Natural

Monday, August 5, 2013

Until four months ago when I thought of that word, the first thing that popped into my noggin was hair color (I think some kind of dishwater blonde?). Then my make-up-less face (yikes). Then my hairy, scary arm pits after a few weeks days (sorry, dear). 

The last image I had was childbirth.


Let me preface this post by saying: No birth story is better than anotherWhether you adopted, epidural-ed it, had a cesarean, IVF-ed it, took all the drugs, took zero drugs, had a midwife, had a doctor, or got your baby from the stork (tell me how), you are giving and nurturing the life that God chose to bless you with. And that is a beautiful thing.

This is just the story behind our decision; I'm certainly not trying to be a pompous ass and say it is the way.

Natural childbirth was a completely foreign, atrocious idea to me not very long ago. I had a very creepy, wonky view of midwives (before I actually met one). Who are these strange hippy women who didn't go to medical school that get up close to your lady business? Where are the doctors? I also had a preconceived notion that people who used midwives were poor; they couldn't afford "real" medicine. And what, no epidural? Uh, no thanks. Did these women think they had gold-encrusted vaginas or something? 

The entire concept was just cooky to me. No way in hell was I going to have a baby like that--how outdated, how unsafe, how weird. 

And then I met a wonderful gal at our church who is studying to be a midwife. (Isn't it funny how God brings people into your life to completely shatter all your crazy misconstrued ideas?) Something she said to me that I'll never forget: You can choose to have a natural birth for the wrong reasons, and you can choose to have a hospital birth for the wrong reasons. Which one, Jena, are you trusting God in?
It became painfully obvious to me that I wasn't trusting God. At all. Only 7 weeks into this pregnancy, and I was already making all the decisions. My way. My body. My decision on how to pop this kiddo out. It's as if I was saying, "Thanks for the baby, Lord, but I think I can take it from here." (Ha. Right.)

Tasha encouraged us to read, to visit the birth center, to ask questions, and most importantly to pray. So we did, and it's amazing how lead we felt to natural childbirth.

At our Birth Center, there are five women who know us. They're incredibly knowledgeable, sweet, encouraging, etc. They know who I am. They know Grahm. They care about my baby, my husband, me. We aren't another face in a crowd. We aren't just another appointment. It's a holistic approach to childbirth. It's community. It's everything we could ever want in the care of our little one.

We couldn't be happier with this God-lead decision. It's one I would have rolled my eyes at a few months ago, but God truly has changed our hearts in the process.

I think there's something completely beautiful, terrifying, and soul searching in allowing God to step into the places we're most afraid. Because let's face it, I'm a bit panicked at the idea of pushing a pot roast out of my lady nostril. There are times, I will admit, that I think I'm crazy. I want to take control of the situation. I want the drugs. I want to do it on my own. It's incredibly hard to trust.

There's still a chance that I could become a high-risk pregnancy, and my birth plan will get all cattywompus. The whole point though, for me, in this journey so far is understanding that God is the author and giver of life. He really is, as difficult as it is to admit for this Type A planner, in charge of my birth plan. And whatever He wants really is the best way to be. 

24 comments:

Karla said...

Cattywompus is probably the best word I have ever heard. But besides that, girl, I love this post. So glad that you have decided to let God take the reigns with this. =) I'm sure whatever He has planned will be nothing short of amazing =)

Kaity said...

Can we please be friends in real life?!

I love this post! Granted, I'm a teensy bit granola as it is, but when the Hubby and I have discussed our future plans for kiddos, I've become really drawn to natural childbirth. I even made him watch The Business of Being Born with me (poor guy!). It's something that just seems so beautiful and empowering. But I also recongnize that I'm the biggest wimp when it comes to pain, so when the time finally does come, I'll be putting it in God's hands. :)

Kate said...

It's a great plan. I always stress to friends to not feel like a failure if things go differently.

Claire Berard said...

Love this! Remember all of this after baby comes too and your control-everything-mama-instinct kicks in! Love ya! Claire

Daliene Hendon said...

What an exciting plan! I have a dear friend who is married to a midwife and she is amazing. Hugs and prayers it continues to go well.

Kayla Peveler said...

This is SO amazing, Jena. I mean seriously, I'm proud of you for trusting God through this! How amazing that God can change our hearts even when we think we won't change our minds. :)

Mason's Mama said...

You are too funny! I love the way you write your posts. But, you are SO right! I admire you for trusting God’s plan!! I will be praying along side you.

k8te said...

i have heard so many good things about midwives, i just watched the documentary "the business of being born" and it's definitely got some valid points about drugs/hospital births! excited for you!!

delcers said...

Love this post, and how open you are about everything! I know someone who planned to have a natural water birth, but the labor lasted so long she had to go to hospital :( I love reading your posts about the process, and how you have decided to let God take over :)

Mikell Gordon said...

Jena this is SO AWESOME. I've never had the idea of a Natural child birth appeal to me. EVER. I thought this was such an awesome way to put it.. on WHY people do natural child birth. I'm happy for you guys and your decision! The Lord works in mysterious ways, but always comes through. I love how your story came together for you guys!!

-Danica- said...

Hurray for natural birth! We are also preparing for one in January (i wish it was going to be in a birth center!) and I am loving learning everything I can about it. I just started going over the Hypnobabies home study course and it seems like such an awesome program with some great tools for birth. Can't wait till January to actually put it to use :)

Jay T said...

The way you write cracks me up! "Lady nostril" WHERE do you come up with this stuff??? I love that you wrote "You can choose to have a natural birth for the wrong reasons, and you can choose to have a hospital birth for the wrong reasons." Love that! I'm nowhere near having kids of my own but if and when the time comes I hope to have this kind of an attitude!

emi said...

this is amazing! you are so honest and real about this, which a lot of people are not. i love the scripture you related, and i think you have the best attitude! xo
the well-traveled wife

Lindsay said...

People are always going to be judgmental and mean about your choices, so don't let them get you down. I had a preexisting condition that meant I'd 99% have a scheduled c-section whenever I did get pregnant but, as it turned out, my baby was breech anyway. Of course, my water broke the month before my scheduled c-section and it turned into an emergency c-section when the preexisting condition and everything else started going wrong (thanks, reality, for taking over when I'm trying to be a control freak! Haha!). People were such jerks! I'm totally one of those all natural crunchy hippie ladies and is all "boo, processed foods!" around my son, but some things in life, like you said, aren't in our hands! People were so mean about it. I should also point out my doctor is my uncle, and my OB was his close, close family friend and most trusted colleague, so I never felt pressured or like someone was steering me wrong in my medical care (the opposite!). I'm still ways away from contemplating my second, but it drives me bananas how people are already all "oh, you should try a VBAC next time!" (Oh, splendid! Get outta here, lol.)

Some of my best friends have natural births, other hospital births, other natural births in a hospital, others VBACs, etc., but like you said, everyone's birth experience should be one they're comfortable with and makes them feel the most confident -- not what everyone else thinks someone should have. Hopefully your birth plan goes according to plan, and how wonderful to have that sense of community, too, and the naysayers and eyerollers stop rolling in!

Katie said...

Good for you!! I have my "birth plan" ready to go as well. However, I'm still expecting the unexpected just in case things don't go as planned. Hoping healthy and easy deliveries for the both of us :)

Kim Matheson said...

Yes! (I JUST wrote a post on my experience with midwifery so far: http://zerofoxgiven.wordpress.com/2013/07/28/midwives-doulas-and-doctors-oh-my/ - er...not to advertise. Just that I wrote it and have decidedly strong feelings about the subject. Not judgey ones, just what has been best for me, and my little gaffer (I think), so far)

Love it. Love. I am also a tiny bit on the terrified side of this whole labour and delivery thing (ANY day/time now), but I trust that things happen the way they happen and that, as long as the wee fellah and I are aces at the end of the day, everything will be just fine.

Also, I love your Faith. Love it. :) This post made me smile. It also made me feel just a little bit more calm about that whole giving-birth thing. :)

Jamie said...

I had in-medicated births for both of my kids. I can definitely recommend it... But it's hard!

Rachel said...

I may be a L&D nurse, but I'm all for a mama choosing her own way (or rather trusting God to!) Love this. I'm just still amazed that you're having a wittle baby! I am just so happy for you and G. You're going to be the best, funniest, most entertaining mama ever! Praying for a smooth and easy pregnancy for you, ma'am!

Katy said...

Love this! My baby is six weeks old and was delivered at a birth center. We had a wonderful experience and were blessed that everything went well. I also agree that there is no right or wrong way to have a baby. Do the research and make the choice that is right for you and your family :o)

Lauren said...

He'll be there through it ALL! Can't wait to hear about your plans!

Anonymous said...

I had natural - completely free childbirth for both of my kids back in the 80s. I chose natural because I was more afraid of the epidural after a friend's sister was paralyzed by the epidural. And as far as the watermelon coming out the va-ge-ge, my mantra was constantly, "Millions of women have done this before me, I can do it too!" Oh and a great bonus? I still hold it over my children that I pushed their beings into existence without any medication - best. guilt. trip. ever!!!!!

Amy said...

You should definitely watch the documentaries The Business of Being Born and Pregnant in America. They'll help solidify leaning towards natural birth and take out a lot of the fear. I am not pregnant yet, but I have also done some research on hipno-birthing. You should Youtube it!

Danielle Carroll said...

We too are planning a natural childbirth. I say "planning" loosely since I know each pregnancy is so unique and unpredictable you can't really plan. So I should say we are hoping for a natural childbirth. I agree with you, it's so nice to not just be another face in the crowd. Our birthing center has 3 midwives and they all personally know me and understand my desire for an all natural birth. Also, we were created to do this! There is a reason women give birth and not men! ;) God designed our bodies to do this and if the momma and baby are healthy, I don't see why modern interventions need to be involved in the birthing process.

Have you been reading any books on natural child birth? I just finished up Ina May's Guide to Childbirth and it was so empowering! I highly recommend it if you haven't read it already. Also, it's not one of those scary books that causes my hypochondriac tendencies to run wild, so I enjoy it! :)

Nagehan said...

Hi lady! I know this is one of your older posts but it's hard to catch up on blogs with a newborn!

I also wanted to go all natural. I wanted it so bad that I went 30 hours without an epidural. Then, my doctor was like, I understand what you want here, but you aren't dilating, you can't keep your eyes open anymore, and your baby's heart rate is dipping too often. (My water broke when I was 1cm dilated and I stayed 1-2 cm for 20+ hours). When I received the epidural (btw...I had 2 epidurals bc the first one moved and it stopped working) everything worked out fine. I dilated and had my baby as naturally as I possibly could.

Trust your body and most importantly trust your doctor. xoxo