PREGNANCY IS NOT AN ILLNESS

Hospitals are made for sick people.  Pregnancy is not an illness.

Almost every woman who walks into a hospital today is faced with acquiescing to hospital policies – or suffering the contempt and fear that accompanies her refusal to "comply."  Women get  any number of excuses when they ask (rather than demand or simply decide) to birth naturally: We've never done it that way; we tried it once and it didn't work out; you won't make it and you'll be begging us for help before it's over; it's not our responsibility; you'll disturb other patients . . .

People have been being born for as long as there have been people.  Many objections to homebirths, or even natural births that take place in hospitals, cite misinformation or throw around fear and shaming emotional ammunition.

In cultures where the process of birth is trusted and respected, in places where pregnancy is not feared, in women who see themselves and the their bodies as sacred and trustworthy, birth happens naturally, easily, joyfully, and even pleasurably.

Our bodies are not broken.  Our ancestresses upon ancestresses have known how to birth naturally and successfully, or else we would not be here.  Trust your body, trust your birthing.

 

THE EMOTIONAL COST OF MEDICAL TESTING

When a woman who swims at my Y heard that I was writing a book on pregnancy, she asked me if I planned to include any material on prenatal testing.  She said that when she was pregnant, she had had a routine AFP test done.  The test showed that she was carrying an anencephalic baby.  She insisted that the test be done again.  This time the test came back with different results: the baby had Down's Syndrome.  The third test?  "Not completely normal," said the doctor, "but close enough." (whatever that meant).  Judy said once you get the results, and there's any question at all, you are no longer waiting for a baby.  You are waiting in the delivery room for the doctors to tell you if they were right or wrong.  She said that her husband was great throughout the pregnancy: he said to her, "Don't worry, honey.  If the baby is this or that we'll deal with it."  But he fell apart afterwards (the baby was perfectly fine).  Judy said, "He never played with the baby.  He just kept testing him."  Her relatives concerned that the initial diagnosis might be right, continually asked, "Do you think he looks alright?  Don't you think his eyes are funny?"  Clearly, they had been prejudiced by the results of the test.

excerpted from Open Season: A Survival Guide for Natural Childbirth and VBAC in the 90's, by Nancy Wainer (Cohen), 1991

 

SHOULD I GO TO THE HOSPITAL FOR AN INDUCTION?

Q – I am past my due date and I am starting to hear about scheduling an induction.  Can I have an induction and still have a vaginal birth?

A – Women have the best chance of having their babies naturally when their bodies go into labor naturally … induced labors ( some doctors will induce VBACs and some won't) increase the chances of having another section as the body is not ready to have the baby — if the body was ready, it
would be in labor!

Many of my VBAC mothers are past their "guess dates"  - and that's all it is, a guess. Remember to stop drinking milk, if in fact you have had it during the pregnancy. There are natural things that can help a woman go into labor ( IF the body is ready) – including acupuncture and homeopathic remedies, etc. but faith and trust are also natural things that go a long way. All your ancestresses had babies naturally and I believe that under the right circumstances, you could as well.