So I keep getting static from people about the desire to one day have a home birth. They say what is a midwife going to do if you need a C-section. Well, they transfer your care and they know beforehand whether or not that is going to be a problem. Midwives are actually very skilled in their profession and must undergo schooling specifically in birth. They aren’t trained in surgery like OB-GYNs because they are supposed to help your body do what it is meant to do. Americans have exaggerated emergencies for as long as I can remember. We also medicate ourselves at the slightest onslaught of pain. We have become a numbed nation.
Women aren’t educated about the medicines they are given either. An ultrasound could be a couple weeks off on the due date and there could be several babies that are in fact premies because women are induced thinking they are “past their due date”. Yes there is a time when a woman is pregnant too long and it could cause brain damage to the child, however this is rarer than doctors make it sound. Also the medicine given to induce labor, Pitocin, actually worsens the contractions. A woman who is administered Pitocin will feel greater pain in labor than one who is not because the baby is under duress and you are falsely telling the body to contract. Pitocin blocks natural inhibitors to pain that are present in a natural birth. Women who are induced will frequently request an epidural because the pain is too unbearable. An epidural causes even more duress on a baby. Since that is the case women wind up having emergency C-sections.
Also, the tale of big babies- 9 pound or greater- has led many women to being sliced on the table. Sometimes the baby will come out at 7 pounds even though the ultrasound said it would be 9 pounds. A woman also needs to dilate to 10 cm before pushing out the head of a 10 pound kid. She should dilate to 10 cm even pushing out a 5 pound kid. Too many women are told they aren’t progressing fast enough because we are a nation that can’t seem to wait for anything. We microwave our meals, text message friends rather than drive to see them, and now say it is safer to cut a woman open to pull the baby out-forgetting to mention that it is MAJOR surgery. We are also basing our knowledge of labor progression off a chart from the 1950s! Even that chart, when thoroughly studied, is incorrect.
Now trust me I’m a fan of modern medicine and I’m not an alien to hospitals. I spent most of my childhood in them. I just don’t want that for my kid. I want my children to handle cuts and bruises without running to the ER. I want to deliver in an environment where I feel comfortable. If pregnancy makes you tired as I often hear why would I want to leave my house at 2 am and drive a half hour to the hospital unless I really needed to. Also, at a hospital I wouldn’t be attended to 24-7 because there are so many other patients. With a midwife I will be looked after for as long as labor takes. She also cleans up and stays with me a little bit to educate me on nursing before leaving. I’ll also be able to eat, sleep, and drink when I want to. In a hospital you can’t do that as easily. They don’t let you eat. (Not letting a pregnant woman eat—whoever thought that up!? I’m pushing out a kid from my crotch would I really care if I accidentally pooped because I ate? I don’t think so.)
In a hospital you lay on your back and use stirrups. This is one of the worst positions to deliver a baby in because it puts stress on your back. In fact, the best way to deliver is most likely in a squat position in water. The water soothes aching, contracting muscles.
Now I’m not saying that there isn’t a time and place for emergency care and sometimes it is needed. However, the C-section and Pitocin administration statistics in this country lead me to believe that we are treating birth as an emergency before it even becomes one. Women’s bodies were meant to do this. Yes, complications can arise but that is less frequent than this country has made it seem. Also, must we be so fatalistic? Birth represents life. Can’t we be a little bit hopeful, a little bit optimistic? This is a question coming from someone who has experienced a miscarriage! I had one, but I know my God is a provider and will bless us how he deems fit, children or not. I am still hopeful that when I am pregnant again that I’ll be able to do this because God designed my body to deliver babies and he gave me the desire to do so too.
Please go to Google, type in Evidence Based Birth, and read her articles. The author is a nurse and researcher. Get educated and maybe you can help stop people from scolding me and essentially telling me I’m endangering my child without having been educated on the issue themselves! I had a miscarriage and want a kid, why would I willingly risk its life? I wouldn’t. Gah, sorry I’m just upset that people treat me like a child and that I don’t understand labor because I’ve never gone through it. It’s my choice and if I need a hospital and doctors at some point, okay, but women have done this in homes for centuries. (Home birth is safer now than before because we understand infection better and can even take measures in our home to help prevent it). Stop being force-fed from doctors and just accepting what they say. Read Taking Charge of Your Fertility. (You’ll see that most doctors also base their calculations off you having a 28 day cycle and for women like me, I don’t have that cycle…mine is more like 38 days. My OB-GYN calculated my ovulation on that and misdiagnosed me with PCOS because he just wanted a diagnosis whereas my fertility specialist said that some women just have odd cycles and she didn’t know why. I didn’t have any cysts in my ultrasound. How can I have PCOS without cysts? I’d rather have a doctor say he/she doesn’t know than just pick a diagnosis because then I’m a “problem solved”.) Understand your body so you can have discussions and questions for doctors. Let them know you know stuff too and they shouldn’t treat you as inferior. Yes they have years of schooling, but you’ve spent your entire life in YOUR body and sometimes you can know yourself better than a textbook.
Anyways, I just say all this because I’m growing increasingly tired of everybody thinking they know what’s best for me and my baby. Frank and I have discussed our options and weighed the pros and cons, the costs and benefits. This was not a flippant decision. For once I want to experience something and not drug myself up. I know it’ll be painful, but that’s okay. I can just get Frank to massage me or alter positions to make me feel better. I can do this. I was meant to do this when the time comes. Perhaps once I do this, Lord willing, people will see that it is a special delivery, having a baby at home.
*sorry for any horrible grammar—also in other posts as well*