How do you filter through all of the uninvited opinions that suddenly come your way when you decide to have a child? How do you know what's trustworthy information and what's a myth or just plain outdated? Join Michelle Smith, CHt -- founder of The Birth Ease Method childbirth program -- and her guests as they share valuable tips, tools, and proven methods to cut through the noise and fear. For 20 years as a birth professional, Michelle has personally helped hundreds of families understand their options in maternity care, transform their fears and stress, and connect with their inner calm as they navigate the sacred journey that is pregnancy, birth, and parenthood.
134 Birth Plans- Dos and Don'ts
A birth plan is a way for you to communicate your wishes to your health care team during your labor and after the birth of your baby. Each birth is a unique experience. Creating a birth plan empowers you to become informed of all your options during labor and Michelle provides helpful tips to consider when writing a birth plan.
133 Pilates for Pregnancy and Birth with Beth Sandlin
Beth Sandlin, NCPT explains the Pilates method and its benefits during pregnancy, postpartum, and parenthood. She emphasizes maintaining a flexible routine and restorative movements and exercises, especially when recovering after birth and caring for a new baby and small children. Beth also explains the similarities and differences between pilates and yoga. Michelle and Beth discuss her Trauma Informed Pilates Approach (TIPA) program for Pilates teachers worldwide who want to use a Trauma Informed Care framework when teaching the Pilates method. Together, they stress the importance of taking time to heal and recover after giving birth and letting go of external pressures to bounce back immediately.
"The first few years, our sleep pattern is disrupted as well. We have more stress. We may be nursing as well. … Our sleep can affect if our body is willing to change and adapt. Our stress levels are also impacted by sleep. There's all these different circumstances. It took us 9 months to prepare for the birth, and just allowing our bodies the time to heal and recover."—Beth Sandlin
132 What If My Water Breaks? Doula Diaries with Heidi Snyderburn
Michelle shares one of her favorite episodes of the Doula Diaries podcast hosted by Heidi Snyderburn. In her episode, Heidi digs into expectant management (aka doing nothing) and induction when you experience PROM-Premature Rupture Of the Membranes (water breaking). Heidi shares her doula advice partnered with the Hanah et al TERM PROM trial and the data. So, want to know what Heidi would tell you do if she was your doula and you experienced PROM? Take a listen. There are also some scripts you could use if this happens to you and how to navigate pressure at the hospital for an induction before 24 hours post-rupture.
131 Hiring a Doula with Kathy Bradley
With 60 years of combined experience between them, Michelle and Kathy Bradley discuss the key things for parents to consider when hiring a doula. Doulas provide non-medical educational and emotional support to birthing families. Doulas can help navigate information overload and differing opinions that expectant parents often face.
130 Nurturing Babies in the Womb with Sarah Dickey
March is birth psychology month. Michelle and Sarah Dickey, Pre & Perinatal Psychology Educator and fellow Calm Birth Teacher, discuss the consciousness of babies. Together they explore the importance of prenatal bonding to help babies in the womb feel welcome, loved, and safe, especially when as a parent you may be feeling stressed or overwhelmed.
"It can just be as simple as if you have had a day that is overwhelming, that you just pause and maybe place your hand on your abdomen. Connect to your womb and just say, "Baby, I feel you. And I just want you to know today has been really overwhelming. I have felt really overwhelmed. But I want you to know that you are safe and I've got you. And, you don't need to worry about a thing. You're welcome. I love you." Like, that dialogue. How powerful that seemingly simple connection can be, but really helps prevent that stress response from being activated." —Sarah Dickey
Sign up for APPPAH's Birth Psychology Summit FILM FESTIVAL March 2022: https://birthpsychologymonth.com/
129 Return to Center Meditation
Becoming quiet, going within, eliciting the relaxation response, and accessing inner peace is even more crucial during these stressful times we are in. Multiple studies have the benefits of meditation and the relaxation response. This response reduces the impacts of stress and inflammation within the body, and reducing stress is one of the recommended actions to take to help strengthen your immune system.
In this special replay episode, Michelle has created this guided imagery meditation to help you mitigate the stress and fatigue that most all of us are under, reconnect with your own inner wisdom, and return to love. This meditation is more spiritual than religious in nature. In order to help each person listening find space for their own belief structure as it relates to their personal relationship with their higher power, Michelle refers to the Divine as God, as Creator of All That Is, as Source… What is comforting to one, may not be for another. Michelle encourages you to please use the name for God or Creator that resonates for you while listening to the meditation.
“There is a part of you that is your inner knowing, your own inner wisdom. This wisdom comes from the Creator and has been within you always. Often we forget to listen to it, or even how to listen to it. The beauty is you can remember how to listen. You can learn to trust yourself once again. One way to do that is to go within… relaxing the body… quieting the mind…. The mind doesn’t have to be perfectly still, it is simply listening for the voice that speaks to you with compassion, with love instead of fear or consternation or judgment… You can find that compassionate voice, you can remember the love that is there for you, and you can return to who you really are.” —Michelle Smith
As a gentle reminder, this guided relaxation recording audio is for just that, relaxation purposes only. It does not constitute medical or mental health advice or treatment, nor does it imply a specific outcome during pregnancy, birth, postpartum, or beyond. Please avoid listening to this guided meditation while engaging in an activity that requires your full attention. Please stop the podcast and return to it when you can be safely seated or reclining in a supported position. Unless you are the passenger listening to this guided meditation with headphones on, for everyone’s safety never listen to it while driving or riding in a vehicle.
A gift to the birthing community
The empowerment, healing, and support Michelle brings through this podcast, as well as her own personal work as doula and hypnobirthing coach is remarkable. She has such a gift and is truly changing the world through her work. Cannot recommend this podcast enough!
Great listen for birth-interested folx
I love these conversations. They will make you think and maybe change you. Thank you.
A Treasure Trove of Hidden Birth Truths & Techniques
This Podcast is an amazing tool to have in this modern world ruled by Western medicine! Women reclaiming their birth/pregnancy/feminine energy is so vital for a peaceful & meditative birth that brings a healthy Baby Earth-side. I’m so relieved that Michelle is sharing this for all Mama’s future/expecting/current. It’s tough to find all of this information collected in one place anywhere else.