For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise You for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well. Psalm 139:13-14
Here are some of my pregnancy posts (so far) that may be of interest
My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in secret and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Psalm139:15
Some Thoughts About Pregnancy and Things to consider when planning your birth
Pregnancy is a time filled with wonder and excitement. But with that excitement also comes questions, confusion and anxiety. Will my pregnancy go smoothly? Will I get the birth I want? How will I care for a tiny baby? Will I be a good parent? Whether this is your first child, or your tenth, I hope that these pages will provide you with some valuable information to help prepare you for the wonderful experiences that lie ahead . . . childbirth and parenthood.
There are many things to consider upon becoming pregnant. I would advise anyone to sit down and write out what their goals are for this pregnancy and birth. Among the things you should be thinking about: nutrition, exercise, who do you want to attend you during birth (OB, Midwife etc), where would you like to give birth - home, birth center or hospital. How would you like your birth to go, would you like a natural unhindered birth or do you want to get an epidural right away, (we won't hold that against you but do you know the side effects and dangers of routine interventions in birth?). All of these things will factor into the kind of pregnancy and birth experience you have (and despite what people may say, yes, the experience does matter).
It would be wonderful if we lived in a time where we were surrounded by positive stories and images of birth, where we could trust that those who were going to attend our birth had faith in our abilities and where we could totally listen to our instincts to give birth. Unfortunately, women today are all too often bombarded with stories and images that reflect birth as torturous and dangerous. With a c-section rate in this country of over 30%, women are made to feel that, rather than being powerful and designed to give birth, our bodies must be flawed in some way. And with hospital protocol and dr practices treating us as if by being pregnant and giving birth we have some type of ailment that needs monitoring, fixing or saving . . . it is no wonder many women are left feeling conflicted and at odds between what society and the ‘professionals’ are telling us, and what out instincts and our bodies are telling us.
"Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed, And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me. When as yet there were none of them." Psalm 139:16
What is the truth? The truth is that pregnancy is a miracle. That our bodies that are designed to grow and nourish a baby so perfectly, can also birth that baby perfectly! Birth is not a medical event in need of management; it is a perfectly designed, beautiful natural process. It is also extremely intense, overwhelming, absolutely empowering and hard, hard work!! There is nothing like feeling your body work the way it was designed to!! And amazingly, it will happen on it’s own, without Dr’s telling us when or how, without hospitals and all their gadgets, and frankly, without any say from us birthing moms!
For the pregnant mom . . . my advice would be read, read, read anything and everything you can get your hands on (and no I am not talking about the "What to Expect Books"). There are many good books out there that talk about all aspects of pregnancy and birth from a more holistic viewpoint. Surround yourself with books and stories that tell the truth about pregnancy and birth. That it is normal, natural, and that problems that sometimes occur are rare. Reading positive, natural birth stories is also a great way to build your confidence during pregnancy and learn about birth (I recommend homebirth stories because those are more likely to reflect natural, unhindered birth as it was designed to occur). Empower yourself with truth so that you can be free from fear.
Only through educating ourselves can we truly know "what to expect" and how to handle whatever comes our way. Only by educating ourselves can we protect ourselves from routine interventions and mismanagement that occurs so often in pregnancy and birth. Learning about our bodies, why they do what they do, how they work and how they birth, building up our faith and trust will help enable us to listen to our instincts during pregnancy and when the time of birth arrives. Through faith and education we can empower ourselves to seek out and insist on the birth experiences that we and our babies deserve.
"If you don't know your options, you don't have any" Korte and Scaer
I believe birth to be a natural process best left unhindered and uninterrupted by doctors, hospital protocols and people who treat it as a disease that needs to be fixed. I truly believe the best chance we as women have to achieve this is to give birth on our terms, in our own homes.
"Lo, chidlren are a heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty warrior; so are children his youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them ..."