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birth stories

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Cherise is an Arizona Mother, Doula, Childbirth Educator, Placenta Crafter, and Creator of the marvelous “Big Baby Project” (a website full of empowering vaginal births of babies 9 lbs and over). I love how her story illustrates what I wrote about in my essay “Unity with Providers of Care” in The Gift of Giving Life. I love that Cherise continued to search and pray until she found the right care provider for her. -Lani

With pain in my baby’s future, with surgeries looming on the horizon and more challenges in his future than I ever would have chosen for my child I took comfort in his gentle entrance into the world. With a childhood of doctors, nurses and therapists ahead I found peace in the intimacy of his birth.

At last month’s TGOGL Party in Utah, I had the privilege of meeting so many beautiful souls. One of these souls was a woman I felt a near-instant kinship with. Actually, I think we’re soul-sisters, though she’s wiser and more experienced. Her name is Maria Farley and today I’m sharing an interview with about her beautiful birth experiences.

The whole point of the placenta burying ceremony is that it is a strong way of “closure” to the time of immersion mothering right after a birth. It can be done on it’s own or in conjunction with some milestone, such as a blessing, first birthday, return of menstruation, etc. Though I thought 18 months was a long time to keep it in the freezer, I think I did it at just the right time for us.

If you want to have a party, you can apply to be a hostess. A GOGL party is a gathering designed to get women (and men when appropriate) together in person to share how God’s hand has worked in their lives (in the area of giving life). It is an opportunity for people who wouldn’t normally to hear spiritual birth-related stories. It is also a great way to spread the word about our book.

I’m so glad I had my friend Cassie and my sister-in-law Brooke there as my doulas/photographers. I created a slideshow with my birth photos that you can view on my Birth Faith blog. But I realized yesterday that I’ve never shared the photos themselves online. Here are some of my favorites, taken by Cassie (and Brooke) at the end of my pregnancy, during labor, and afterward…

Shari shares the healing journey she experienced as she brought her special son, Michael, to Earth. It gives us much to ponder, particularly those struggling with pregnancy depression and those who have had cesareans.

Something I used to frequently say regarding childbirth was that I was born in the last days because Heavenly Father knew I couldn’t handle a natural childbirth and knew I needed epidurals. It was something I would always joke about, but also really believed. I might be mentally strong, spiritually strong, but physically strong? No way. That was not for me. I wasn’t a hardy pioneer woman that pushed handcarts and gave birth along the Mormon trail. Heavenly Father knew me and knew my mental and physical limitations. Or so I thought.