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A Call for Caulbearers5 February 2009
For those not yet versed in the physiologic and cosmic possibilities of childbirth, I’d like to introduce you to birth in the caul. I’ve recently come across a video of a Mama having a water birth—which is a method of birth during which the awesome parturient Mama is partially submerged in lovely warm water and—the new little soul being born slides from her first watery home into another wet environment. The baby, still getting oxygen from the Mama via the placenta and umbilical cord, does not take it’s first breath until out of the tub when she is stimulated by the air. This video is extraordinary because it shows both a water birth and a birth in the caul!
The amazing image that you see here, which looks like a pearly gem emerging, is actually the baby’s amniotic sac bulging out. The bag of waters or caul is the valise that the little bean lives in during the average 40 weeks of gestation. Most often the membranes rupture during the labor process (think: “My water just broke!”) or is artificially ruptured by a Midwife or Obstetrician prior to birth.゠ There is no harm in leaving the amniotic sac whole, however, and many peoples all over the world believe that when left intact the caul and the baby which bears it have magical qualities.
Legend holds that caulbearers carry good luck and protection from death by drowning, making them considerably valuable folks among seafarers. The Scots, too, believe the child will be fey, or psychic. And from the ancient Egyptians we learn that the newborn baby is destined for the cult of Isis, a mystically inclined fate.
Notice first of all how relaxed this amazing Lady is while pushing her baby out.゠ You can see that the sac bulges and contracts with pushing efforts and relaxation respectively and that the head is born with the caul intact. The Midwife then breaks the membranes and catches the little one.
Just think how cushioned both Baby and Mama are during this process of birth in the caul.
Psychic abilities?! No perineal tears?! No cephalohematomas?! Three cheers for CAULBEARERS!! (As well as the amazing Women who push them out and the Midwives and OB docs who have the patience and respect to leave the process be).
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