The new royal family

You certainly do not need Birth Story to fill you in on the birth on Monday of Prince George Alexander Louis, heir to the British throne.

The new royal familyThe 8 pound 6 ounce Prince of Cambridge was born on July 22, 2013. For our purposes, it's interesting that his dad was present at the birth. It is not ground-breaking, though, as Prince Charles was the first to break with tradition and attend William's birth in 1982.

Charles' dad, Prince Philip, played squash in another part of Buckingham Palace during Charles' birth, but men did not typically attend their children's birth at the time.

When William married Kate Middleton three years ago, I wrote extensively about past British royal births of the 20th century, which you can see in my archives from late April of 2011.

The births of British royalty have historically twined together with the latest birthing practices, and so, for the purposes of Birth Story, they are important.

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Happy Mother’s Day!

Mother's Day seems like a good time to make a resolution to get back into more regular posting on Birth Story. So let it begin!

With Nora on the couch

With Nora on the couch

This is a picture of my daughter Nora, who is now 24, during her first few days home, relaxing on the couch with me. I don't know why she is sitting at the other end of the couch, but this is my husband's favorite early picture of us together.

Being a mom changed my life in big ways and small. I remember how disoriented I felt that first week, adjusting to nursing and my post-pregnancy body. My daughters, Nora and Maeve, are two of my favorite people, and Mother's Day is one of my favorite days in the whole year.

Happy Mother's Day to all the other moms (and everyone else) reading this post today. Have a wonderful day!

How the other half births

The birth Jan. 7 of Blue Ivy Carter, daughter of hip-hop stars Beyonce and Jay-Z  (Shawn Carter), had Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan in a tailspin this week.

Beyonce pregnant

Beyonce

Other new parents complained of disruptions and even security breaches as the celebrity family reportedly took over part of the hospital's sixth floor for a private, customized labor-delivery area for $1 million-plus. (A hospital spokesman said the Carters occupied an "executive suite" and paid the standard rate for it.)

Neil and Rozz Nash-Coulon were upset at being detained in the neonatal intensive care unit after visiting their newborn twins, while Edgar Ramirez reported he was refused entrance to visit his baby in the the NICU unit. Windows were covered, private security guards issued orders, and security cameras were even disabled, families complained.

"The security of our children is at risk when you cover security cameras," Ms. Nash-Coulon told Nina Bernstein of the New York Times.

And, all the secrecy fed rumors. Beyonce's website states that "Baby Blue" was "delivered naturally," while portions of the blogosphere ran with a report that the birth was a C-section. And there's even a contingent that holds that Beyonce's pregnancy was a fake, that a surrogate mom bore Blue.

Tina Fey and Jane Krakowski, stars of the sitcom 30 Rock on NBC, told The Today Show's Matt Lauer that they both had their babies at Lenox Hill Hospital as well. Said Fey, "My celebrity treatment at Lenox Hill involved taking a group breast-feeding class in a closet."

It’s a boy for Cruz, Bardem

The Spanish movie star couple Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem reportedly welcomed a baby boy, their first child, on Jan. 22 at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles.

Bardem was nominated for an Academy Award on Tuesday for best actor for his role in Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's new film, Biutiful.

He won a best supporting actor Oscar in 2007 for his role as a psychopath in No Country for Old Men. Cruz won a best supporting actress Oscar in 2008 for Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Cruz, 36, and Bardem, 41, were married in July in the Bahamas. The couple, who met nearly 20 years ago on the set of Jamon Jamon, Cruz's first movie, reunited while making Vicky Cristina Barcelona for Woody Allen in 2007.

Kelly Preston talks about her “silent birth”

Actress Kelly Preston, wife of actor John Travolta, talked with Natalie Morales on the Today show on Wednesday morning about the "silent birth" of her son Benjamin at a hospital in Ocala, Fla., on Nov. 23.

Benjamin weighed eight pounds three ounces. Both Preston, 48, and Travolta, 56, are Scientologists. Their religion espouses a birth free of conversation, as supposedly "any words spoken ...can have an aberrative effect on the mother and the child."

Preston and Travolta have a daughter, Ella Bleu. Their son Jett died in 2009 at the age of 16.

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