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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Giving Birth God's Way at The Cathedral of the King

Among the articles I share in my Facebook page are those pertaining to natural birth.  Out of the blue, one of the moms, Lala Espina messaged me.  She had experienced natural birthing at a birthing facility provided by her church in Mandaluyong City.  I was very curious because Lala shared that the set-up was very much like birthing at home.

Lala invited us to visit her church's birthing facility to meet their midwife, Mama Chato.  I went with my breastfriend, Velvet Roxas and her husband, Atan.  Velvet had recently been certified as a birth doula and I will write more about her in a future post.

We visited one Sunday after the church's service.  We were led to a room within a church which was set-up with the requirements for a natural birth - a bathtub, birthing stool, bed - complete facilities.
Lala had her second child in this facility.  Mama Chato shared how she had already decided not to pursue midwifery but had a calling and was asked to set up the birthing clinic by their church's leader.  She responded to this and resumed her midwifery practices.  She has delivered hundreds of babies, not only from among church members but also babies of Filipino women within the vicinity who could not afford to go to hospitals or lying-in clinics.  You can read more about it here.
What impressed me the most was the homeyness of the facility.  Here, fathers are encouraged to participate in the birth.  Because, the facility is in a home-setting, moms are not pressured into speeding up their labor.  Usually, in hospitals, moms are strapped to beds for the convenience of the medical staff - easier to check fetal heart beat, easier to IE, etc. etc.

Natural birthing advocates have emphasized that lying on your back is the worst position for laboring moms.  At this facility, moms are encourage to walk around, use the birthing ball, go in the water, do a dance with their husband to encourage the labor to progress swiftly and naturally.
During the recent Breastfeeding Uncovered seminar, one of the things that Dr. Jack emphasized was how birthing can play an important role in a successful breastfeeding relationship.  At this clinic, natural birthing is emphasized and the moms are encourage to welcome each contraction and not to fear childbirth.  I was really amazed that such a facility existed in the heart of Metro Manila.

If you want more details about whether you can give birth at this facility, it is best that you contact the Cathedral of the King by visiting their website.

While I had a natural birth with E, I was still not allowed to labor in my preferred position and I was asked to stay in bed.  I found that the better position for me was to labor on my side.  You can read about my own learnings from birth here.  How was your own birth experience?

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