Birthing By His Strength

Friday, May 22, 2015

The first time I met Normi I thought she was just someone who knew someone I knew. She was at Ibu Robin’s forum the last time she was in Manila and didn’t think I’d see her again.

But come May 2015, I see her at the Thank God It’s Mom’s Day gathering of Pursuit Manila. In an albeit short conversation, I felt like our hearts were being knitted by The One Above. We are ordained to be friends, this is what I am sure of, for reasons I cannot tell everyone yet as of now.

Soon enough after that second meeting our hearts were burning with a shared passion for natural birth that we just had to meet in my house! There she told me her full account of her birth story and I almost shed a tear to hear someone so deep into this as I am and attributes nobody else but the Lord Jesus for it!

I don’t want to write spoilers but  I promise you, if you are looking for encouragement and inspiration regarding natural birth, this is the woman to talk to, listen to. For not only did she give birth at home, in water, without medication and even assistance (her midwife Deborah didn’t get there on time because …err…just ready the story yourself hahaha!), and also chose to not cut the cord until it naturally fell off after a few days! (Lotus Birth, that is what one practice of delayed cord clamping is called, and she also blogged about that!) So without further ado, here is Normi’s birth story featuring the birth of her second son, Amos: My Second Birth Story: Amos.

This is still in light of my series celebrating the INTERNATIONAL WEEK OF RESPECTING CHILDBIRTH. Previous posts can be read by clicking these: Birthing Surprises, Of Births and Laughter. 

Of Births and Laughter

Thursday, May 21, 2015

I still remember the time when Phoebe told me that she was all set for CS when suddenly she felt like pushing. She also added that no matter how numbed you are from the drug they put inside of your body to dull the pain of labor YOU WILL STILL FEEL THE NATURAL URGE TO PUSH WHEN IT’S TIME TO PUSH.

When I was reading Bradley Book of Natural Birth I remember it was mentioned that dilation is not a gauge of how fast a woman is going to open to full 10. Sometimes they say it takes forever, but other times it takes a minute to jump from 5 to 10!

So many things can really happen in between and this story is a perfect picture of how God’s design for the woman’s body may be unstoppable at the time He really calls for the baby to come out!

Still in light of the International Week of Respecting Childbirth, here is another blog of a woman I personally know who gave birth in a similarly surprising manner! (See part one of this series here: Birthing Surprises!)

Read Buzzer Beater by Phoebe Sebastian (here is the link: Buzzer Beater) to be inspired to not give in too quickly but to wait for the breakthrough that God has in store for you at birth. It may just be a matter of minutes, but are you willing to wait? That’s the question.

F&F in Manila!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Some weeks ago I attended F&F’s launch in their flagship store in Glorietta 3. Before that, I actually got shop a couple of things from the store already and I was surprised at how it was such a “one-stop-shop” for me! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

FF women


Of course I went to the women’s section first, as it also is the first section to welcome shoppers, and I was glad to find all sorts of things! Jumpsuits galore- woohoo!!! (I am such a jumpsuit girl!) And then pajama party outfits, haha! Like fun robes and even adult onesies! (They also had eyelet ones so delicate and I fell in love with it! Hmmm…should go back for that now that I think about it.) One piece swimsuits also with great designs, and RTW gowns for perhaps a wedding or two! :)

ff baby


Moving nearer to the back end of the store, where the check out counter is located, I see tons of adorable clothes for baby and little boys AND girls!!! I couldn’t help but scout some shirts and pants for Philip, and even buy a pair of sandals for him to wear this summer! (And wow aren’t those rain boots too cute for life???)

ff show



These are photos from the fashion show and I picked these to show you how versatile this brand is. Price points are also affordable, which makes a happy mommy to have enough to spare for both herself and the baby! :)

For something new I wouldn’t hesitate to say it’s worth dropping by this store. Again, it is located in Glorietta 3, and you can find it on the 2nd floor! Hope you all will have good reviews of it, too! Have a great Tuesday!

Birthing Surprises

Monday, May 18, 2015

People who have been with me throughout my pregnancy through this blog know my desire to give birth naturally is very, very strong. However, because of medical reasons, and more importantly spiritual reasons that I am only beginning to understand these days (like, after a year after my birth, I know), I came to give birth to Philip via C-Section.

One day I will be able to tell the whole story of why I think it happened that way. For now, all I can say is that The Lord is sovereign and His Will was done even at Philip’s birth. This is why I still call it a beautiful birth until today. Because for all we know, this is just a part of a better story. (Read my birth story here: BEAUTIFUL BIRTH)

But it being The International Week of Respecting Childbirth until the 24th I’d like to dedicate this week to a couple of posts by women I personally know, who blogged about their own birth stories. These are women who have had different experiences, but all have given birth naturally. More over, these are women whsao have experienced God to really be Immanuel- as in God With Us, God was indeed with them in their birthing rooms!

By the way, let me clarify natural birth not simply as normal or vaginal birth but as a way of delivering a baby in a completely unmedicated or not medically assisted manner. Meaning, no anesthesia, no epidural, no induction, and for purists, not even the breaking of water bag. In short, plain and simple, natural means everything happened naturally and the process progressed without any help or alteration via drugs or medical equipment. (Drinking castor oil and nipple stimulation and assuming positions that help a woman to go into labor are considered natural, on the other hand.)

For our first story, let me first give you a background about Char, the author. I personally met her and she officially became my friend way back when she was still living in Manila. When she went into labor with her firstborn we were chatting over Facebook because she was in the U.S. at that time. (To not confuse you she now resides permanently in the U.S. haha!)

A day at the park with my boys ☀️

A photo posted by @chartrinidad on

When she shared a bit about her first birth story to me, part of me wondered if the hospital was just being too “business like” with her. Meaning, treated her as they would all laboring patients- that is, generic, and as if all babies are to come at their designated time. I felt like they didn’t even give her the chance to wait it out naturally and took things into their hands. (She did give birth vaginally though, but with induction and epidural assisting and numbing her at certain times.)

Perhaps I am more bothered about this than Char herself (hehehe) but the point really isn’t in that first birth but her second. God is a Redeemer after all and perhaps He just really wanted to show her how He had marvelously designed a woman’s body, has His own time for the baby’s arrival, and Lord even at something seemingly so unpredictable as birth. I pray you will take the time to read this brief account, and learn much from her direct and firm resolve about faith and birthing!

Click this for Char’s blog: ACCIDENTAL NATURAL BIRTH

Tangible Memories

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

I can’t quite remember who it was I was talking to about the decline in consumers for point and shoot cameras. Guessing that perhaps even DSLRs or semi-DSLRs have felt the shift to the cellphone camera technology, too. I mean the biggest sign of this is ME! I was the number one supporter of Canon cams- Rebel series down to 60D, and currently I bring my Olympus OMD with stock and pancake lenses on our out of town trips. (I had to go micro 4/3 since the bebe came; not even a chance of good pictures using the 60D if I have to be lugging a baby around 90% of the time. To have both the camera and the baby is too heavy a burden that I’d have to always choose to leave one in the car. Then of course it’ll have to be the camera, right?)

Yet recently I find that my phone has been more than enough. I shoot and shoot and shoot away using that and boom it goes straight to FB or IG or Twitter and what can be more convenient than that, right??? Then about a few weeks ago I was talking to Sheila Catilo who takes photographs for a living and tells me the same thing. Endless photographs from their professional cams with the firstborn, but now mostly relying on the phone camera for the third. Similarly, Philip had a lot of photos in my Olympus from 0-6 months but once I got a hold of a nice phone with an okay resolution kind of phone camera, I left the micro 4/3 alone.

My gosh, remember the days when our moms kept our cord stumps or pusod??? Then our first everything! Like haircut, clipped nails, first tooth! Oh, those were the days!

Sometimes this virtual world isn’t very helpful in keeping some things. While we write away everything, a click of a button refreshes the page and new information rises on the screen and we can actually forget all too easily what we just felt, what we just wrote. Unlike developed photos sealed within plastic covered pages in an album, the picture I just uploaded will be, in a minute, only one in a million.

But I am glad I am realizing this now and not later. As a result, I began using my OMD again on Mother’s day. And I am keeping at the habit of making handwritten letters to Philip that he shall read when he is older, and continue to keep tangible firsts that I can one day hold when he is old for the moment when I would like to feel like he is my little baby bub all over again.

BEAUTIFUL FEET. My DIY project for today. I bought a frame from Regalong Pambahay- one that has spme space inside, like a box, removed the original backdrop and replaced it with plain red colored paper, then i glued philip’s memorabillas like the tag when we first rushed him to the ER, the cake topper made by @loveandlavendermanila (the handcrafted PHILIP attached to barbecue sticks), one of the buntings from her decor during the party also which i used as the backdrop for my project title which simply expresses my one and only hope for my son and our entire household, philip’s shoes, some cotton for my clouds, then a drew a plane beside it and the black shoes… were mine. My mom was able to keep them. ❤️ i will probably transfer this to a bigger box someday for better housing and preservation but for now this will do. #confessionsofaDIYaddict #buhaybasurera #mamawonders #hanDIYmom #mamacrafts #mamamotional

A photo posted by Rica Peralejo-Bonifacio ( on

If you want to copy this project, feel free! Have a shadow box made or buy an available one, make sure it has a sturdy background for things you will be mounting, cover with paper of choice for backdrop, mock the blocking of your objects before sticking it on the base permanently, and when finally satisfied with the way everything looks, begin gluing using glue gun or something like Mighty Bond. 

For objects- anything sentimental and will effectively transport you back into time will do. Really is up to you. Mine were as said in the caption and I am just so glad my mom got to keep my very own shoes as a little girl! 

Now my next project is how to do this with my wedding shoes and gown…hmmm….the size can be quite a challenge!

God did not give us tactile bodies for no reason. He wants us to feel, to touch, to have something solid to hold. The most obvious thing that makes us realize how God values tangibility is that God came in the flesh – and that’s Jesus.

So I say don’t let all those memories slip online. Stash some in the box that can make memories available at the tip of your fingers! Have a great Wednesday!

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