The gentlebirth.org website is provided courtesy of
Ronnie Falcao, LM MS, a homebirth midwife in Mountain View, CA
An interactive resource for moms on easy steps they can take to reduce exposure to chemical toxins during pregnancy.
Other excellent resources about avoiding toxins during pregnancy
These are easy to read and understand and are beautifully presented.
My daughter was born after a face presentation in October 2005 weighing
in at a chunky 8 lbs 14 oz, with a head circumference for 14 inches. Other
than some mild swelling on her face (although not out of the realm of normal
for even newborns born in the regular presentation) she had no birth related
problems. The labor was quick and relatively easy. My midwife arrived about
35-40 min before my daughter was born. As my midwife was still getting
settled, I came out of my birthing hypnosis enough to say that the baby
was pushing out. I reached down to feel squishy tissue instead of a head
and was a little confused. I proceeded to get onto hands and knees in the
pool which felt the most comfortable at the time. Then in 2 contractions
without any conscious pushing on my part, my daughter was born. I had no
tearing at all, not even skid marks. She was born with her chin flexed
toward my tailbone. I had no idea. My husband who caught her only told
me after the fact. He said all he could see at first were her chin, lips
and chubby cheeks. He didn't recall this from our son's birth and was a
little surprised. Our daughter came out with fish lips. LOL Her head was
not misshapened at all. Due to the ease of her birth, I was not even aware
that her presentation could have caused problems before researching it
on the internet. All the articles I read discuss the difficulties of birthing
a face presentation. I just wanted to share my story which contradicts
all the others.
Evelyn Rose entered the world at 6:23 am on Monday, October 31, 2005 after an amazing water homebirth. In attendance were my midwife, Beth, my doula, Nichole, and my husband, Kai.
I *thought* that might finally be true labor around 1:51 am on Monday, October 31st. I was laying in bed listening to my HypnoBabies CD and suddenly felt a “pop” sensation. I had spent most of the earlier evening bouncing on the birth ball because my constant contractions seemed to be accompanied with more cervical pressure than normal. I had also been having bloody show for a couple of days. I woke Kai telling him he was probably not going to work later. I asked him to fill up the birth pool and call our doula, Nichole, and a friend in case she needed to pick up our son when he woke up in the morning. Then I hurried to get the last minute preparations done.
An hour later (around 2:50 am) the pool was filled and I got in the water still listening to my CD. Kai had turned off all the lights, lit the candles and put on some relaxing background music. Nichole showed up about 5 minutes after I got in the pool. She and Kai spent an hour talking quietly and timed my contractions based on when I did my "ahhh..." breathing.
Around 4 am, Nichole pointed out that we should call the midwife as it seemed my contractions were coming every 2 minutes or so. Kai comes over to ask me if he could call the midwife. I told him yes since I was feeling A LOT of pressure at this point. Beth leaves her home promptly, but gets pulled over for speeding. Her usual 40 minute trip turns into 1.5 hours. She arrives around 5:40 am. I am in transition. It took most of my energy and concentration to get through each contraction so I stopped verbalizing the "ahhhs" during my breathing and threw off my earphones.
A little after 6 am, I feel something is being pushed out of me and
verbalize to Beth that my body was starting to push. I asked her to check
me to make sure I was complete. She checked, told me to let my body do
what it needed to do and to be prepared to catch my baby. I lay on my side
prepared to catch but found that position didn't feel right. I reached
down to feel the baby's head only to find out it didn't feel like a head
at all - just soft squishy tissue I couldn't make out. During that contraction,
I flipped onto my hands and knees and braced my head against the side of
the pool. I told Kai he should catch because I couldn't in this position.
Beth gets him situated and ready. Next contraction, I feel a lot of burning.
Beth announces the baby is coming fast and I need to slow down. I tell
her I can't help it because I'm not consciously doing anything. She shows
me how to blow out my breaths which helps slow down the baby’s decent.
Out pops the head. One more contraction and out comes the rest of her while
Kai catches. He brings her out of the water and we hear her cry softly.
I flip over onto my back and Kai puts her on my belly. Then he tells me
that she came out chin first and looked so funny with her big checks squished
and lips pursed into fish-lips. I'm so glad that despite the malposition
she came out fast and without problems. Evelyn weighed in at a hefty 8
lbs 14 oz and measured 21 inches long. She was all rosy and held her color
beautifully. Beth said Evelyn had no blue on her whatsoever.
Evelyn’s birth turned out exactly the way I had envisioned it minus the face presentation. I could not have asked for better circumstances and feel really grateful for such an incredible experience.
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