ISO: Home Birth and/or Midwifery pictures and videos

I’m making several promotional/educational videos about midwives, midwifery, and home birth for our Mississippi Friends of Midwives group, and would like to have more pictures and/or videos that I can use. Here are the two that I’ve gotten done so far.

This second video is clips from my younger son’s newborn exam (we had no video nor pictures from my first home-birth). I edited it for length as well as due to background noise (my mother and sisters talking), so this isn’t the entire exam.

I may even be able to make a lengthier DVD production if I can get enough material. If you have any pictures or video that I can use of midwife-attended births (preferably a home-birth, but I wouldn’t exclude a hospital birth), or even pictures/video of an OB-attended hospital birth to use as a contrast to home birth, or you can video yourself talking about why you chose a home birth, if you’re a midwife why you became a midwife, etc. — if you would like to be included, you can email me the pictures and/or links at kathy_petersen_283 at yahoo dot com [note the spelling of my name!], and in the email please write some sort of statement giving me permission to use the pictures/videos for MS Friends of Midwives.



Why I love blogging

There are a lot of reasons I like blogging. I like connecting with like-minded (or not-so-like-minded) birth people all over the world. I read their blogs; they read my blog; we comment on each other’s blogs, and hopefully come to a greater knowledge and understanding of each other, of other people and situations, of birth in our own corner of the world, our own perspective, etc. I get to read interesting and insightful posts, and through blogs I come by more links that I’m glad I read, than I would have discovered otherwise.

But one of the reasons why I most like blogging — and why I blog so frequently and so much — is that it serves as a sort of online “memory bank” for me. Sure, bookmarks (on the computer or online) are helpful, but I use my blog as a big file folder that anyone can access. I’m not for sure when this will post, because I write up posts several days in advance sometimes, and then schedule them to post about the same time of day every day, and sometimes I will bump one post up or down, depending on what else I have in queue (for instance, if something time-sensitive comes to my attention, I will put it at the head of the line, and posts like this get bumped to the end). But, at the time I’m writing this, today somebody in an email group asked about a particular video on YouTube, so I just went into my WordPress Dashboard, pulled up the posts, and then filtered them by the category “birth video”, because the video she mentioned sounded familiar, and I was pretty sure that I had blogged about it before. It took maybe half a minute, and I had it! Is that cool, or what? 🙂

Many of the posts I write serve as detailed notes to myself about the links — what I got out of it, what I liked or disliked about it, etc., which also prompts my memory when I need to narrow down the list of posts I need to look through. In this case, I was looking for a twins birth video, but I wasn’t sure how I had worded the post, or if it was a post by itself or one of those “half-dozen links” posts, so I just filtered it down to the “birth videos” category, then looked at the tags to see which one(s) looked most promising. I got it on the second try.

This sort of thing has happened several times in the past several months — somebody will ask about something that sounds familiar, so I’ll check my blog, and *snap* there it is. Blogging is better than Delicious in this way too, because I can have a bunch of links in one post, whereas in Delicious, each link has to be separate. Sure, I can use the same tag to link them all into the same category, but it just feels “clunky” to me to do that. Ah, the internet! Love it!!

“Birth Matters Virginia” Video Contest

Previously, I had blogged about the video contest sponsored by Birth Matters Virginia. Now that the deadline for new entries has passed, there are 44 videos in the running. In order to be considered for the contest, entries had to have a YouTube tag of “BirthMattersVirginia,” so it’s easy to find them. Here is the link to all the videos with that tag. I haven’t had a chance to watch them yet, but it promises to be good. Remember to vote for your favorite(s)!

Here is a video that was included in the facebook group’s links, but is not actually entered in the contest (perhaps because Dr. Buckley is one of the judges, and also appears in the video?). Enjoy “We Can Be Much Kinder,” a video about delayed cord clamping:

Kathy’s Birth

Yesterday, I got 1015 hits, most of them to do with “Kathy’s Birth” in various search terms. A big thanks to Jill at The Unnecessarean for getting to the bottom of the mystery.

First, if you’ve come here looking for the funny clip, here it is.

However, if you’re looking for the supposed 70s clip of the woman named Kathy actually giving birth… you’re outta luck. That was just a fictitious bit of tape made for the “Worst Week” show. If however, you’d like to watch actual birth videos, I’ve got a lot of them right here.

Since I’m Kathy… If you are interested in my birth stories, here is my first birth and here is my second birth. If you want to read other birth stories, you can choose that category from the drop-down box in the left hand column.

Onto the subject of men attending birth and/or being squeamish about seeing their wives or other women give birth, since that was the thrust of the funny “Kathy’s Birth” clip you’re looking for. Ladies, let’s let men be men, and if they don’t want to see you or anyone else give birth, respect that. Some men can actually be turned off by seeing their wives give birth, and have trouble reconciling the sexual and birth-giving aspects of your genitalia after seeing birth. If you push it, you may be disappointed by the repercussions. Just something for you to ponder.

Some men just don’t want to see other women give birth. Respect his limitations, and get a female friend (mother, sister, friend) to go to birth classes with you and attend you in birth. We see throughout history that most birthing women were attended by only females, so the current trend of requiring fathers to be at the birth of their children (which is fine if the men want to be there) is an oddity. Just some food for thought.

This is weird

I just checked my blog stats (it’s 8:15 a.m., Central Time; although the blog day begins around 6 p.m. — I think midnight in London or something — no big deal to me either way) — and already I’ve got about 750 hits. Today. About 14 hours out of 24 hours for this day. To put this in perspective, usually I get about 300 hits per day, sometimes less, frequently but not usually nearly 400 or above. My previous high day was Jan. 3 with 575 hits; before that, it was sometime in October or maybe before, when a commenter from Dr. Amy linked to me and I got a 100 hits or so just from that. Since I went to that thread and thanked her kindly for all those hits, just as I did the last time she had linked to me, she won’t link directly to me any more. Since I don’t read her, I have no way of knowing what if anything she is saying about me. I assume she hasn’t said anything, since there are no links, but this makes me wonder. Most of the hits have been some variation of “Kathy’s birth video” or going to wordpress and doing a tag search for “birth video(s)”. Which makes me wonder why all of a sudden everybody is looking for birth videos. Of course, there are no videos of me giving birth, because the first time, I forgot to have anybody get out either the video or still camera, so I have no pictures of me greatly pregnant, in labor, giving birth, or in the first few hours postpartum — only in my noodle, as Amadeus might say. The second time, I didn’t think I was in labor, and there wasn’t anybody around anyway to take pictures, much less video, so of course there aren’t any videos of that; although there are a plethora of pictures and some video in those first few hours postpartum. Considering some of the birth videos I’ve seen, I rather suspect that I would prefer that no one see any birth pictures or videos of myself in my birthday suit, so if given the choice, I’d probably not have a video camera at any subsequent births, either (although I enjoy watching other births, and am not concerned about what other women look like at that time). So I’m left wondering, why are people interested in “Kathy’s birth video”? Is there some celebrity whose name is Kathy and whose birth has recently been released? Or has Dr. Amy directed people to google for “kathy’s birth video” so they can see something on my blog that she disapproves of, but won’t link directly to me? Nah — the point of not linking to me would be that she wouldn’t want to direct traffic to my site, not being surreptitious about me not knowing that she’s blogged negative things about me. Unless, somehow, she approves of what I’ve said or shown, which I can fully see her not wanting me to know. 🙂

So, does anybody know why all of  a sudden I’ve got nearly double the hits I usually get, when the day is barely half over? And what is the big deal with birth videos or Kathy’s birth videos? If any of you regularly read Dr. Amy’s blog (which I cannot recommend), have you seen me mentioned? Should I be paranoid or glad that all of a sudden I’m so popular? I’m at a loss to explain this, and I was rightly named — I’m curious as a Kat!

Whoever these people are, they’ve now been exposed to a lot of good birth videos, at least. 🙂

P.s., in the 15 minutes or so that it’s taken me to type this, I’ve gotten another 15 or so hits. Totally weird, but I’m not complaining!!

Update — apparently I never actually hit “publish” so it’s now 4:21 p.m. Central time, and about 22 hours into the WordPress day. I now have 975 hits for today — about 3 times what I normally have. And I still have no explanation for it. (Nor do I have any complaints about it, either!!) But I’m just completely bumfuzzled.

I find this sad

Beyoncé Knowles (Mrs. Jay-Z, now, I guess — I’m not that much into pop culture!) is scared of having a baby. She says that seeing her nephew be born terrified her. I wonder what the circumstances of that was. I can imagine what she saw may have been more like this or this, rather than this or this. Or perhaps she saw her sister being treated like a child, or her wishes ignored, or people in her face screaming at her to push harder or better or longer, or needing oxygen at the end (because of having purple pushed until her baby was having trouble from the lack of oxygen). Maybe it was just the whole tense environment of far too many hospital births that “it was only normal in retrospect”, and until the baby is born and declared alive and well, the doctor and all the nurses have an attitude of expecting something to go wrong at every second.

What does natural birth sound like?

This is probably one of the biggest questions people who have never given birth without pain medications or who have never seen such a birth might have — just in general, as well as particularly if they are planning a natural birth.

Here is a good video that shows a woman vocalizing through her contractions, and as the contractions increase in intensity, her “singing” or moaning also increases in intensity. While many of you may possibly be put off by hearing this (if you’ve never heard something like this before, only watching the medicated births on “The Baby Story” or “Discovery Health” or other similar shows), and may even feel more inhibited now, the reality is that when you’re in labor, the last thing you’ll likely worry about is what other people think of you. After all, if you’re allowing half a dozen people (mostly strangers) to stare at and touch your genitals possibly for hours, then how can vocalizing be any worse?!

One caveat, though, is that since most women have some sort of pain medication — typically an epidural — in the hospital, some nurses may be uncomfortable with how you’re sounding. It’s a typical human response — see somebody in pain and want to help them. Unfortunately, if you’re wanting to give birth without pain drugs, and the only “help” a nurse has available is pain drugs, then she can’t do anything and may feel bad, and may undermine your attempts and desire to give birth unmedicated so that she will feel better. (I’m not talking bad about L&D nurses that do this — I think many of them have the right desire, but just don’t have the right tools to help you; some nurses, though, will not be supportive and will deliberately undermine you just because you’re not fitting into their little mold.) I read a blog recently which is written by a newbie L&D nurse in which she said just this thing — that she feels bad for women in labor and wants to make things better, so she offers them drugs, since that’s the only help she has. I suggested that she take doula training (or at least read some books on what doulas do) so that she has more ways of helping women other than just giving them shots or calling the anesthesiologist.

But enough of the intro: here is the video (which I found by way of Empowering Birth blog)…

This doesn’t mean that every woman is going to vocalize like this. Some women sing, some pray, some chant, some moan softly, some keep it all inside. One woman whose birth story I read said that she felt like she was roaring loudly when she birthed her baby, but when she watched the video, she found that she was absolutely silent — all the “noise” she thought she was making was just inside her own head. I understand that. I felt like I was being loud, but my husband said he didn’t remember me making much or any noise. But this video is an excellent visual and auditory lesson (for anyone attending or giving birth) of what a real birth might sound like. Too many birth videos don’t show this type of thing — only the “sanitized” or “quiet” version. You know the type — where they cut the audio and start playing soft, flowery music. The video only tells half the story; without the audio, you’re missing a hefty dose of reality.


This poll allows repeat voters and is multiple choice, so if you have five children but only three birth videos, you can choose “yes” three times and the variations of “no” that fit the other two.

— Update — For some reason the poll associated with this question won’t show up in the post, so if you want to vote, click on “poll questions” in the right-hand sidebar and look for the poll that asks if you have videos of when your child(ren) were born. Also, just in general, if you choose “other” on any poll question, there should be a little box to clarify what the “other” is, and I always burn with curiosity when I see that somebody would do some “other” thing, and I don’t know what it is! (Yeah, I’m curious that way.) 🙂