If I led you to believe that something was possible, if it wasn't.
My intention is always for good, but over the last few months I have felt a shift in how I feel about some stuff...in fact it's actually more like several shifts to be honest, but there’s one particular thing that has been playing on my mind.
And yesterday when I was at Suzy Ashworth's the Calm Birth Methodbook launch, I was delighted to meet (in the flesh) and chat to Anthonissa aka the Hypnobirthing Midwife.
We were talking about her exciting new venture, an online course - Align Your Baby which was launched a few days ago.
It's an amazing course which is geared towards helping women across the world get to grips with how to best align their babies...with the view that this will help lower the ever rising rate of forceps and Cesarean births.
I have to be honest when I first saw the course, I felt bitter sweet.
Bitter that there’s so much I wish I had known in the past, but all the more sweeter that going forward I think ultimately this is a game changer for birth and actually...for lives!
Sound dramatic? Well...I think there are some who would absolutely agree and here's why...
I believe that the position of your baby can ultimately be the thief of the birth you imagined.
Don’t get me wrong, I know that there are women who have straight forward births when baby is not in the 'optimal' position and I’m sure plenty of women come away from their birth even when there’s intervention and feel absolutely fine about it.
But I have also met so many, who’s births could have been the
EMPOWERING, EUPHORIC, POSITIVE
births they prepared for and yet they experienced the opposite.
Yes, their babies are happy and healthy, but they feel robbed, not heard and coerced in to making decisions in their labour because they believe that their bodies have failed them.
I know this first hand because it happened to me.
So how have I misled you?
Well for years I have been talking about back to back babies as just another version of normal.
And I do still believe that, but despite explaining the ways in which your labour may be different if your baby is not in the optimal position such as how these labours can be longer, the positions that complement the process, I honestly still don’t see our modern system being set up to support this variation.
Women are governed by big clocks on the wall, systems and protocol and are STILL encouraged to get on their fucking backs!
This is under the guise that your perineum will be protected!
And yet when this leads to intervention like forceps or ventouse…there seems to be very little regard for your perineum and an episiotomy is performed like it’s as routine as brushing your teeth.
Yes they are necessary for some births, but it's wrong for so many women to be at the hands of a modern day system that simply does not support birth that falls out of the parameters of what is considered 'NORMAL'.
After my own experience, I wanted to understand how much anyone knew about womens post natal recovery.
I remember I asked the first specialist I saw about how much feedback is given when there are complications in healing after these 'routine' procedures and the Dr looked at me like I had two heads. As if asking this was an absurd concept.
He then went on to suggest that as this is such a norm, I should just grin and bear it.
So yep, I think collectively the work Anthonissa and us birth workers are doing is imperative to changing lives.
And writing this on the eve of my second baby’s 4th Birthday feels a little strange because I feel perhaps like the tone of this is a little sharp.
Flyn's birth was amazing and I am able to remember it with such joy and gratitude.
I am so grateful to have been able to experience this variation of normal under the support of a midwife who understood my needs and allowed me to have the physiological experience I missed the first time.
Who laid alongside me, quietly confident and who was totally at ease with the process.
Who treated me like the fucking goddess I was as I birthed all 9 pounds 8 ounces of my little Flyn on my sitting room floor.
I'm grateful that despite my first birth trauma, I had the insight and the knowledge that I hadn't failed the first time, but in fact the system had failed me.
I was confident in my body and my strength of conviction and all of my preparation came to fruition.
And I am and have been telling the truth when I tell you that it is possible.
I whole heartedly believe in your ability to birth your baby, but I feel I should be delivering the message that it's tough to stick to your guns in those final hours, so having the tools and knowledge is power all the way.
It is totally possible to birth a star gazing baby comfortably and confidently.
I don’t believe your body is the deal breaker, but the inadequate system supporting this may well be.
So I urge you to get informed and this definitely is a brilliant place to get started.