Just What we needed!!!. My wife and I had been trying for some time to get pregnant to no avail. We decided to look into the Acupuncture route for increased fertility, At a friends suggestion (who had enjoyed success using their service ) we went to Blossom. Today we heard our soon to be babies heartbeat for the first time!! Our experience at Blossom was professional , pleasant and informative , and most important of all SUCESSFUL!! Big Thanks to all the staff at Blossom! CM Continue reading
Classes include textbook, rainbow relaxation CD and a rewarding experience for you, your partner and your baby. Cost is $325 for 5 weeks. The next series start date will be in June 2013.
HypnoBirthing® is a rewarding, relaxing, stress-free method of birthing that is based on the belief that all babies should come into the world in an atmosphere of gentility, calm and joy. When a mother is properly prepared for birthing physically, mentally, and spiritually, she can experience that sort of joy, birthing her baby is an easier, more comfortable and often, even pain-free manner. Through a well-thought-out program of deep relaxation, self-hypnosis, and education, HypnoBirthing® returns to a woman the art of birthing in a way that allows her to summon her natural birthing instincts and to birth her baby in safety and with ease. In HypnoBirthing® the birth companion is an integral part of the birthing process, enhancing the entire bonding experience.
I recently had the opportunity to chat with a former patient about her amazing vaginal birth with her twin boys. Every mom is a super mom no matter how their babies come into the world, but if you desire a vaginal birth with your twins, here is an interview to inspire you. Click here for an additional twin birth story or click here to see an inspiring video. Continue reading
The MediClear Cleanse is user friendly. In this cleanse, you eliminate foods that are commonly allergenic or inflammatory for 15 days. Continue reading
Blossom Clinic is pleased to announce that we are now offering Arvigo Technique Prenatal Maya Abdominal Therapy in addition to the prenatal massage that we currently offer. In Prenatal Mayan Abdominal Massage Therapy, we focus on preparing your body for labor by strengthening, toning and aligning the uterus, uterine ligaments, and other pelvic organs.
Through studies at the Arvigo Institute, women who received Maya Abdominal Therapy throughout pregnancy, had labors an average of 6 hrs or less with their first baby and 4 hrs or less with their second. These women also pushed approximately 30 minutes or less on average. It is believed that the Mayan Massage increases blood flow to the fetus, aligns the uterus for optimal birthing, and improves nerve and blood flow.
A Mother’s Day Tribute
By: Lori S. Reising
To the mothers whose babies grew wings…
We waited so long
To see your face
To experience the joy of life with you
Those moments have changed
You were not ready for this world
Your journey changed from this one we planned
On Mother’s Day I miss you
As with everyday I do
I may not be recognized as a mother to others
But my heart knows the truth
We shared a connection
A bond created
You know me
I know you
It may other than this worldly plain
I am your mother
I gave birth to my second son, Leo, on Mother’s Day 2007 via VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean). In this society, where the c-section rates in hospitals are high and rising, having a VBAC is indeed a big accomplishment. Most of the time when I tell people that I had a VBAC, they look at me with surprise. People do not realize that you can have a vaginal birth after c-section. There is a misconception that there is danger around this. To honor Mother’s Day today, I reflect on my VBAC experience and would like to share a little of my story with you.
During both pregnancies, I carried my babies in the posterior position (face up or “sunny side-up”). In the posterior position, babies are more difficult to birth due to the inability of the cranial bones to cross over as they do in a normal birth with the baby face down, or anterior.
With my first son, his head was also asynclitic, meaning that it was tilted to the side and not in line with the birth canal. I had the cards stacked against me and I ended up with c-section after 52 hours of labor. I made the mistake in all of my birth prep of not reading one thing about c-sections. I am not sure if it would have reduced the grief I had felt afterwards, but maybe I would have been better prepared for it. I was devastated afterwards.
This is how my first labor went: I went 41 hours with no drugs and dilated to 10 cm with a lip. My cervix swelled and went back down to 6 cm. When they prepped me for the c-section, the epidural was so strong it numbed my diaphragm so that I could not breathe. It was probably one of the darkest time of my life. After the birth I was exhausted and my milk didn’t come in for five days. We had to supplement with formula through a tube attached to my breast, which was difficult considering he was also attached to a machine with lights for jaundice. All of the additional tubes were not what I had desired, to say the least.
It wasn’t until my second pregnancy that I could really start working through the grief from the first birth.
During my second pregnancy, you can believe me when I say that I tried everything to get my baby to turn. I swam, sat on birthing balls instead of chairs, did acupuncture & moxibustion (which works incredibly well for breech babies), and even crawled on my hands and knees down the stairs, which is an amazing feat in itself!
During the second pregnancy I joined an online support group called ICAN (International Cesarean Awareness Network). Being a part of the Yahoo ICAN support group online helped me realize that there were women all over the country being coerced into c-sections when they could have most likely had a healthy vaginal delivery. It was astounding to hear story after story of women in small towns (and big cities) being misinformed and/or scheduled for a c-section due to the doctor’s schedule.
Realizing that my c-section was not forced upon me helped me heal a little. In the end I realized that I had not failed, nor had the labor failed me. It also gave me hope that many women were having VBACs and that it was completely safe for me to try and have a vaginal birth. I worked towards recreating my birth story with the help of Kristen Olberz, nurse and Certified Hypnotherapist, here in Portland, OR.
I am proud to say that in the end, after 17 hours of hard labor, I birthed my baby sunny-side-up. I pushed him out with his face looking right up at me! I do not think that I could have succeeded at my VBAC without the amazing midwife and nurses at Emanuel Hospital here in Portland. They were right there with me the whole time. I was so happy that it was actually happening. When the huge crowd of nurses and doctors walked in, ready to help receive the baby, my husband and I looked at each other like, “It is really happening?!?”- we couldn’t believe it.
In the end the physical recovery was more difficult after the vaginal birth due to the pelvic stretching that had to happen to push out my OP baby. But the psychological recovery was worlds away from the first time with my c-section. I was so happy! I have so many fond memories of my laying-in period with Leo snuggled in the crook of my arm. My milk came in easily and I was able to rest at home soon after the birth.
It took us a week to name our baby and in the end we named him Leonardo Victor. I want him to know when he is older that his mom was strong like a lion when she gave birth to him and that he came into the world victorious!
Contributed by Liz Richards, Acupuncturist and Owner of Blossom Clinic.
By: Lori S. Reising, BA, LMT
As I try to come up with the best way to talk about the far-reaching effects of stillbirth to our physical and emotional body, I struggle to find the words. The reason being that there are no words for this tragedy. There is no sense to the loss of a child a lifetime too soon. Our bodies are designed to carry children and keep them safe until they enter the world. When this fails, our entire belief system and trust is broken along with our hearts.
This subject is entirely too big to cover in one article so I am going to attempt to break it down into several parts. In this first piece I would like to talk about the point of trauma to our womb. In an instant our life has changed. The moment we learn of the loss the shock overwhelms us. We go into hysterics, distress, grief, sadness, anger and more. Every woman’s reaction is unique in itself, but there is a sudden reaction nonetheless. Inside the cells of our bodies we carry something called emotional memory. Our emotional cellular memory imprints all the emotions we feel as our bodies tense from pain. The sadness left in an empty womb grows as we grieve. The layers dig deeper and deeper as we move through many phases of loss. Everything we feel throughout this process becomes trapped in our cells. We need a release.
After the loss of my daughter, I had a phantom pregnancy. I still felt pregnant. Sometimes I could even feel her kick. I believe some of this is a result of a hormonal cycle stopped abruptly, which caused utter chaos in my chemistry not just for months, but years. It was also because my subconscious was not ready to let her go. I held her in my womb even without her body there. I was supposed to protect her and unconsciously I continued to do just that. I remained unwilling to let her go. After all, if I completely let her go, who was I? I was not a mother anymore, I was not a beautiful pregnant woman awaiting the blessing of my first child, I would lose the bond that grew everyday we were together and I would be living a life without meaning. I was so deep in my grief I did not make that connection until I went and had abdominal work done and I am therapist trained in this exact area! The reaction to a loss can be so overpowering logic becomes meaningless.
It was over a year after my loss that I went in for a Myofascial Release treatment in Sedona, Arizona. A whole year had passed before anyone touched my daughter’s previous “home”. During that year my body continued to guard itself and hold on to her memory. By the time I reached out for help, I was like a rock. As the therapist moved into my womb, there was excruciating pain. I quickly realized my body was still holding on to her. Our bodies innately want to protect themselves. After a trauma to an area the fascia (or connective tissue) begins to tighten itself to protect against any more pain that might come. In this case it may even tighten itself to hold a memory in. We don’t even recognize this process as it continues along with our pain. Our entire body has just gone from the state of growing and nurturing a baby to the place where we lost our baby. This shift is very sudden, but the effects remain long after. Having the profound releasing I did in Arizona made it no surprise that we had been dealing with secondary infertility since our loss. There was no flow in my abdominal tissue. Everything was locked up and holding on to my daughter’s memory. Just the physical trauma of her delivery alone was enough to tighten things up. Having to deliver a child not there is one of the most horrific experiences a woman can go through. There is no positive ending coming, it is a mother’s nightmare that waits. We go through so much, I wonder how our bodies function at all following the process. But we survive. I want to help other mothers of angels thrive. I had to search for help. I want to be here for all of you brave women that are finding the strength to continue on this painful journey.
I feel like I am getting ahead of myself. I want to talk much more about the delivery process, the grief, our relationships post-loss, the return to self and more. I needed to touch on some of these areas, however, to stress the need for abdominal work. It is essential to nurture our wombs after such heartbreak and open our connective tissue that becomes tight from shock and loss to create a flowing environment again. It takes courage to place your trust in a therapist after that same trust has just been shattered. You can take these steps. I ask you to make them sooner then I did. As I said earlier, this tragedy has far-reaching effects and the abdominal area is the first and foremost point of impact. I will talk later about the need for overall bodywork through grief, but the sooner you have help in releasing your womb the sooner you will begin to heal, physically and emotionally. When we reach out to those people that understand our pain we mend a little more hour-by-hour and day-by-day.
Some great resources related to these thoughts include the book “Molecules of Emotion” by Candace Pert and “Healing Ancient Wounds” by John F. Barnes.
Stay tuned for another part in the series ‘The Deep Reaching Trauma of Stillbirth’.
Chinese medicine recognizes five major transitions or watersheds in a woman’s lifetime: birth, puberty, pregnancy, menopause and death. Each of these times is an opportunity, a gate through which we pass, and can irrevocably affect our spirit and/or our health.
There is no better time to closely nourish ourselves than when we are pregnant. It presents itself as an opportunity to not only resolve old health issues of our own but to help form and impact the future health of our soon-to-be child.
At Blossom we are fortunate to be able to offer both traditional Swedish pregnancy massage and Asian bodywork Therapy for pregnancy. If what you need is deep relaxation and a nourishing touch to ease your spirit and melt your aches and pains try the Swedish prenatal massage. If you are suffering from lethargy, feeling out of sorts and achy try the Asian bodywork to revitalize and balance your mind and body.
A woman may receive prenatal massage at any point during a healthy pregnancy. In a high risk pregnancy, or when there are medical complications, it is recommended to consult with both your obstetrician and a prenatal massage therapist. The benefits of prenatal massage and Asian bodywork therapy include the following:
* Reduces stress & anxiety
* Relieves aches and pains due to the rapid changes taking place in your body: great for the neck, back, sacrum, hands and feet.
* Reduces swelling of feet and ankles
* Maintains skin elasticity, reducing stretch marks
* Promotes deep relaxation & improves quality of sleep
* Improves digestion – constipation and acid reflux
* Relaxes and soothes baby
* Reduces pelvic & sciatic pain
* Can help reduce nausea
* Improves energy and vitality
* Relieves sinus congestion
Prenatal massage and Asian bodywork therapy are safe and effective complementary health care approaches for mothers-to-be. To avoid any negative effects make sure your therapist is trained and experienced. Note that nausea and dizziness can occur after any massage, don’t come with a completely empty stomach but do avoid eating immediately before a massage, and get up carefully and slowly to avoid problems. Hydration is essential after receiving any type of bodywork, be sure to drink plenty of water following your massage.
Blossom Clinic also offers Chinese Medicine, acupuncture and nutritional support for a healthy pregnancy. At Blossom Clinic we celebrate all phases of the human life. Congratulations on your pregnancy!