Giving Birth to What Matters

Portrait of a mother with her 4 months old baby
Often times we hear all that matters is “healthy mom, healthy baby” . Yes, this matters. It is the heart of the matter. But just as the heart needs many different “parts” to work in order to function properly, labor and birth need many different things to work in order to get a “healthy mom, healthy baby” outcome. 
We have so many choices and options when it comes to birthing our babies. We can do it at home, we can do it in a Birth Center, we can do it in a hospital. When at home we can do it in our own bed, we can do it in a birth tub, we can do it in the kitchen if that is where baby decides. At the birth center we can do it from a birth swing, or birth stool, in the bath or in the bed. At the hospital, we can do it in the bed, in foot stirrups, natural or medicated. Or by cesarean birth. 
When you have your baby in your arms, it was a journey getting there. Each mother goes through her very own journey with obstacles, detours, speed bumps, and road blocks. Each of these obstacles can be overcome. I have seen each momma I have worked with overcome emotional hurdles. Those games your mind plays- a game between fear and pure physical agony.  A game between past emotional pain and new found peace. Everything comes full circle. Things you thought you conquered, surprising new fears you become friends with. 
You don’t just have a baby. It’s not just about sugar and spice and everything nice. It’s big. Birth is bigger than most people think. It stays with you. Even my Grandma who passed away last year could remember her births. And her loss. 
It does matter how you get there. It matters who walks with you on your laboring path. It matters what is said. It matters how it is said.
I am not sure which direction I want to go here- I am not a big blogger or writer. I could talk about the importance of who you allow to be a part of your birth. (YOUR BIRTH) I could talk to you about healthy outcomes. I could talk to you about your birth place options… 
I think the biggest thing for me right now is to talk to you about being open to the detours of birth. Things change in a matter of minutes. Even when things take a big turn, if you have options and are able to make your own choices, you can rock your birth no matter what that looks like. Ask questions, be informed. Interventions are not bad. There is a time for everything- everything being lots of interventions or everything being nothing. I have had conversations with moms that had a zero intervention birth. A beautiful natural birth, but in the end felt less than satisfied because of overhearing conversations she didn’t want to hear. Feeling unsupported. Feeling like a burden. Yet, I have seen women have interventions done, that were not in the “plan” feel like they were queen of the world because they were validated. Their options were well laid out. Their questions were answered. They were supported. Having a “healthy mom, healthy baby” outcome matters. It’s big. It can be life or death. Let us not forget the journey to “healthy mom, healthy baby”. 
The last few days I have seen pain with a purpose, I have seen life-saving interventions, I have seen compassion. And I have seen a healthy mom and healthy baby. There is still much healing that needs to be done. Physical and emotional. The journey does not stop after the outcome. All those detours and speed bumps are now added to the new journey. The parenting journey. Take those. Accept those. They are part of the structure of the journey. And it is a good journey. 
This blog was inspired by one of the strongest mommas I have ever met. It was an honor to witness her courage and strength. What was even more powerful for me was to witness her fearlessness and acceptance. Embracing your journey brings a peaceful path. 

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