Australian Birth Stories Podcast
If you’ve been a follower of Fressko for a while you will be across our award-winning glass and stainless steel infuser flasks, but are you aware of our bigger and better insulated 660ml and 1L flasks and sip lids, released Dec 2021?
Whilst we hate to brag, (read: we love to brag) *winky face* they may be our favourite release yet. Aside from still featuring the non-slip base, and scratch resistant powder coated outer, the addition of the interchangeable sip lid option makes drinking from your flask a breeze, think…. no screw top or wide opening to contend with. Less spills. More hydration and perfect for on the go parents.
This month we are teaming up with The Birth Class, an online antenatal course, run by Sophie Walker; Host and Creator of Australian Birth Stories Podcast. *Each new subscriber to The Birth Class will be receiving one of our 660ml OR 1L stainless steel flasks plus a sip lid, perfect for the labouring or nap-trapped parent. IYKYK. *Limited number available, so be quick!
Read about how Sophie got into the field of birth work below as our feature guest writer this month.
My second-born son, Louis, just turned six. We celebrated with fish + chips and a meringue cake and I quietly acknowledged my own birth-day - the one that changed my whole career.
My first birth was quite traumatic so when I found out I was pregnant with Louis, I threw myself into research; I wanted to know everything about birth - to be informed and armed with practical birth skills. His birth was the positive, intervention-free birth I had planned and prepared for so I decided, on a whim, to record my birth story in case it would inspire other pregnant women.
So began my podcast, Australian Birth Stories, currently at 6 million downloads and counting. When you hold your newborn for the first time you never know the person they'll become. Likewise, I had absolutely no idea that my very unprofessional, poorly recorded birth story would be the first of over 300 in a collection featuring women from all over Australia. Every woman on the show has shared a very honest story of conception, pregnancy and birth and she's had to step into her most vulnerable space to do so; stories of elation and joy sit alongside stories of loss and grief and as I listen I'm reminded of the importance of stories; they are such a powerful way for us to connect and learn from each other. Australian Birth Stories is endorsed by the Australian College of Midwives and this year, I'll be launching two new episodes most weeks with the intention of sharing an inclusive collection of fertility, pregnancy and birthing experiences.
In 2021 I launched The Birth Class, an online birth preparation class featuring 10 audio episodes with midwives, doulas, yoga teachers and obstetricians. It's the ultimate conversation starter for pregnant women and their partners and because you can listen to it in your own time and in the comfort of your own home, you're more likely to digest and remember all the information that's shared. The most popular episodes are #1 with doula, Rhea Dempsey, where she explains the role of hormones in labour. It’s a really simple explanation of how your baby and your body communicates to kick start labour and what you can do to actively facilitate this process. In episode #4 with yoga teacher, Jodi Wilson, you learn how to use the breath and sound to ride contractions and stay present and grounded. There is also a lot of practical information in The Birth Class about pain relief options, birth interventions, VBACS and caesareans so regardless of how you birth, you’ll know what to expect, hence you won't be blindsided. There is also an entire episode on the hours after birth which aren't often discussed and can therefore be both surprising and confronting. I’ve received such amazing feedback from women and midwives after they’ve purchased The Birth Class and I’m so proud of the accessible format that allows you to listen to it as many times as you like.
The podcast and The Birth Class are particularly relevant in the current climate when uncertainty can be really unsettling for pregnant women and their support people. If you are pregnant, please remember that it’s never too late to start preparing. I really encourage you to listen to stories, to understand the birth process and learn some simple breathing techniques so you go into labour with awareness of your mind-body connection.
The best place to start? My free breathing exercise which you can access HERE. It's lovely practised when you get into bed at night. It’s also perfect for new (and not so new) parents.
Head over to Australian Birth Stories podcast via your preferred podcast app/Australian Birth Stories instagram or our Instagram page for details on how to nab your free Fressko flask.
Guest post by Sophie Walker
Header image credit @tiffs.tribe