Natural Childbirth

Before I was even pregnant, I was interested in natural childbirth.  I loved the idea of a woman's body doing what it was designed to do.  I also liked the idea of a woman's mental stamina pulling her through intense pain to let her body perform exactly as it was designed to perform.

(I feel like I need to put a disclaimer here, as well: anyone who carries a baby for nine months and births the child [whether naturally, with pain meds, in a hospital, at home, through c-section, whatever] is amazing, in my opinion.  I'm not critical of modern medicine nor do I misunderstand the hundreds of different circumstances surrounding the act of bringing a baby into the world.)

About halfway into my pregnancy, I made the definitive decision to try for a natural childbirth in a hospital with an OBGYN.  My husband is a lawyer and has seen too many cases of childbirth-gone-wrong to be on board with a home birth.  And in Memphis, midwives can't deliver in hospitals.  So hospital birth with an OBGYN was the option we had.

During my pregnancy, I wanted to be as informed as possible about what was going to happen during labor.  We attended a 4-week class on general pregnancy/childbirth info (offered by my OBGYN's office).  We attended 2 classes devoted to natural childbirth (one at Methodist hospital and one at Baptist Women's hospital [and for any Memphians - the Methodist one was awesome and a must-attend if you want a natural labor, in my opinion]).  And my husband and I read The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin (which I highly recommend) and Natural Childbirth The Bradley Way by Susan McCutcheon-Rosegg (which I sort of recommend, but not wholeheartedly).  Also, a quick shout out to Ricki Lake's documentary The Business of Being Born, which I found really interesting and powerful.

Both my husband and my OBGYN were 100% on board with my decision to avoid drugs and in my opinion, this made the whole experience possible.  We came up with a birth plan beforehand and had a copy in my file and a few copies on hand when we arrived at the hospital.  Overall I was so pleased with the way everything happened.  

Here is the link to the birth story of my baby.  It was such an amazing experience, I hope I conveyed that through my description.

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