be more than happy to share my reasons 🙂

———————————-

Dear Dr.

My husband and I have chosen you as the people we want to attend us when our baby is born.  We have chosen a hypnobirthing method of quiet, relaxed, natural and active birth.  From everything we have heard from others we truly believe that you will do your utmost to help us attain our wish for a joyous, memorable and most satisfying natural active birth.

The information below is a copy of our birth plan.  My husband and I have given careful consideration to each specific request in the plan and we feel it represents our wishes at this time.  We realize as that as labour begins we may choose to change a few things and wish to feel free to do so.  We understand that these choices presume a normal pregnancy and birth.  Should a situation arise that constitutes medical emergency please know that you will have our complete cooperation after we have had an opportunity to discuss the medical need and assess the situation.

Please attach this to my prenatal record and make it available to all physicians/staff who may be attending the birth should you not be attending us.

For Hospital Admission

  • To decline routine IV (intravenous) prep upon admission
  • To use natural means of induction moving to artificial induction only for a medical urgency
  • If necessary to initiate labour, only a minimum of Pitocin drip to be used
  • Pitocin drip to be removed once uterus is naturally contracting
  • To return home until labour progresses further if less than 4cm dialated
  • To have dim lighting in labour room and drawn curtains
  • Do not want to be administered an enema
  • To have my husband, mother and birthing partner (if available) available with me during labour
  • To have no telephone calls relayed to room or use of telephone in room
  • To bring a tape and player for background sound

During First Stage of Labour

  • To have quiet room, dim lights
  • To have husband/birthing partner/mother labour support person present at all times
  • To be able to take nutritional snacks if labour is prolonged
  • To have fluids to sip on including herbal teas
  • To have ice chips to cool the mouth
  • To have freedom of choice to walk and move and to adopt whatever positions are most comfortable, using the floor, cushions, chair as well as bed during labour and delivery
  • To allow labour to take its natural course
  • To be fully apprised and consulted before the introduction of any medical procedure or intervention
  • To have access to shower prior to rupture of membrane
  • To seek permission before rupture of membrane

During Birth

  • To assume birthing position of choice that will facilitate delivery using gravity and maximizing the space through pelvic outlet to avoid episiotomy unless necessary
  • To use birthing stool, bed, floor squatting, semi squatting, all fours, positions
  • To have perineal massage with oil and to have hot compresses to avoid episiotomy

Following Birthing

  • To have immediate skin to skin contact with baby placed on my stomach.
  • To have father present with me in the operating theatre in the event of a c section
  • To have the cord attached for as long as possible To allow 30-40mins for natural placenta delivery –and I want to see the placenta once it comes out.
  • To have baby brought to breast to assist natural delivery of placenta

For Baby

  • To have vitamin k administered orally not through injection
  • To have baby brought immediately to me
  • To have foot print made in the baby’s birth book
  • To exclusively breastfeed –no formula or water or bottle feeding
  • To delay/omit (if not needed) use of erythromycin/nitrate eye drops to allow optimal sight binding as it blurs the vision – as I understand it is required if mother has STD (gonnorehea) – which I do not have so if given the option would like to opt not to have the drops administered.

We thank you in advance for your support and kind cooperation with our choices.  We know you join us in looking forward to a beautiful birth and celebration of this new life.

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