Birth Preparation

Online Fertility Yoga Classes at MamaSpace Yoga

Why Fertility Yoga?

Several years ago when I was a student in a San Francisco prenatal yoga teacher training, my teacher mentioned a fertility yoga sequence that she had practiced when she wanted to start her family. Instantly intrigued, I asked her if she was going to teach it to us. She said she didn’t have time to add it to the current prenatal/postpartum training, but would consider teaching it as a stand

Parenthood Disconnect by Carol Gray at MamaSpace Yoga

Parenthood Disconnect

I recently reflected on a meeting I had a few years ago with second-time expectant parents. As their three year old played with toys in my living room they told me about the parenting challenges they had weathered since the last time I was their midwife. They had a great home birth the first time around, but wondered why they had focused so much energy on preparation for birth and

Questions to Ask a Homebirth Midwife at MamaSpace Yoga

Questions to Ask Homebirth Midwives

With more people considering home birth or planned out of hospital birth these days it’s good to know what kinds of questions to ask while searching for your perfect birth attendant. I wrote and published these questions on my website years ago when I was a homebirth midwife. I’ll never forget the one time a pregnant couple who interviewed me pulled out my list of questions and asked them. It

MamaSpace Yoga Helps You Ask Your OB the Right Questions for a Better Birth

Questions to Ask Obstetricians and Hospital-Based Midwives

We get lots of questions about pregnancy birth and postpartum care providers and hospitals. Our prenatal yoga students have so many choices to make – especially during the pandemic. In some hospitals laboring people can have only one support person. In others, they may have more than one. Some people are considering virtual doulas. In other situations they can be accompanied by an in-person doula. In  some hospitals parents and

Carol Gray Tells the Truth About Epidurals at MamaSpace Yoga

The Truth About Epidurals

First a word or two about birth physiology: Labor is almost universally painful for birthing parents and sometimes painful for babies. One of the ways we cope with pain is to produce beta-endorphin. Beta-endorphin is an opiate-like brain chemical – the same one responsible for the so-called runner’s high. It reduces pain. In a typical labor the pain increases over time. As the pain increases the production of beta-endorphin also

Learn How to Have a Better Cesarean Birth at MamaSpace Yoga

Cesareans! Emergencies! and Strategies!

The word “emergency” used to ONLY apply to childbirth. The baby emerges, get it? Lately, I have been hearing an emergent theme in the stories people have been sharing with me about their cesarean births. They divide them into two categories – planned and emergency. Often a parent will say to me that their cesarean birth was not planned. It was an emergency. Yet, when I hear the details of

A View of the MamaSpace Yoga Video Studio

I Miss Teaching In-Person Prenatal Yoga Classes

As I stand in our old yoga studio, I prepare to begin again. I’ve rearranged this room – several times. In some ways it’s almost unrecognizable. I’ve moved shelving and props. I’ve hung blankets from the ceiling and walls to produce better sound quality for our yoga videos. I’ve hauled lighting and camera equipment up and down flights of stairs. I’ve spent hours on ladders changing lighting and installing special

Postpartum Core Reconnection With Margot Strauhull at MamaSpace Yoga

Culturally-Relevant Care

Black Women Again Turn to Midwives, Some Fearing Coronavirus in Hospitals. I was so happy to read this headline. I’m sad that fear of contracting COVID-19 in the hospital and  concern over no support people allowed to attend laboring people in the hospital is driving some of the change. Nonetheless, it’s change. We’re headed in the right direction. I’ve long known that Black parents are three to four times more

Inanna Queen of Heaven and Earth - Her Story is Potent for Pregnant and Birthing People

Inanna’s Journery

Inanna, Queen of Heaven and Earth, was a goddess revered by the ancient Sumerians. I love her story of descent into and return from the Underworld. It’s a wonderful analog for the process of preparing for, moving through and returning from birth. Inanna undertook a perilous journey to the underworld – a place from which nobody had ever returned alive. She prepared, she planned and she forged ahead. She brought

Pregnant People Meditate at MamaSpace Yoga

Responsibility

Many yoga studios around the world have reopened or are planning to reopen for in-person yoga classes. We aren’t (yet). At MamaSpace Yoga we serve a particular population – pregnant and postpartum people. It’s obvious to me that we can’t yet know what any long-term (or short term) effects of COVID-19 infection in the first trimester of pregnancy would be. People who have contracted this disease in the first trimester