I am so glad for the life-saving advances we have made in medicine that comes in the form of cesarean surgery - when it is indicated.
When this is the safest course of action for mom and baby (pelvic nuances, placental previa, fetal malformations, iatrogenic complications, etc..), there are some great resources that I would like to share with you, so that you can share with others.
Joanna Moorehead watched the cesarean birth of one baby. In Every Bit as Magical, the British doctor who headed this procedure up, understands more than most OBs how very important it is to preserve "birth", no matter what the setting. I would love to have this Obstetrician teach doctors in the U.S. a new way of cesarean delivery. Not to make it more acceptable of a practice, but to make it a better transition for mom and baby, should it occur.
"Whatever your view on caesareans, for some women it's always going to be the safest choice," he explains. "And while couples having normal deliveries have been given more and more opportunities to be fully involved in childbirth, very little has been done to see how we could make the experience more meaningful for those having caesareans...Paula Beckton is another individual who, with her birth team, has changed the face of cesareans for those willing to fight for something better.
What I realised was that caesareans were done a certain way because they've always been done a certain way, but in fact they can be done differently - and in a way that parents love," says Fisk. Other doctors are sometimes shocked when they hear what he is doing. "They say, but surely you have to get the baby out fast so she can get oxygen straight away? And I say, when the baby is being born she's still attached to the umbilical cord and is still getting oxygen from the placenta. Caesarean birth can be gentle, just as vaginal birth can be gentle.
Obstetricians are too hung up on getting from the point of incision to the birth of the baby as quickly as possible: that's been the benchmark of a skilled surgeon. But I'm challenging that because, from the baby's and from the parents' point of view, it's not very helpful."
For many women the thought of having a caesarean is terrifying, the knowledge that after viewing your newborn child, you may be unable to hold or even see your baby for at least an hour (sometimes longer), can be devastating. Paula Beckton experienced a ground breaking caesarean, where she helped assist in the birth of her second child Oliver and not only was he not whisked away immediately, but was placed on her chest for cuddles and mother/baby bonding. This is her story...Although I don't know as she had to have another cesarean, the point is how she made her own choices regarding how it would occur and how she would be more involved in the process. Her story is an amazing, nearly unbelievable, triumph of a woman taking control of her birthing time. Again, though I might not agree with everything about her reasons for a re-C, my point is not whether she needed one, but how she became proactive in her health care, making policy changes and overcame the very stubborn status quo of surgical delivery.
And finally, Humanizing Cesarean Birth... This, The Ideal Cesarean, is a wonderfully insightful article written by a doctor by the name of Robert Oliver. Not only is it eutopian, something we can only hope for when these instances are of the nessessity, but it is beautiful to read his heart.
Now, I will never hope that any woman will go 'under the knife' if it can be helped, but these more recent events, I hope, can inspire us, and U.S. mothers, to demand more, better, healthier, and safer practices that not only benefit our physical bodies, but our emotional, spiritual, and mental health as well - which can, in turn, only better our familial health as well.