I'm on a bit of a high after hearing the news of two babies born this week, Logan and Rachel. Logan's mom Jenn was told at 30 weeks that she should schedule a c-section because her baby was measuring big. She continued to question this advice, and when again at 38 weeks she was advised to schedule her cesarean for 39 weeks she did what most won't do; she sought a second opinion and switched doctors. She went into labor 5 days past her due date and vaginally delivered her 8lbs+ baby boy in an uncomplicated birth. Rachel's mom Christine had a little bit of a different story. She was never offered a cesarean, but she also did what most won't do; she stayed pregnant for 42 weeks and 1 day past her due date. She went into labor 15 days past her due date and delivered her little girl 7lbs 10oz in an uncomplicated birth.
I know that Christine went drug-free, but don't know yet about Jenn. But the point that I'm always trying to help people understand is that a good childbirth class is about so much more than the epidural! In both of these cases, these mothers could have easily had births with very different outcomes. Few women would know to question a doctor's opinion that a cesarean was necessary. If not for Jenn's knowledge and self-advocacy, she would not have experienced labor much less birth. As for Christine, few women have the confidence in their bodies to go so far past an estimated due date. But she knew that inducing a labor before the baby is ready can cause a long difficult labor and she knew based on non-stress tests that she and her baby were healthy. Her waiting was an act of advocacy and I'm so proud of her for that.
I also need to mention the husbands here. It is not easy being a dad whose only concern is that his wife and baby are safe. But they had knowledge too, and their knowledge helped them to be supportive when their wife was facing these decisions.
I am proud that the Bradley Method is a comprehensive childbirth class that helps women and their partners not only know how to handle actual childbirth, but know how to handle all of the CHOICES that present themselves so that they can truly make informed decisions for their health and the health of their babies.