Repeat after me: There is NO WRONG WAY to have a baby.
Again, I'll say it: There is no wrong way to have a baby.
If you've read the stories of my birth experience with Shep, and my labor induction with Rory, you'll know that I chose not to use pain relief. And yes, that's a personal choice - one I support in other birthing mothers. But I also support them walking in and asking for all the drugs. Heck, if you want a scheduled C-section because the thought of a vaginal birth gives you anxiety attacks - SCHEDULE IT, mama!
In addition to my time writing to you lovelies, I'm also a doula. There's a common misconception that doulas are primarily "crunchy". That is, doulas will encourage you to birth unassisted in a field by a river, to have lotus birth, eat your own placenta, and refuse any and all vaccinations for yourself or your newborn. And you know, many doulas are! They cater to a specific market that is looking for a specific type of birth.
Personally, I practice a little differently. One of the great tools that my sociology minor (Shoutout to Professor Darcy Leach!) taught me was "the veil of ignorance". Those are fancy words for "ignore your own bias". So, yes - I chose to birth without pain relief. But I will 100% support a mother who wants to have every type of pain relief available to her. Because you know - it's not my birth! It's her birth. And she should plan for what will make her comfortable. My feelings and personal preferences just don't have a place in another woman's birth plan.
Apparently my "veil of ignorance" isn't a common perspective. Countless mothers have shared with me the absolutely despicable comments they've heard. One mom-friend even heard her own mother-in-law say, "Well, you don't really know what it's like to give birth."
I'll give you a moment to pick your jaw up off the floor.
Can you imagine being so cold-hearted that you would say something like that to someone? Now, everyone is entitled to their opinion. But having an opinion doesn't mean you have to share it - a tip my own mother-in-law swears by.
Women who have vaginal births with pain relief still carry a baby in their body. Mothers who become mothers through c-sections still carry a baby in their body. When it's been 40ish weeks of the brutal slog of pregnancy, why are we so focused on a few hours or days at the very end? Does pushing a baby out of your vagina somehow mean that you're a better mother than your neighbor who had a c-section. Hell. No. If you haven't walked through the aftermath of a c-section with a dear friend, I encourage you to do so. Did you know that you're not allowed to lift anything heavier than your baby for weeks afterward? You're not allowed to drive for weeks, you have to clean and care for your incision, and you still experience all the same bleeding and cramping and discomfort of an otherwise typical vaginal birth? There is nothing about a c-section birth that is for the faint of heart.
You know what makes a person a mother? Raising a child. Period. Newsflash: you don't even have to birth a child to be a mother! All it takes is self-sacrifice, shouldering the responsibility of preparing a child for adult life, and an iron will. Parenting is not for the weak. And birth - whether by belly or vagina - is hardcore.
Did you have a c-section birth or a vaginal birth? Do you consider your birth "real"? Share your perspective with me on Twitter @pi3sugarpi3 with #AllBirthIsReal