"Mother lovingly and courageously follows the lead of her baby's soul into conception and labor. Her innate ability to give birth is within every cell and she trusts her inner strength to guide her way."
Sacred Birthing Insight

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Video: What is Sacred Birthing?

Sacred Birthing is like… a sacred place in Nature: wonderful, still, quite, beautiful, pristine, nothing that’s hurt or violated.

Sacred Birth is not religious birth… it is unharmed, un-violated, pristine, the way it needs to be, it always was and has been; not bothered, not interferes with or interrupted; it flows in its own progression. It has everything to do with what mother needs.

Sacred Birthing is when mother can do exactly what she needs to do, when she have only people there who she lives and who love her…
…more on the video

I’ve put all the gifts that I received from the Source, during my soft birthing experiences next to mamas and babies, in my Sacred Birthing – Birthing a New Humanity book.

Wishing all the mamas and babies out there a soft, Sacred Birth! <3

Ideas for a Sacred C-section

…Is there anything in your book about cesarean births?
(I have to have one due to my anatomy.) …

As a mom, we must empower ourselves about our c-section birth, just as we do when it is to be a vaginal birth. Research it, to know what to expect and what questions to ask. Go to alternative sites on the web to receive the wisdom of other mothers who have already walked this path. What did they learn? Knowing what they know now in hindsight, what do they wish they had, or hadn’t done? The more you research, the more you will discover how many possibilities there are, and which of these you need to learn more about. Follow your gut.

Talk to your baby’s Esa, (See, Sacred Birthing, Birthing a New Humanity, for more about the Esa.) Ask her for help to bring you the understanding you are needing. Ask for her help to find the best caregiver for a softbirth. Ask for her help to orchestrate each prenatal. If dad is much bigger than you, ask that the baby grows in proportion to you. (Rarely is a baby not able to be born vaginally because of its size. Often they say baby is too big, but the next baby is larger and is able to be born vaginally!)

Long before your due date, tell your doctor you wish to go into labor naturally (instead of scheduling a date for the c-section,) so that your baby can have the stimulation that labor gives to help baby prepare for life. This is very important for your baby. Be strong, without taking “NO” as an answer. After all, are you choosing this date for a pleasant schedule? Or for your baby’s highest birth and most vibrant health? Let this be your gift to your c-section born baby.

Clearly the health and well-being of both mama and baby are most important. So, ask yourself,

“What do I need to feel empowered and satisfied with my C-section birth?”
“What do I feel is the best way to celebrate our baby’s birth?
“How can we make it special for our baby and our family?” Think ahead.

Prepare yourself. Birth, (these days) is about standing in our power and protecting what we know to be right for our baby. Don’t give up your birth to your doctor, either prenatally or in labor, by saying, “Oh ok,” if your gut wrenches and feels terrible. This is your baby’s vote! Do all you can to rearrange things until your guts feel good. That’s your sign that all is well with that decision.

Claim your power in your surgical birth, if things are not going the way you need. One couple told the whole O.R. staff, “Just STOP. You are rushing this too much. This is our birth and we are going to do it the way we want.” They turned on the music they chose for their baby, and as it played, they had a good cry that they were not getting the birth they had planned. When they each felt complete and composed, they said, “Ok. We are ready now.” The staff stood by and waited. They later shared with the couple how impressed they were by their actions, and how sacred their birth was.

If this is a true emergency birth, then of course we surrender to the medical team’s expertise. However, very few c-sections are for true emergencies. So if minutes or a half hour are not vital to the health of the baby, there is time to do what you feel is important, especially if you are adding love. What would make you feel more connected to your baby? Do that. What would make you feel more relaxed? These are one and the same.

Talk to your doctor about your questions. If s/he is not open to listening, or really hearing you, change doctors. This won’t get better as time goes on.

If you know ahead of time that you are heading for a C-section, OR, if this is an unexpected decision in labor, it is VERY important to talk to your baby about it. Tell baby all that you know and all that you feel, without sugar coating it. Let the baby know how it may feel. Tell the truth. If you are scared, tell baby: “I’m scared too. I’ve never done this before either.” This warns baby about what this medical ride may be like, and baby appreciates this preparation, instead of being overwhelmed, just as you would. Tell baby:

You will feel yourself getting squeezed tight. These rushes are me hugging you, massaging your muscles and wakening up your nerves. When its soon time to be born, there will be drugs given to me that will make you feel dizzy and limp. These drugs are for me, not for you. Let those drugs pass right out of your body. The drugs make it feel like I am far away, but I’m right here. I love you no matter what.”

Just before you are born, you will feel the doctor’s hand feeling for your chin. He will lift you out. As you are born, you’ll feel heavy and cold. You’ll see bright lights, and something will go into your nose, mouth and throat so you can breathe better. You’ll be dried off and wrapped up. Give me a good cry so that the entire staff relaxes and knows you are breathing well. You are safe, my sweet one. Listen for your Dad’s voice and feel his arms, and know that as soon as I’m able, I will be holding you in my arms too, but first, you’ll feel your dad. I can’t wait to breastfeed you, and I know we will both be good at it!

By talking to your baby, it helps baby recognize the birthing process. NICU nurses say that when babies are prepared in this way, they are more relaxed, breathe more deeply and have fewer problems nursing. It helps you be more peaceful too, and that is immediately transferred to baby.

Remember: you take your own sacred preparation with you no matter where, or how, you labor and give birth: home, hospital, vaginal or c-section. Your trusting ‘Field of Birth,’ all that you created during your whole pregnancy, surrounds you and keeps both of you safe. Keep your attention on trust. Your trust creates the highest vibration and means that the best people will be on duty, and that all will go well. When you are in a state of trust, there is no room for fear. When you feel trusting, baby knows that everything in his world is OK too.

Nancy Lucina interview with Sunni Karll for “Reawakening Ancient Feminine Wisdom” Summit

If you’re a mom-to-be, new mother, birth worker or planning on becoming a mom one day, you may wanna listen to the “Reawakening Ancient Feminine Wisdom” Summit that Nancy Lucina prepared for all of us. This summit is a series of conscious conversations about pregnancy, birth and motherhood with women who believe in the sacredness of the feminine.
 
In this free interview summit, Nancy is talking with midwives, doulas, women’s coaches and postpartum specialists about conscious conception, natural and sacred birth preparation, motherhood as a rite of passage, how to process and work with fears of labor and motherhood, herbs, flower essences & nutrition to support your process, the holistic stages of birth, postpartum rituals & ceremonies, intuitive parenting and much more.
 
Grateful to partake in Nancy’s Summit… here is our conversation.
 
Grab a cup of tea and join us in this! 🙂
Love to all <3
You can also watch our interview on YouTube:

 

See Nancy’s full summit here.

See Nancy’s facebook page here.

Jeanine Parvati Baker, on Breastfeeding

Jeannine Parvati Baker was an amazing midwife, author and mom who first coined the terms “Lotus Birth” and “Free Birth” in the ‘80’s and 90’s. She is the author of Prenatal Yoga & Natural Birth; Conscious Conception: Elemental Journey Through The Labyrinth of Sexuality; & Hygeia, a Woman’s Herbal. She died in 2005.

Jeanine taught me about Lotus Birth. I called her in 1992 and said “tell me everything, for I have told parents about it, and they say it feels like right action for their baby”. She told me her experiences and I interviewed doctors who told me the medical truth: there was no medical reason to cut the cord. Jeanine changed my practice when I was just a brand new midwife.
Jeanine was interviewed by Michael Mendizza, who created Touch The Future and then became an amazing dad, with a sensitive blog about fathering. This website has a plethora of wonderful information on it: Expanding Human Potential by Supporting Those Who Care For Children, and so much more. Please check it out.

On Breastfeeding

Jeanine

Birth is the first sexual experience of a baby’s life. Being born in a technocratic environment with machines, the baby feels separated, removed from his or her source, from their mother. And that’s exacerbated by bottles. Anytime we put a bottle or a pacifier, which is a misnomer, it does not bring peace to the planet. I prefer to use the term “dummy”, because that’s what it does. The “dummy” literally dumbs that baby down because they’re not able to express what they are feeling. When you have a sexual relationship, love will bring out all of our feelings to be healed. When we do feel nurtured and loved, we are safe enough to be who we really are. For a lot of us, if that dummy’s in our mouth, we have been dumbed down and repressed emotionally. Those feelings come up for healing in a sexual relationship. Hence, many of us go unconscious. We do not want to approach this material inside. We’ve used and abused the gift that we have been given, our sexuality, with one another, to avoid authentic and intimate relationships.

Michael

We separate the baby from human contact, which means pleasure, and in its place we substitute things, bottles, cribs, plastic carriers and pacifiers. Removing pleasurable touch is sensory deprivation. Sensory deprivation means collapsed potential brain development. And this affects the social and sexual capacities when they unfold. Harlow’s work in the late 50’s demonstrated that monkeys separated from their mothers as babies were incapable of grooming one another, of touching one another. They had no sexual or social skills.

Jeanine:

This is one reason nursing my babies was so important. I focused on the relationship, and did not distract myself while breast feeding by doing other things. This is where a baby learns the give and take of sexuality, how the giving and receiving of pleasure is simultaneous, how pleasure co-arises. In nursing, the baby’s mouth, which is an erotic organ, is allowed to pleasure the mother. My heart melted and turned into milk. In that exchange, love and sex are one and the same. That’s what breast feeding imprints upon the baby.

Clarity from a Prenatal Consultation

Big sister meets the little one, minutes after birth.

 

Andrea connected with me for a consultation. She is a wonderful nurturing mom of four other children. She was expecting in about 3 weeks and did not feel ready. She had not made sense of one of her past births and wanted to be totally clear before stepping into this one.
She told me all about it, and we shared that deep, heart-felt space together. I witnessed and she heard herself differently as she spoke. I offered a perspective she couldn’t have had, and she incorporated that new information. I heard her sigh and breathe deeply. As she did, I could feel her as she set her internal compass, away from confusion and toward this upcoming birth.
All it took was knowing she needed to be clear, reaching out and being honest and vulnerable. All it took, was maybe 30 minutes of sharing, woman to woman. Mom shifted in that moment, and baby shifted to reflect mom’s new internal environment. Weeks later, birth happened magically, in the best way possible. Of course.

Kindness abounds,
Sunni

BE Happy! No Worries about my Cord!

There is much talk about the dangers of the cord being wrapped around the baby’s neck. Everyone in the checkout line has a story about the cord around their baby’s neck. This is one of the most common worries in pregnancy, and adds drama and fear to birth where none needs to exist.

The truth is, many babies are born with the cord around their neck. Maybe even most babies. This happens because when the baby is a tiny ‘little bean’ he jumps all around as if he’s on a trampoline, and can jump right through a loop of his own cord. Then as he grows, there is little chance of getting back through that loop.

I have found that certain kinds of exercise, like diving, and doing intense aerobic exercise, or flip turns when swimming laps in a pool, can cause the baby to be tangled up in his cord, and because of that, can increase the time of labor. This is not a problem if you have a home birth, but taking “too long” is one of those things that’s most likely ‘managed’ in the hospital. So enjoy swimming but don’t do somersaults. Exercise for breathing and feeling alive!

Having the cord around baby’s neck is rarely a problem, and it is usually slipped right over the head after baby’s head is born, just before his body births. And most of the time, the way baby turns, the cord loosens all by itself. If it is very tight, which is rare, the cord is then cut and the baby is quickly pushed out. (I have only had this happen one time.)

In my experience, umbilical cords are often around the baby’s neck. Sometimes they have even been tightly wrapped around the baby’s neck as much as three times, and a baby is still fine.

Here is a picture of a placenta and its normal umbilical cord. The placenta has been prepared as a Lotus birth with Rosemary powder, and that’s why it is green. It sits in a steaming basket on a plate.

Cords typically have blood clots left in them that create dark bumps. Often these bumps are assumed to be knots in the cord because they make it fat in places. Untrue. It’s just the leftover blood, going from baby to mother, that remains in the cord.

So, Be happy. Let go of all worries about the cord being around baby’s neck. Even if it is, it’s OK.

Kindness abounds,
Sunni

Birthing Stones

Wahiawa Birthing Stones are a sacred area on Oahu where the Hawaiian Royalty once held their births. Royal births were not private affairs but ones that were attended by the elders, healers, wise way-showers of all neighboring clans. It was a grand gathering. And it would go on for weeks, as the families gathered ahead of time to celebrate the coming arrival.

We think Birthing Stones were used as birthing chairs, but that was never the information I received. On Kauai, birth was auspicious when it took place between two bodies of flowing water. I was shown how a particular stone of the cluster was most important to those birthing mamas because they were strongly magnetic. To move closer to the rocks, created a dramatic downward pull to assist the contractions of labor.

Since there was great importance placed on the timing of the birth, with the most auspicious time being at the moment of the rising sun, the mother could move closer to the rock, or move farther away to ease contractions some, to bring the birth as close to sunrise as possible. (Imagine trying to hold back!) Would this baby be acknowledged by the sun?

Let’s protect our babies

“For the fetus, the hangover may last a lifetime.” (3)

Many ‘different’ Hawaiian children have caught my attention lately. I see them hanging around when their parents are selling vegetables at the Farmer’s Market. They made me remember that I have seen children with this very same look in Ecuador, Spain, France, and plenty in America. There are so many of them in my awareness that I started wondering, what’s going on? I see they are retarded, but there is a similarity to them that made me look deeper. It suddenly hit me: they are children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS),

Although they are adorable when little, and couldn’t be more affectionate, they usually are born prematurely, small, look different facially, often having small heads, facial malformations, as well as internal problems with heart, spine, Central Nervous System, and way too many other problems. They develop more slowly, grow up to have IQ’s around 60 + -, and grow to an age when they stop developing. These children are difficult to raise, are not able to motivate themselves, care for themselves without supervision, or have the ability to function in the world. And just as worrisome, one generation begets another with the same problem.

I thought this was related to a “Native American problem,” but find that nothing could be farther from the truth. It is worldwide. It’s caused by alcohol. And its 100% avoidable.

All women need to understand that when they drink, the alcohol goes right into the placenta and the baby is actually drinking too. “By the time mom feels tipsy and thus socially or physically compelled to refuse a refill, the child she carries could have already passed out. … The baby in the womb becomes more drunk than its mother with every drink of liquor, wine or beer she takes.” (1)

Alcohol goes right through the placental and brain barrier, making the fetus even more drunk than mom. It goes into the liver, pancreas, kidneys, thymus, heart, and brain, concentrating in the gray matter of the developing baby. It interferes with the placenta carrying enough oxygen, and this is what creates brain damage, especially during the first and third trimester.

Brain damage is also from alcohol being a dehydrating agent so it absorbs water. The brains of a newborn whose mother drank appears desiccated, (dried up,) and smaller than they should be because the water has been sucked out of the developing cells, either killing them or rendering them functionless. Ouch.

Another reason is the difference in weight of mom and fetus: the growing fetus is tiny in comparison, yet, gets the same dose that mom gets.

The alcohol in mom’s bloodstream envelopes baby and circulates around and around until it can be detoxed, but it takes twice as long in a fetus as it does in mom.

“Women become drunk more quickly than men because their stomachs are less able to neutralize alcohol…” (5);

Looking at the FAS child’s brain compared to a normal child’s brain, there is scrambling of the layers of brain cells that are typically associated with alcohol use.

There seems there is NO safe amount of alcohol that is safe for a fetus. There are different things that make a mom be more at risk, but basically for a sacred birth, it comes down to a decision in pregnancy to NOT DRINK, and STOP all alcohol. Not a glass of wine, not a cold beer, nothing.

Most of the women I have met are not concerned because they think it’s just an alcoholic mom, or the binging mom that has a baby with FAS. But it’s not just about the size of the dose, it’s also about the dose, the age of the mother, and the timing of the dose on fetal development too. What developmental stage is the baby? The first trimester and the third trimester are highly susceptible.

Most parents reading Sacred Birthing are taking great care of their unborn baby. But at prenatals I have heard, “Well I just had a few drinks. Just this time. That’s OK, right?” Ask your baby. “Baby, is it ok that I do what I want, even if I know it might hurt you?” Absolute abstention from conception, pregnancy and while breastfeeding is the only way to protect your baby. She/he’s worth it!

With so many questions about alcohol’s effect, I think the best course of action would be at the moment when you are planning to conceive, or, know you are pregnant, make a decision one time and then both parents stick to it for the duration. Then your baby feels your commitment to his health and well-being.

Why both parents?
“Until now Fathers have not had a causal link to such disabilities. Ground breaking new research has been revealed which shows Dads may have more accountability.

Published in Animal Cells and Systems, researchers studied male mice exposed to varying concentrations of alcohol and one control group exposed only to saline. After exposure the mice were mated and resulting fetuses examined. The findings revealed previously unknown and riveting evidence that paternal alcohol consumption can directly affect fetal development.

A number of fetuses sired by males exposed to alcohol suffered abnormal organ development and/or brain development. Those in the saline group were normal. So, can developmental abnormalities be predetermined at fertilization? This research proves so. The authors believe alcohol consumption affects genes in sperm which are responsible for normal fetal development.
Until now fathers’ lifestyle choices have not seen any repercussion on their unborn children. This ground-breaking research provides the first definitive evidence that fathers’ drinking habits pre-conception can cause significant fetal abnormalities.”(4)

Plus, when a father drinks, its placing mom in a more difficult predicament of constantly having to make the choice each evening NOT to drink. Sometimes we are strong and sometimes less so. Making this decision once is the easiest and it lets baby feel your devotion. Dad, can you support your future child by choosing Not to drink, and choosing other activities that do not include alcohol? Your baby thanks you.

Four hours ago, an article from Northwestern University in Chicago came out saying, “There may soon be a cure for foetal alcohol syndrome.”(6) But really, when alcohol creates such havoc in the nervous system and brain, why take chances? Always come back to your deepest intention: “What is the highest you wish for your child? A nominal existence, or to be a child/adult who retains his innate well-being?

Another SoftBirth reason to abstain from both alcohol and weed is that they lower your vibration. When you are heading toward a Sacred Birth, it is your highest vibration that helps your baby mesh his body and soul. Since you are the Cosmos to your baby, give him your best, and your reward will be seen in the alert, clear eyes of your baby at the time of birth.

References:
1. American Journal of Obstetric Gynecology. “By the time mom feels tipsy…”
2. Doris, Michael. The Broken Cord. July, 1989
3. Enloe, Dr Cortez. Editor of Nutrition Today, 1980. “For the fetus, the hangover…”
4. Hye Jeong Lee, Jae-Sung Ryu, Na Young Choi, Yo Seph Park, Yong Il Kim, Dong Wook Han, Kisung Ko, Chan Young Shin, Han Sung Hwang, Kyung-Sun Kang, Kinarm Ko. Trans-generational effects of paternal alcohol exposure in mouse offspring. Animal Cells and Systems, 2013; 17 (6): 429 DOI: 10.1080/19768354.2013.865675
5. Charles Lieber, Dr. New York Times, 2013.
6. Redei, Eva. Health 24.com. “There may soon be a cure for foetal alcohol syndrome”.