Since birth is unpredictable, there will always be some amount of fear concerning it. But lately I have really noticed how so few care providers actually have faith in birth. This lack of faith makes parents feel more fearful; and often, more willing to accept interventions that are offered to them without true medical need. It's a cycle that desperately needs to stop.
My latest client was expecting her third child. She had been induced for medical reasons with both of her previous births, and was thrilled when this pregnancy had no medical issues. For once, she was going to be able to go into labor all on her own!
However, several weeks before her due date, her care provider kept finding things to fear. The baby wasn't descended in the pelvis yet, or the heart rate was a few beats too low. She talked often of the size of the baby, and worried it would be too large to be delivered vaginally (even though this mom had already vaginally delivered a baby barely under TEN pounds!). The topic of cesarean came up at every appointment during the last 4 weeks of this woman's pregnancy.
Where was the faith in this woman's ability to give birth?
She had already proven that she could, TWICE!
Yesterday she was getting serious pressure to induce. She and I spoke on the phone about the pros and cons. This is a hard place for a doula, since we can't let our opinions sway the way we talk to our clients about their own agency. But personally, I didn't see any true need to induce. However, many couples agree to inductions because they feel that once the provider has mentioned it, that it is something they have to do. Thankfully, this couple decided to go home and think about it. And wouldn't you know, she went into labor that night!
I received a text at 5:40 am, saying that contractions had just gotten intense. Mom and dad arrive shortly before 6:00, and I got there shortly before 6:30. I could hear mom vocalizing as I was walking into the maternity center, and I could tell she was about to have a baby within minutes!
A fast labor is mainly a blessing, but can feel like a curse while you are experiencing it. There are literally NO breaks. Moms feel very overwhelmed, and often hyperventilate because it is so hard to find time to breath. I quickly started helping mom find her focus, and use her breath purposely.
Before the first official push, mom expressed her fear that the baby was too big. Hmm... I wonder why she worried that. Oh wait, it's because her provider planted that seed of fear weeks ago....
But there was nothing to fear, as her son was quickly born after just a few pushes!
He came out a little blue, and a little lethargic; but had pinked up within a few minutes.
No Name Baby Boy :)
Born February 5th, 2014
6: 47 am
9 pounds 5 ounces
Dad was able to hold baby while mom recovered.
I could hear him talking and humming, and it was beyond sweet!
Congratulations to a wonderful family, who truly had nothing to fear. :)