Birth Bold: L is For Learn
To “birth bold| to me, means,
learning all you can about your birthing options.
Aside from being an expectant mom or dad as you read this, you are also an advocate of birth because you’ll be learning your options and choosing what’s best for you based on your values and beliefs. You’ll be an advocate of choice.
You are also a consumer! Based on what you choose you’ll be communicating to your health care provider what YOU want during your birth experience – this creates change.
When I had my son 16 years ago, “family centered” maternity units were just starting to be created in hospitals. The move to renovate maternity units, making them attractive, and creating an “all in one” set-up (labor, deliver, recover in the same room) in hospitals was in response to the interest of expectant parents (consumers) requesting this kind of birthing experience, as well as current social trends and medical research supporting the change.
Change happens through consumer demand.
That’s how all change happens! But it can work both ways. No demand, no change. Demand it, there’s a change and if the “voice” is loud enough, change will happen.
Expectant moms wanted to have waterbirth experiences. Now more and more hospitals are making this option available. Moms asked for their partners to stay with them throughout their hospital stay until discharge to go home with baby, and that’s happening now.
And yet, when it comes to options to give birth, moms are still not always informed by their health care provider of non-medical options in preparing for birth.
Midwives, which I am in total support of, are on the rise. As more women seek out their care, they will become significant care providers and maybe one day out number obstetricians.
Education is key! If you don’t know what’s available to you, you have nothing to choose from, and you’ll go with what ever is presented to you. But if you learn from people who know what your options are, like a childbirth educator, you’ll not on;y have choices, but you’ll be in a better place to discuss these options with your care provider.
Avoid being the mom that says, “If I only knew …”
- First, know your rights as a childbearing woman
- Research your options
- Talk to professionals, don’t always believe what you read on the internet
- Take a childbirth class
Learn all you can about how your body works through the labor process and what you can do to manage your labor. When you choose not to learn about it, you increase your own anxiety about it. But when you educate yourself it can build trust and confidence in your abilities to birth while learning the process of birth is a very, normal event.
So far I’ve talked about believing in yourself, owning and being responsible for your pregnancy and health, and now, learning, educating yourself about labor and birth to prepare for it and choosing the best options that suit your needs. Avoid believing in hear-say. Go to the professionals to learn what’s available – Midwives, Doulas, and Childbirth Educators will tell you.
PS: Tell me what you think, would love to hear.