The empowering process of my daughter Lydia’s freebirth was an immensely healing experience for me after the traumatic one of my son Leo back in 2010. Although the scars of that experience are still there, they are no longer raw and I feel inspired to finally move forward in my emotional growth. The tangible difference in how I feel after this last birth has made me truly understand the importance of supporting natural birth for women and having proper prenatal emotional support. I always felt that a normal birth was a worthy intent for many psychological and physiological reasons, but the depth of that was not known to me until I experienced it myself. The disparity between the hospital birth I had with Leo and the homebirth I had with Lydia is palpable.
Not only is my physical healing more efficient because my body was allowed to make use of its normal physiological processes, but all the psychological issues I had after Leo like the PPD, the D-MER, the emotional disconnect to my own child are non-existent. I am instead filled with blissful feelings and immense gratitude to those in my life, and a sense of grace that I have not experienced until now. This has given me the strength to shoulder the responsibilities of being a solo-parent temporarily while my husband is away for several months with his work. I could not imagine how I would function if I felt similarly to my experience after birthing Leo. It would not have ended well, that’s for certain.
Knowing now that without a doubt that my body is not broken and that I can birth my babies as beautifully as I can grow them is definitely worthy of pride. My first birthing experience left me feeling self-conscious, doubtful about my abilities, and emotionally damaged. This time, I feel empowered and pretty bad-ass. The experience of birthing unhindered; with no one to direct me a certain way or interfere in the process and instead proceeding solely based on my instincts was amazing. It was a FAR more efficient way to birth. Intense, but smooth. The gift of actually feeling my child move through my birth canal and surrendering to the powerful manner in which my body encouraged Lydia’s journey earth-side is appreciated. Those that claim that naturally birthing does not deserve a medal obviously have not experienced it themselves nor understood the significance of it in their lives. Perhaps having experienced the polar opposite has given me a special vantage point.
During the labour itself I kept asking myself why I wanted to go through this without numbing my body and was afraid that I could not handle it, but that voice was very small compared to the roaring mother-goddess one that kept reminding me: YES YOU CAN AND YOU WILL. Whether I wanted it or not this baby was coming out through the efforts of our symbiotic dance. I had no choice but to embrace it. So I breathed and meditated through every surge, yielding to the aches of my body working to push my baby out into the world. It was so hard for me to let go mentally since I am so used to taking control of things in my life. The mental leap was the hardest for me. Physical pain I am used to and know how to handle, but the loss of control was terrifying. But I did it and came through the other side beautifully. One of the first thoughts I had after birthing her though was that I would never do this again! My reasons were twofold: because pregnancy is pretty hard on me now with the SPD, and also that naturally birthing is crazy intense and overwhelming while in the midst of it! This thought pattern soon passed after getting over the shock of the whole event (still not doing this again though, I’m officially retiring my uterus)!
Now at almost two weeks post-partum I’m already fitting into my pre-pregnancy clothes, my lochia is already almost nil, the SPD has worn off, my abs are already nearly re-knit, and I feel fabulous! It took months for me to feel even close to this after Leo’s birth. Yes, I would definitely say that homebirthing was the best thing I could do for myself.