Friday, February 15, 2013

Birth Doesn't' Require Luck

I have a little bit of a pet peeve when it comes to what people say to a mom when she says she is in labor. I know these things are said with good intentions, but when you really look at what these statements imply, it makes it sound like birth is just a game of chance.

"Good Luck!" and "Hopefully everything turns out ok!", are among the phrases I often see.

Why do we need "luck" when we give birth? I didn't feel like I had any odds to beat while I was laboring. I focused on having the birth I wanted and focused on the healthy baby I was sure I would be holding soon. I truly believe that positive thinking goes a long way, and that my positivity helped create my amazing birth. I just can't imagine managing the pressure of my contractions effectively, if I had been worried about everything that could have gone wrong.

I know I haven't posted my entire birth story here yet, but I was faced with a few situations that weren't in my dream birth plan. I decided to roll with the flow, stand firm on what I believed was right for my baby and decided to have the birth I wanted. I believe that I avoided having to use pitocin during my labor, because I decided I wasn't going to need it. Yes, I know this all sounds so tree-hugger, but have you ever realized that people who think positively, seem to have very positive lives? They see the glass as half full and decide to enjoy that half glass, instead of focusing on how things could be.

I didn't tell many people that I was trying to go medication free. I didn't want the opinions of others to affect my positive feelings about my labor and birth. I wanted to be excited to feel the contractions and experience every aspect of birth. I know too many women who have heard "You won't win a trophy for not having an epidural" or "You won't be able to do it without an epidural, it hurts too much". I didn't want someone to tell me what they thought I was capable of. I knew myself and my body and knew what I wanted. It just wasn't anyones business but my own. I just didn't care what anyone else thought and refused to let anyone ruin my excitement.

I also didn't tell anyone that I was being induced. I saw my labor as a special time for just me and my husband to experience. I wanted to focus on myself, and not have the distraction of people calling or texting to see if my son had been born yet. It also helped me avoid hearing statements full of good intentions, but not full of the support they thought they were giving.

Now I want to be clear, I don't judge any women for her choice of how she labors or births her child. It is her body and her choice. It is also her choice to call everyone she knows or post on Facebook that she is in labor. I just ask everyone reading this to think about how they respond when they see the announcement that a mom is in labor. Instead of wishing her luck, congratulate her! Instead of saying you hope everything turns out ok, say "You will do great!". Help that momma be confident in her body and it's ability to birth a baby.

We don't need luck, but your positivity and support is always appreciated.

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