Author(s): Ina May Gaskin
In 1976, Ina May Gaskin wrote "Spiritual Midwifery," the handbook for midwives now in its 4th edition with 600,000 copies sold. Gaskin now shares with all women her knowledge and wisdom about what she calls the "true capacities of the female body, " based on her more than three decades as a midwife. Gaskin explains that at The Farm Midwifery Center, which she co-founded with her husband, Stephen, all the women expect to give birth vaginally - and almost all do. The Center's cesarean rate is only 1.4% of more than 2,200 babies delivered, compared to the national rate of 22% (in 1999). This amazing book takes the fear out of childbirth, recasting it as the positive experience it should be, and includes inspiring and instructive birth stories from women who have used the midwifery model of care at The Farm. Because Gaskin knows that women who believe in their own power to give birth are able to do so more easily, she packs this volume with information that will empower women in the birth process. She provides numerous suggestions for how a woman can maximize her chances for spontaneous birth, including: *creating a safe, comfortable environment for birth in any setting, including a hospital *the best ways for women to work with their doctors and/or birth care providers *how to avoid specific medical procedures that can hinder labor *what makes for such great differences in women's experience of birth *the risks and reasons not to have epidurals, episiotomies, C-sections, and other medical interventions *and much, much more.