I can’t believe that it has already been a year already.
A year has passed from the day that my baby was born, into our hands, in a pool in the living room of our house. A birth attended only by his father and his brothers.
An experience that was not only exhilarating, empowering but also healing for myself.
My choice to have an unassisted pregnancy and an unassisted birth was first due to the lack of midwifery access. There are no birthing centres in my region and midwifes are not allowed to practise out side of them. The birthing centres that are out of region do not take women out of region because they are too much in demand. It was a decision that was first made for me since there was no way that I would ever go see a doctor for a pregnancy or a birth. The decision did not scare me…. instead I felt relief.
I knew that having a UP/UC was the best choice.
Now… I look back at the pregnancy. There was so much less stress being unassisted. No appointments, no refusing tests and being made to feel guilty when I knew that the tests are not necessary. I was able to experience pregnancy for what it is. I was able to listen to my body and find the answers to my questions. I was able to gain control, something that I lost when I relied on a midwife for advice or answers.
I look back at the birth and realize that it was exactly what I would have hoped that birth could be.
With my other two, I had to deal with posterior babies, with long labours, with back labour, with “failure to progress” beyond 3cm. I truly believe that most of the problems were due to the presense of a midwife, to the presense of other people. The stress of deadlines, of numbers, of the rules that the midwifes have to follow all hindered in birthing process. However, It was a midwife in my second birth that gave me the confidence I needed to give birth.
After she spoke to me I was able to lose myself in my “la-la land”, She gave my the confidence to ignore everyone, to ignore their advice, to ignore their presence, to listen to my body. She gave me the confidence to know that I could birth my baby, that I as a woman I was made to give birth. I was able to do that all well enough that I was able to relax enough to sleep between contractions and essentially sleep through transition and soon after I gave birth to my second son.
I was unimpressed however with the way that the third stage was over managed and mismanaged in my opinion.
This midwife gave me confidence in myself. The others took my confidence away. I knew in my heart that I needed solitude to birth after that. It was that reason that I felt a sense of relief when I choose to go unassisted.
I find it ironic that my confidence to birth alone stemmed from a pep talk from a midwife, but I thank her for that.
So, when I read Khéna’s birth story, when I look back at my freebirth, I feel peace with the way things happened. It is something that I don’t feel reading my other births. I am proud with the way that my children were able to experience birth as being normal. I am proud that they will remember birth as being positive and natural. I feel proud that they were able to see the birth and that their new brother fit into the family so seamlessly in many ways because of the way he made his entrance into the family.
I am proud that I was able to take control of my body and do what I needed to do to have the easiest and healthiest birth that I could have had.
If I have another child there is no hesitation in what choices that I will make.
A year ago…