Birthing From Within is for you if...
- you are worried about the pain and intensity of childbirth and early parenting
- you are interested in mindfulness as an approach to birth and parenting
- you want to connect with your baby and partner (if you are coupled) in a small and intimate setting
- you want to prepare for the unknown of birth and early parenting with creative and multisensory processes
- you want to gather information and learn about the stages, physiology and hormones of labor, comfort measures, partner support, feeding your baby and baby basics
- you want to take some time to process a previous birth experience with art and discussion
- you are preparing to give birth at any area hospital, home birth, birth center, or by Cesarean
- you believe that trusting birth means trusting your ability to cope with what birth brings you
- you would like to tap in Richmond area resources for birth and parenting
- you are interested in the 1 hour in-home postpartum visit included in all classes to provide resources, hear your birth story, and check in on feeding your baby
- you want to go deeper in your preparation for birth and parenting
- you are looking for a holistic class to supplement or as an alternative to hospital based classes
Your prenatal class will include..
- stages & emotional map of labor
- labyrinth as a metaphor for labor
- introduction to mindfulness based pain coping
- breath awareness
- comfort measures
- eating and moving in awareness
- nonfocused awareness
- optimal fetal positioning
- hormones of labor
- unexpected events and labor tips
- circular breathing
- spiraling and edges visualizations for pain coping
- Cesarean in awareness
- compassionate use of drugs and epidurals
- affirming partner's needs and role
- new family visit
- postpartum needs and moods
- feeding your baby
- placenta rituals and options
- going back to work
- baby basics
- birth bundles and closing ceremony
- share birth stories
- feeding your baby
- postpartum moods
Most childbirth preparation is thinking, reading, and talking about childbirth, looking things up on Google, TV, friends, books, or social media. This is an important way to prepare, but parents these days are inundated with information. When we prepare in this way to the exclusion of being in our right brain in a creative, visual non-verbal way, it can be detrimental.
Learning to be comfortable in your nonverbal mind can be useful preparation for childbirth, which is largely a non-verbal process. In a 4 week class, we might experience the birth art process 2 or 3 times, responding to assignments such as Womb With a View or Birth in Our Culture. Pastels, art paper and any other art materials, are included in the class fee.
From Point Zero: Creativity Without Limits, by Michele Cassou:
You must get acquainted with the unknown while your mind calls for familiarity and plans. You must let your intuition guide you into the unexpected and unimaginable. You just need to stand erect in the unknown, in the empty space...Projection and expectation can often hypnotize you with their false offers of petty fulfillment. On the other hand, creativity has the whole universe working behind it. You are in a state of awakened surrender.
There are a surprising number of parallels between the creative process and birth, which we explore in class.
All group classes are held at
Three Sisters Midwifery Care, LLC
905 N. Sheppard
Richmond, VA 23220
1.5 Hour Mini Classes, $25
Get a taste of Birthing From Within and learn about a different topic each month, such as postpartum, pain coping, optimal fetal positioning and more. The $25 can be applied to the cost of a series.
Series, intensives and private classes include a postpartum doula home visit.
12 hours, 4 week series: $200
Recommended for first time parents
4 Hour Mindful Birth Express: $150
Includes home reading assignments
Private Classes: $40/ class hour in your home
Private classes will cover Birthing From Within pain-coping techniques, birth art processes and emotional preparation, selected modules on practical information relevant to you, a reading packet and an up-to-date list of local Richmond resources.
for all classes, a $50 deposit will be due via Paypal, Venmo, check or cash to hold your space in class; the remainder will be due by the first class meeting.
Location & Current Schedule
All group classes are held at @ Three Sisters Midwifery Care, LLC
905 N. Sheppard, Richmond, VA 23220
Adrianna Ross, CPM, LM & Glenda Turner, CPM, LM
4 Wednesday nights starting June 6 from 6-9PM
Saturday Intensive, July 28, 1-5PM
As a guy, she made me feel very comfortable asking questions about birth.
They [the classes] gave my wife confidence in knowing what to expect with the birthing process. My wife and I are more confident with our birth place decisions. We now have enough information to make informed decisions. Cat was very open to discussion and welcomed all questions.
— J. H.
The class opened up conversation.
I really liked how the class gave basic facts, stages of labor, positions, about birth as well as explored fears. [The classes] gave him [my partner] information about birth and procedures since he has never experienced a birth [and] opened up conversation about our thoughts and ideas and birth plan.
The coping techniques were extremely useful.
The class reframed how I think about pain in general. I loved the labyrinth drawing and he connection between partners in the class. Cat is an excellent public speaker and really does well engaging the class and encouraging participation.
The class made our relationship stronger.
It was wonderful!
Knowing and having reminders that you CAN birth you way, being prepared in case you can't, and having a safe place to talk was great!
I believe she and I are much better prepared, less anxious and more excited about the process.
The breathing exercises and ideas to cope with pain during labor will be invaluable. Communicating expectations and fears openly was helpful and gave us additional ideas on how to manage. We have increased confidence. I believe she and I are much better prepared, less anxious and more excited about the process. The class helped us mentally prepare and reduce anxiety. It feels like we’re on the same page with our birth plan and expectations. I think we’re a lot more confident since we’re prepared for knowns and unknowns during labor/birth. Cat made the room very comfortable and it felt like everyone was able to share fears/concerns openly and it felt like everyone benefited.
Cat brings a unique perspective to childbirth education, as a ToLabor certified birth doula and CAPPA certified postpartum doula who has attended births of all kinds in Richmond area hospitals, birth center and home births. She has experience at St. Mary's, St. Francis, Chippenham, Henrico Doctor's, VCU, Memorial Regional, Embrace Birth Center and local home births and brings her varied experience to her classes. She is a mom to two exuberant boys (born 2012 and 2014). She has completed training in childbirth trauma, perinatal loss, optimal fetal positioning and acupressure, holds a Master's in Teaching from VCU and a Master's in Fine Arts from Emerson College and is the 2017 chair of Richmond Doulas. She completed Birthing From Within Mentor training in 2015.
I would be honored to walk with you during your childbearing year.
Cat's Trainings, Certifications and Memberships
When do I enroll?
Most parents choose to enroll in a class at the beginning of their third trimester. If you would like a first trimester class focused on early pregnancy and birth options, let's set up a private in-home class.
What is the in-home postpartum visit?
A one hour in-home postpartum visit is included in all class registrations. I am a certified postpartum doula and I love visiting, hearing your birth story, checking in on how feeding your baby is going, and if time allows, helping with some simple chores! My main motivation in offering this service to all CBE students is that I want to be sure you have the resources and referrals you need postpartum. Sometimes you can feel alone after you head home from the hospital or you settle in at home the first weeks for out-of-hospital birth, and during this one hour visit, I can help connect you to parenting groups, extra feeding support, or resources for postpartum mood disorders. Also, it is so fun to meet the little ones that have been kicking you during the class series, and hear your birth story! All you need to do is text or call me and let me know baby has arrived and I can visit at your earliest convenience.
Do partners come?
Yes! Partners deserve support. Birthing From Within sees birth from four perspectives: birth parent, partner, baby and culture. We take time in class to explore and understand each of these frames. Partners participate in all pain coping practices and art processes and couples benefit greatly from practicing pain coping together. If your partner is planning to be at your birth, he or she will benefit greatly from attending classes.
Birthing From Within believes that all persons regardless of age, sex, race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression should be treated with dignity and respect.
This method of childbirth preparation is intimate, discussion based and creative. While the majority of what we talk about is universal, it is important that all participants feel safe and valued. BFW strives for proper pronouns and inclusive language. If "mother" or "father" is not the way you identify, it can create added stress during the childbearing year. If you identify as a trans or genderqueer parent, sometimes touching base before class starts to have a discussion about the pronoun you prefer and the language that resonates for you and any topics you would like to be sure we cover, can be helpful.