Friday, August 29, 2008

5 months later

5 months ago, I gave birth. I loved it. I still love it. I was looking at our birth pictures yesterday and remembering everything. Oh, I love giving birth. I should do it again sometime... Too bad I'm not ovulating. :)

TopHat! It's been 5 months! Aren't you over this yet?

I've thought about that... and nope. I'm not over this yet. I hope to never be "over it". When I was pregnant, I met Laura Shanley. I remember thinking, "She's done with her childbearing years- why is she so still into this?" I understand now. When you have an experience that is so powerful, encompassing, life-changing, and empowering, you aren't going to let it go- and you're going to want everybody to have that experience.

Thinking about "guts," I know I still need to get some when it comes to this. So often here in Provo you run into pregnant women. It's pretty inevitable. And so often I've listened to people tell their birth horror stories. I want to chime in and say, "I had this wonderful birth!" but I don't have the guts. Partly, like a friend of mine has said, it's because no one wants to hear good birth stories- there's no drama. And partly because I'd be in the minority- it's hard to tackle a group of ladies with horror stories- you're usually outnumbered 5 (or more):1 and they'll just downplay your excitement and dismiss your feelings. And partly because people get so defensive when you try to mention "natural birth" or any other topic that's even remotely crunchy.

But I did have this wonderful birth- and you can too! It's amazing how good you feel after birth when your hormones are uninterrupted by chemicals. (Speaking of, here's a post about the long-term effects of pitocin- can you tell I love reading Rixa's blog?) I didn't realize how good I felt the night of the birth until the next morning when I realized I could barely walk, having pulled a muscle/tendon in my never-ending squatting. I was feeling so great that I didn't notice the pain until the next day when the oxytocin wore off. Hooray for oxytocin!

Actually, I've re-written my birth story- it's amazing how much you realize you forgot! Birth stories are so multi-dimensional! I'm still wondering if I should post my updated version. It will be published in a book- which is why I re-wrote it. I'm guessing it'll publish sometime next year, but the author/compiler hasn't let me know.

So- new resolution. Finding my "ask people about their birth" guts. A friend of mine said she thinks she'll just start asking right out, "Oh! Are you planning on doing it at home?" when she finds out when people are pregnant. Just skip to the good stuff! Plus, it normalizes home birth.

Was it empowering? Was it wonderful?


  1. You know, I think you're right about normalizing home birth by talking about it. Plus, it doesn't hurt that I love talking about birth (even though I have yet to experience it...). Anyway, I really would love to read your revised birth story...loved it the first time too :)

  2. I love that Hathor, probably one of my faves. And YES I want to read the updated birth story.

  3. I love hearing your birth story! When we were talking about play group I felt bad because my experience *was* negative and hard, but knowing how bad it was for me and hearing how wonderful it can be gives me hope for my next birth. I hope that makes sense.

    You have to admit though, as far as drama goes, I think mine takes the cake :) I could be biased though, hehe.

  4. I'm often a little uncomfortable around pregnant moms, especially at baby showers. Everyone likes to talk about how wonderful the epidural is & I feel like I'm lying by staying silent, and yet I know they don't want me to open my mouth and shoot down everything they're saying, either.

  5. I think it's very important to speak up and let people know that birth doesn't have to be highly interventive and medicalized. If someone never hears people talk about a wonderful, peaceful homebirth they won't know it happens. Or they'll think "well, no one I know does things like that." Y'know?

    I know I'm guilty of not speaking up and sharing how great my birth was when other women are comparing horror stories. But I'm working on that. The hardest part for me is presenting my positive birth story in a way that doesn't devalue their experiences. All of our birth experiences are valid, and no one's is "better" or "worse" than the other's...just different. *sigh* How do we make it so it's not a competition?

    (stumbled here from my friend Prairie Mama's blog)


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