Delayed Cord Clamping. Ask the Midwife. Missoula Birth

The umbilical cord… that beautiful lifeline between a mother and her babe, coiled strong, pulsing blood and life for only a brief period once the baby is earth side… deserves our attention and praise. The benefits of leaving this in tact after birth has been an easy one for me since day one. I’ve never worked under a midwife who felt it wasn’t the standard of golden care. I have advocated for clients to their OBs and even CNMs to leave it only to be met with opposition and have even seen some occlude the cord saying “yep, it’s in tact” but not allowing it to pulse to the baby. Times are changing on this tide though. Finally OBs, and CNMs are following better guidelines and we are moving towards a norm of letting that cord pulse or delayed cord clamping. Why would we even do this? My question is why would we ever have not done this? Some of benefits are things such as decreased rate of resuscitation. This is a no brainer for home birth workers. We resuscitate babies when needed but almost exclusively we leave that cord in tact while doing so. The oxygen rich blood is my personal “insurance policy” while I may be helping a baby along to take her first breaths providing oxygen rich blood to the baby during this time. It eases the transition in any baby, not just the ones who need some help. The iron stores are increases and a 50% decrease in anemia can be found in newborns. Increase in myelin for brain function, stem cells, red cells, immune cells are also happening in this time. There is a 30% higher blood volume found in infants… I mean it is their blood after all. A decreased rate of brain hemorrhage and a decreased need for blood transfusions are also found. Premature babies are needing these benefits even more so than a term babe!
This entire process takes approximately 5-15 minutes. When the baby is born, reach down and feel that cord, feel that powerful force coming through. Know you are not only allowing the natural process to take its course but also giving your baby a better start. These fleeting moments are for wiping your own brow, listening for the first cry, reaching down and welcoming a new person into your world… all as it should be in tact, together, transitioning to the next phase of your lives side by side instead of as one. Written by Ashley-Hinton Sharp- Licensed Homebirth Midwife.

the scene

the birth scene in Missoula- in Montana ebbs and flows. the popularity of the most transformative day in a women’s life disappoints me. but when equality between the sexes is still a struggle – women’s birth choices, resources and support and overall reverence is minimal- then how can I count on the niche of Birth photography?

Missoula Birth Photography

those that book, stay booked, INVEST and receive the visceral unparalleled gift of a BIRTH STORY– back into their hands, is a very small percentage compared to the population of expecting mamas. my clients would make a lovely case study.

I wonder if my clients have achieved within themselves and their relationship with their partner and the world- ownership of the concept of VALUE? Do my clients harness worth differently than others? Do my clients hold women and women’s health issues with a sense of utmost importance? Do my clients revere childbirth, life? Do my clients practice self love and self care dropping the binding restrictions of the culture at large? I can be most intuitive about these things but cannot rightfully assume them as facts.

What I do know about my clients. They never regret investing in me. My clients never regret having documentation of their child’s first or last breath. I know that my clients respect my on-call, my sacrifice, my skill, my eye, my heart, and my art.

missoula nicu twins bonding with mother

Montana Birth Stories

Birth Stories of MT coming soon. In collaboration with Bozeman (http://www.midiphotografi.com) and future recruiting for a voice in Billings!

Birth Stories of MT is a visual resource, celebrating and validating the 4th trimester of the female journey and the intimate details of new motherhood. It’s vision is to create awareness and community, to provide evidence and healing through visual birth stories and uplift women in their rawness, their simple nature and the beautiful and visceral demand of the skin. 

Documenting: maternity, BIRTH, Fresh48, Surrogacy, loss, Postpartum & Breastfeeding

Birth Stories of MT. What makes MT mamas different? What is birthing in MT like? What makes us all the same? How is Birth love and how can it create community? What do your local birth places offer? Why choose home birth or center birth? What does a water birth look like?

We can’t wait to explore all these questions. We can’t wait to hear from Montana mamas- Birth Story client’s.  Let’s SEE these stories and talk about them together!

©2017 Jenna Nord- First Embrace Photography