the halo effect (and a giveaway)

I’ve sat here trying to find the right words for this post, and everything has got slowly repeatedly deleted. Why am I finding it so difficult to put in to words what is sitting so comfortably in my heart?

I’ll try to explain…

Last week I went to a screening of Face of Birth. A documentary on pregnancy, childbirth, choices and where Australia currently sits with those choices. I’d been looking forward to seeing it for a long time, and the premiere week was finally here.

It was wonderful. AB.SO.LUTE.LY wonderful.

Yet sitting here now with my decaf coffee, my newborn sleeping peacefully near by, and my fingers paused over keyboard… I still hesitate to find the right words. Partly due to a mushy baby brain and partly due to the fact I have so many thoughts and emotions racing around my head that they seem to be tripping over themselves.

Tripping aside, what I do know is that birth is important, it’s so incredibly important and this documentary is an absolutely beautiful look at why it is. The film looks at a number of different women and their choices, along with experts in the field (Ina May Gaskin, Michel Odent, Dr Andrew Bisits) and their thoughts on how things are in the birthing world at the moment. This is a film for teen girls yet to even contemplate pregnancy, young women not having given birth before, pregnant mamas, partners, mums to one, mums to many, fathers, grandparents… anyone who thinks choice is important.

Nearly four weeks ago I birthed my third babe. A waterbirth at home, my third baby, but my first homebirth.

It was the most exhilarating, joyous, empowering, truly magical experience of my life, and I would choose to do it again in a heart beat. I’m so very thankful that I was given that option of midwife led care while pregnant. The whole experience is the founding block of something wonderful. What that is I’m yet to find out but I know that it sits there, and it can never be taken from me.

While my words for this post still sit tripping over themselves, I’m still going to press publish. As if I don’t, it could be quite some time before I find the right structure to really convey how I feel in a coherent way. Time doesn’t wait and now is the time to see this wonderful film.

If you would like to see it I have one to give away. Just leave a message in the comments below and I will draw a winner on Monday the 26th of March. (Or you can buy your own copies here.)

* The picture above was of a ice sun ring, or 22 degree halo effect I saw during the week.Β For two weeks after I gave birth I was blessed with a magical babymoon period. The wonderful hormone oxytocin was running high, and I felt well and truly surrounded by a bubble of love. Just like this ice sun ring, there was an almost halo effect here at home surrounding us as we all got to know our little girl.


** Congratulations to Kari @ Bite Sized Thoughts on winning the dvd.**

31 thoughts on “the halo effect (and a giveaway)

  1. I had both my births in hospitals, but not by choice. I was very fortunate to have a midwife for my first birth and it made a world of difference!
    Would love to win the video, of course, but hope to see it either way!
    Love your blog!!!
    Please post baby pics πŸ™‚


  2. This is definitely a film you have convinced me to try and see. With friends starting to make choices – and home births getting a huge publicity here last year after Prof Fiona Stanley (then director of the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research) endorsed them, but various medical people then criticised that! – I feel like it is an area that needs talking about much more.


  3. I think you’re doing amazingly well to be blogging while just recovering from having your third baby. Your home birth must have been amazing. I had three natural births but all of them were in a hospital. I hope the weeks ahead are easy for you and that your newborn settles into a good routine with great speed xx


  4. I too have a three week old (happily making up for the sleep he misses when big sister is home giving him endless amounts of *love*). I missed the premier of this doco and would love to see it. I’ve had two midwife led, peaceful, private and wonderful births (tho not at home) and hope more people are able to have such an experience at their venue of choice!


  5. Congratulations! I am so happy for you πŸ™‚ my sister had a waterbirth for her first daughter and a waterbirth at home for the second one – and I know from her it was an amazing experience. Welcome to the universe, your precious bundle of joy! Blessings Tandy xox


  6. Congratulations for taking that leap and creating a supportive team to help you achieve this. I’d like to think if I had another birth I could invite more choice into the matter. For someone with baby brain….you certainly make a lot of sense! πŸ™‚ x


  7. bless you, you have obviously been really moved by this film. I had 2 natural births, not at home but in a small midwife led unit, no doctors, no proper pain relief. Although I panicked a bit with the first one (and would have had any drugs they could have offered!!) I am so glad that I managed to have them both in this calming, warm, female environment, not in a sterile hospital. I feel immense pride in my body and I feel that I have found my true female strength and that I did all I could to bring them in to the world as they should be. I know that hospitals and doctors are wonderful things if you are in trouble, but I was lucky enough not to be, and I shall feel proud till my dying day. The water is amazing too, and I sometimes wonder if my eldest one is the calmer of the two because she came out into water – the second didn’t as it was too hot for me on a warm day, but I did have the joy of picking her up before anyone got near her, I had this immense feeling of motherhood as I scooped up this mucky little bundle who had just slipped out of me. Sorry long post, but you started my monday with such lovely memories! Have a good week.xx


  8. I’m so happy for you. I am sure this will lead to something wonderful for you. When the time is right I believe everything will fall in to place. This is what is happening to me at the moment. My boys are a little older and I have a bit more time to explore. For me it is a new career path, studying to become a Holistic Health Coach and I’m loving it.
    I love your photo.
    Wishing you and your family much health and happiness,
    Julie xxoo


  9. You’ve drawn out a long time lurker today πŸ™‚ Congratulations on your amazing homebirth for the arrival of your little girl.
    Me, right now, I’m pregnant with my first and chasing information and thoughts and pregnancy/labour/birth philosophy wherever I can get it. My husband is quite opposed to homebirth whereas I think it would be something I could ‘do’ (though still with some trepidation). Instead, we’ve booked into a family birth centre, with a small midwife led team.
    I certainly believe that knowledge is power, and with that comes the power of choice… there just isn’t enough out there about the non-hospital-delivery-suite options.
    So…. after that ramble πŸ™‚ thanks for sharing your experiences, and I’ll look out for this DVD.


  10. Like you, I’ve experienced both a hospital and a home birth. I certainly know which way i’d opt for in future! My midwife likened giving birth in a hospital to birthing in the supermarket. . . all the bright lights, hard surfaces and strangers. So very glad you got to experience the power and beauty of a home birth this time ’round.

    rachel xo


  11. Wow, just the ‘teaser’ sparks quite an emotional response from me on this issue. I will have to see this. I feel quite passionate about natural birth and could chat to women all day long about their births. I had all my children naturally, including the 3rd birth which were twins. Although I had them all in a private hospital here in Hobart, it was the most amazing positive experience with beautiful midwives and a caring obstetrician I’ve had since baby no. 1. I spent the whole time in the shower until I was ready to push and there were no bright lights here or anyone in the room other than my husband until the end. I know from friends in Sydney that it is a bit different in the private hospitals there but I really couldn’t fault the system down here and would definitely opt for this same option again as I really feel it had all the benefits of homebirth without the anxiety I would have had having it at home. Not as brave as you. I’m so so happy for you though, having a positive experience sets you up for a great start to mothering a new baby πŸ™‚ Hope to see more pics soon xx


    • The snippit does ignite an emotional response doesn’t it. I’m absolutely thrilled you had such a positive birthing experience with your births and your natural twins? Awesome!
      (I’m always happy to find another passionate natural birth advocate πŸ™‚


  12. Hello, how wonderful to read your web of emotions and feel your great joy. I do love midwives, and both my older boys were born using midwife team care with just midwives present. (Both in hospital, I am strangely find of hospitals and loved being there.) The twins were breech and section which was fine too.

    Babies can be born all ways, and all my births were beautiful in their own ways. The one that was most natural, fast and furious and with me just sucking very low gas, was the most defining, the most amazing… the one I will think of when re-living life’s highest points at the end of my life.

    Ahh… fantastic… but then again…. the safe and healthy baby… that’s the most important thing at the end of the day.


  13. Hi, I’m new to your gorgeous blog and going back through your posts I came across this one. Beautiful! I will have to seek out the film. I have two daughters (nearly three and nearly one) after two drug free births in hospital. First time with an ob, but she only made the very last bit and it was a wonderful midwife who reassured me that although it was all happening pretty quickly I was doing amazingly and I was! Second time around I went with a public one-to-one midwife led care and it was the most wonderful decision I made. My second birth was very fast and I was only at the hospital for 15mins before I had babe in arms, but I KNEW my midwife, she was waiting in the carpark for me. I was in full labour, waters flowing, head crowning on the lift up to the birth suit – the lift was full of couples going for their child birth ed class! The baby was posterior, but in fifteen minutes I was calming talked through a ‘slow’ push to ease her out with tearing at all thanks to a midwife totally in tune with me and who I completely trusted. Whether this relationship culminate in a hospital, birth centre or home birth, all women should get at least the option to have someone they REALLY KNOW there to offer guidance and support. The best thing about my second labour was the fact that she was posterior, I pushed her out into my hands looking right in her eyes, no one else touched her until much later. The worst thing was that it was all so fast and I went into shock afterwards that I lot is now just a blur, but I remember that beautiful face!

    Sorry I’ve gone on, I love birth stories and the telling and retelling of them – good or bad or anything in between – is so important.


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