September 1, 2008

A Life On Labor Day

I found this in my drafts this morning, from well over a year ago, and thought it was just so fitting for today.

There was a beautiful tribute in the newspaper about the life lived by Dr. Carolyn Mann Rawlins. I did not know this woman, but she has so deeply inspired me...

Considered by some an area pioneer in natural childbirth and family centered maternal care, Dr. Carolyn Mann Rawlins touched the lives of many.

Rawlins' family said she delivered more than 16,000 babies during her 45 years in obstetrical practice in Northwest Indiana.

Sharrie Parr, of Michigan, was a former patient who considers Rawlins a god-sent physician.

"She had an instinctive way of always doing and saying just the right thing. We (her patients) were never just a number there. Doctor thought her occupation was making families, not just delivering babies," Parr said.

Parr said Rawlins was a positive influence in many lives.

"Many of her patients formed deep friendships. She was always teaching us something, challenging us and enriching our lives," Parr said.

Chris Rawlins, her youngest son, lauded his mother at a recent memorial service.

"My mother wrote in her Bible at age 8: 'Jesus Christ was a physician, and I will be, too.' Focused, she accomplished her goal. Her specific calling to obstetrics and gynecology became evident from the first time she walked into labor and delivery and witnessed life. Her future was sealed," her son said.

"She had been trained as a physician that pregnancy was a type of disease, that mothers must be anesthetized, and that babies were to be removed by forceps. One day, a patient came to her office and asked if she would follow a book called, 'Childbirth Without Fear.' She agreed. During that delivery, the patient refused all traditional medicine had to offer, and Mom watched her first natural childbirth. She was astonished as the woman used controlled breathing, pushed, and gave birth to a beautiful baby. She was so stunned that she went into a private area, praised God, and asked him to teach her to help women give birth. A new life opened up to her, and she followed that quest for her entire life."

Just beautiful. And did you see that we are now in September? I will have a baby this month!


  1. Dr. Rawlins was my mom's OB, and from all I've heard, she was definitely an amazing woman. She used to hold breastfeeding classes at her house for all the pregnant moms, back in the 70s at a time when very few women did breastfeed (and very few physicians supported it). She was definitely an inspiration, and I think it's pretty cool that her hands were the ones welcoming me into this world.:)

  2. That last paragraph gave me chills. Sounds like an amazing woman.

    Is is going to be a true LABOR day for you Steph? :-) Have a good one no matter what. Baby is almost here!

  3. Isn't it amazing how it takes one woman to change something. Okay, maybe two, the first one who wanted a natural childbirth and then the doctor who not only followed her wishes but then went on to encourage other women. Cool post.

  4. Very neat. I would love to find such an open minded physician around here. Thanks for sharing her story.

  5. Happy September! I had a friend go into labor on Labor Day a few years ago. Could be you....

    Sounds like a doctor with a true mission.

  6. Sharon - Mom GenerationsSeptember 01, 2008 6:51 AM

    Dr. Rawlins sounds like she was a gift to this world. What a beautiful post.

  7. Wonderful post. She sounds like a truly inspiring woman.

  8. Wow Erin, that is awesome....
    Steph, this was a perfect post today. I am so excited to think that in a very short time, we will be seeing little Ivy and smelling her precious baby smell...I just can't wait to see the looks on her big brother's faces...I have my camera ready and charged up!

  9. Wow, that is awesome!

    A baby this month!!! How about waiting 9 more days and having it on my birthday?!?!?! :)

  10. Lovely. So lovely.

    I saw that "ticker" saying 17 days to go and got chills...

  11. Sounds like a fabulous woman...

  12. Beautiful post - You are glowing - I would have loved to look like that nine months pregnant - Enjoy the last days and know that many of us are thinking of you!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  13. Interesting - especially that she had been trained that pregnancy was a type of disease. That still is a common perception, it seems.

    Here's to your successful and happy labor this month!

  14. What an inspiring woman! I LOVE my OB/GYN, she is so patient focused and caring, and it makes such a difference! I can't imagine what a blessing this woman was back when pregnancy was considered a "disease" - yikes!

    Happy September!


  15. Great blog, I LOVE the picture! You look so beautiful! Found your blog from Home Team Wins and I'll definitely be back!

    Stop by my blog to enter my giveaway! I'm having a month of giveaways to celebrate the relaunch of Blissfully Domestic!

  16. Ok, so I should've posted after I read the post huh?

    I think that's wonderful. It's sooo important to have an honest doctor who truly wants want best for mom and baby. I LOVE my dr. I had a c-section with my first one because I'm 5'1 and he was just under 9 lbs and his head was turned. I pushed for 3 hours and the little man wasn't budging and most dr's wouldn't allow for a VBAC. Then I moved and my doctor here was sooo supportive of my decision to try a VBAC with my 2nd. She even told me most dr's don't want to bother because they'd have to be there for the entire labor and not the last couple of pushes. Tsk. Tsk. :)

    Good Luck and I can't wait to see the new babe!

  17. Stephanie,
    wow, you look absolutely beautiful! I am so excited for you and your family as the birth of your daughter is near. I have been following your blog for most of your journey with this pregnancy for I am due a few days after you and it has been neat to see how you have progressed. God's blessings with everything...and by the way was it the Chicco stroller/car seat that you purchased that got recalled because of the Latch connectors? If so I got the same one...bummer :)

  18. I can't believe it's already time! I just wrote out my birth story on the blog in celebration of the first bday. Time flies.

    Natural birth education has been on my mind so much lately. Great post!

  19. Haha, this was great to read! This article is about my grandmother. Thanks all for the support...she is missed. A truly amazing doctor.


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