Old school Birth Faith

August 25, 2011 at 6:13 pm

I was just scanning through some posts on my old blog, reliving blogging memories… sigh. Maybe you’re new here and didn’t know I used to post over in Blogger (2007-2010).  It’s sort of crazy to me that I’ve been blogging for longer than I spent in college.  And, honestly, I’ve learned and grown more since I started blogging than I think I learned and grew in all those years of higher education! Ha.  Starting my blog was, most definitely, one of the best things I ever did for myself, my family, and (I hope) for all you wonderful readers who think that reading what I have to say is worth your time.  I love you!

Here are thirteen of my favorite old Blogger posts (and excerpts to entice you), if you’ve got some time to kill and want a peek into my blogging past. Starting with the more recent and moving to the earliest…

1) Rejoicing with a friend

Never stop sharing, my friends!  Never give up.  We are making a difference.  Maybe only for one woman here and another woman there, but those women are worth it.  And so are their babies.  And there is nothing in the world like rejoicing with them as they bathe in the joy and empowerment they feel from their positive birth experiences.  Nothing in the world.

2) Hear me roar

We are women. We are strong. We can push ourselves to our absolute limit and somehow find the strength to push some more. And then rinse and repeat.

Don’t you dare call yourself a pansy.

3) For them I could

Sometimes I feel like it’s inevitable. I’ll probably end up a midwife, in the end. But most of the time I don’t really look forward to it. It terrifies me to imagine holding the lives of women and babies in my fallible human hands. I don’t really want to be a midwife. But I’ve been thinking lately of some facts and figures that just might be enough to propel me forward on the path toward midwifery.

4) ‘Cause I love you

I love your comments. I love hearing your insights. I love your questions. I love hearing about your experiences… especially when your births have gone well and you come back and let me know. I hope you realize how much it warms my heart. There have been moments over the last three years when I have contemplated quitting for one reason or another. But then I get an email or comment from one of you offering thanks or encouragement, and I realize (again and again) that I could never stop. You are why I keep going, keep researching, keep writing and sharing.

5) Birth Art

6) Monitoring

So improving the use of this technology is definitely in order. I’m heartened by the efforts of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and Dr. George A. Macones who are encouraging obstetricians to refine and improve the way they interpret electronic fetal monitor tracings. Especially considering the somewhat frightening inconsistency of doctors’ interpretations of EFM tracings, as the NY Times article reports…

7) “Elective” Cesarean

After educating herself, working hard to find the right provider, and hoping and praying, Sarah ultimately ended up losing her dream of a VBAC with an “elective” cesarean. I put elective in quotation marks because, like so many other women reaching for VBAC, the odds were stacked against her. And Sarah’s heartbreak only intensified when her daughter suffered life-threatening complications as a result of her cesarean. Though her story is painful, I encourage you to read it. The truth needs to be shared so that the future of birth can be brighter. Thank you for being willing and courageous enough to put it out there, Sarah.

8) Pushed and preoccupied

Am I capable of throwing myself in front of the psyches of my clients? Could I really stay positive in the face of abuse? Can I allow myself to be an enabler of this horribly broken system? Can my own psyche handle the emotionally challenging task of witnessing “medical rape” on a regular basis? I really just don’t know if I could do it… Maybe I’m better suited to prenatal education? I just don’t know if I can handle working in the trenches.

9) Baby stuff I really didn’t need

It got me thinking about all the baby paraphernalia that seem so essential when you’re pregnant for the first time but really aren’t necessary at all. Obviously everyone’s different, but here’s my personal list of useless baby stuff…

10) And you thought folic acid was important

American Chronicle reports, “According to food consumption surveys, 85% of all women are deficient in the EPA and DHA fatty acids [two types of omega-3s]. Among pregnant women, only 2% have diets that meet their needs for EPA and DHA. The rest get less than 18% of the recommended daily allowance”(source). What’s the big deal about omega-3s?

11) Enduring a mile (or a centimeter)

After finishing my run yesterday, I thought a lot about the experience. . . . And I also recognized that the same things that helped me to navigate the journey of childbirth also helped me to get through that mile (and would probably help me get through a marathon as well). Here’s a play-by-play…

12) Down with the I.V. league

“You’re thirsty? Do you want some more ice chips?” Most women laboring in U.S. hospitals, no matter how thirsty or hungry they may be, must resign themselves to sucking and munching on ice. I munched my way through that rite of passage with my first baby. Enduring labor and birth has been compared to enduring and completing a marathon. Both feats are extremely physically taxing, but you would never expect a marathon participant to run without drinking or consuming any kind of fuel. Hospitals across the country expect laboring women to do just that, but is this deprivation really necessary?

And… drumroll… my first blogpost ever (which also happens to be one of my first publications—opinion piece in our local newspaper)…

13) To the women of the world

Let us no longer accept mediocrity and “go along blindly” with any procedure. Let us no longer tolerate practices that have been shown to cause us or our babies harm. Let us stop playing the victims and start creating the reality that we all deserve — the absolute best maternity care possible. Let us demand the best of the best for ourselves and our babies.