During pregnancy I spent literally most of my time researching all aspects of birth preparation, reading more books than I ever had, even on Astrology, Personal or Professional development. And that says a lot! I’m one of the biggest bookworms I know!
What I discovered is that there are too few places where all of the information I found are accessible and available in a way that makes pregnancy feel a lot less stressful for the mum-to-be who is looking for a natural birth!
It’s mostly an uphill battle preparing for birth, locating all of the best resources to save both time and money, looking and sifting through everything to find what feels right! I started out very early on, attending private birth education from just 18 weeks! Finally, I was empowered enough to have a 3 day unassisted home labour and birth! It was just us.
No midwife – until baby was already half out.
It’s was after all of that time that I spent reading day in and day out, committed to finding the information I wanted to birth the way I wanted, that I developed a strong clarity around the need that exists for more resources for birthing women. I realised how incredibly over medically managed most births are especially these days, where hospitals are under the pump, needing their beds within hours of a women arriving!
It became clear to me that there was a motive for hospitals to hurry the birthing process up! And what’s the easiest way to do that? Scare women into thinking their baby is too big, that they could not possibly carry a baby full term, due to age or prior c sections…so they might as well “book in” a c section. It’s disempowering and I have discovered just how many women are operated on, not just prematurely, but due to failed interventions!
It’s upsetting! There are some scary statistics out there that I came across about the numbers of maternal deaths in first world countries, about the rate of c sections in certain countries being well over 90%!
What amazed me was the fact that less than 2% of women now give birth naturally, drug free at home! And even more concerning is that so many people think natural birth is vaginal birth, drugs and all, even if it is just “gas”. The problem with this is, it seems these women that go into birth “going with the flow” or leaving it up to the “professionals”, is that there is far too much mismanagement that can and does happen.
Secondly, the issue with this type of birthing plan is that the rate of interventions increases phenomenally as a result. This is especially so when the women is not prepared with the knowledge around such interventions and their risks. What became apparent to me when pregnant was the incredible risks that came with interventions, especially when they are not essential medically.
Disrupting the birthing hormones with one intervention, dramatically increases the potential for a cascade of interventions, which each have their own issues. Inducing or augmenting birth once labour has begun, increases the chances of pain management being sought, given the synthetic hormones are far more volatile than those of natural birth. The intensity increases dramatically, increasing the women’s chances of opting for pain management, where natural labour would be far less intense.
From the pain management drug during labour, the risk of fetal heart rate changes increases substantially, as a result, which then increases the chances of emergency c section, which sadly many women are thankful they were in hospital because of such results, not realising that if birth was left undisturbed to begin with, a c section often is statistically far less likely!
From the drugs used especially in epidural, the natural birthing and bonding hormone Oxytocin stops being produced by the mother, which lowers the ability to bond well naturally with the newborn and has been shown to correlate with initial problems breast feeding.
Learning all of this in my pregnancy made me realise how little women are aware of such medical intervention risks and it simply made me sad! Some women have no desire to feel any pain or suffer as they see if during childbirth. But the problem with this is, there are reasons for everything in nature! We are designed to open and stretch in birth. Like an elastic band, we soften, open and baby emerges!
It is not meant to be scary! It is meant to be beautiful! The issue is, the beautiful stories are not shared enough! There is a problem with the birthing culture I have found! When an accidental home birth makes the news and the presenters comment how “lucky” the family were that an ambulance arrived on time or that “someone” was there to “deliver” the baby, I see red.
Home birth is natural. It’s where birth used to be. It’s where it mostly belongs. Especially in normal pregnancy. This is where my passion for working with pregnant mother’s grew! I myself had many pregnancy massages and treatments and found them to allow my body to adjust well and prepare for birth in a healthy way, without pain.
This is what I want for other women. To be able to birth well, recover quickly and have support! As someone who lost my mother at 18, after first going to foster care at age 3, I had little to call upon come the time I fell pregnant. So a passion grew in me, to be there for other women who for some reason, don’t have the resources to empower them to recover fast, with strength and confidence.
Having gone through the first days of crying, struggling to breastfeed, pumping away anxiously until my baby finally latched properly for a full feed at between 2 – 3 weeks, I know what it’s like to feel thrown by being a new mum. I also know where you can turn for help. This is what I now offer my clients. It’s something that I love being able to share.
So, as I step back into my clinic after maternity leave, I look forward to bringing an incredible amount of wisdom with me. With an incredible passion, I look forward to sharing more with you, as I know how valuable it can be to stumble upon someone who knows and has been there.