The thing that gets me the most is the intense fear that so many women seem to have towards childbirth.
- The fear of pain.
- The fear of "something" going wrong.
- The fear of being out of control
- The fear of the unknown
Take this as an example. A womans labour is medically induced. It means that an IV line needs to be placed in the womans arm. It means that the baby is likely to be closely monitored involving the mother having to lie on a bed - which then means freedom to move and find the bodies most comfortable position for labouring is way limited. The drugs used to induce labour result in contractions stronger and more intense than if natural labour had occured... and this leads to a much increased likelihood of pain relief being used - in particular an epidural, which then comes with its own risks. Afterall having a needle inserted into ones spinal column has its dangers.
As a result of being confined to a bed being monitored, numb or at least partially numb from the waist down from an epidural, unable to use gravity and their own sense of where they are at with their labour, lends this woman to being at the mercy of the the judgements of the medical staff attending her - in my mind, completely disempowered. At this point the chance of having an emergency caesarean is greatly increased - not really suprising is it! And of course caesareans which we seem to view more and more as preferable to pushing, come with the risks that all major surgerys carry - we seem to forget this.
Don't get me wrong.
- childbirth IS painful (at least in my experience)
- sometimes things go wrong
I remain open to accepting medical assistance should that become absolutley necessary, but I look towards my impending labour and delivery and silently affirm my strength and ability as a woman to do what the billions of women before me have done.
I will now step down from my soap box...
p.s. the photo at the top of the post is just after giving birth to Isabella. She is probably minutes old.