If, as soon as we heard the news of being parents, someone told us that the best thing we could give our baby was a home birth, in an intimate, warm, caring and familiar environment, we would have looked at it in surprise and judged it as timeless and anachronistic madness .
“This is no longer done, science has advanced in recent years. It is not necessary to take some risks that occurred in the past, when women gave birth at home with the midwife ”. They could have practically been the arguments that my reason would have used. However, when we left that first interview we had with Alejandra, the obstetrician we finally chose to assist us in this experience of becoming parents, her strong conviction led us to ask:
I am going to share with you our story of natural childbirth, at home, arising from a pre-feeling. The one that led us to question whether that was the best option to bring our son into the world, until we reached the strong conviction that it really was. But, sit still and get ready to read, because it was not a short way. Although one is full of life, doubts, fears, searching, questions, testimonies and, above all, letting ourselves be guided by our feelings.
The wrong obstetrician
At first, the way we chose the obstetrician was “traditional”. I consulted a couple of friends, cousins and acquaintances, for recommendations from their obstetricians. And so, based on some options, I chose among those that had my prepaid coverage. It is not less than this requirement, which before I saw as "indispensable" then we would make it a totally dispensable one.
What happened to the accompaniment of Obstetrician 310? It was our first experience as parents. So we went to the first consultation with the enthusiasm of someone who is going to see someone who knows a lot, who is going to give us a lot of information, because we really had no idea of anything. However, we find ourselves in the position of "well, what questions do you have?" I remember that I made a lot of effort to think, between meetings, about which were the correct questions that would give me the answers that I was needing to walk this path with more information, tranquility, confidence and security. However, I felt that it was he who should give me the knowledge so that I could take it, mature it, investigate it internally and question myself. Wasn't he the one who had been through this experience more than a few hundred times?
What were the questions that I should ask myself, I remember that it was something that disturbed me internally. And then, little by little, attentive to the articles and notes I read, to what I heard other women share with each other, the advice of those who approached me, began to appear. “Aboriginal women squat,” a friend, herself a homeopathic doctor, told me. And then suddenly I saw the logic: to put gravity in favor of that powerful force, which had to go down, to bring her son to earth. Then, at the next meeting, I would already have a few new questions to ask that obstetrician. “Can I squat? What if I want to walk during labor, can I do it? Maybe I need a bathtub, to calm the pain of contractions a bit? " It gave me the feeling that I asked the wrong questions, because after my questions, he extended a card with the following inscription “PSI Hospital Austral”. "Consult them, they will know how to guide you in what you want," he told me as if taking an ace out of his sleeve and also a weight off him. "What is PSI?" I asked him. "I deliver without intervention", he would answer me. The first clue that would be given to us to retrace the experience of childbirth towards the natural.
Delivery Without Intervention, Humanized Delivery or Respected Delivery
I later discovered that "PSI" is also what is currently known as "Humanized Childbirth" or "Respected Delivery". And so, by reference to an acquaintance of my brother, I came to the "Nacer en Familia" team.
The first interview with his obstetrician, as I mentioned at the beginning, was so forceful that it disturbed me. I came up with my spiritual concept of childbirth, built on beautiful ideas, my disruptive little questions about squatting, the bathtub, and being able to walk during labor.
“Childbirth is earth, it is blood, there is a smell, it is animal. It is pure nature, it is instinctive. He's atavistic, ”he told me with some condescension in his eyes.
"But, but ... and what is the transcendental experience of bringing a spirit to live its physical experience in the world?" For 1 hour and a half we had no choice but to listen carefully: Alejandra was speaking to us from the truth. And not only from her experience accompanying the natural birthing process in a respectful way but also from her own experience as a mother. “I have been attending home births for more than 10 years,” convinced that the home is the best environment to give birth and the one that gives her the most freedom to work as they do. Accompanying, respecting, ensuring that everything unfolds with health and waiting for the foot to intervene when needed.
That day we left feeling that that woman would reveal several myths to us, but that it was the necessary path that we had to (un) walk to give birth freely. And that not only scared us, but in turn we felt that the experience was still a bit too big for us.
The following Saturday, already in our fifth month, we had to attend the biweekly and morning parent meetings. This time it was at Gabriela and Pablo's house. They had had their second son, Amaro, at home just a few days ago. Her testimony was moving because of what was real, because of how brave both of them and because it allowed us to experience in advance the greatness of that moment after the birth, when the three of them were left alone, enjoying their encounter. Without procedures, unnecessary interference, and full of happiness; all in the privacy of your home. However, already in this first meeting, we would also glimpse the "risks" of the experience. After the birth of her second child, Gabriela began to lose a lot of blood. This is one of the risks expected in home birth, as it is also in the hospital. Her bags were ready to go rushed to the nearest clinic. It was an instant that seemed the longest of their lives. Alejandra asked him if he wanted to wait a few minutes to see if the bleeding would stop, there was a margin that was safe. Later, they should go to an institution. Gabriela decided that they would stay. After a few minutes the bleeding stopped.
With this introduction we began to value more and more the parents' meetings, which were giving a glimpse of reality to the birth, staging the possible situations that could occur. Today I understand why they insisted on attending, on going to hear the testimonies of others, the doubts and fears of new parents who had already crossed the threshold of experience. These instances began to be like a ground wire for us: we contemplated what could happen, we observed that situations could be handled with the guidance and accompaniment of someone who knows, and something no less: that time is not always short., as in the ideology behind Hollywood movies.
Soon, this and other living stories would add great value to our own experience: that of stimulating us to trust ourselves, inviting us to banish myths, beliefs and prejudices embraced without much conscience, or from fear.
If there is something I have to recommend to a mother who is in search of a birth as natural as possible, it is that she seek and inform herself. And that, from that place, he connects with what happens to him, with his feelings. Because it is she who is going to give birth, to put and dispose of her body at the service of that baby. Then no one else can define and decide on how to give birth. What do I want? How do I want to travel it? In me it was clear: from Knowledge. Be willing to know more about myself: to build my desire I also had to know what my fears are. And this experience would take me in search of the deepest. What if I don't know 'bid'? What if something happens to me during labor? And if I don't notice the contractions, I don't feel the pain, therefore I can't tell the midwife to arrive on time? What if it has a cord loop, and it must be taken immediately to the operating room? What if the baby's heart rate drops when pushing? What if the baby poops on the tummy and the baby sucks it up? Those were some fears that began to unsettle me. I do not know its origin, surely something I heard. The point is that they were there, in me. And I saw that it was due to not knowing or - which is the same - due to the wrong belief of what could happen. And it is the same fear who elucidates the most apocalyptic images, those that with their great power bound me internally. And that they manage to suffocate so much, but so much our love, to the point that suddenly we distrust even ourselves. We forget our love and instinctively surrender our power to another, power that resides nothing more than in me, in my biology, in my instinct.
I dare to tell you that all these concerns were answered to us; all. Even those fears: they were staged in the experience of other parents, who had given birth at home. So, either in the form of the testimony of a couple, covered in response - of incontestable logic - from the obstetrician, in the form of an article or a research note. We were shown all the variables, in their most varied forms. Thanks to this, we were able to work on leaving fears behind, uncovering myths, running prejudices and planting ourselves in reality (which is not little). It was the knowledge that allowed us to go through this process of approaching the natural and attributing to me that ancestral knowledge that I bring as a woman, printed in my own nature.
It was then that a "milestone" occurred in my pregnancy: it was I who decided whether to stand on the side of confidence in myself, in my own physiology as a woman, in the intelligence and wisdom of my body. Or, from the side of fear, of the lack of confidence in myself, handing over my decisions to someone outside of me, denying the perfection and divine intelligence of my body.