Last night I had the privilege of attending an evening with Ina May Gaskin - a woman I have admired for years now and who's sage advice and knowledge I take with me to every birth I attend. In fact, when attending births I often ask myself, "Why would Ina May do?"
Ina May is known as The Mother of Authentic Midwifery. She is the founder and director of the Farm Midwifery Centre in Summertown Tennessee. Founded in 1971, by 2011, the Farm Midwifery Centre had handled approximately 3000 births, with remarkably good outcomes. Ina May has herself has attended more than 1200 births. She is the author of Spiritual Midwifery and Ina May's Guide to Childbirth - these books come second to the bible for me!
Ina May's centre is noted for its low rates of intervention (her cesarean rate is less than 2% compared to the North American average 30+%), morbidity and mortality despite the inclusion of may vaginally delivered breeches, twin and grand multiparas.
So what did I take home my evening with Ina May?
Books to Read:
Humans are the only mammals that are afraid of their own bottoms. Let's change this! A few videos to help change this mindset:
Favourite Quote of the Night: "Go outlaw if your laws don't make sense"
Ina May may be known as a bit of a radical but her research and practice is based on years of real life experience, observation and learning from other experts around the world. There is no doubt that this woman knows what she is doing!
If you're expecting a little one soon, whether you'll be having a home birth, water birth or hospital birth, I would highly recommend that you add any one of Ina May's books to your reading list. Her insight, wisdom and incredible stories will inspire you and that's a guarantee!