“Trust on yourself and your body during pregnancy, delivery and after birth”is the message for the future mums of the 13 authors of the book "Birthing with heart - The Birth of a Mother " . 

The idea come from my colleague Caridad Saenz- said Wendy Menghin, midwife and co-author of the book - that wanted to write a book little bit different from the classical manual about pregnancy and birth and more focus on the holistic aspect of woman’s power , so she asked the help of different birth workers to write on different aspect of that.

Wendy Menghin

Pregnancy and birth are an amazing experience in woman’s life, which involved some massive and deep physical, psychological and social changing. The book "Birthing with heart - The Birth of a Mother " , recently out and available on Amazon, was written by a group of 13 women, mothers, doulas and midwives in 22 chapters, talking not only about pregnancy, delivery and post-partum but also about sex, mental health, IVF, birth trauma and baby loss. 

Wendy Menghin, is a midwife and breastfeeding consultant. After specializing in obstetrics in Verona, she began her profession in Veneto. In 2011 the experience abroad began in United Arab Emirates in Abu Dhabi, where she also gave birth to her first child. Today she works as a Midwife Educator and Lacation Consultant IBCLC at the American Hospital in Dubai and has recently become a mother for the second time. Wendy is a woman, mother and midwife. 

“I choose to become a midwife- she said- because I love women, for the power and strength they have, but very often underestimated by themselves. I can stay here for hours to describe the power of a woman in labor or the courage she spreads going to operation theatre for a cesarean. The moment I love, whatever type of birth she has, is to see the baby on skin to skin contact on her chest. Be witness of the first time they will look each others into their eyes and the smiles of the new mums make me so happy. My aim is to help every mum to achieve that special smile, a mix of emotions difficult to describe, which I felt when I become mother too.” 

And in the book, Wendy and the other authors, talk about their own birth experience in one of the chapters, to pass the message that “every birth is different and there is no a wrong or right way to deliver a baby. Every women is already a mother from the first two lines of a pregnancy test.”

In her three chapters Wendy Menghin talks also about work and maternity (in the UAE maternity leave last only 45 days, n.d.r.) and sexuality during pregnancy. “We don’t talk often about sex in pregnancy. In the book I describe some of the aspect of sexuality during the nine months, firstly about the importance of the common consent and respect for each other (even the partner can be intimidate by the tummy) and find new way to be a couple together. A good sexual relationship in pregnancy will help also to have a better knowledge about our body and pelvic floor too, very useful in labor. 

After the birth of her first child Wendy became a lactation consultant IBCLC and at the question what are the benefits for the newborn and the mum she answered: “There are a lot. For a newborn nothing is better than mama’s milk. Human milk has inside all the optimal nutrients for a healthy growth.

It is already well known worldwide that breastfeeding in the baby reduce the incidence and duration of gastroenteritis, diabetes, specific kind of cancer and to develop allergies. It protects respiratory tract infections, improve the sight, the growing, the gut bacteria and helps to avoid oral malformations. (from: salute.gov.it)

Not only the baby, but mum can have benefits too! Breastfeeding, which is “ecological and economical”, like Wendy said, helps also the uterus to contract reducing the post-partum bleeding and to get back in normal dimension. Helps also to reduce the extra pregnancy weight gain and reduce the risk of osteoporosis and some form of breast and ovarian cancer. (from: Salute.gov.it)

It is also very important for the bonding of mum and baby. “When the baby is born – Wendy explained- everybody can cuddle him, changing the diaper, making the baby burp, but breastfeeding is something that only mum can do, it became a strong bond which worth every sleepless night. Breastfeeding is hard, difficult and tiring and a new mom needs time to find a good balance between feeding the baby and her life routine, and only in few are talking about this aspect. With this lack of information we need also to add the lack of postpartum care. A woman very often is alone, at home, with a crying baby, and unfortunately the easy option is to start formula with bottle. To all the mums I always say to look for help. In many hospitals here there are lactation consultant or midwives expert in breastfeeding. At American Hospital Dubai, where I work, I organized Breastfeeding Coffee, free meetings for mums and babies. The help and support is the key for a successful breastfeeding, because, even is exhausting sometimes, is completely worth.”

"Keep calm and relax" is "Keep calm and carry on" are the two messages midwife Wendy would like to deliver to all the couples that participate to her parent education classes. “Enjoying every single moment of pregnancy without stress is very important for the woman. The same concept is applying for postpartum. Keep calm live the moment and the journey without worrying so much, together with the partner. And trying to make new friendship with other mums and babies, as is so important to don’t feel alone later, when the baby is out, especially for whom, like us, are expats.”   

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