Monday, July 31, 2006

Belly Dance - A Birthing Dance
Published in:-
Woman & Child May 2004Gold Coast Life Magazine May 2005

This century, the constantly evolving art of belly dance, from traditional to cabaret, has undergone a greater number of shifts and changes than ever before. The dance has journeyed to every continent on the planet and has been kept alive through both original cultural migrants and keen non-ethnic enthusiasts. Indeed, the concept of belly dancing has often been misunderstood, westernized and de-authenticated; yet we could look at this expansive dance as a starting point for many other varieties of human expression and actually as an improvised art, a theatrical inspiration, a healing and therapeutic practice or cultural study.
Belly dancing is a perfect exercise for women. It encourages suppleness and strength, fitness and co-ordination. And best of all, it is low impact and safe for knees and lower back. The isometric and toning aspect of the dance is a welcome benefit. Tummy undulations tone abdominal muscles, snake arms firm up the upper arms and back, and hip moves strengthen legs and back. The increased circulation brought about by the aerobic aspect of the dance, especially with the shimmies, stimulates blood flow to the large muscle groups of the thighs, hips and bottom. This has a firming effect on the muscles and smoothes out the skin, eliminating cellulite. Because belly dancing is enjoyable, it is an easily sustainable exercise.
The fun elements in the dance, coupled with expressive and emotive factors, make belly dancing a great all-round exercise. Belly dancing has, for thousands of years, been known as the 'dance of fertility' or 'the birth dance' because of its connection with female sexuality and sensuality, birth and the menstrual cycle. It was traditionally a dance that prepared the woman for the birthing process, aiding them during pregnancy, labor and beyond. The round, undulating movements of belly dance focus on the hips, belly and the pelvic area that is so frequently overlooked in other exercise regimes.

The supple moves can help ease menstrual pains, regulate the cycle and maintain the health of the reproductive organs. It is a safe exercise to do during pregnancy and is best when the focus is on the gentle, round and soft movements. It is also a great post-natal workout. The dance isolations help get a new mother back into shape and strengthen the pelvic floor muscles at the same time.

For more information regarding local class offerings, please go to the Birth Rhythm website

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Tatianna's Birth

I wanted to send out a little birth story to you.

I do expect to be there on Thurs. for coffee by the way with baby!!!!

As it turns out, I went into Labour approx. 3 pm Thurs. 29 but didn't know it until after 5 pm. I was determined to stay out of hospital as long as possible so we went in about 1:30 in the morning. By that time I was only 4 cms. dilated, was hoping it was more, but it progressed fairly quickly after that.

My son & Tony were both in the labour room with me the whole time and Tony's son was in & out (he is 18). My son & Tony had attended two labour classes with me ahead of time so they were awesome and helpful. I couldn't have done it without them. John has a new respect for women and Tony is very grateful to the doulas for all they taught us!!

It was very intense and transition lasted a while which was the hardest. I not only felt extreme pressure with each contraction but sometimes nauseaus and shaky. The only thing that got me through was prayer and Tony's words. Most of labour I could not be in bed, just couldn't get close to comfortable. The nurse was awesome but of course she kept putting that damn fetal monitor belt on me to get baby's heart rate.I'm guessing around 6 a.m. i was checked again and the Dr. had to rupture the membranes.

Well, this was left up to us to decide. I was kind of stuck at 6- 7 cms. and wanted faster progression. I found pushing to be really hard cause i was sooooo tired. But finally after lots of coaching & help Tatianna was born at 7:41 a.m. Friday June 30. She was 8 lbs. 13 oz. and 19 3/4 long.

Because of my age and her size we had to spend a few days in hospital and they did some tests on her. She is beautiful and healthy and we finally came home Monday. It is good to be home finally. My room was often freezing cold. Most of the staff were wonderful but the odd one put me & Tony off.The nurse from Healthy & Home came over today and was very helpful, answering my questions. She weighed Tatianna, now 8 lbs. 7 oz. after being 8 3 just before leaving hospital. So, breastfeeding is going well. We've learned together and she is an awesome baby. But of course we all say that about our babes eh? Look forward to seeing all of you when possible. And to those who are still pregnant - hang in there thru the heat. It is SOOOOO worth it when you hold your baby and gaze at her with a love so huge you cannot imagine it.


Shelbie is born!

Hi Lisa
Just wanted to let you know that I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl on June 24 at 3:38 pm. She weighed 7lbs 5oz and was 19 3/4 inches. Her name is Shelbie Jane Isabella.
Everything went so much better this time. I didn't need any stiches which was great. My water broke at 8:00 am at home, then labour started about 1/2 hour later. I went to the hospital around 10:00 and she was born at 3:38.
I really want to thank you and Kari for all the stuff you taught in the class because I think it really helped. I used lots of the breathing techniques and they must have been working because the nurse kept telling me I was doing a good job. My nurses name was Donna, we really liked her. Dr. Martel wasn't there (no surprise) so a resident delivered her. I'm not sure what her name was but she's from Columbia. We really liked her to, she did a good job. The baby was out after 3 rounds of pushing.
So thank you thank you very much. I hope to see you all soon. As soon as I get a stroller I plan to come to the walks. I would like to go to the coffee shops too if they ever go to one that is a little closer to me since I have no transportation.
PLease feel free to share my news with the other ladies and tell them all I can't wait to show her off.

Hope to see you all soon