the business of being born

I’m not a documentary person.

I don’t like watching them, because I’m well aware of the fact that documentary-makers have personal agendas and they like to push their agendas off onto other people all the while making the opposing viewpoint look silly, stupid, and invalid.

But.

When people you respect suggest a documentary about something you’re already feeling skeptical about, you take note. And then you watch the documentary.

My friend Rachel suggested that I watch The Business of Being Born. And you know what? I’m really glad that I did. It opened my mind to a perspective that I’d never considered, even though I was leaning toward it subconsciously. Let me explain.

As I stated previously, I was aware that there was an agenda in this documentary. The approach with this documentary is to basically educate American women that we’ve been accepting what the medical field has been feeding to us for a half-century now, that we don’t know how to give birth, that we need obstetrician to aid us in giving birth, and that midwives are of satan. It’s got a very feministic, earth-mother center to it bemoaning the fact that women are being robbed of their “right of passage” in experiencing natural childbirth.

But.

If you can cut through all of that and watch it objectively, you really get to the gem of the message {that they’re not even telling you, but what I took away from it} and that is this: God knows what he’s doing.

God created the world and everything in it. And saw that it was good. Furthermore, he created my body – all humans – to do certain things that it does very well, all without the “help” of technology. One of the things that I have the ability to do is to give birth. And my body knows what to do. I wish I could really unpack everything that means, but there’s just not enough time to really do it justice. Because we all have the attention spans of gnats.

Here’s the gist of what I mean: OB’s are so very, very induction-happy. For many reasons I’m sure, but inducing labor starts a vicious cycle, and that is this: most labors are induced with the help of pitocin which is a drug that attempts to mimic our body’s natural hormone called oxytocin – which essentially is what naturally induces labor. But pitocin brings contractions on longer and stronger than what the natural progression of labor does, removing any desire a woman has to attempt to labor naturally, so she gets an epidural. Which slows labor down. So they have to increase your pitocin, which mom doesn’t feel, because she’s got the magic drug, but the baby does because the longer stronger contractions generally cause the baby’s heart rate to drop {which is bad} thus requiring an emergency C-section.

Do they all happen this way? No. They don’t. But it’s becoming increasingly more common, because statistically 1 in every 3 births ends in a C-section now. Some hospitals have a 40%+ c-section rate.

And c-sections affect the immediate bonding between mother and baby. Not to mention the extra recovery time for mom, the fact that it’s major surgery that can and should be avoided

There’s just SO much more to this documentary that what I’ve stated here. And I would absolutely recommend it to any woman, expecting or not, just so you can get a perspective from the other side. To really hear about what our bodies are capable of doing, on their own, without interference from anyone. It was powerful.

And depending on how this birth goes, if they really keep pushing me toward induction, and if they keep being pushy about his size and getting him here quickly, I may just go in a different direction the next time around.

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