On Sunday, we celebrated my youngest’s son’s birthday. Eleven years. How time zips by. Every year on his birthday, I always think back to his birth.
I didn’t plan a homebirth at first. I had my two other kids via cesarean. Lauren’s birth was especially hard, because I had hoped to birth her naturally, but ended up consenting to be induced. Post-partum depression reared its ugly head and I was fortunate to find a support group to help me through it.
While attending the support group, I learned that several other moms had given birth at home. One mom had two cesareans like me.
Homebirth? Nah. That was far too radical for me. I was a good follower. I dutifully took my kids to the pediatrician and followed the schedule for vaccinations. I read the books on what to expect when pregnant. I went for the epidural and the pitocin hook-ups each time.
Then a little surprise–the lines turned pink on the plastic stick, the result of a New Year’s Eve party that we had at our house. A welcome surprise though, as we had planned to have a third child down the road.
While attending the support group, I began to dive into books about birth. My friend Beth had briefly contemplated a homebirth and she handed over Sheila Kitzinger’s Homebirth for me to read. The more I read, the more people that I talked to about homebirth, the stronger the feeling began to grow inside of me that I wanted to have a homebirth.
And I did. It was an amazing time, in more ways than one. But I also ended up being induced at home, consenting to something that I didn’t really know I was consenting to. Steven’s homebirth turned into a story that was published in Don’t Cut Me Again.
Birthing at home wasn’t so much the life changing event as making the decision to have a homebirth. I was torn between doing what society perceived as safe (birthing in the hospital) and doing what my instinct was leading me toward. Did I have the courage to break the status quo? Did I have the courage to look within and make a decision that that felt right to me (and my husband), despite others telling me I shouldn’t?
Making the decision was a liberating moment for me.
When decisions come from within us and are not influenced by outside factors, we hold ourselves responsible for the outcomes. We own the decisions with more rights than we could have if we allowed someone else to influence us.
So tell me, have you faced a moment in your life that shaped the way you make decisions?