Wednesday, May 29, 2013


I just finished this book and I loved most of it.  The author actually gives a summary of it here, if you're interested.  I get a little frustrated with women who have a bad experience in the hospital with their first baby and then run out screaming that anything and everything medical is bad.  I have found midwife after midwife, book after book and woman after woman that have done this and it frustrates me.  While I have no problem agreeing with the fact that the hospital often interferes too much with labor and delivery and I definitely recognize that so many women have been traumatized by their experiences there it does not mean that the entire medical establishment is bad!

She does cover different ways to make a hospital delivery more bearable and also talks about her experiences both there and with her home births.  I love this excerpt: 

Don't Take it Lying Down
My first suggestion, my number one rule for making labour easier is this: STAY ON YOUR FEET.
In the hospital the first thing they do is issue you one of those ugly backless nightgown-things, and show you to a bed like any other patient. But you are not "sick" when you are in labour, you are doing a job -- an important job -- that of bringing forth a new life.
STAY ON YOUR FEET, therefore, because you have an important job to do.
STAY ON YOUR FEET and keep walking because sick, weak people are the ones who need to be in bed. Think of yourself as a client using a service, not a patient. Keep upright and keep walking, so you feel freedom to move and not confinement.
STAY ON YOUR FEET because it raises you up to eye level, where you won’t be looked down upon.
STAY ON YOUR FEET like a capable, healthy person, confident and in control.
STAY ON YOUR FEET because gravity helps the baby to move down, pressing on the cervix, shortening your labour.
STAY ON YOUR FEET because there is less pain when the weight of the uterus is not pressing on your back.
STAY ON YOUR FEET because when you lie down, the very bed you lie upon offers resistance to your pelvis, which is doing its best to open up for the baby.
STAY ON YOUR FEET, walking, walking, walking through the contractions, rocking, rocking, easing your baby lower and deeper into the birth canal.
STAY ON YOUR FEET so the doctors and nurses can’t keep invading your body with their painful vaginal exams. They have to ask you to lie down for them, and that puts you in control! If you STAY ON YOUR FEET they’ll only be able to do things when you’re ready to let them. If you STAY ON YOUR FEET, you can look them in the eye, say no, and walk away.
STAY ON YOUR FEET, walking, refusing all those unnecessary vaginal exams, until you realize your body is pushing.
How long can you stay on your feet? Well, if you like, you can push while you are standing, or you can go down into a squat, and deliver your baby like that. You don’t need to lie down to have a baby!
Something I absolutely loved was her chapters on breastfeeding, the La Leche League, and the support that she received.  Support groups like that are invaluable-and I love that she crossed what she learned there with breastfeeding over into how to deliver a baby.  The key to breastfeeding successfully is just to do it.  And if you have problems and it's just keep breastfeeding.  Labor is the same.  You just keep doing it.  Such a powerful analogy and amazing way to look at things!

She is super sexist when it comes to who should be delivering babies and I kind of love how bold she is about it.  Most books kind of edge their way around the fact that most obstetricians are male and don't hit that-she hits it super hard.  Why are men delivering babies?  They do not have vaginas!  The thought of a female urologist dealing with men is laughable...yet we have men rummaging around in vaginas all the time!  Unfortunately, just looking for a female OB doesn't guarantee anything either BUT at least she has the same equipment.  And I would never say that all male OB's are bad-they aren't.

She then covers the Marilyn Moran Method of home birth which is essentially unassisted childbirth.  This worries me a bit.  I think husbands should be involved fully in birthing babies-I absolutely agree that their role is vital and important.  I even think the idea of your husband actually catching the baby is amazing.  BUT I also think it's a really good idea to have a competent professional there with you as well.  She (like everyone that has had success with this) has not had any complications so OF COURSE this is a safe idea.  And honestly, most babies are born perfect and mom is usually awesome but every once in awhile this is not the case...and it really is SOO rare if you're low risk but wouldn't it be nice to have some sort of competent professional with you just in case?  I don't know...I couldn't sleep at night if I knew I could have prevented something tragic...but that's me.  And unfortunately many use that same logic and think they need to be in a hospital.  To each their own.

She also has some recipes in the back for healing sitz bath's and such and I loved that.  Overall the book was a very good read-she is so personable and friendly in her writings and has studied quite a bit.  I would absolutely recommend it.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...