Rhea Dempsey
Birthing Wisdom

blog archive:

The Grumpy Swimmer Bookshop

Nothing grumpy about this night, which was the first book event in an actual bookshop.  The Grumpy Swimmer in Elwood.


It, like most successful bookshops, regularly present a program of book talks and has a loyal following including Sarah from Nurtured Birth mentioned earlier.

On the night the participants were a mixture of birth people as well as regular grumpy swimmer supporters. This gave scope for my ‘crisis of confidence’ model to be applied in a more general way over many other challenging life events as well as specifically to birth – juicy conversation.


Thank you Clifford and Sarah x

Red Beard Bakery – Trentham

This was a charming opportunity to hang out at the famous Red Beard Bakery Red Beard Bakery the vision and sweat of John Reed and his partner Thais. I had the privilege of being with them for two babies. Their great story with their second son finishes off my book. (You’ll find it on pages 198-200)

This birth event turned out to be a real treat for a number of reasons. Catching up with passionate birth women including Kaggi (you’ll find a great quote from her on pages 156-157 of my book) as well as Thais and John and their now grown up kids. Mmmm … can’t imagine it gets much better than reminiscing on birth stories with the mother and with the grown young men who were the baby’s in the stories!

Thank you Thais x



More passionate birth activists, beautiful venue, opportunities to talk my talk and share with pregnant women, couples, midwives, midwifery academics, student midwives, doulas, new and old friends … couldn’t do better.


As well as the actual book event, where I get a chance to read a bit and speak directly to the issues in the book, a public lecture Pain and Power in Birthing was also on the program.


The book event was held in the Warrnambool art gallery – we felt the art piece ‘Hymns of Creation by Bruce Vinall provided an on theme background.


The organizers also managed to get an article in the local paper and get me interviewed on the local ABC breakfast radio show. (You can listen to a recording of this via my birthing wisdom website)

Thank you Delise, Suellen and all others involved x

Wagga Wagga – Wagga BaBs

Off to Wagga Wagga in country NSW after an invite from Wendy Harper on behalf of the local Wagga BaBs group.

BaBs groups—Birthing and Babies peer support groups—are an initiative of the Maternity Coalition Maternity Coalition.

With the support of midwifery lectures from the School of Midwifery, Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, I had the opportunity to present a seminar, Boosting Birthing Capacity: what helps, what hinders, what heals. Then in the evening the book event again offered an opportunity for me to speak about the birth issues I’m passionate about, whilst also offering an opportunity for me to hear about what was happening in Wagga Wagga—sadly the usual—small pockets of enlightened (well really just evidenced-based!!!!) practice that are hard to access in a generally medical/obstetric dominated birth scene.

Staying positive and continuing to strive for change continues to be the challenge for those of us passionate about normal physiological birth.

Thank you everyone in Wagga who supported the events – food, venues, words and positive energy for change x