Thursday, June 7, 2012

Don't Ask, Don't Tell

There's a critical difference between this time around and last time around.

Last time around, I was pretty open about my plans for delivery and had gotten pretty use to explaining why I was choosing cesarean. Often, my plans were met with "but recovery from a vaginal delivery is so much easier" or "that's what epidurals are for", or even "Are you nuts? Birth is a natural process.". To which I'd usually respond with, "my decision is not about the recovery or labour pain" or even "no, I'm not nuts.". Perhaps they were just defending the childbirth plans that they, themselves had had and were in someway threatened by a woman who would make a plan that was different from what they, themselves had chosen. Planning to deliver vaginally is the norm - it is nearly seen as a right of passage into motherhood, one that is perceived as being only justifiably avoided if there are clear "medical indications" for a cesarean birth. To be planning a cesarean birth in absence of any clear "medical indications" is taboo, and perhaps that is something I failed to appreciate then. I naively believed that it was my body, that there were risks to either birth plan, and that deciding which birth plan to persue was my choice and my choice alone.

By the end of my last pregnancy I was tired of defending my choice and was just looking forward to having my birth plan realized and meeting my child.

And then it didn't happen. And, as well meaning as many family, friends and acquaitenances have been, many of their comments have been unintentionally hurtful and fail to recognize the travesty of what has happend. Glass half-full, look at the bright side.

The fact it didn't happen remains a somewhat sensitive issue for me (putting it mildly). If anything I have become more defensive about a woman's right to choose a birth plan that best meets her needs - and I am particularly sensitive to moms who for whatever reason, would choose to deliver by cesarean section.

So in real life, I'm a bit reserved when it comes to what my plans are for this pregnancy. I'm in no mood to defend my choices. I'm just quietly going about making them, and hoping that this time it will be different. And if anybody asks why, I leave it at "I don't want what happend last time, to happen this time."

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