The Birth Rehearsal

Why do a birth rehearsal? If you want to know what to expect of normal labor, and how to engage with it, then this is probably the most practical workshop that you can take.

birth rehearsal workshop

 

Birth rehearsals are not like other prenatal classes: they are a unique form of preparation to help prepare you for labor, whether you are having a hospital birth, a water birth or a home birth. Perfect on its own for parents who already know the basics of birth or a great addition to any other childbirth education class you have previously taken.

Your instructor, Brandi Spray, draws from her experience as a two time mom, birth doula, Hypnobirthing Certified Birth Professional and trained Hypnobabies hypno-doula for a fun and inspiring private workshop for both mom & her birth partner.

A WHOLE RANGE OF TOPICS ARE COVERED AND INCLUDE:

  • Optimal fetal positioning and the value of maternal posture in late pregnancy
  • Mental and emotional preparation
  • Top tips for birthing partners – physical and emotional support for the laboring woman (dad gets to be the doula!)
  • How fear affects labor
  • Breath and movement in labor for energy and pain management
  • Massage techniques for pregnancy and labor
  • Visualization and relaxation techniques to promote gentle birth

WE’LL ADDRESS OTHER VERY COMMON QUESTIONS SUCH AS:

  • How can we keep calm?
  • What positions work best?
  • How will I know when I am / she is really in labor?
  • What do we need to do once we know its birthing time?

 

It is a relaxed, effective way to learn practical coping skills for birth. The session works best when the pregnant woman is accompanied by her partner (usually dad, sister, or close friend who will attend the birth.) The class includes a deep relaxation hypnobirthing practice that assists in the integration of the techniques taught for those interested birth hypnosis. You will also receive access to my online resource library only for Fargo Childbirth clients.

Your private session will last about 2 hours & is best suited for moms after 32 weeks. Cost is $75 per couple + $25/add’l friends & family who will be participating in the birth experience.

my newborn baby won't sleep – and other things a postpartum doula can help with

Oh my gosh, when they said “sleep when the baby sleeps” they didn’t know that you can’t because you’re off Googling “my newborn baby won’t sleep”! And using that logic, if you are supposed to sleep when the baby sleeps, exactly when, tell me when, are you supposed to eat?  Unless you have 4 arms or a husband who doesn’t mind spoon feeding you while you nurse, its pretty challenging to eat while the baby eats (until you get the hang of it that is!)

The first few days your newborn baby is home is supposed to be a wondrous time of unicorns farting rainbows, is it not?

Sometimes it is and if you are lucky enough to have a great system of family and friends to help, its pretty awesome.  But for most parents, after a few days the visitors go home and reality sets in “exactly how do I take care of my newborn baby?

my newborn baby won't sleep

A postpartum doula can help be the unicorn, but instead of doing it for you, she’ll teach you how to fart those rainbows yourself. All joking aside, this type of doula has the sole purpose of “mothering the mother” providing physical, emotional, & educational support after baby is born. She’s not usually a nurse (a postpartum doula doesn’t do anything medical) and she’s not a nanny (she’s more like your mentor than your employee.) But many things can overlap.  Because her goal is to help give you confidence as a parent, she may help with light household chores, watch baby while you rest or shower, demonstrate various newborn care techniques, and even help you with breastfeeding questions.

While grandmas, best friends, and sisters are irreplaceable, sometimes its nice to just have a totally new perspective. Someone who is specializes in helping mom with her newborn baby. And if you have other kids already, she can help you during this adjustment period to care for yourself and other children. Some postpartum doulas, like myself, offer virtual services online or via phone and text if you don’t need someone there in person. Enjoy this time, she won’t be a newborn baby for long.

4 Ways to Rock Your Natural Birth

rock your natural birth #wecandobetter

So, your crazy self decided you wanna try to rock your natural birth, huh? **Pretend I inserted a meme here that shows what society thinks, what your mom thinks, what you think, and then of course the reality. Guess what, they ALL might be just a little accurate.**  If you are already considering a natural birth, its pretty likely you might already know a bit about birth.  If not, I offer some pretty fun classes that are designed to help you including one to help you plan your birth.

Perhaps you are already all studied up or have used Google to learn everything there is to know about giving birth naturally.  If not, here are a few tips to help you rock your natural birth whether its at home, hospital, or perhaps birth in the backseat of the car.

how to Rock Your Natural Birth

1. Hire a doula

Um, yeah, this is a doula’s website so it might seem kinda silly that my number one tip is to hire a doula, but hiring a doula can increase your chances of having the birth experience you want.  Seriously, if you do nothing else, do this one, she’s professionally trained to help you with everything else that follows in this list.

2. Learn how natural birth works

Birth is actually pretty simple.  Yes, your BFF might have had a less than stellar experience that she’s told you about in excruciating detail, but that’s just it, its hers– not yours. Part of the solution for this step is to take an EVIDENCE-BASED childbirth education class.  These classes help give you information you need to make informed choices for your birth, which leads me to #3.

3. Know Your Choices

Once you know how natural birth works, you need to understand what options are available to you.  For example, you know that after birth the baby is still connected via umbilical cord to the placenta. In the movies, they show dad quickly stepping in to cut the cord as soon as baby is out.  Well, folks, that’s only one of the choices you have available (others include delayed clamping, cord blood banking, leaving it attached to naturally dry while still connected to the placenta.)  I’ve said this before, but if you don’t know your options, you don’t have any.

4. Involve your partner

This one goes along with #1.  While your doula is an expert in birth, your partner is the expert in YOU.  He (or she) is the one who knows your heart, understands your deepest fears, has seen you before in good times and bad, and is the one who can connect with you better than anyone else. Having your partner become involved with birth shows him that you feel the same way. When you involve your partner, you have another set of hands, another voice to provide encouragement, and another shoulder to cry on.  Don’t underestimate how emotional having a baby is for your partner too, even though he’s not the one with the baby in his belly.

While I certainly cannot promise you that birth will be everything you hope for or expect, I do know that these four ways to rock your natural birth will get you on the right path.

How did you prepare yourself to rock your birth?  If you have more suggestions or tips, leave a comment and help another woman to rock her birth!

informed consent questions for birth

Well, you’ve taken a class, read all of google, and have a very sturdy understanding of birth, possible interventions, and have a great plan of action. SO, what do you do if during your labor you want to deviate or your provider suggests something different?  You have the right to informed refusal as well as informed consent.

informed consent defintion

I’m sure that you would walk to the ends of the earth to ensure your baby is kept healthy and safe. So if an intervention is recommended you have the opportunity to provide your informed consent, my focus here is on the word INFORMED. You have the right to refuse, but you also have the right to allow. The objective is to ensure you understand the pro’s and con’s and are able to weigh those in your decision making process.

I’ve created some cards you can use as a reminder on what you should be asking.  The first question, “is this an emergency” should take priority, obviously.  If you have time to discuss and weigh your options, use the BRAIN acronym to assess the Benefits, Risks, Alternatives, Intuition, and Next steps/Do Nothing.

informed consent printable card

If you’d like, I can mail out a few of these printed cards FOR FREE for you to use (or if you’re a doula, you can give them to your clients) just shoot me a quick message with your address and I’ll get some sent out. Of course, while supplies last.

 

Do I Need a Doula QUIZ

doula quiz

Are you try to decide whether or not you should have a doula attend your birth? The first thing to know is that doulas are for ANY woman who wants support, not just crunchy-granola hippie types. In Fargo-Moorhead, we have a number of doulas that are part of the Doulas of the Red River Valley collaborative. We support moms in both hospital and home settings and anything from natural birth to surgical birth and even home water birth (its not just for mermaids!) Its our job and passion to help guide you to have the best experience possible. So go ahead and take this doula quiz to see if one might be right for you.

do I need a doula quiz

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Dayspring Doula strives to help parents develop the mindset, confidence, and support system needed to achieve their best birth. I provide individual, personalized birthing education and am committed to being a dependable resource for my clients.  I am a birth & postpartum doula also providing childbirth planning & education. Your partner & advocate to have the experience YOU want http://dayspringdoula.com/ Also check out http://fargochildbirth.com to see available childbirth education classes or http://doulasrrv.org to see other doulas available in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

Prepared Childbirth Classes and the Zombie Apocalypse

I’ve come to realize that for many people, we (yes, myself once included!) too easily just blindly follow along with the brochures included in our folder from the hospital telling us to attend “prepared childbirth education.”  Recently I’ve asked myself, exactly what was I being “prepared” for, was there a test at the end?! Did I really need weeks and weeks of training? Isn’t birth as normal of a physiological experience as intercourse (remember how awkward THAT class was in junior high?!)

This is where my Your Birth Experience classes come into play.  As your educator, I can help you identify what you want and what to expect so you can make informed choices about how you want to give birth.  I’m not going to prepare you for a zombie apocalypse, instead, I’m going to help you make a plan for your birth experience based on evidence based information. Whether you want to deliver your baby in the hospital or at home, c-section or normally, with medications or without, I can help you identify your choices and create a plan.

Private YBE classes are offered in the comfort and privacy of your own home and tailored to your schedule. 4 hours of tailored instruction for you and your birth partner to prepare you for your childbirth experience, not just hospital expectations. The Your Birth Experience Childbirth Parents’ Guide included with the class, is an interactive journal that walks you step-by-step through the process of understanding your own unique desires and needs in relation to childbirth, It also contains detailed information about childbirth and evidence-based information about all your options that is presented in a simple and understandable way.

Topics in the manual are:

  • Why Your Birth Experience?
  • The Importance of a Birth Plan
  • Understanding the Birth Process
  • Preparing for Your Birth Experience
  • Constructing Your Birth Plan

Check out my Facebook Page for a current listing of group classes or visit http://dayspringdoula.youcanbook.me to schedule your private class.

Creating YOUR Birth Experience ~ FREE Birth Planning Workshop

Your Birth Experience

I’m proud to announce, I am now a Your Birth Experience trainer. I am very excited to share with families a totally different paradigm in childbirth education, focused on individual couples and their needs.  As an introduction to this new approach, I’m offering an introductory workshop to help you learn more about what choices you have in childbirth. Specifically we’ll be talking about the choices you have for your birth education and your support team.

Your Birth Experience Childbirth Training Curriculum is a comprehensive, customizable training system designed with YOU in mind. The purpose is to help you envision, prepare for and achieve the birth experience YOU want. Through the Your Birth Experience Childbirth Training Manual, and one-on-one sessions with your personal, Certified Trainer, you and your partner will be empowered and equipped for YOUR unique experience.

FREE Creating YOUR Birth Experience ~ Birth Planning Workshop

Tuesday February 24 at 6pm in the meeting room at Atomic Coffee Downtown on Broadway.

This workshop will focus on learning what choices you have for creating a support team and childbirth education focused to achieve your best birth. We will envision your ideal birth and create a plan on how to achieve the positive experience you want.

Includes workshop handouts, gift bag, and light snack.

Space is limited, please preregister at https://dayspringdoula.eventbrite.com

birth philosophy