, CPM, (previously Alison Parra) was an independent homebirth midwife in Mexico for 12 years. She now teaches classes in midwifery, childbirth education and herbalism, and together with her family runs a natural products dispensary and store. She has lived in Mexico over 30 years, and was one of the founders of the MANA Mexican region.
You can see Alison’s herb work at www.Lavictoriana.com.
“Whenever the midwife came, we all got quiet. We knew things were going to happen then; the baby was really coming. She’d go into the bedroom with our mama and come out with a baby,” my husband recalled.
Read more…. The Spectrum of Traditions in Childbirth in Mexico
Not every baby is born perfect. The author, a self-trained homebirth midwife from Mexico, shares some ideas to help guide people when they encounter a baby with surprises. Read more…. When a Baby Is Born with Surprises
Midwives and doulas may find that they relate to the ideas expressed in this story. Fear is a normal aspect of life, but it is important to know how to handle fear when you have responsibilities during a birth.
Read more…. Midwives and Fear
A childbirth educator considers “the place of change” in labor that transcends stages and what she sees as the overemphasis on pushing. Read more…. Getting Pushy
Photo by Hush Naidoo
Reflections on how obstetricians have a tendency to choose the most medicalized interventions, rather than trying a simple fix first.
Read more…. Health Care with No Legs to Stand On: The Questions behind the Question
Photo by Ashton Mullins
The other day I was kneeling by the single bed where I check pregnant women. A woman lay on the bed, her shirt up to reveal her six-month-pregnant belly. As I approached her with the measuring tape to check fundal height she looked at me, puzzled.
Read more…. “Hands-off” Care and Birth as an Out-of-body Experience
Photo by Faye Cornish
The Blessingway is an alternative to the baby shower, focused on honoring the transition to motherhood. It evolved out of a Navajo ceremony. There are usually plenty of laughter and tears at a Blessingway, and each woman leaves feeling blessed and honored to be a part of this great circle of womanhood.
Read more…. The Blessing of a Blessingway
Photos provided by author
Mother and doula-in-training Penelope Haskew
The placenta is a mediator between the life flow of mother and baby. It is rich in nutrients, hormones and immune builders (stem cells too!); indeed, it helped build a body. This article presents a few small ways we affirm that our lives and the lives of other women matter. That birth matters.
Read more…. Placental Rituals, Placental Medicine
Photos provided by Author
Traditional midwifery cannot be understood on a timeline or through protocols. Nor is it a fascinating compendium of “tricks.” For the same reasons that it seems a lost art, I believe it will never disappear. For wherever a woman plants her spirit and says, “I’m with you,” a tradition is carried on.
Read more…. Traditional Midwifery