Midwifery Today is 18 years old this year. I like to reflect deeply at special milestones. To me, the beginning of the year is always a time of intense planning for the future and pondering where we have been. Read more…. Midwifery Today: Past and Future
Alsea Falls Oregon. Photo by Jennifer Rosenberg
Midwifery knowledge is knowledge of woman and nature. We must remember that all we know about birth comes from these primary sources. Increasingly, we rely on our opinions to tell us what is true about birth, or we quantify our experiences of assisting labor to find meaning in the face of its potential chaos.
Read more…. Wild, Beautiful Birth
Photo by Nathan Dumlao
Midwifery knowledge is everything about woman. It is innate. It is what our bodies know without instruction when fear is absent. It is more than birth. It includes living, loving, sharing, crying, learning, helping and simply being silent while listening.
Read more…. Women’s Innate Knowledge
Photo by Travis Grossen
On one of my trips to the magical world of the library I was drawn, as if by a magnet, to the newly acquired books table where my fingers fell upon The Heart’s Code. In this work, Paul Pearsall offers a revolutionary view of the human body based on the most advanced scientific studies coming out of the field of psychoneuroimmunology—the study of the interaction between mind, body and social systems and how this interaction influences social systems—and bio-energetics or energy medicine—the study of energy generated within living things.
Read more…. The Knowing Body and Remembering Heart
Photo by Yousef Espanioly
I began my journey to and through midwifery in 1980. Little did I know as a Bradley® childbirth educator that homebirthing is what lay ahead. If I had known, I don’t know that I would have continued!
Read more…. Passing It On
When he was asked, “What is a friend?” Aristotle answered, “One soul inhabiting two bodies.” When asked, “What is a doula?” I answered, “One soul inhabiting two bodies,” … the privilege to be in union—nonseparate from another with a shared intent or purpose. Read more…. An Intimate Dance with Birthing Women
Ever since I met two traditional Oaxacan midwives at the 1993 Midwives of North America (MANA) conference in San Francisco, I wanted to visit Oaxaca, Mexico. Ten years later, it happened when Jan Tritten invited me to participate in the 2003 Midwifery Today/ MANA conference in Oaxaca. Read more…. The Birth of a Collaboration
The question we must ask ourselves is this: Can a midwife survive a medicalized education and still come out an authentic midwife? Read more…. A Knowledge Base Fit for All Midwives
On September 24, 2003, a group of traditional midwives from Mexico gathered at the Iglesia de los Pobres, a church in Oaxaca de Juarez, to write these declarations about midwifery and birth. Read more…. Pronunciamiento/Pronouncement
Many North American women are being told at the very end of their pregnancies to go to an ultrasound clinic and have a biophysical profile done. They will probably not be told that there is no scientific basis for having faith in the test results… Read more…. Suspect Diagnoses Come with Biophysical Profiling
Photo by Angèle Kamp
It is always tempting, when speaking or writing about complex philosophical ideas, to look for simple, everyday metaphors to try to make sense of and explain those ideas to other people. Often, what you gain in being able to express your thoughts, you lose in attempting to simplify thoughts that should not be simplified, or in trying to put boundaries around ideas that should remain fluid and unbound.
Read more…. The Pie of Midwifery Knowledge
Photo by Tom Chamberlain
When a baby is gestating in the mother’s womb, neural circuits are being formed in its brain. This process begins in early pregnancy and continues as the baby grows, until by the time of birth the baby’s developing brain already contains millions of pathways and connections. Much of the information that flows along these circuits is cultural. As it develops, the baby receives enormous amounts of cultural information from the mother’s activities: when she goes to sleep, when she wakes, how she moves during the day, her speech patterns, her emotions, etc.
Read more…. Ways of Knowing: Open and Closed Systems