Seeing as our newest addition (#6) will be welcomed into the breathing world in just a few weeks more, I have felt such a great desire to really start mentally preparing for the birth and for a new baby. Children are such an amazing blessing, not in that they are always providing fun and enjoyable experiences, but that they bless us by helping us to become more mature, less selfish, more focused, more determined, etc. A recent quote I read really hits the mark on this:
“The value of marriage is not that adults produce children but that children produce adults.”
~ Peter de Vries
I have had such a spectrum of experience when it comes to birth. I love birth. I am what you would call a birth junkie. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I get some kind of pleasure in experiencing suffering, but the birthing process is an amazing thing to behold, and to experience. I had my first birth in the hospital where I received a lot of unwanted, unneeded medical interventions, which thankfully did not result in a C-section and me and the baby both survived. But, I also do not hold the standard of acceptable birth experiences to be set at “at least everyone is healthy.” For that reason, we have enjoyed four home births thus far, with our fifth to come in just under two months.
I do not think that every woman needs to have a home birth or anything, it is just the best place for me to birth after a non-emergency, low risk pregnancy. And, I love, love, love it! It is the most beautiful event that I have been blessed to experience four times now, and I just am so very thankful for that.
Every Woman Deserves Support for the Birth She Desires
For me, the procedures of the hospital system were not ideal for the birth I wanted. I was not in any kind of emergency situation, I had no red flags, and there was no indication of a bomb waiting to explode. Yet, I was treated as though these were all true. I was clear about not wanting medications, but at every turn I was offered and accepted them, mostly because I did not understand what I was up against, nor what I was doing. I thought that because I went with a CNM (i.e. midwife) in the hospital that she would be my advocate for natural birth procedures, but I learned the hard way that this was not the case. Because of my own lack of knowledge and naive ignorance, I did not achieve the birth I had wanted.
My heart greatly desired to experience this amazing thing called birth. This right of passage from woman to mother. This significant transition from childhood to adulthood. This process that would forever after change my life completely. When, for no other reason than to “hurry things along”, that experience was removed from me, I felt the empty hole left in the wake of missing the experience because of numbness and medications. This was all made right after I experienced my first drug-free, medical-free, peaceful at home, water birth, and for that I am thankful.
I realize that not every woman feels this way. Some women have NO desire to feel the intensity of birth. They are THRILLED to receive the drugs and welcome the numbness of the occasion. I want to say pain-free, but I know from experience that this is not actually true, because there are so many things that can occur (I had a nerve in my hand struck during an IV drip that affected me for 2 years). If everything goes 100% right, though, yes, the medications make the birth “pain-free”. For these women, I am so, so glad that you have the interventions provided through the medical system!!! That is such a blessing for you! It would be terrible to really, really want those drugs and not be allowed to get them because some system would not let you. Since we have the conveniences of modern medicines, and they are available, if you want to use them, I totally, totally support that decision.
I am thankful that some hospitals are getting better at working with women who desire a drug-free, intervention-free birth with the use of natural pain management methods (like water, movement and massage). That makes me so very happy, because there are a LOT of women who maybe want to have a drug-free birth, but are not quite comfortable with the idea of being home to achieve that. It is an unfair situation where there seems to be no other option than to be home just to experience a pressure-free drug-free birth. Sigh….
Some of us want to be in the hospitals because we want the interventions and medications they offer. Some of us want a drug-free birth, but still would prefer to be in a hospital for proximity in case of emergency. Some of us want to be out of the hospital completely and feel most safe and secure in the comfort of our own homes. These are all significant and valid preferences that really make a difference as to how a mother interprets her birth experience.
No matter where you fall on the spectrum, every mother deserves to be supported for the birth she desires. I wish we lived in a perfect world where one mode fit us all, but we each have our own preferences for our own reasons. Until then, though, I continue to hope that we can each learn to love and encourage each other in the fulfillment of our own heart’s desires. And, if there be any sinful way in us, for the Lord to remove it, such as choosing to have a home birth in order to control things, etc. Everything can become twisted in our hearts, so I pray we all remain humble before an Almighty God and trust His Ways. And above all, love our neighbor as Christ loves the church. There is no condemnation in Christ.
- Trim, Healthy Tuesday (THM) Recipe: AMAZING Almond Flour Brownies (S)
- Why We Choose Home Birth