I am so excited and honored to be part of the New York
Family family! Let me start with a bit of my background. —
I started teaching yoga 11 years ago and began specializing
in prenatal yoga almost 10 years ago. After teaching prenatal yoga for
about 2 years, I was invited to witness a few births at a local hospital. I had never seen a real live birth before (only on TV and in movies – needless
to say, it’s VERY different than the real thing). That experience blew me away, and
my eyes were definitely blown wide open by
the management of birth in a hospital setting. (Please note: I am not
saying a hospital is a bad place to have a baby. It was just more managed than
I had realized it would be.) In 2003, I built on that experience by
enrolling in a labor support doula certification through DONA (Doula
Organization of North America) and have been attending births ever since. Being the big geek for learning that I am, I decided to continue my education
in the childbirth world and completed the Lamaze International Training in 2006
and a Midwifery Assistant Program at “The Farm” in 2008. At this point, I
have had the pleasure of working with over 7,000 new and expectant moms. I
most recently put all my training and experience to use when I birthed my son,
Shay, in July.
When the idea of blogging was introduced to me about 4 years
ago, I was completely terrified. I was, after all, a musical theater
performer with a degree from a music conservatory. Essay writing was
hardly a top priority for a singer/dancer like me. I often joke that as long as I
could read a script and count to 8, I was all set! Just like anything
else, it took a little time to adjust to the weekly self-assigned task of
writing. But blogging quickly became one of my favorite parts of my
My blogs focus on prenatal yoga and pregnancy and
postpartum-related issues. I come up with specific topics by listening to
the concerns of my students, witnessing the many variations of birth taking
place in our community, and being active in the birth community. While I
do have opinions about some birth practices, I try to approach my writing from
the standpoint of offering substantiated information that will educate families
about the choices they have with respect to their child’s birth. I truly
believe that education equals empowerment. I do NOT believe there is “one
right way to birth,” just as there is not “one right way to mother.” If we can
get rid of some of the fear and start from a place of confidence, then our
personal choices can become an authentic way to birth.
Please continue to visit New York Family to read my blog posts –
I look forward to sharing with you!
Debra Flashenberg is the director of the Prenatal
Yoga Center. For more on Debra, see our
contributors list to the right.
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