July 31, 2013
Volume 15, Issue 16
Midwifery Today E-News
Print Page

Welcome to Midwifery Today E-News !

Midwifery Today Online Store

Get second stage advice in e-book format!

Download Second Stage: The Pushing Phase of Labor, a collection of ten articles from Midwifery Today magazine. Articles include “Understanding Stages of Labour after the Paradigm Shift” by Michel Odent, “Midwifing Second Stage” by Sister MorningStar, “Supporting Motherbaby in Second Stage Waterbirth” by Cornelia Enning and “Getting to Second Stage” by Carol Gautschi.

Available on Amazon or on Smashwords in a variety of formats.

MT online store

This issue of Midwifery Today E-News is brought to you by:

Look below for more info!

In This Week’s Issue

Help your clients have more comfortable labors

Belgium conferenceAttend “Comfort Techniques for Midwives and Doulas,” a full-day pre-conference class with Debra Pascali-Bonaro. You’ll learn about techniques such as the gate control theory of pain, hot and cold compresses, music, massage/touch, acupressure, aromatherapy and the birthing ball. You’ll see demonstrations of a variety of positions and techniques for both first and second stage, and there will be time for hands-on practice. Registrants at previous conferences have raved about this class, calling it fun and informative.

Learn more about the Belgium conference.

Come to our conference in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania!

Mark your calendars and save the date: April 23–27, 2014. You’ll be able to choose from a wide variety of classes including Breech Skills, Optimal Fetal Positioning, Spinning Babies, Cultural Aspects of Resuscitation and Midwifery Skills. To receive a printed program by mail when it becomes available, please e-mail admin@midwiferytoday.com with your name and postal address.

Learn more about the Harrisburg conference.

Quote of the Week

There are two things in life for which we are never truly prepared: twins.

Josh Billings, American humorist

Do you like what you’re reading? You’ll get even more content when you subscribe to our quarterly print magazine, Midwifery Today. Subscribe here.

The Art of Midwifery

It seems theoretically easier to meet the enormous needs of the developing human brain when the diet includes some food from the sea. Our focus has been on the molecules of fatty acids, which are preformed and abundant in the sea food chain. Sea foods have other characteristics, such as being rich in iodine. Iodine is also essential for brain development, as a major component of thyroid hormones. The imbalances between different thyroid hormones in preeclampsia also suggest that brain development is a priority among humans. Of course, the nutrients abundant in the sea food chain include salt. There is an increased need of salt during pregnancy. A sufficient amount of salt tends to moderate the stimulation of the reninangiotensin system and is also necessary for the adaptive blood dilution in late pregnancy.

Michel Odent, excerpted from “Land Food, Sea Food, Brain Food,” Birth Wisdom, Tricks of the Trade, Vol. III, a Midwifery Today book
View table of contents / Order the book

ALL BIRTH PRACTITIONERS: The techniques you’ve perfected over months and years of practice are valuable lessons for others to learn! Share them with E-News readers by sending them to mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com.

Send submissions, inquiries, and responses to newsletter items to: mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com.

RSS Feed Subscribe to the Web Updates RSS feed to stay on top of what’s new or highlighted on the Midwifery Today website. Be alerted when conference programs go online, new articles are posted and more.

Jan’s Corner


I have been thinking about twins and how to grow healthy babies. The old axiom that you are eating for two becomes eating for three! Though it has been discounted by many, it really is true. Dr. Tom Brewer wrote about the importance of good nutrition and how twins need mom to eat healthfully to grow two babies. The importance of nutrition cannot be overemphasized in pregnancy, and even more so with twins. Dr. Brewer discovered that with good nutrition, voilá!—the babies rarely come prematurely. A dear midwife friend told me, “Babies come out early because they are hungry.”

We as midwives and doulas have a responsibility to the mothers and babies we serve. Doctors rarely tell mothers about the importance of nutrition to support healthy pregnancy. So please, take the responsibility to help moms with this (fairly easy) thing they can do to grow a healthy baby or babies. Let them know that prenatal care is what they do between visits to their midwife or doctor. Good nutrition can prevent prematurity, preeclampsia, abruption of the placenta, long hard labor, hemorrhage, time in the neonatal intensive care unit and a multitude of other problems we are just beginning to discover. It is up to us who care for mothers and babies to spread the message of the importance of prenatal nutrition. So tell the world far and wide of the value of nutrition in pregnancy. Let’s help empty out those neonatal intensive care units!

For helpful information regarding prenatal nutrition, visit the Dr. Brewer Twin Pregnancy Diet page.

Jan Tritten, mother of Midwifery Today

Jan Tritten is the founder, editor-in-chief and mother of Midwifery Today magazine. She became a midwife in 1977 after the amazing homebirth of her second daughter. Her mission is to make loving midwifery care the norm for birthing women and their babies throughout the world. Meet Jan at our conferences around the world, or join her online, as she works to transform birth practices around the world.

Jan on Twitter: https://twitter.com/jantritten
Midwifery Today on Facebook: facebook.com/midwiferytoday
Jan on Facebook: facebook.com/JanTrittensBirthPage
International Alliance of Midwives on Facebook: facebook.com/IAMbirth
Birth Is a Human Rights Issue: facebook.com/birthisahumanrightsissue
Midwifery Education: Caring and Sharing: facebook.com/MidwiferyEducation

Live your dream and become a Nurse-Midwife at Frontier Nursing University


Frontier Nursing University’s nurse-midwifery program is the longest-running midwifery program in the United States, was the first to offer distance education, offers one of the only ADN-MSN online bridge options and educates more certified nurse-midwives than any other program in the country. The community-based distance education program allows you to complete your coursework online and clinical work in your own community.


Featured Article

Six Days, Two Healthy Babies, One Extraordinary Birth

It wasn’t that I set out to be an enthusiastic proponent of homebirth. As a matter of fact, I hadn’t thought much about what kind of a birth experience I would like to have until I got pregnant. Somehow, when I found out that I was carrying a baby (or what turned out to be two), it became clear that it was my greatest desire to allow these children to enter the world in the most sacred, peaceful, loving way that I could imagine.

When I was six months pregnant, my partner, Francis, and I relocated to Southern California. I had read a number of books about birthing and was considering having a homebirth with a midwife. In the stories I read about homebirth, women went through amazing vision quests, discovered their own strength and softness and molded into the divine feminine. I wanted one of those experiences; I wanted to bond with Francis and feel the primordial creative force coming through us as we journeyed together with our babies through the transition from the unseen world into the material world. And I wanted to feel everything. Nowhere in my vision of birth did I see bright lights, hospital gowns, IVs or being immobilized and told what to do.

Miraculously, I found a wonderful Ob/Gyn who agreed to do my prenatal appointments and be a backup doctor for my homebirth. I just needed to find a midwife willing and capable of safely delivering my precious twins at home. This proved to be no small feat, but where there is a will, there is a way. After countless e-mails and conversations, I finally found an amazing midwife who had delivered 14 sets of twins and over 500 singletons. Francis and I drove three hours to meet with Brenda, and at that first appointment I knew I’d found the person who I trusted enough to be the first one to touch my babies. She was Mama Earth embodied: nurturing, grounded and serene. Moreover, being a midwife is truly Brenda’s calling; she is passionate about giving women like me a choice in how we bring our children into the world. I was grateful and relieved to finally have all the birth plans finalized.

At 36 weeks, Francis and I went in for a routine appointment with the doctor and found out that Zaanti (our son, and the first one in position to come out) was footling breech. Miela (our daughter) was vertex. The doctor said that she no longer felt comfortable being a backup for my homebirth and strongly suggested that I schedule a c-section at 38 weeks. My heart tightened. My throat narrowed. I felt as if I was breathing through a tiny straw, getting just enough air to survive. I composed myself enough to thank the Ob/Gyn for her opinion and told her we needed time to process this news at home. As soon as we left the office, I became hysterical. This news was so sudden. I worked to accept that what I could control was setting a clear intention to follow my own Wisdom; the rest was out of my control and so I needed to surrender to the events as they unfolded. Whether it was a c-section or a vaginal birth, I wanted it to be a conscious birth with a conscience.

Francis and I decided to gather more opinions before we made a decision. In the week after that appointment, I entered a period of intense spiritual contemplation. I meditated, prayed, journaled and spoke with every “expert” I could locate—I even consulted a psychic. But, mostly, I listened. I closed my eyes, but opened them wide to the internal compass leading to a birth that honored me, Francis and our babies.

Lana Shlafer
Excerpted from “Six Days, Two Healthy Babies, One Extraordinary Birth,” Birth Stories, a Midwifery Today e-book.

ed page graphic

You want to be a midwife, but where do you start?

Are you an aspiring midwife who’s looking for the right school? Or maybe you’re trying to decide if midwifery is the path for you. Visit our Better Birth Education Opportunities page to discover ways to start or continue your education.

Featured Products

Belly dance and pregnancy: a perfect pair!

Dance of the Womb DVD coverLearn how to do it with Dance of the Womb: A Gentle Guide to Belly Dance for Pregnancy & Birth. This 2-disk DVD set includes a 45-minute warm-up and six dance chapters that teach specific movements and their uses during labor. You’ll also see belly dance in practice during labor, as well as a beautifully filmed 50-minute homebirth documentary. To Order

Order the Midwife’s Assistant Orientation Manual PDF book
book cover…and you’ll get a detailed and comprehensive how-to guide to help you prepare for the clinical setting. This PDF book from Birth Joy Consultants is packed with information and includes graphic step-by-step instructions for important skills such as blood draw, intramuscular injection and IVs. Topics covered include duties at birth, homebirth setup, charting skills and emergency procedures. To order

Want the whole story?

Subscribe to Midwifery Today print magazine and four times a year you’ll receive 72 pages filled with complete articles, birth stories, stunning birth photography and more. Midwifery Today E-News is just a taste of what you’ll find in Midwifery Today magazine. Subscribe.

Midwifery Today Magazine Issue 106

Learn how to examine a newborn
Newborn Exam for the Student Midwife

When you order Newborn Exam for the Student Midwife, you’ll receive a treasure-trove of detailed information. First you’ll learn the basics, such as how to examine the eyes, ears, nose and other parts of the newborn’s body. The next section covers common newborn reflexes such as rooting, sucking and swallowing, while the third part explains a variety of gestational age assessment factors, both external and neurological. If you’re an apprentice or student midwife, you need this four-disk DVD set. To Order

Choose your classes from our Eugene 2013 conference!

Bring the conference home with your choice of classes on a portable USB drive. Classes available include Midwifery Skills, Developing Your Breech Skills, The First Hour after Birth, Shoulder Dystocia, Art in Midwifery and Birth, Prolonged Labor and Malpresentation. Just go here to select the classes you want and place your order.

USB_Eugene2013_2 (6K)

Understanding Diagnostic Tests

Learn the how and why of diagnostic testing.

Understanding Diagnostic Tests by Anne Frye will give you a holistic perspective on test results. The 7th edition is updated and expanded by around 395 pages, to give you 1365 pages packed with valuable information. To Order

Website Update

Read this article excerpt from the newest issue of Midwifery Today, Summer 2012:

  • Protecting the Sisterhood: Thoughts from Midwifery Today’s Human Rights in Childbirth Summit, April 2, 2013—by Kathi Valeii

    Excerpt: Persecuted midwife Katie McCall compiled a list that she calls “Sisters in Chains,” which details more than 100 midwives who have been or are currently being persecuted for practicing their craft. While the list is horrifying, I’m certain it does not capture the entire gravity of the situation. As I sat in the summit room listening to 10 panelists detail their legal encounters, my jaw dropped as woman after woman stepped up to the microphone to tell her own traumatic tale. At the end of the day, when Robbie Davis-Floyd asked who in the room had endured persecution, I had to gather my chin up off the floor when around 75% of the room held up their hands.

Promote Your Product or Service Here

advertise in E-News

For as low as $100 per insertion for a text-plus-graphic ad, you can put your birth-related product or service in front of over 19,000 E-News subscribers from around the world. This is a great way to reach midwives, parents, childbirth educators, physicians, nurses, doulas and others interested in safe, natural birth.

Learn more here or contact our Ad Director at ads@midwiferytoday.com.

Birth Q&A

Q: When caring for a mom with a twin pregnancy, what do you do? What does she need to know?

— Midwifery Today

A: Get at least 110 g of protein per day! And get into an aquatics class to be able to exercise and help babies find an optimal position.

— Martha Paschke

A: Mom needs to know how a proper diet will help her carry her babies to term, birth the way she wants and breastfeed. Her nutrition will take a great deal of focus and conscious effort.

— Rebecca Strickler

A: Mom needs to know what kind of twins they are and how important diet (especially protein) is to carrying to term. She needs to know about malpresentations in birth and her rights as a birthing woman.

— Selena Harbick

A: Eat nothing processed and find a doctor who will allow you to have the twins naturally. Once you find the doctor, know that this is how your babies will come—naturally and on their own.

— Lucy Mesa

A: Being pregnant is tiring, being pregnant with multiples is even more so. Early on, I’d recommend that you implement a rest period every day. Just get in the habit of taking a few minutes to lie still and be quiet.

— Jonalyn Provido Soliman

A: As a mom to twins, I always felt like my OB was expecting complications. I had a great, uneventful twin pregnancy, but I always left my OB’s office feeling like I should be worried when actually everything was great. I think expecting a normal, healthy pregnancy contributed to achieving that.

— Caralee Anderton

Craving more birth info?
Subscribe to Midwifery Today magazine!

Conference Chatter

Harrisburg Twin Birth Class

Greetings to all of you lovely birth practitioners and supporters,

It’s a hot summer day here in Eugene, Oregon, and we are working hard not only on the upcoming conference in Belgium, but also on our Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, conference which is set for April 23–27, 2014. Our program is almost finalized and will be up on the website once it is complete. I thought for this installment of conference chatter I would share a little teaser of the upcoming program. This edition of E-News is focused on twin birth, and at our Harrisburg conference we will have an amazing class on twin birth offered as part of our Midwife Issues and Skills pre-conference course. This will be taught by Mary Cooper and Diane Goslin. For all of you interested in learning more about twin birth, this class is a must. Check back soon on our website for the program or wait for it in your mail box. We hope to see you in Harrisburg!

For more information about the Harrisburg conference, go here: midwiferytoday.com/conferences/Harrisburg2014/

If you have any questions about this conference or any conference from past or future, please feel free to drop me a note at conference@midwiferytoday.com and I’ll be happy to assist you.

— Andrea Goldman


A big black cat had it out for my apprentice. The cat had stalked her during a home visit, freaking her out. At the birth, as baby was crowning, the cat jumped onto my apprentice’s back. She screamed and backed up right into the birth tray causing it to tumble right into the birth tub! I had to ignore it all and continue to help baby out and into mama’s hands.

— Lily Bhavani Aquarian

Classified Advertising

Tell our readers about your business. Just $48/issue ($135 for four) gives you 35 words to promote your products or services. /ads/enews.asp or ads@midwiferytoday.com

E-News Subscription Information

Remember to share this newsletter—it’s free! You may forward it to as many friends and colleagues as you wish—just be sure to follow the copyright notice.

Want to stop receiving E-News or change your e-mail address? Or would you like to subscribe? Then please visit our easy-to-use subscription management page.

On this page you will be able to:

  • start receiving any of our e-mail newsletters
  • stop receiving any of our e-mail newsletters
  • change the version (text or HTML) that you receive
  • change the e-mail address to which newsletters are delivered

If you have difficulty, please send a complete description of the problem, including any error messages, to our newsletter.

Learn even more about birth!

Midwifery Today Magazine—mention code 940 when you subscribe.

 1-Year Subscription2-Year Subscription
United States$55$105
All other countries$75$145

E-mail inquiries@midwiferytoday.com or call 800-743-0974 to learn how to order.

Or subscribe online.

How to order our products mentioned in this issue:

Secure online shopping

We accept Visa and MasterCard at the Midwifery Today Storefront.

Order by postal mail

We accept Visa; MasterCard; and check or money order in U.S. funds.

Midwifery Today, Inc.
PO Box 2672
Eugene, OR 97402, USA

Order by phone or fax

We accept Visa and MasterCard.

Phone (U.S. and Canada; orders only):  800-743-0974

Phone (worldwide):  +1-541-344-7438

Fax:  +1-541-344-1422

E-News subscription questions or problems

Editorial submissions, questions or comments for E-News

Editorial for print magazine



For all other matters

All questions and comments submitted to Midwifery Today E-News become the property of Midwifery Today, Inc. They may be used either in full or as an excerpt, and will be archived on the Midwifery Today website.

Midwifery Today E-News is published electronically every other Wednesday. We invite your questions, comments and submissions. We’d love to hear from you! Write to us at: mtensubmit@midwiferytoday.com. Please send submissions in the body of your message and not as attachments.


This publication is presented by Midwifery Today, Inc., for the sole purpose of disseminating general health information for public benefit. The information contained in or provided through this publication is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be, and is not provided as, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Midwifery Today, Inc., does not assume liability for the use of this information in any jurisdiction or for the contents of any external Internet sites referenced, nor does it endorse any commercial product or service mentioned or advertised in this publication. Always seek the advice of your midwife, physician, nurse or other qualified health care provider before you undergo any treatment or for answers to any questions you may have regarding any medical condition.

Copyright Notice

The content of E-News is copyrighted by Midwifery Today, Inc., and, occasionally, other rights holders. You may forward E-News by e-mail an unlimited number of times, provided you do not alter the content in any way and that you include all applicable notices and disclaimers. You may print a single copy of each issue of E-News for your own personal, noncommercial use only, provided you include all applicable notices and disclaimers. Any other use of the content is strictly prohibited without the prior written permission of Midwifery Today, Inc., and any other applicable rights holders.

© 2013 Midwifery Today, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Midwifery Today: Each One Teach One!