As I reflect on the recent births I have attended, I am struck by the powerful belief the Mothers had that they could give birth and in each case they did without any intervention and it was a privilege for me to witness this. It was no coincidence though that these births went well let me explain!
Natural birth occurs when a woman releases powerful hormones and neuro-chemicals that enable her body to expand and release her baby from her womb. In its natural form, childbirth is a state of surrender and also a state of ecstasy, as the highest peak of love hormones occurs in both the mother’s and the baby’s brain and body, which heightens their ability to adapt and engage in new relationships after the birth.
For a mother to give birth naturally, we must not disturb the natural physiological process of labour and birth. Women are designed to give birth and are usually able to do so without intervention. According to global statistics, only 10-15% of women may need some assistance and 85% of women are capable of birthing naturally. Women deserve to be informed about the benefits of natural birth so they can make informed choices about who cares for them, where and how they give birth. Women deserve compassionate and respectful care during labour and childbirth whether this takes place at home or in hospital.
It is wise to consider the life cycle of a butterfly. The caterpillar eats and eats and then curls up becoming a chrysalis, during the period within the case the transformation is underway, however, if we were to offer to be obstetrician to the emerging butterfly and cut open the chrysalis the butterfly would die. It is the process of wriggling and stretching by the emerging butterfly that is essential for it to survive and to interfere with the process is fatal.
Now clearly I am not saying that all caesareans should be avoided as it is an amazing lifesaving intervention; however that cannot be said every time a birth ends that way. The problem with the birth process is that if women are not treated with compassion and respect and are subject to a lot of routine interventions then the normal flow towards a natural birth will falter and the very care that you are receiving will then be responsible for the resulting C-section.
Here at UK Birth Centres we give continuous individualised care to our clients. We are listening to their hopes and dreams and because of this we are already keyed into their choices ahead of the birth which has a huge benefit during the birthing process. The result is that the birth will often flow well as the client knows she doesn’t have to stay in her neo-cortex staying alert to protect her choices allowing her body to expand and release her baby from her womb.
Following on from a natural birth the newborn has heightened abilities to adapt to life outside the womb. I am convinced that it is who you have supporting you at the crucial time of birth that will affect your ability to give birth naturally. Another consequence of a physiological birth is that breast feeding will often go well due to a wonderful hormone cocktail an empowered Mother and a calmer baby!