My husband and I recently watched the documentary, “Pregnant In America” on our Netflix instant watch (gotta love it). I had wanted to see it for awhile. Having previously watched “The Business of Being Born” another birthing in the US related doc by Rikki Lake and, “At Your Cervix” where the truth behind pelvic exams was revealed. All great documentaries! I highly recommend them all if you are even remotely interested in having a child in the United States of America. Because a lot of what we’ve been told, taught or marketed to in regards to women’s bodies and reproductive health, is, well…BULLSHIT!!!
I was born in a hospital. No complications, just a typical 1977 birth. My younger brother and sister, however, were born at home with a midwife. They, too, had no complications in their births (or should I say our mom didn’t). Yet somewhere along the line I grew a nice big prejudice against home births. I am not entirely sure why, other than I typically will rebel against anything my mother is for (I have not seen her in over 15 years). But getting my info on and watching these incredible documentaries has completely changed my mind!
I had grown fearful, over the last couple of years, of having a kid because of a lot of things. Mostly passing on genetic stuff, but also because there’s a damned good chance that I’ll have a fat child (who may also end up with my hair color, not bad, but kids are merciless towards redheads). Would the government take my child away because it’s fat? I couldn’t bear the thought of living through that. Or would I even get a say in the birth of my child while also being seen as too fat for anything in the eyes of the medical world? I read the blog WellRoundedMama and have found some great articles/info/resources there, but that fear still lingers.
When I read this post on AmpleProportions I was quickly reminded of my fears and the real threat to our rights as women in America, let alone the rights of the fat! Watching “Pregnant in America” sort of snapped me back to my germaphobic self in a way: hospitals are for the very ill, not for the newly born! I mean, babies don’t belong there! They don’t have fully formed immune systems and who knows who is touching your baby and if they’re washing their hands appropriately?! My husband has long said that he doesn’t want to have our baby in a hospital because they snatch it away from you the moment it’s released from the birth canal and instantly inject, weigh, test, “clean”, etc… when the natural thing is to clutch the infant to the mother’s breast, leaving the placenta in-tact for awhile, so that the natural hormones kick in and do what they need to do: Bond, initiate natural breast feeding and so much more.
Is it possible that the rise in postpartum depression has something to do, directly, with the westernized pathology of handling birth? To inject drugs (epidural) into the spine of the mother (can lead to so many problems I don’t even wanna talk about right now) so that she cannot feel the baby moving and may even be temporarily paralyzed until after the baby is born? You see, we’re natural baby makers, women. We and our bodies know exactly what to do, if we are unaltered and uninhibited. We will find the right position for us while giving birth, naturally! While OB/GYN’s have been trained to find pathology and complications where none exist all in the name of efficiency and profit! Laying on your back, legs splayed in the air, is not only not natural, but damned uncomfortable while pushing out a baby! I have completely changed my mind and I have no intention of going anywhere near a sick house (hospital) unless it’s an absolute emergency. They don’t want me anyway, I’m fat and have no insurance. Fuck ’em!
I’m not pregnant and don’t have immediate plans to get there, but if and/or when I am ready, I thank the stars above that these films and the experts and resources available today are there to inform and help me along the way. I cannot stand the thought of not being in control of my own body or infant. To interfere with a natural thing? Well, that’s bullshit! I won’t stand for it and I most certainly will not pay for it!