Newborn family stories
Baby tense & nursing painful after difficult birth – Alicia’s story
Our son Jonah had a tough birth. He was sunny side up and ended up having a vacuum delivery. After he was home I noticed it often hurt me when he nursed, especially on one side. At three months, Jonah also frequently seemed uncomfortable (which we thought was maybe just gassiness) and didn’t like being touched on one side of his neck. Our doula and a Blooma instructor both noticed Jonah’s tension and recommended we see Catherine to help unwind him and feel better.
Seeing tension in his little body
Seeing Catherine was such a positive experience for my family. She was so intuitive and clearly saw how we could relieve Jonah’s tension. She helped us track with what is going on in his body that we never even noticed. Her goal was to see him a few times and to give us a home care plan so we could help him ourselves.
It didn’t hurt to nurse anymore
It was remarkable to watch Catherine find ways to relax Jonah. She was very informed and explained to me what she was doing and how I can help him at home. Jonah reacted so well to her. After our first session I realized it didn’t hurt to nurse anymore. After our second session, it was clear his digestive system was significantly better, and he started sleeping better at night. He now doesn’t react when we touch his neck/shoulder and he just seems more relaxed and content in his body. Catherine taught me how to do the very light, gentle releases for our home care going forward.
We would highly recommend Catherine and hope to use her as a resource in the years to come! – Alicia Dunning
Colic & sleep
Relief from reflux & pain – Anita’s story
Lukas began having reflux and very restless crying at two weeks old. In the evenings he was in a lot of pain. Lukas was only having one bowel movement a week then. With Catherine and other practitioners’ help, we were able to sort out several problems for Lukas, who is now happy and healthy.
I saw how comfortable Lukas was during the whole session. He had cried throughout a prior chiropractic session, so I was relieved to see how gentle craniosacral therapy was.
How craniosacral therapy works
Also, Catherine explained how craniosacral therapy works and showed me the anatomy. This information helped my husband understand why integrative therapies could be valuable for Lukas. Catherine also recommended that we might need a small team for a short time, to solve both structural issues and gut problems.
We had seen Kate Birch, RSHom(NA), CCH, CMT, for homeopathy and a little craniosacral work. Along with giving us a full craniosacral therapy session and some activities to do with Lukas, Catherine sent us to Cori Rutchick, DC, a chiropractor who used kinesiology to check Lukas for food sensitivities. Although it was hard to eliminate foods, at least we knew which ones to cut out.
Right away we started seeing improvements. Lukas was so much better that week and into the following week. Following those sessions he started having one bowel movement every day. I feel it is much healthier for Lukas to eliminate daily, in spite of some doctors saying that babies are ok with having infrequent bowel movements.
Now I can eat any foods and Lukas is good, at two months old. Lukas is big and chunky and enjoying himself. I feel much more relaxed and now can leave house with both kids.
Catherine has also helped me with other questions for both Lukas and my 3 year old daughter. She has encouraged me to find my own way to parent, and to find the rhythms for night nursing and co-sleeping that work for every member of the family as Lukas grows. – Anita
Recovery from intense birth – Rachel’s story
My baby had been trying to resolve the intensity of his birth journey for a month. I see him going through his birth process every day. I would rather that he had help to sort out the intensity of his birth, rather than him trying to work it all out on his own.
Better communication between baby and me
The communication between Alden and me has improved greatly since we last met, and his latch looks so much more open and accepting than he had previously shown after our session. I have also tried some different positions when holding him for nursing according to your recommendation, and it has been quite an amazing turnout! My breasts feel relieved and a bit more regulated only after a day. 🙂
Trust & empathy
I cannot begin to thank you for all that you did, and the amount of time you spent to work through Alden’s distress and birth experience. I think he knew he had the best support and felt nothing but trust and empathy on your part, all of which I attribute to why his session was so open and successful. Thank you! I will be studying the home program for some time, and look forward to assisting Alden with an easier transition into the world. – Rachel
Timely help – Kara’s story
My husband, new baby Olivia and I stopped by the Birth Center on our way home from an unexpected and difficult birth at the hospital. You did craniosacral on Olivia for quite a while.
I just wanted to express my thanks to you because you completely went out of your way to do that when we didn’t even have an appointment . The work you did on her made a huge difference in getting us through the next few days of feeding and new parenting. – Kara
Baby frantic & frustrated – Adriana’s story
Úna was born after a very long labor and an extended pushing stage. I was overwhelmed with relief to close the chapter on labor and move on to bonding with my new baby. I didn’t have any concept that the difficult and lengthy labor could impact breastfeeding or how Úna would feel, but when we tried to get breastfeeding started, my instinct told me that something was wrong. Úna was clearly very frustrated, and she had difficulty latching. Her eyes were tense, her brow was furrowed, and she was pushing on her mouth with her fists. Something was preventing her from nursing well, and she seemed to be frantic in everything that she did.
During the first two days I knew that breastfeeding was giving Úna nutrition and bringing my milk in, but it was extremely uncomfortable. Her jaw would chomp down to nurse; I dreaded every feeding and cried through them. While Úna was biting down on my breast I was biting my finger and stomping my feet.
After one session she was a different child
I am completely committed to breastfeeding, but I could understand why someone would try formula or give up breastfeeding altogether. I just never allowed myself to consider that an option. At our day three appointment our midwife talked with me about craniosacral therapy. Although I had heard of it, I didn’t know what would be involved or how it would work. I knew we needed help, more than just the breastfeeding advice I had received to that point. After three days of very painful feedings and feeling totally exhausted, I emailed Catherine in the middle of the night. I now know that we made a great decision to work with Catherine, and looking back, I wish that we had gotten in touch with her from day one.
After my 4am email, Catherine visited us that same day. In our first session we saw Úna work through some of her birth issues, and Catherine pointed out that Úna’s crying during the session was her way of telling us how hard the birth process was for her. It was difficult to watch, but I could see that we both needed to work through some of the trauma of the birth process, both physical and emotional. At the end of our first session with Catherine, Úna was already a different child – her hands and face were relaxed, her eyes were bright and open, and she seemed generally content and calm. I felt that Úna had been relieved of much of the tension and anxiety that she had been holding on to.
Vastly more comfortable
After our work with Catherine, Úna has a much better latch, more open suck, and she is settling in to a better rhythm. She is more comfortable and relaxed in her eyes and hands, and while breastfeeding. Nursing is vastly more comfortable for me, too. We are still a work in progress at 8 days, but now I am very confident that we will get to the place where it is natural and easy for us both.
I am so glad that the resources were here for us, and that we didn’t hesitate in contacting Catherine. Since we worked with her, my husband and I have talked to so many women friends who say that they just suffered through the early days or even months of breastfeeding, only to ultimately turn to craniosacral therapy for help. I know that some people are able to work it out with their babies right at the beginning, but for the many others who are suffering through painful breastfeeding, I can’t recommend Catherine strongly enough. – Adrianna
Signs for concern
Bruised at birth & Noisy breathing – mama MFM’s story
I delivered my baby boy naturally, but I had hemorrhaged and was very weak. As a first time mother, I was trying so hard to breastfeed and was successful, but just about every feeding caused him discomfort and pain. I tried everything. I got the midwives to check and see that everything was OK, but baby L would still cry through almost every feeding. Because I pushed for almost 7 hours and he had a very large head, he was in rough shape. His face was bruised and his nose was pressed flat for so long that L’s breathing was very noisy.
My birth center referred me to Catherine. I was so excited for someone to help. She was able to work with us to gently adjust my baby’s head. After a few sessions, L was improving and no longer crying during feedings. It was amazing to see the changes. We were able to enjoy him more and more.
It was such a blessing to find Catherine. She answered all of our questions and was so gentle with our little guy. We are so grateful for our experience with her. – mama MJM
Triplet tales: Easy vision for future reading – Mama J’s story
Early on we noticed that one of baby P’s eyes seemed smaller than the other. Catherine suggested that gently guiding the bones around the eyes to even alignment would make her vision easier for long term, future reading loads. Since cranial bones are the most mobile in the first years, we could now make a big difference for her down the road.
With a few sessions and our home program, we saw her eyes even out gradually. This seemed like it was all worked out. Then 2 weeks after we had seen Catherine, her left eye again looked smaller. When we talked about it, we realized Baby P had had a growth spurt. As Catherine described it, we had gently moved her bones into better alignment, but not perfect alignment. So when P had a growth spurt, the slight displacement became more apparent. With continued gentle craniosacral therapy we saw her eyes become even again. –– Mama J