Sunday, March 25, 2012


Sometimes we doula types go on long Youtube jags, looking for videos that illustrate a particular situation. You can learn a lot from watching births, not the least of which is that there are a billion ways to do it! I'm expecting a twin birth sometime soon, so that's what's on my mind this week.

And of course, sometimes when you're actively thinking about one thing, it turns into a completely different tangent or three.

These videos may (gasp!) show nudity.

This video really gets me, probably because it reflects a lot of how I see myself. Maybe it's the braids and the tattoos (or the wood paneling or the handmade pottery!), or the fact that she has a lot of surrounding support but doesn't seem to want much touch. I think that is something that all doulas have to acknowledge and let go of: the idea that all women want what you would. Once you can accept that, you can learn from it.

For example, I mostly don't like to be touched when I'm in pain. It breaks my inward focus and makes me irritable. Because I have that personal understanding, I have found that I am able to use massage and counterpressure with clients who have yelled at everyone else who tried to touch them. When I'm working with a client who doesn't like to be touched, I try to come at it with no thought and no ego - not like a person giving a massage, but like the wall she was leaning on just happened to develop hard knobs that fit into the right pressure points.

Anyway, back to twins. This one is a planned vaginal birth in a hospital. A lot of doctors recommend automatic C-section for twins, but there are other options. It is really hard to find good videos of hospital twin births, though. Here's one; the mom seems to be in a normal Labor-Delivery-Recovery room with an epidural.

Often hospitals require that you will deliver in an operating suite, even if you are having a vaginal birth (this means laboring in a normal LDR room, then moving to the OR when you are completely dilated). I have heard of doctors who want the mother to have an epidural in place as well in case of emergency, though this isn't the norm as far as I know. Talk it all through with your OB or midwife. There may be surprises in store for you in your birth, but they shouldn't be about hospital policies that you didn't know about!

Last of all, remember that of course a cesarean birth is still a birth and should be celebrated as such. I love this video of twin c-section, shot from the father's point of view. The birth is shown clearly, but the curve of the belly hides the incision site. The mom is relaxed and smiling.

No comments: