Midwife Visits, Deepening Our Appreciation of Babies

A few of our students have recently become, or will soon become, older siblings. To celebrate their growing families we invited our friend/HFP alumni parent and midwife, Maura, to share about babies and the birthing process. Maura brought some of the tools she uses in her work: scales, fetal dopplers, and a baby doll in a bag of water with detachable umbilical cord. Children loved listening to their own heart with the doppler and stethoscope, and getting to play with the baby doll. 

   

Maura: “I love talking to young children about babies and birth. They are not that far removed from the experience that I think they can still really relate to the fact that they were once inside the uterus. I find the real connection is made through the belly button (that original point of real connection!) When you tell a child that they used to be attached by an umbilical cord, and now that’s their belly button, many of them are more than ready to raise their shirts and show you theirs. And of course they want to see mine. I’m happy to share. It’s a place we can all connect. 

I also love using accurate terms for things, and for kids to know there are many ways to make a family and different ways for babies to be born. I think it’s never too early for young children to hear the words uterus, vagina, penis, sperm, egg, umbilical cord, cesarean section, sperm donor, etc. The minds of children are like sponges, and most do not yet feel shy or shameful about their bodies. I hope to pass on positive messages that all of our bodies and all parts of our bodies are beautiful. “
 

 

In our Monday class a mom with a newborn joined us, and the children got to see her feed and weigh her real life baby. In our Tuesday class, children were enamored with A’s baby sister, Amaia. During circle time an expecting mother of one of our students, visited and Maura was able to show the children how to use her tools, like the doppler on a real pregnant belly. 

 

It was wonderful to see the change in the children as they became quieter and calm with curiosity as the midwife did her work. 

Late last week our expecting mother who came during circle time gave birth to a happy healthy baby. We are so happy for H’s whole family. 

*Thanks to Maura Jansen for generously sharing her time, tender attention and expertise with our classes. Thanks to Mandy for sharing her enthusiasm, body and time and for letting us listen to her baby’s heartbeat!

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