Friday, June 17, 2011

Real Birth. The Grit Behind the Glory

I've been thinking about writing a blog for years now.  Well, my husband had told me I should.  But it just never felt right.  Me rambling on and on about me. Wh really wants to read that?  So the thought is always pushed to the deep, back part of my brain.

With that said, let me introduce myself.   My name is Jessica Fuss.  I'm a certified birth doula and have been for almost 8 years now.  I also have the glorious job of working with a midwife here in RI who delivers babies at homes.  I am one of her assistants.  One of the hight-lites so far in my learning journey has been attending a 6 day Midwives Assistant Training workshop at The Farm in TN.  I learned from Ina May Gaskin, Pamela Hunt and Joanne Santana, founders of The Farm.  I ate, sang and held hands with Ina May.  I learned so much and felt the ultimate reinforcement of what I believe to be true, that birth is a natural life event that needs to be allowed to happen on it's own.

In these past 8 years my view of how a woman needs to be supported an informed has changed about 5 times over (possibly more).  I used to never bring up any of the bad things that could possibly happen during birth.  I thought that would jinx the couple I was working with.  But then I saw a truly wonderful couple who tried their hardest to birth in a natural way, need to have a Cesarean Birth for good reasons, and I realized I had never prepared them for this possibility so that if it did happen, it wouldn't' be so traumatic.

I also used to subscribe to many natural birth methods that are taught to so many expectant couples.  There was one particular method that I actually thought I might become a teacher for.   But then I realized that I couldn't tell an expecting couple that this was the one best way for them to birth their baby. All ways can work.  All women find their own rhythm.  I certainly don't subscribe to any birthing methods that lead a woman to believe that if they do exactly what they say to do she"ll feel no pain, or she"ll have the exact birth outcome she hopes for.  Ya just can't plan birth out that well.  And even the most devout follower of one specific method, who puts their all into learning and practicing and doing when she goes into labor, can still end up with a different outcome of her birth than originally planned.

This is what it comes down to for me.  Prepare.  Inform.  Educate.  Learn to breathe.  RE-learn to breathe.  Find your center core of relaxation.  Set up a safe team to surround you at birth.  Learn of all outcomes.  Be at one with your fears.  Then let go.

Birth has no set way to do it "right".  That's what I want all women to know.  Birth is glorious and empowering.  Birth can also hurt like heck.  In order for that glory moment of birthing her baby, a woman must sometimes go though rough and tough times.  I want to share stories of some of the real births that I have the privilege of going to.  I want women who are preparing for real, normal birth, to be able to read about all the different forms that real, normal birth can take on.

I have asked permission to share all of these stories.  The names will all be shortened to a letter or changed so as to protect privacy.  But all the events are real.