Weddings and babies, similarities and differences. Traditionally one follows the other and they both bring major change to your life, social status and future.
In planning a wedding there are assumptions that this is an important day, if not the most important day, in a woman’s life. Therefore she deserves to have everything as she wishes –it’s often likened to being a princess for a day.
Do you imagine a woman in labour looking like a princess, or perhaps a goddess? Ina May Gaskin, mother of American midwifery, has this to say about giving birth: “If a woman doesn’t look like a goddess during labor, then someone isn’t treating her right.”
How readily can you imagine a bride looking like a princess? And now, how easy is it for you to imagine a woman in labour looking like a goddess? And yet when a woman attempts to write a detailed plan of how she would like her birth to be, what she would and wouldn’t want to have happen, she is all too often mocked, dismissed or told that there is no point in planning. As if she is asking for the impossible.
Sure, things might change on the day, there are no guarantees of how birth will go; but there is clear evidence available to show that some specific treatments, behaviours and attitudes will help or hinder the birth process. Every woman has the right to plan for those positive measures or to refuse the potentially negative ones.
The point I’m making is that our society believes that a wedding day should and will have a fairytale element to it and this belief is supported on all sides. Women and babies deserve an equally strong and unshakeable belief that giving birth has a magical quality to it as well.
The opposite of this belief is held by most of our society and constantly reinforced from girlhood. It’s time for this to change. Being around positive attitudes to birthing, spending time and energy preparing for your birth, learning as much as you can, all these things will empower you.
Make a birth plan, find out what is available to you, believe that you can make a difference. And then you can pass this information and attitude on to someone else to make a difference for them.
Reach out to me at Holistic Birth, if you have anything to share, ask or discuss. I'll be updating these blog posts regularly with my reflections, please have a read.
Hope to hear from you soon.
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