Why talk about birth?
Natural birth, for that matter?
Because as Ms. Gaskin has so aptly told us (and she’s something of an idol to me), birth matters.
I’m not the new-agey type by any means, but as a mom twice over, I know that giving birth is a deeply existential, profoundly life-altering experience; to literally deliver life is undeniably spiritual, whether you use that word in the secular-sense or the sacrosanct.
And the manner in which we deliver life matters.
It can determine whether we enter motherhood feeling disappointed or empowered. It can instantly impact our feelings of attachment to our infants, for better or worse. It can hinder or promote our breastfeeding relationship. It can influence post-natal feelings about ourselves, our bodies, and our own capabilities.
I don’t claim to be unbiased; I happen to be a lover of natural, unmedicated, low-intervention child birth. But, and this may come as a surprise to you, the purpose of the Birth Matters! Series is less about promoting natural child birth as it is providing education, resources, and a warm community for women to share their personal birth experiences, whatever those may be.
I find no satisfaction in pitting mother against mother. All births are important and valuable. Child birth is not meant to be a competition against women, or even with ourselves; a successful birth is one in which everything is done to ensure that both mother and baby are healthy.
But I worry too few women know that they have a voice in their birth plan, and too many women fear unmedicated labor. They don’t realize they can choose a midwife over an OB, that they can have a VBAC instead of another cesarean, that they can labor and deliver naturally without an epidural, that they can say no to an elective induction, that they do have a say in how their labor evolves.
Most importantly, women need the knowledge and resources so that they remain in control of their birthing process, rather than riding the bench during one of the most important events of their lives
Throughout the week we’ll feature guest posts from:
- labor and delivery nurses
- lactation consultants
We’ll provide resources on:
- natural child birth (why women are going natural, what it’s really like, why YOU can plan for it too!)
- birthing classes
- what you’ll need during labor and delivery
- prepping a birth plan
- pain management during labor
- choosing a provider
- finding a birth location that’s right for you
And my personal favorite:
Share AMAZING birth stories!
FYI, many of the personal birthing stories that will be shared tell stories of births that did not go as planned. Perhaps the most important thing a woman can do is educate herself so that even if her birth unfolds differently than anticipated, she knows enough to stay empowered during her labor and can make confident, well-informed decisions in concert with her birthing team.
To enter for a chance to win $1,000 in prizes in the Birth Matters! Giveaway click here
So I hope you’ll learn something new from this natural birthing series. I hope you’ll comment and tell us about your own experiences if you feel moved to. I hope women will approach birth with less fear and more confidence. I hope we can discuss and support one another!