Friday, February 27, 2009

Posted by Kim:

Our Interview posted on DotComMothers

Birthing Clothes - Meet Carri Grimditch and Kimberly Taylor of Binsi™

I have two guests today - Carri Grimditch and Kimberly Taylor of Binsi™. The company sells specially designed birthing clothes - tops and skirts aimed at making women feel more relaxed and comfortable at the time of giving birth. Their birth / labor clothing has attracted wide media attention. In my interview the owners share their business tips and tell us their business story. Lets move on then and learn more about these unique labor and delivery clothes business. Read and get inspired.

BINSI® is a unique Labor & Birth Apparel and Jewelry line designed to empower women during pregnancy, birth and beyond. BINSI® is a wonderful way to help mothers create a more normal and personal birth experience. These functional and practical skirts and tops are designed to be stylish and comfortable during third trimester, labor & birth as well as postpartum recovery. BINSI® Birth Wish Bracelets and BINSI® Blessing Beads offer a unique way to connect friends and family to the mother-to-be, and surround her with a network of support and love.

How did you come up with the idea for your birthing clothes business?

The idea began when Carri was preparing for the birth of her second child. She knew that she didn’t want to wear a hospital gown, but also knew that it would need to accommodate the medical equipment she might need, and the physical needs of moving while laboring. She then started to put together different design ideas until she found one that would work. She learned how to sew to make her skirt, which is a story in and of itself, but ended up with a great looking skirt that was better than she expected to wear during her labor and birth.

Was it hard to promote the labor and delivery clothes in the initial days?

The idea was not difficult to promote in the beginning because Carri never intended it to become a business. However, after telling other friends and doula clients about what she chose to wear at her birth, they wanted them too. They told their friends and clients and soon she was sewing a lot of skirts, and still not a good sewer - 4 hours per skirt!

Did you have a business plan when you started?

After Carri exhausted her own abilities, and that of a neighbor who also sewed, she realized that it was time to create a real company. When Carri made that decision BINSI® did start off with a business plan. It was a difficult to create it, but well worth it!

What is your number one stress relief tactic?

Carri: Spending a day not working or cleaning. Just hanging out with my husband and kids.

Kim: Putting all the work aside (and my cell phone where I can’t hear it) and simply being a Mom for the afternoon!

Give us some of your time management tips?

Carri: Work when you have time to sit down and actually accomplish something. I have learned the hard way that constantly trying to fit things in while the kids are around is too difficult, everyone ended up with less, and it wasn’t worth it.

Kim: Find a friend who needs help too and set up a regular kid swap. I can get more done in 3 hours alone than 8 hours trying to be business person/mom. Everyone suffers and my stress level increases exponentially. In addition, I prioritize the things I have to do and if I can do it at night after the kids are in bed then I wait to do it then. Quiet day time hours are precious and I hate to spend them doing things I can do in the evening.

Finally, your five keys to success?

1. Truly believing in the benefits of our products. We not only want the business to succeed, but we are truly passionate about wanting to empower women through their birth experience.
2. Maintaining our focus on creating quality products that are focused on the mother and her needs.
3. Specific job responsibilities and expectations.
4. Specific job responsibilities and expectations.
5. Most importantly a close friendship between us.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Pregnancy - Pregnancy with 3 Kids

Posted by Carri:

One amazing thing about having a large family is how you are able to handle other kids while being sick, tired, and just plain out of sorts. I can’t say that I have any answer to this, other than we are all given just enough to get through. I have found that guilt and frustration only made the experience worse. I had to keep reminding myself that I was giving my children the gift of another sibling, rather than my damaging them by not being engaged with them all the time. I am also blessed with an amazing middle child who is the best big brother to my 2 year old. They love playing together and entertained each other, which gave me the freedom from having to come up with activities or be the activity most of the time. This is another blessing of a large family - playmates!

Product Review - Bella Band

Posted by Carri:

With this being my 4th pregnancy, I have many clothes left over, and many that have been loaned to me. However, I did make a purchase this time around that I had not made before – the Bella Band. It is great! I have a couple pairs of pants that are super cozy for winter (fleece lined!) and I couldn’t think to part with, and Bella Band made that possible. It is just a simple tube of spandex material that fits over your belly and pants. It reduces the exposure of the buttons flaring, and it keeps people from seeing my underwear – which are all good things! It was a fairly inexpensive and worth while purchase.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Partnerhships - Operation Special Delivery

Posted by Kim:

BINSI® Supports Operation Special Delivery

BOULDER, Colo. ---- BINSI®, the leading manufacturer of stylish and hospital-friendly labor and birth apparel, has partnered with the Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association (CAPPA) to support Operation Special Delivery. Operation Special Delivery provides trained volunteer doulas to pregnant women whose husbands or partners are deployed, have been severely injured, or who have lost their lives due to the current war on terror. The CAPPA-certified doulas offer emotional, informational, and physical support to the women during childbirth in the absence of their husbands.

BINSI®, a female-owned company since its inception in 2005, is committed to supporting women through pregnancy, birth, and beyond. Through this partnership, BINSI® is donating 5 percent of their sales to CAPPA for Operation Special Delivery.

“No woman should ever have to give birth without someone there to lovingly support her,” says Carri Grimditch, founder and co-owner of BINSI®. “Operation Special Delivery offers that support by providing doulas to the women whose husbands or partners are away making an immense sacrifice for our country.”

Just as it’s important for women to feel comfortable and empowered by the clothing they wear during labor and birth, it’s also important for them to have people there to advocate for and encourage them. Research has shown that women who have a doula present during labor are less likely to require emergency C-sections and other invasive medical procedures. “Partnering with Operation Special Delivery seemed like a natural fit for BINSI®,” Grimditch says.

About BINSI®
BINSI®’s mission is to help women feel supported and empowered throughout their pregnancy, labor, and birth by offering products that make them feel beautiful, healthy, and in control of their motherhood journey. BINSI® labor and birth apparel is comfortable, modest, and stylish while still being fully compatible with any labor position and medical equipment—a great alternative to unflattering, immodest hospital gowns. All BINSI® products are tested and approved by mothers, doulas, midwives, obstetricians, and nurses. For more information about BINSI®, visit

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Pregnancy - Spotting during the 1st trimester of pregnancy

Posted by Carri:

One part of my pregnancies is spotting during the 1st trimester, and is easily one of the worst and most stressful parts. Starting with my 2nd pregnancy, I would start spotting during my 5th week and usually spot until 12 weeks. I found with this current pregnancy that it was often worsened by stress and doing too much. I always had ultrasounds early to check the viability of the pregnancy, and even though once they found the heartbeat my chances of having a miscarriage went down significantly, I never stopped worrying until I was out of the 1st trimester. I did suffer one miscarriage, but there was no spotting beforehand. I just woke up with a lot of bleeding, and it only increased from there. There seems to be no cure to spotting, it just seems to be what some women’s bodies do, and others do not. All I can say is that I learned from my miscarriage that I knew how short and precious life was and I vowed to love these tiny babies as much as I could, for as long as I could. I also found this was a great opportunity to challenge and rest in my faith. For those of you who are also experiencing spotting, I hope and pray that you are made stronger and that your pregnancies end with a healthy happy baby in the end.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Reviews - Barefoot Mommies

Posted by Kim:

Check out the awesome review we received from Angela of Barefoot Mommies! Read the review and leave a comment for a chance to win the BINSI Birth Skirt of your choice.

Angela says "Now, I'm not pregnant, nor have I just had another baby, but that doesn't keep me from wearing this. It is BEYOND comfortable! You can even wear the skirt out and about. After you have your baby, it comes with draw strings so you're still able to wear it even after post baby weight. Which I think is awesome because you will get what you paid for and then some.
When Binsi contacted me, I was excited...Course with someone not being pregnant I was a little hesitant because I figured it's just for pregnant women, but I LOVE this skirt, my gosh. I can't say enough about the comfort of it."

What an honor for us!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Partnerships - BeadforLife

Posted by Kim:

BINSI and BeadforLife Partner to Support Women Worldwide

BOULDER, Colo. — BINSI, the leading manufacturer of stylish and hospital-friendly labor and birth apparel, has partnered with BeadforLife, a non-profit organization that creates opportunities for Ugandan women to lift their families out of extreme poverty by creating and selling goods in a fair trade market.

BINSI, a female-owned company since its inception in 2005, is committed to supporting women through pregnancy, birth, and beyond. Through this new partnership with BeadforLife, BINSI now offers Birth Wish Bracelets, the perfect gift for expectant mothers and their friends and family.

“All over the world, pregnant women are showered with support and prayers for their unborn children,” says Carri Grimditch, founder and co-owner of BINSI. “Our BeadforLife Birth Wish Bracelets are a wonderful expression of those blessings for the women who wear them, as well as a perfect way to support the betterment of women worldwide.”

Each bead on the Birth Wish Bracelet is handmade from colorful recycled paper, resulting in a unique, vibrant look. The bracelets can be given to family and friends as favors at baby showers and blessingways—wearing them is a visible reminder to loved ones to keep the mom-to-be in their thoughts throughout her pregnancy, birth, and transition to motherhood. Plus, 100 percent of BeadforLife net profits go toward support such as food, clothing, and education for impoverished families in Uganda.

Birth Wish Bracelets are available for $6 each and you can create your own pack by ordering as many bracelets as you need, ideal for group purchases such as baby showers or blessingways. All bracelets are one-of-a-kind and come with a keepsake card for loved ones to write a wish, blessing or prayer that will be treasured by the mother-to-be for years to come.


BINSI’s mission is to help women feel supported and empowered throughout their pregnancy, labor, and birth by offering products that make them feel beautiful, healthy, and in control of their motherhood journey. BINSI labor and birth apparel is comfortable, modest, and stylish while still being fully compatible with any labor position and medical equipment—a great alternative to unflattering, immodest hospital gowns. All BINSI products are tested and approved by mothers, doulas, midwives, obstetricians, and nurses. For more information about BINSI and BeadforLife, visit

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A NICU Story Part II

Posted by Kim:

A continuation of yesterday's post, here are some more letters we wrote to Connor while he remained in the NICU. While our stint in the hospital was about to get worse, it was also the beginning of the answers to Connor's problems. Thank goodness for Denver's Children's Hospital!

Written by Kim

October 28, 2002

Dear Connor,

Today was a day filled with joy and concern. I was so excited to come to the hospital and see you today because I knew you would not need the bililights, which meant that I could hold you all day long. When I called Karen in the nursery last night she told me you had gained 16 grams. Dad and I were both VERY excited about that. When I came into the hospital this morning you took 23ccs from a bottle. I just knew it was going to be a good day. You laid in my arms all morning long, I couldn't bare to put you down. I just love it when you snuggle your head into my neck. You are the most beautiful and loving baby. Sometimes I can't believe you are mine. I often wonder how my life can be any more perfect. I have the greatest husband and the most wonderful son. We sat on the couch and read stories all day. We read about Old Yeller, Paul Bunyan, and Pecos Bill and of course we read your favorite book "Guess How Much I Love You." Later in the afternoon we had a wonderful visit with Aunt Kathy and your little friend Adrian. We had lunch on the floor and Adrian just stared at you. He can't wait until you start going over to his house to play. You two are going to have the greatest time growing up together.

When Mom and Grandma came back to the hospital to feed you at 5pm you weren't feeling very good. Dr Rosquist came to visit and we decided to go for a trip to Denver. You were the greatest little thing and got to ride in the ambulance with the nice nurses. I am sure it was very exciting. We are at Children's Hospital now and the nice doctors are looking you over. I knew we are going to figure out what is going on . They are going to fix it and you will soon be home with Mom and dad. We love you so much. Can you guess how much?

We love you all the way to the moon and back.

After a trip home to pick up Grandma Sarah and Paul we arrived at the hospital to find things spiraling down for Connor quite rapidly. It was kind of like watching a car accident. Everyone was rushing around quickly taking care of Connor and another critical baby that had just been born, but at the same time everything seemed to be moving in slow motion and the sound was drowned out by my mind wondering what was happening. The nurses were amazing, truly like Mothers to me rather than clinical medical nurses. I will never forget seeing Connor's limp little body laying in the crib with the oxygen tent over his head. I just wanted to hold him, he needed to be held by his Mom! The sweetest nurse just stood by his side singing Amazing Grace and rubbing his little fingers. The Flight for Life team came to take the other baby to Denver and we were waiting for Connor's team to arrive. The LUH nurses kept taking Polaroid pictures of Connor and giving them to me. I didn't understand what was going on and I kept screaming inside of my head saying "Stop taking his picture" because I was thinking that they thought these might be his last pictures alive. In retrospect however, I wonder if they took the pictures so when we arrived at the hospital we would be able to identify Connor, because there was not room in the ambulance for us ride along with him. Everything was so scary and all I could think of was the worse case scenario. I kept praying and praying that Connor would be ok. Life couldn't be that cruel, God wouldn't separate me from my baby, he was going to live! I'll never forget the long drive to Denver Children's Hospital, following the ambulance wishing I could be in the ambulance with Connor.

October 29, 2002

Dear Connor,

Again today was filled with joy and concern. We woke up in our little parent sleep room
somewhat refreshed and immediately rushed downstairs to see you. You are just so cute I can't take my eyes off of you.

Around lunch time Auntie Amy brought Grandma Sarah down to the hospital to see you. We were all staring at you and saying how you are the most beautiful baby we have ever seen.

Soon after lunch Dr Mitchel came to see us to tell us about a heart procedure they were going to do. You have a duct in your heart (PDA Duct) that should have closed soon after
you were born, but it didn't. So Dr Mitchel will go into your chest and tie off the duct so that all the blood flows where it should. We are also hoping that once this is complete it will help your intestines do the job they should do.

You went in for surgery around 4:20pm and Mom and Dad were VERY worried, but luckily Auntie Amy and Grandma were here to keep us company. We were also talking to Grandma Vonnie and Grandpa Roger every hour or so to keep them updated.

Not an hour later the nurse and the doctor came in to see us all and they said you were a perfectly behaved boy and the surgery was a great success. You even pooped while on the surgery table. You are just so cute.

We all hated to leave the hospital tonight, but we knew you were in good hands and boy did Mommy need a shower! Daddy too! But we knew we would be down to see you first thing tomorrow morning. We love you so much!

Even though being transferred to Children's Hospital was the scariest night of my life, it proved
to be the best thing that could have happened to us. We had spent the last week in limbo in the Longmont NICU having no idea what was going on or how to make things better. We finally arrived at Children's around midnight, they gave us a parent sleep room that consisted of a bed, sheets and a phone for $1 rental, but at least we had somewhere to sleep. By the time we were at Connor's bedside at 8am the next day Drs Karrer and Hendrickson had already identified the need for a PDA duct ligation and the possibility that Connor had Hirschsprung's Disease. We had hoped after the PDA Duct ligation that the new blood flow would correct Connor's bowel problems, but things remained the same so the doctors took a tissue sample from Connor's colon and when the test results arrived they discovered that Connor did in fact have Hirschsprung's disease, a rare disease of the large intestine where the ganglion cells, or nerve cells that make the intestine push stool down to be excreted, are absent in some or all of the intestine. The stool then backs up in the intestine causing an infection in the belly and would eventually cause death. This disease is more often found in children with Down's Syndrome and has varying degrees of severity.

Thankfully after several days of observation and an enema, the doctor discovered that only the lower sigmoid region of Connor's colon w
as effected and at 3 months he would be eligible for a Pull Through Surgery. So they kept Connor in the hospital for observation for one week after we arrived to make sure he was stable and to educate us on how to care for Connor's bowels until the surgery.

Each day we would go down to the hospital and sit by Connor's side in the one chair that was there. Every three hours I would go to the breast pump room (which was about the size of a phone booth) and pump enough milk to feed the entire NICU! I was just glad they continued to feed Connor the breast milk and the my milk stayed so that I was able to nurse Connor until he was a year old. These pumping breaks were literally the longest 20 minutes of my life. I am not sure what the new hospital has, but hopefully there is a little tv or something in the pumping room!

Eventually on November 5th after they had deemed Connor stable and taught us how to irrigate his bowels with a tube and saline solution (which we had to do for 3 months) we were released from the hospital and ready to go home. It was so funny because I had been praying for so long for Connor to come home with us, but when they actually said we could leave I started to panic a little and worried if I would be able to take care of this precious little baby. Until now I had hardly even changed his diaper or dressed him in clothes. Luckily love overcame fear and I knew that Paul and I would be wonderful parents. As you can imagine once we arrived home we could hardly put Connor down. He rarely if ever slept in the crib or pack and play and eventually we just adopted the family bed and we haven't changed since!

Connor looked so tiny in his car seat it seemed like it really wasn't very protective.

At 3 months
old Connor had his pull through surgery, they removed the lower sigmoid region and he began popping right away and hasn't stopped since! I was very impressed with the care we received at Denver Children's Hospital and I was particularly impressed with our doctors Dr Karrer and Dr Hendrickson. While I never imagined this situation happening I was so thankful to have such a great hospital close by!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A NICU story Part I

Posted by Kim:

Connor's birth went smoothly and for some reason Paul and I were under the misconception that we would have a baby that was 5 weeks premature, a little small, but healthy and ready to go home. Unfortunately that was not what happened. Connor ended up spending 2 weeks in the hospital after I was discharged. He was at Longmont United Hospital for one week and then at Denver Children's Hospital for one week. The following are letters I wrote to Connor while he was in Longmont United Hospital.

Written by Kim

October 23, 2002

Dear Connor,

Today has been a very difficult day for Dad and me, but somehow you knew just what to do to make us feel better. Last night was heartbreaking for us because we did not want you to leave our room. Dad was so sad when he had to put you down in your crib so the nurse could roll you to the nursery, but we knew it was the best thing to do and all we want is for you to be healthy.

Together Dad, the doctor and I decided we would start your tube feedings (gavage) last night and I think we made the right decision because you seem to have a lot more energy. I just never want to leave your side.

Unfortunately Mommy is feeling good physically and there are too many patients in the hospital so I must be discharged. I hate the thought of being without you, but I will be here with or without a room.

After your 4:30 feeding Dad and I went to dinner with Aunt Amy and Uncle Jeff and then we all came back to see you. Auntie Amy could hardly wait! She loves you so much. She says that you are the cutest baby she has ever seen and I know it is true.

After Auntie Amy and Uncle Jeff had a chance to cuddle and snuggle with you it was time for dinner. It turned out to be a great feeding. You breast fed at 7:30 and 10:30. It was just the encouragement Dad and I needed. We love you so much and just can't wait to take you home. This was definitely what we needed. Thank you Connor, we love you!

October 24, 2002

Dear Connor,

Today is going to be a tough day. Dad and I were very encouraged by your eating last night, but today you have to spend time under the bililights. You just look so vulnerable. I hate having to put you back down when you are done eating. Luckily Pooh has been by your side the whole time to keep you company. We'll have to thank Aunt Lisa for that.

You are so special to us and we love you so much. We are going to have the greatest times together.

October 25, 2002

Dear Connor,

Today was such a wonderful day! I guess you decided it was time to go home. When I came to the hospital this morning the nurse, Robyn, told me you no longer had the tube in your belly and you had taken both of your late night meals by bottle. I was so surprised I could hardly believe it. I had wondered why the nurse decided to take out the tube when Robyn said it was you who decided to pull out the tube. Apparently you pulled the tube out yourself and the rest is history. You breast fed and bottle fed breast milk all day long.

We also had a fabulous visit with the pediatrician Dr Rosquist. She said she is very excited about your progress and if all goes well the rest of the day you may be able to go home with us tomorrow. That would be the most wonderful thing. I can hardly wait for tomorrow.

Hopefully we will all be together at home. It will be a great surprise for Grandma Sarah too, because she will be arriving tomorrow night and will be so excited to meet you.

I know I keep telling you this, but I can't help it, Mom and Dad love you with all of our hearts. You are my special little guy!

October 26, 2002

Dear Connor,

Today was a very difficult day. I stayed overnight at the hospital so I could be with you every single minute and make sure you had some really good feedings. Unfortunately when we weighed you, you only gained one gram and I knew that was not a good sign but I still kept hope that you could come home. When Dr Rosquist came in she was a little concerned because you really hadn't gained any weight and you looked a little yellow. We looked at your bilirubin test results and they decided you needed to head to the tropics again (light therapy). Hopefully this trip will be the last.

The good thing about today is that you have started to eat more. It is usually a combination of tube and bottle feeding, but we'll take it. Our goal is to get you to consistently eat 30-35 ccs of breast milk at each feeding. Even though I was upset that you could not come home, I know it is for the best. The worst thing in the world would be for us to take you home and have to bring you back to the hospital.

Daddy has been working so hard on your little bedroom and it looks so great! He painted the wall and assembled your crib. You are going to look so adorable in the room. I think we picked the perfect theme (Americana). Now that we know our baby is a boy Daddy wants to add some Buffalo Bills memorabilia to your room. With their new colors the Bills stuff will match perfect. So, I am sure you will be a big Bills fan.

As the day wound down it began to get better. The most wonderful thing happened. You got to meet your Grandma Sarah for the very first time. Daddy picked her up from the airport at midnight and they came straight to the hospital to meet you. Grandma Sarah thought you were the most handsome little boy she has ever seen. I have to say that I agree. I just can't wait to bring you home so I can hold you whenever I want to. You are going to be the most spoiled little boy because Mom and Dad are going to make sure you have everything you could possibly want or need. We love you!

October 27, 2008

Dear Connor,

Today was a nice quiet day. We spent the day together feeding and reading stories whenever possible. But mostly you had to spend time in the tropical bilisunshine. I am looking forward to holding you all day tomorrow.

Grandma also visited you today and held you for a while. she loves you so much. We are all looking forward to the day you can come home.

Throughout the week Connor had many ups and downs, but I never suspected that things were about to get worse. Everyday I would go to the hospital thinking this is going to be the day we are going to go home, but because of his rising bilirubin count he had to spend every second of each day under the bililights. Apparently if his bilirubin count got too high it could have caused brain damage This increased bilirubin count was due to the fact that Connor was not pooping and no one seemed to be able to figure out why he wasn't having bowel movements. The only times that he was not under the lights was during feedings. Connor ate via a tube that went in through his nose and down into his stomach (gavage feeding). The great thing about the feedings was that I was able to hold Connor while he ate through the tube because they thought this would help him to associate feeding with Mom as I planned to nurse him whenever he was ready. Unfortunately many times he would eat and then spit up the majority of the breast milk. I was so thankful that I was able to pump enough milk that he never had to have any formula to supplement his feedings. I was with Connor everyday from 7am until 1am, missing only one feeding a day. While exhausted when I went home being away from Connor was absolute torture and I was so frustrated not knowing what was causing the rise in his bilirubin count. Every time we took one step forward it seemed like we would take 2 steps back. Until October 28th when things got much worse, but at least was the beginning of the end of your NICU stay.

To be continued........

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Birth Story - Kim's First Birth

Posted by Kim:

I have been promising my birth stories and after an aggravating, sweaty search for my birth journal I finally found it and will transcribe the words from the actual birth experience. I have been looking for a week and I was starting to get a little sick to my stomach because I thought I had the journal out since we have been in our new house, frankly I felt a little taste of vomit in the back of my throat for every day that went by and I couldn't find it. Never the less, I was successful and without any more pointless details about my search I will get to the story!!!

Look at this picture? If you ever wonder why we "invented" BINSI this is why. To say the least I am not looking like I am ready for the challenges of labor and birth. I look like someone stuffed into a sausage casing. Thank goodness I wore BINSI for my second birth

October 20, 2002

written by Paul (Daddy)

Today is the big day! We arrived at the hospital around 12:15pm to begin inducing the baby. We are inducing the baby because the baby is a little bit smaller than expected, but the baby is healthy [original due date 11/16/02]. The Doctor believes at this point the baby will grow better on the outside than inside [had an amnio the previous week and lungs are developed].

Our first nurse is Polly and she has been wonderful. Our room number is 2010, pretty ironic since today is 10/20, we think it might be a sign that the baby will be born today (so naive we were). Also the Bills are beating the Dolphins 20-10, coincidence? The first thing Polly does is put Kim on the fetal monitor for about an hour while going through the formality of admission paperwork. During the course of conversation we find out that Polly is from Elmira, NY and that Kim and Polly share the same birthday. It seem that everyone has a NY connection.

At approximately 1:30pm Dr Finnegan arrives applies prostin gel to begin inducing the baby. Kim is about 1cm dilated, so we have a ways to go, but almost immediately after the gel is applied, Kim starts to feel cramping. We are also starting to see contractions on the external probe, a good sign. Kim describes the pain as similar to menstral cramps she used to have.

Since our arrival we've been catching up on our NFL action. Unfortunately the hospital does not have the NFL ticket, so we didn't get to watch the Bills today, Kim and baby are disappointed. Dr Finnegan says the head is in position for delivery and that the baby's head is looking in the direction of the football game, must be a football fan!

Amy Jones arrives around 2pm to visit us. Shortly after Amy arrives we go for a walk outside around the hospital. It was a short walk, but it felt good.

The Bills won today 23-10, so maybe its a sign that we're not having a baby today.

After a shift change, a new nurse Kelly, our friends Mark and Becky visit bearing gifts. Becky brought a sleezy sex mag (Cosmo), a baby Magazine (Martha Stewart) and Fortune with an article on Super Dads for me.

Dr Finnegan returned around 7pm to check on Kim's progress. Contractions are still occuring and the baby looks good, so the Dr will not give another dose of prostin gel tonight. Our progress indicates the baby may not come until Tuesday, but he'll re-evaluate on Monday morning.

After the Dr leaves Kim, Amy and I watch Monsters Inc. After the movie I run home to pick up a few things and get some food. As Day 1 comes to a close Kelly is relieved by Missy who will be our nurse throughout the night. I think we were both very anxious for the baby to arrive and with the news it may be Tuesday before baby comes is disappointing. The hospital and nurses are great but I think we'd both like to be home with our new baby!

October 21, 2002

Day 2 starts early with Missy coming in to take vitals every couple of hours, with a pelvic exam around 5am to check Baby T's progress and prepare for Dr Finnegan's first visit. After the prep work for the Dr visit Kim heads for the shower to freshen up. I slept on the sofa bed in the room. It was nive to stay in the hospital, but the comfort could be improved.

written by Kim:

Dr Finnegan stopped by around 8am or so, just before breakfast arrived. I was very hungary and wanted to eat, but didn't get a chance. The cramping from last night's gel had pretty much worn off so he decided to start with gel again today, not pitocin. Dr Finnegan checks my progress and I am 3cm dilated and about 80% effaced. He applies the gel and it seems to instantly spin me into labor. Our nurse today is Stacie and she says that the gel may be enough. I may not need pitocin.

Stacie constantly monitors my progress and I feel the contractions come on strong. They are approximately 2 minutes apart and 45 seconds in length. Stacie checks my progress and vital signs. She can not believe it, I have not dilated that much, but I am 100% effaced. She is going to call Dr Finnegan, it may be time to break my bag of water.

Around 9:15am Dr Finnegan breaks my bag of water and the contractions start to get stronger. He thinks we may have a baby by 4:30pm today. Mean while, throughout the whole labor process Paul has been wonderful! He hasn't even had a chance to shower or anything. He just sits by my side, counts my breathing and holds my hand. After Dr Dinnegan broke my bag of water he had to put the internal fetal monitors on me to check the baby's heart rate and my contractions. For some reason my contractions were not showing up on the monitor. I find this very odd because I know I am having them. The pacement of these monitors restricts where I can go, but that's ok because it seems like lying on my right side makes me feel best any way. Every time I move I throw up! I feel sea-sick.

The contractions keep coming and they are getting stronger. Nurse Char comes in to relieve Stacie so she can go to lunch. Char suggests I try some different positions, maybe this will help. I try sitting in the glider chair, but the rocking really makes me nauseous. Then I try to stand up and lean forward on the bed while Paul rubs my back. While Paul's massage feels great the standing and swaying makes me sick to my stomach again. So I just opt to sit on the bed. The baby's heart rate is best if I just lay on my right side so this is what I do.

The pain is really starting to get intense now. Epidural is running through my mind, but I can do this, I can endure! I will wait until Dr Finnegan comes over on his lunch to check my progress.

Around 12:30pm Dr Finnegan stops in to check my progress. I am only 4cm dilated! 1 cm? How can that be? I don't htink I can do this too much longer [this is where a doula would have intervened]. Stacie said I may need to get pitocin to regulate my contractions. this will probably make them more intense, regular and closer together. UGH!! Call for the epidural. I need it now.

We hear Dr Schneden is the doctor on call and I am nercous about this, but all the nurses say he is the best. At 1pm he starts the process and it takes about 30 minutes to complete, well it would have taken only 20 minutes if he wasn't so concerned about deleting a message on his beeper. By this point I could have picked up his beeper and slammed it on the floor inro 1000 little pieces. But eventually it is placed and the medicine starts to work.

It is amazing what a difference the epidural makes. I can hardly believe it, and I think Paul is pretty amazed too! The break in the action allows him to take a shower. I guess he doesn't want to be in his pajamas when the baby is born.

Around 1:15pm Paul calls Amy to give her an update. Very shortly Amy calls back. She got our message when she was in her car because she was already on her way to the hospital. She was just too excited to stay ay work. It works out well because Paul hasn't had anything for lunch and he asks Amy to stop by Wendy's and pick him up his favorite #2 combo.

Amy arrives around 2pm and Paul goes to eat lunch (switching of the guard)! I tell Amy all about the day and we are chatting when Stacie comes in to check my progress. She can't believe it, I am dilated to 10cm and I can start pushing! It is 2:30pm now and Amy runs out to get Paul and let him know we are going to start pushing. Paul runs into the room he can hardly believe it. In a little over an hour I went from 4cm to 10cm. Stacie says maybe th eepidural helped me to relax.

I begin pushing and it is really nice because it is only Paul, Amy, Stacie and me. The cameras are ready for action and the pushing begins. Soon the warmer comes into the room with our nursery nurse Brenda and Kristi the tech is present as well. A few contractions come, so they tell me, but they don't want me to push because the baby is too close. I have been pushing lying on my right side Stacie is counting and holding my left leg. Amy is cheering me on, but I think Paul is so excited and overwhelmed he forgets about me. He doesn't count, I think he is speechless. Finally Dr Finnegan arrives and he says we need to push him out now or we may need to use the vacuum because the baby's heart rate is going down. Just as he says that I push as hard as I can and out comes the abby. For what seems like an eternity I think "What is it? Boy or Girl?" Finally Dr Finnegan says it is a BOY! I can't believe it, I was so sure it was a girl. Paul was glowing with pride!! It was the cutest thing I have ever seen. Connor was 4 pounds 10 ounces and 18 inches long.

After Connor was born they laid him on my belly and cleaned him off. We had a short time together, but then they took him to the warmer so the nurse could check him out. Of course at this point the only person paying attention to me was Dr Finnegan [again a place where a doula would have made a major difference]. Dr Finnegan said I better get use to it. I don't mind my boy is healthy and beautiful!!!

Connor was induced 5 weeks early due to low in-utero fetal movement. We had been sent to Denver for an amnio and his lungs looked developed and the Dr there said I could either have the baby now or wait a week on bed rest and then induce the labor. Upon Dr Finnegan's recommendation we decided to induce sooner than later (the day of my planned baby shower actually).

While typing these words out I felt tears of joy coming to my eyes thinking about the birth of my first son. While at the same time I feel tears of pain stinging my eyes for the naive choices we made, the lack of knowledge I feel I had going into the birth (we did take a childbirth class), and some mourning for the birth experience I did not get to have, but had been planning all along. I have often wondered why we didn't listen to our friend Chuck when he said "Get a Doula. It's the best investment you will make." While hindsight is 20/20 and I can't change anything about Connor's birth there is a feeling of loss and sadness that I did not accomplish the natural birth I had been wanting. I really think we made the choices we had to at the time and as Carri always says, I have to embrace Connor's story because that is HIS birth story and in the end we have a happy healthy 6 year old now who I adore and is truly one of the lights of my world!

Little did I know that Connor's birth was going to be the easy part. The next two weeks were to be the hardest weeks of my life!

To Be Continued.......

Thursday, February 12, 2009



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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Partnerships - Waterbirth International

Posted by Kim:

BINSI® Partners with Waterbirth International

BOULDER, Colo. ---- BINSI®, the leading manufacturer of comfortable and stylish labor and birth apparel, has partnered with Waterbirth International, an organization dedicated to preserving, protecting and enhancing the well-being of women and children during pregnancy, birth and the early childhood experience. Waterbirth International accomplishes this goal through programs designed to educate both parents and professionals about the Gentle Birth model of maternity care.

BINSI®, a female-owned company since its inception in 2005, is committed to supporting women through pregnancy, birth, and beyond as well. Through this partnership, BINSI® and Waterbirth International offer the Basic BINSI® birth skirtTM and Go Go birth topTM to pregnant mothers as an accessory to waterbirth, encouraging women to move freely throughout their labor, in and out of the water, all the while feeling comfortable and covered.

"What BINSI® offers women is more than a piece of clothing. Their design represents autonomy and freedom of movement especially for women who choose to give birth in the hospital. I never could understand the purpose of putting a flimsy, tie up the back, gown on a laboring woman. The attractive skirts and tops help women feel not only comfortable, but attractive, even in labor! And they are great to use in birth pools!" Barbara Harper, Founder of Waterbirth International.

By partnering together BINSI® assists Waterbirth International in achieving their goal of making waterbirth an available option for all women. By wearing BINSI® skirts and tops women can feel the support, comfort and relaxation water provides during labor while also feeling covered and comfortable so they can focus on what’s really important.

With Waterbirth International BINSI® adds another women-centric, empowering organization to their ever growing network of companies that increases their ability to reach women around the world and bring to fruition their true passion, to empower women well beyond their birth experience. In addition to this new partnership, BINSI has also partnered with CAPPA (Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association), Operation Special Delivery and BeadforLife.

About BINSI®
BINSI®’s mission is to help women feel supported and empowered throughout their pregnancy, labor, and birth by offering products that make them feel beautiful, healthy, and in control of their motherhood journey. BINSI® labor and birth apparel is comfortable, modest, and stylish while still being fully compatible with any labor position and medical equipment—a great alternative to unflattering, immodest hospital gowns. All BINSI® products are tested and approved by mothers, doulas, midwives, obstetricians, and nurses. For more information about BINSI®, visit

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Pregnancy - Carri's Pregnant!!

As part of a series we are beginning in Carri's 2nd trimester, she will be giving us her input as a pregnant mommy with 3 boys already!

Posted by Carri:

I’m finally returning to the world after a very long and sick start to my fourth pregnancy. This pregnancy was a big surprise, but very welcome none the less. My husband and I went to Chicago to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary and a friends’ wedding, only to bring home more than the guest chocolates. I had a lot of doula births lined up for the fall and before I had even missed my period I started showing signs of pregnancy. Fatigue and nausea – ugh. On our actual 10th wedding anniversary we took the test and found out that I was indeed pregnant! To make things even more wild, it turned out my due date was the exact date I miscarried last summer. This news was very exciting, overwhelming, daunting and humorous all at the same time. However, I proceeded to get more and more sick, which is bad enough on its own, but with three other children, a business, and many doula clients it was near impossible. Morning sickness is such a strange phenomena. Why some women get it and others don’t is unfair and mysterious. I did have it with the other three pregnancies as well, but this one out did them all. I ended up depending on Unisom – yes the sleeping pill. It was the ONLY thing that helped, and helped does not mean cured. I tried the prescription meds, even IV meds when I went to the ER for fluids. I do not recommend taking Unisom, because it is not recommended for pregnancy, but it was my saving grace. I do also have to give a shout out to my amazing husband during this time. Not only did he work a lot during this period, but he would come home, cook, clean, handle the children and get them to bed every night for many months. Without him it would have been disastrous! So now at 20 weeks, I’m back and will gladly share my weekly journey along the way!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Doula Digest - What to pack in your Birth Bag

Posted by Kim:

What should I pack in my Birth Bag?

Preparing for the birth of your child is one of the most exciting times for every mother, but what do you really need to bring with you? With my experience as a doula and mother of three, along with many experienced moms' opinions, we have the most comprehensive list along with many great tricks and inside tips. We hope this not only prepares you, but also educates and empowers you to create the best birth possible for you!

Labor Soothing Tools:
Massage Oil - not only does massage feel good, it also helps the body relax. If you like scents, massage oils are the best way to experience aromatherapy during your birth. But be aware, just because it smells good to you now, you may not enjoy the smell while you are actually in labor.

Massage Ball - using a massage ball creates pressure like a hand, but without the effort or stress on the massager. You will us it FOREVER!

Spikey Ball - rubbing a spiked ball between your hands (or on your feet) during contractions will relieve pain. The tactile stimulation focuses your pain receptors away from your contractions.

Barley Pack - wonderful to heat in the microwave or cool in the refrigerator to relieve sore spots (especially the neck and lower back).

Moist Heat Heating Pad - cordless microwaveable heating pad can soothe back aching. Be sure it is moist heat though!

Personal Items

Birth Outfit - don't be frustrated and intimidated by the hospital gown and environment. We at BINSI feel that you deserve the most practical and functional outfit possible on your big day. Check out our complete line of labor and birth apparel!

Robe - a soft, warm and comfortable robe will make a huge difference.

Slippers - slippers that slide on, are soft and cushioning and have a tread bottom are important. You want to be able to get in and out of them quickly and easily, all while feeling cozy and warm.

Personal Pillow - bringing your own pillow can be important, it is nice to have something soft and comfortable (not plastic) to rest your head on. Make sure you use a colorful cover, so it isn't mistaken for a hospital pillow. One mom even told us she brought a pillow with a red pillowcase to use as a backdrop for her pictures. Hey, its ok to want to look as good as you can!! You deserve it!

Music - bring all the genres of music you like. You may be surprised what you're in the mood for or need during your labor.

Flash Light or Night Light - turn off those horrible overhead lights (especially while you're in the bath) and relax with soft lighting instead of the harsh overhead lights.

Chap stick - the effort you exert, not to mention the breathing techniques you might use, will surely dry your lips.

Ponytail Holders - obviously very important during one of the most physically taxing events of your life. No one wants their hair in their face.

Sour Candy - labor can often create nausea. Having sour candy can help alleviate these symptoms.
Doula– be supported, encouraged and understood during your labor. A doula provides physical and emotional assistance for both you and your partner.

Baby Powder– labor can make you hot and sweaty. Baby powder can be an easy solution to helping you feel dry and fresh.

Bath Pillow – if you are able to labor in the tub, it is nice to have something soft to cradle your head as you relax.

Prenatal Vitamins – the amount of energy you exert during labor and birth is enormous. Remember to give yourself and your baby the best start by staying healthy and nourished.

Toiletries – all the basics (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner, hairdryer, makeup, etc.)

For Birth Partners:

Change of clothes

Comfortable Shoes


Food – bring lots of non-fragrant snacks, granola bars and protein bars are great. Even though she won’t be able to eat, you need to stay nourished and in top shape to be there for her as best you can.

Video and/or Still Camera

Phone List

Cell Phone (and charger) – preload your friends’ and families’ email addresses into your phone so you can send pictures right from your phone.

Laptop Computer -

Books and Movies – for big brother’s or big sister’s visit.

Medicine – even though you’re in a hospital, if you get sick they won’t give you anything. Make sure to pack a pain reliever and upset stomach medicine – just in case.

Swimsuit – you may want to join her in the tub – which we highly recommend.

Pillow – pillows can be scarce in a hospital, and you’re the last in the line. Make sure you’re comfortable and bring your own.

For after the birth and the trip home:

Maternity Clothes – even though you are no longer pregnant you will most likely not fit into your pre-pregnancy clothes.

Nursing Bra -

Book and/or magazines -

Baby outfits – your baby does not have to only wear a diaper or t-shirt while in the hospital. Bring some outfits for your little one for your stay in the hospital and for the ride home.

Baby Blanket – a soft, cozy blanket helps everyone to feel more relaxed and ready to brave the new world.

Baby Girl Born In Denver Public Library

Posted by Kim:

WOW, now that is going to be a smart little girl! As the librarian said, "It's never too early to get a library card."

Rocky Mountain News - January 27, 2009
Baby Girl Born in Library

She is officially the youngest person to hold a Denver Public Library card — and deservedly so.

Sariah Unique Trevino was born Tuesday morning inside the doors of downtown's central library, just minutes after her surprised and scared mom realized she was going into labor while riding an RTD bus.

The little girl — all 5 pounds, 12 ounces of her — wasn't due to arrive until Wednesday.

"I just can't believe I had her at the library," Dominique Trevino said while cradling Sariah at a press conference Wednesday at Denver Health.

Trevino, 18, was riding the route 0 bus down Broadway, en route to a doctor appointment, when she started feeling contractions.

She told a woman sitting near her what was happening. The still unidentified woman — who told Trevino she worked at Denver Health — told her to get off the bus and go to the library, while the woman called an ambulance.

Trevino thinks the bus driver never knew what was happening.

Across town at Colorado Boulevard and Colfax Avenue, paramedics Jeremy Greene and Maryanne Foerster got a call about a possible delivery near the library's Broadway Street entrance, Greene said.

They were three-quarters of the way when the dispatcher returned with an update: "Baby's coming."

By the time paramedics arrived, security guard Zac Laugheed had helped Trevino inside and placed his jacket on the floor for Trevino to lie on. Sariah was halfway out.

She arrived at 9:03 a.m., just inside the library doors in a spot Laugheed said was "as private as I could find."

The whole delivery lasted just a few minutes — much easier than Trevino's first daughter, born 18 months ago.

Baby and mom were just fine.

Library staff pitched in to buy a bag full of children's books for Sariah, which Thomas Scott, director of security and safety, presented to Trevino at Wednesday's news conference.

He also gave her an earth-friendly library totebag with two unactivated library cards inside — one for mom, who said she's not a big reader, and one for baby.

"We look forward to having her as a customer," Scott told Trevino.

The birth was a first for the Denver Public Library.

"It was awesome," Laugheed said.

With some of the crazy things he's seen as a security guard, the 25-year-old was happy to see sirens arrive for a happy reason.

"We all had smiles on our faces," he added. "It was a beautiful morning."

Trevino, meanwhile, is scheduled to take her newest daughter home to east Denver on Thursday.

She assured everyone that this time, there will be no bus.

"I got a ride," she smiled.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Doula Book - Part V The Dublin Experience & Pospartum Care

Posted by Kim:

Covering Chapters 9 and 10 of The Doula Book

The Dublin Experience

"The major emphasis of the obstetricians at the National Maternity Hospital [in Dublin] is on the one-to-one personal attention of the nurse, and we wished to see how similar this was to support by a doula." (p 151)

"The innovators, Drs. Kierin O'Driscoll and Declan Meagher note: 'Mere physical presence is not enough, the nurse must appreciate that her primary duty to the mother is to provide the emotional support so badly needed at this critical time and not simply to record vital signs in a detached clinical manner." (p 151)

"Birth, he [Dr O'Driscoll] pointed out, must preserve a woman's dignity, and must remain a joyous event with a woman feeling in command of herself." (p 152)

"Midwives in Ireland have a different status than do those in the United States. The Irish midwife has a complementary role, now competing with the physicians." (p 153)

"A diagnosis of labor is made if a woman has been having strong and regvlar contractions every eight to ten minutes that last thirty to forty-four seconds each, if her cervix is dilated and thinned out (effaced), and if she has a bloody mucous show." (p 154)

"The nurse-midwife reminds her [laboring mom] to look at the nurse-midwife's face or at something in the hall. Focusing outward is a way for the woman to distance herself from focusing only on the pain." (p 157)

"The effective ingredient in the management of labor in the Dublin program is not rupture of the membranes of large doses of oxytocin, but the presence of a continuously supportive labor companion." (p 164)

Postpartum Care
"Parents' need for support does not, of course, stop at the moment of birth." (p 169)

"Studies have shown that the sooner after delivery mothers start breast-feeding and the more frequently they nurse their babies in the first two weeks, the more abundant their milk supply and the greater the babies' weight gain." (p 171)

"After a mother has a baby, her mind tends to go back to an early time in her life, and many memories come to mind. These memories may evoke in her a special need to be cared for and protected." (p 172)

"As part of this psychological regression a mother needs to feel safe, to be held, and to be cared for." (p 172)

"The doula's presence makes both gather and mother feel safe. The father, too, is relieved of the heavy weight of responsibility that the doula carries." (p 172)

"The more the mother is cared for, the more easily she can manage the baby. The more praise and support she receives, the more love and patience she will have with the infant." (p 172)

"In the hectic atmosphere of the modern hospital, the heightened sensitivity of primary maternal preoccupation is sometimes misinterpreted by physicians and nurses as excessive anxiety." (p 174)

"The 'baby blues,' characterized by a short period of emotional liability, commonly occurring between the second and fifth postpartum day, affect between 80 and 90 percent of new mothers" (p 174)

"The term postpartum depression refers to a group of poorly defined, severe, depressive-type symptoms, which usually begin at four to eight weeks postpartum but, sometimes, later in the first year and which can persist for more than a year." (p 174)

"The incidence ranges from 10 to 16 percent of new mothers." (p 174)

"The symptoms of postpartum depression cover a wide range, including exhaustion, irritability, frequent crying, feelings of helplessness and hopelessness, lack of energy and motivation so that the woman's ability to function is disturbed, lack of interest in sexual intercourse, disturbances of appetite and sleep, and feelings of being unable to cope with the new demands placed on her." (p 174 - 175)

"It is not uncommon for a woman suffering from postpartum depression to have psychosomatic symptoms such as headache, backache, vaginal discharge, and abdominal pain for which no organic cause can be found." (p 175)

"A mild appearance of one or more of these feelings is normal. When they are many and continue over a period of weeks, help is needed." (p 175)

"A person's previous history or a family history of psychiatric problems increases the chances of postpartum depression." (p 175)

"When a mother has had a poor relationship with her own mother or was separated from one or both parents before the age of eleven, she is more likely to be depressed and anxious, according to research." (p 175)

"The mother's inability to confide in her partner or a friend has been noted as a factor in depression." (p 175)

"The father or other helper should have the responsibility for making sure the mother is not overwhelmed with too many visitors or phone calls for too long." (p 176)

"Relaxation exercises continue to be useful in the postpartum period." (p 176)

"The more frequently the mother breast-feeds her baby in the first two or three weeks and, as we said, the more she carries the infant in a Snugli-like carrier on her body, the less the baby will cry." (p 177)

"Studies have also shown that if the response to a baby's cry or fuss occurs within ninety seconds, the baby will quiet rapidly." (p 177)

"After birth the infant's body should be dried thoroughly with three cotton blankets but not the baby's hands, because the amniotic fluid dried on the hands has an enticing smell for newborns and is useful as they find their way on their own to the breast." (p 177)

"To improve the chances of this early suckling the injection of vitamin K and eye ointment should both be delayed one and a half hours while the infant is in the quiet-alert state." (p 177)

"When babies 'latch on,' they open their mouths widely to avoid the tip of the nipple, placing their lips on the areola." (p 177)


"Sometimes after this is done the infant becomes aversive to the breast. The newborn should always be the one to decide when he or she would like to take a first drink." (p 177)

"The key is to start with a calm and focused infant. Babies have more control over their movements when they are calm." (p 179)

"We start with the baby asleep, or only in very mild hunger, with mother and infant undressed and skin-to-skin, with the infant's chest on her upper chest, usually between her breasts. It's often helpful to hold the baby in a vertical position." (p 179)

"As the baby stirs, his mother can keep him calm by talking to him, getting his attention, even making eye contact if he looks her way. As he gets hungry, he will start twisting his body toward one breast or the other, and may begin bobbing his head up and down, looking for the breast." (p 179)

"As he moves his head toward one breast, his mother may want to help him a little, by moving his rump up toward the other breast, and helping him keep his face in contact with her skin." (p 179)

"At this point, a mother can help by continuing to talk to her infant. Her encouraging voice helps him stay focused and in control. She can also help by assuring that his whole body is against her in such a way that his nose, rather than the mouth, is heading toward the nipple, and by allowing him to keep his face in contact with her skin. The infant knows that breast by feel, not by sight, and knows the nipple by smell, not by sight." (p 179)

"It is helpful for the mother to avoid having a hand on the back of the newborn's head; instead, her hand can support his neck and shoulders. The infant needs neck support but also freedom to move." (p 179)

"A good latch is always comfortable." (p 180)

"The training of a postpartum doula includes CPR, lactation training, common infant health problems, knowledge of what to look for in the mother that may need medical attention, and communication skills often dealing with emotional concerns." (p 180)

"She [postpartum doula] helps organize the household and keeps appropriate emergency and family numbers available for the parents." (p 181)

"An important skill for a postpartum doula is her ability to listen. The mail foal is to be present while the mother is the one talking. By listening to and acknowledging her feelings and memories of the birth and what she is experiencing in the postpartum period, the doula helps the mother process these significant events." (p 181)

"Learning how to become attuned to the infant's signals is a major task for both parents..." (p 181)

"The doula can remind parents that they cannot spoil their infants by picking them up when they cry or by being immediately responsive to their needs." (p 181)

"However, a father has an important role in supporting the mother physically and emotionally in this tender time." (p 181)

"The partner's understanding, support, love and encouragement are especially meaningful at these times. Until feeding becomes established and the mother does not need help, being with the mother during nighttime feedings is unusually supportive to her." (p 182)

"A father needs to have his own time to bond with his baby. He can bathe the baby, change the diapers, dress the baby, nap with the baby on his chest, sing to the baby and rock with the baby." (p 182)

"When the body and mind are calm, healing is enhanced, mental tension is released, and more inner peace and confidence can develop. Relaxation also enhances breast-feeding and milk flow.

"So what you need is one hand on the back of the baby's head, not too high up, right behind the ears, and you need the other hand, the one that's closest to your breast, to support that breast because it's heavy. It could slip out of the baby's mouth. People don't usually think of that." (p 185)

"New parents your new job is going to be sitting there and staring at that baby, feeding the baby, taking care of the baby, but then who takes care of you?" (p 186)

"The first week is really recuperation, getting to know the baby, just taking it easy, and working on the breast-feeding, and working on getting their strength back, and keeping their life calm." (p 188)

"Jaundice is really, really common, especially with breast-feeding. It comes about the second or third day." (p 188)

"We need to make sure that the baby wants to nurse every two to three hours, that they're having real awake time, that they're not lethargic." (p 188)

"...If you pick up a baby within ninety seconds after it starts crying, it will stop." (p 189)

"Babies eventually end up loving the changing table.... They learn pretty quickly after a week or so that on that changing table they are being attended to, being loved, and enjoyed" (p 189)

"Emotional and physical support of new parents that continues after the birth will enhance the well-being of the whole family." (p 190)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Longmont moms furnish Westminster girl with milk

Posted by Kim:

By Susan Glairon
Longmont Times-Call

When her daughter would run out of milk, Stacey Vaught would pray. Each time, the Westminster mother’s call for help would be answered, she said.

Doctors had diagnosed, Grace, 2, with a bad case of inflammatory bowel disease, she said. Breast milk is one of the few foods her daughter can digest. One time a phone call from Longmont mom Hannah Gaitten answered Vaught’s prayers.

Gaitten had heard about Grace’s plight through, where a member of Vaught’s church posted a plea for mothers to donate breast milk.

Gaitten contacted the family and then solicited other moms through the momsoflongmont Yahoo group. Three women responded, and the four began pumping breast milk daily for Grace. They soon filled two large coolers with milk, including frozen milk they previously expressed for their own babies but didn’t need.

After collecting the milk, Gaitten called Vaught, and her husband drove to Longmont that day.

“They had just run out of milk,” Gaitten said. “I could hear Grace crying in the background.”

That was two months ago. Since the beginning, seven Longmont moms have pumped for Grace. But Gaitten is having trouble with her own milk supply and is trying to find other nursing mothers to help.

“This is a true need for this family,” Gaitten said. “They really rely on the giving of others.”

‘I knew it wasn’t normal’ Symptoms started about a year ago, when Grace began vomiting almost every night for several months, her mother said.

“The stench was amazing,” Vaught said. “I knew it wasn’t normal. I knew she wasn’t digesting food regularly.”

At one point, Grace cried and screamed for three days and didn’t eat or drink. Vaught and her husband took her to the hospital, where tests were performed, and then found a doctor to treat the disorder.

Soon after, Vaught thought about trying breast milk as Grace had already been weaned and Vaught was still nursing her younger child. The first time Grace drank it, she kept it down.

Vaught prayed: “Lord, if this is something, show me.”

But Vaught, a mother of six, could pump only 4 ounces that day. Armed with $35 and a prescription, she went to Mother’s Milk Bank, a Denver nonprofit, but was shocked to find it would cost $200 a day to buy enough milk for Grace. That day, the milk bank gave her extra.

She prayed again. Mother’s Milk Bank donated $1,000 worth of breast milk. When Vaught ran out of that milk, she prayed again. Samaritans Ministry Christian Health Care, a nonprofit through which Christians help other Christians with medical expenses, donated $21,000 for milk.

Vaught put word out at her church, and news of her plight quickly spread. Other women stepped forward to help, including the group of Longmont women. Through postings on the Internet, she sometimes receives coolers from across the nation from women she has never met.

She admits the milk has not been tested for diseases, but feels that the women had prenatal tests before giving birth.

“It’s really grown my faith,” Vaught said. “The Lord has told me to say, ‘I trust him.’ I trust him.”

She now has a two-week supply in the freezer, including milk recently donated from the Longmont mothers.

Grace drinks a 6-ounce bottle every meal. Vaught has slowly reintroduced some fruits and vegetables, which she rotates with the breast milk. Occasionally, Grace eats small amounts of rice and organic meat. She also takes enzymes to help her digest the food.

“There is no textbook thing about this,” Vaught said. “I have to be creative. I credit attention to what she eats and prayer.

“She can eat. She’s happy. Her hair is growing, and she’s got energy.

“I don’t know how long it has to be this way (drinking breast milk), but I feel like it’s getting better,” Vaught added. “I am thankful she can eat and she can live.”

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Doula Book - Part IV Birth with a Doula & Father's Role

Posted by Kim:

Covering Chapters 7 and 8 of The Doula Book

Chapter 7 Birth With A Doula

"To make clear the real-life role of a doula, we followed the labor and delivery of two different couples expecting their first babies. The first couple found the doula's help beneficial in their hospital birth, whereas the second couple, engaged a doula to help them at a midwifery-assisted birth in their home." (p 115)

"Having a doula did not undermine my role as husband and father during the whole process. It enhanced it." (p 127)

"To me, birth was not about excluding, but instead is about including. they are a useful tool that helps the mother and the father, so wht not use them?" (p 127)

"I remember two really important things the doula did... One was that she brought food and made a point not to even let us make her tea; she got busy and set it all up herself! And then she made the important point over and over again that we should just be in bed with our baby, letting our families and friends do the laundry, make meals, etc. - and she suggested we make a list of simple tasks and directions for anyone who offered to help out." (p 129)

"The other thing she [the doula] did was to write up a birth story for us, and that really helped us to come one step further out of the 'birth fog' " (p 130)

"The main thing she did was to keep reiterating how strong we were and how much of an honor it was to be a part of this time in our lives. That felt really great." (p 130)

Chapter 8 A Father's True Role

"Even more stressful are the changes occuring in the mothers, the people they [the fathers] love most - obvious pain, anxiety, unusual sounds and fluid discharges never seen before." (p133)

"We believe that too much is expected of men in childbirth today. Fathers cannot be objective; there is too much at stake." (p 133)

"In suggesting the support of a doula, our intent is not to diminish the father's role but to enhance it, to free him up to stand by the mother." (p 134)

"With the doula present, the father is never left as the sole, isolated, responsible person caring for the laboring mother." (P 134)

"A father needs to be present: a mother needs to know he is there, he is with her, loving, concerned, responsive, and taking responsibility." (p 134)

"His presence si important for the emotional connection of the couple and for their relationship to each other and to the baby." (p 134)

"Recognition and validation of the father's right and need to be present at the birth of his infant is not only compatible with but also enhanced by, the presence of a doula." (p 134)

"To help understand and compare the roles of the doula and father during birth, we have closely observed and recorded their behaviors during early and late labor." (p 136)

"Overall, fathers were present for somewhat less time during the labor than were the doulas. In early labor fathers were in the mothers' rooms 78% of the time, while in late labor they were in the mothers' room 95 % of the time." (p 136)

"Both in early and late labor the doulas remained with the mothers almost 100% of the time." (p 136)

"Throughout early and late labor the doulas remained closer physically to the mothers 85% of the time, while the fathers were that close for only 28% of the time." (p 136)

"Fathers held the mothers' hands a greater percentage of the time than did the doulas in early labor, but this recersed in late labor." (p 136)

"Overall, the fathers and the doulas held the mothers' hands about the same length of time. Both fathers and doulas talked much more in late labor than in early labor." (p 136)

"During both the early and late periods the doulas were touching the mothers more than 95% of the observation time, compared to less than 20% for the fathers." (p 137)

"Another ongoing study of fathers has noted that their behavior is altered when they are not the only person responsible for support. When a doula supported a couple throughout labor, the father was freed to offer more personal support and did much more intimate touching of the mother's head and face." (p 137)

"A doula with experience and no personal tie to the woman in labor could pace herself and not become anxious about behaviors and events that she knew were part of normal labor." (p 137)

"We suspect that in some cases the fahter's behavior, like sleeping or leaving late in labor, was a consequence of anxiety that his wife might die." (p 137)

"The mother in labor was so interested in having the father remain with her thoughout the delivery that she was devoting much of her attention and energy to his comfort and well-being." (p 138)

"The doula supporting the couple always thinks about what will be most helpful for both the mother and the father." (p 138)

"We strongly believe that a father cannot be a doula for ht emother. A father is rarely able, moment to moment, to appreciate what is happening with the mother and whether each change is a notmal part of labor." (p 144)

An easier role for him is to give emotional suport to the mother while the doula is there to support them both through the labor." (p 144)

"Men sometimes find it hard to observe, accept, and understand women's instinctive behavior during labor and delivery. Instead, they often try to keep laboring women from slipping out of a rational, self-controlled state." (p 144)

"When a doula is available to both the mand and the woman, they are able to fulfill their individual responsibilities: for the mother, going on with the birth, asking and receiving what she needs in the way of appropriate and empathic responses; for the father, being as supportive as he can be, yet responding at his own level of comfort and competence without losing face." (p 145)

"So many variable of an emotional nature can be projected into the birth situation. In contrast, the doula's role remains relatively constant. She is there only as a supportive and informed birth assistant." (p 146)

"Women who choose to become doulas want to help other women and have a certain empathic sense of childbirth. They have an opportunity during their training to understand their own personal issues associated with childbirth, and they learn not to project onto the laboring woman their own emotional needs." (p 146)

"The presence fo a doula complements a father's role and strengthens it." (p 147)

"Over and over again women say that 'just knowing my husband was there, just his holding my hand, was the most important thing for me - while I could trust the doula's words and actions and let myself go, feeling safe that her experience would see us though' " (p 148)

"Fathers, with the support of the doula, should be able to participate at any level that feels right and natural for them. In this way they can experience fully the joy and wonder of watching their babies come into the world." (p 148)