Monday, May 11, 2009

Motherly Love

As I reflect on this past Mother's Day, I can't help but think of the day my son was born. It was particularly reflective as I worked the 13th Annual Birth and Baby Fair on Saturday and shared our story with many attendees. I now share it with you.

My son, Tyler Shea was born in the middle of the night on August 19th in a birthing tub underneath our dining room chandelier. When my midwife brought him to the surface, she gave him some oxygen as I held him close to keep his tiny body warm. There were no bright lights, no drugs, nobody took him away from me, no shots or goop in the eyes, my husband was with me through the entire process (heck, my dog was, too!), we did not cut the cord immediately, and it was entirely beautiful. It amazed me how quiet it all was. How peaceful.

When I was a child, I guess I didn't really know much about birth, however, I don't know that I ever thought I would have a child at home. I don't know that I even really knew it was an option. When I found out I was pregnant, I knew I had a lot of research to do. It was with a lot of persistence and a little bit of luck that I found my way to my wonderful midwife's office. It was there that my journey into the realm of natural childbirth began.

I am not a feminist, a glutton for punishment, or even what I call a "birth junkie". I am simply a mom who wanted to do what she felt was best for her son. When I read about the side effects of pitocin, epidurals, c-sections, vitamin k, vacuum extractions, etc. my intuition told me there had to be a better way. When I read the statistics of intervention proceedures with an OB/GYN versus those of midwife-attended births, it was clear that interventions went drastically down and outcomes drastically up.

My choice was clear. Though I know home birth may not be for everyone, I urge you to seek out your local midwives for care. There are now hospitals that allow Certified Nurse Midwives to deliver and free-standing birth centers are becoming more commonplace. Know your options when it comes to childbirth. Get a good education outside of the hospital. Know not just what the hospital would like you to know, but also what your options are.

With a Motherly Love and Gratitude~

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