I recently attended a perfect birth. The kind of birth that looks like this…..mama arrives in active labor, she’s three. She walks around, bounces, contractions get more intense – she is sweating, working with it, she asks to be checked. I stall a bit – we check her. She’s 8. Twenty minutes later she pushes her 8 lb plus baby out – no tears, 7 minutes later a big and juicy placenta. A bit of blood then no more…..
She is up and about soon after. She is eating, hungry and thirsty. Baby won’t stop nursing for even a newborn exam. We wait, she chats and loves her baby in her quirky way.
She can’t wait to go home, she’s up and packing her bags, her belly still totally large in her short stripy patterned nightgown. She looks overdue still. Her husband works on the baby’s car seat. He’s huffing and puffing trying to make it work. “We washed it recently and now I can’t get it back together.” We take pictures, they make phone calls, send text messages. The phone is dinging and beeping. There is joy and reserved understanding. They are seasoned parents. They already have many children.
She is careful, cautious and realistic.
I wish more births could be as simple. They aren’t. I know the dogma from both sides. If only you were in the hospital, it would have been easier, better, faster, safer……
“If only you were at home it would have been safer, easier, faster, better, more sacred, more joyful, more this or more that.”
“If only the midwives had done more for you……”
“If only the midwives had done less….”
You know – sometimes a birth is the way you hope it will be, but often it is not. They are challenging in ways you will never imagine….ever. It works, but it can be complicated too. I think the complications are normal. Make sure you choose your care providers, your doctors and your midwives carefully. Choose people you trust.
Your midwives or doctors will be the people who accompany you on this journey. They may make suggestions, intervene when something is going in a difficult direction, perhaps even a dangerous direction. They will be with you throughout the process. But they do not control the outcome. They are witnesses to your birth, your story.
They are not God. (If I believed in God…) They do not make your story. They are there with you. They can react, but they cannot manifest.
Does this make sense? I’ve been thinking of this so often.