Essay #1, Final Draft
Homebirth: Your Best Birth.
Let me begin by stating, childbirth itself is an incredible experience. Every birth is a woman’s right of passage into motherhood; be it by water birth, cesarean section, home birth, or hospital birth. But in America, our health professionals have convinced the vast majority of women that they do not know how to birth. That their bodies cannot in fact handle what they were meant for without medical intervention. This is a sad misconception. Women need to empower themselves by taking a stand for their babies, their bodies, and their experience by choosing homebirth as opposed to hospital birth. If women took the time to do the research instead of feeding into our country’s failing prenatal care system they would find a whole different set of views, ones that center around the health and wellness the mother and the child; not around making a dollar. This is the business of midwifery. Rikki Lake’s documentary, The Business of Being Born (2008) brings a new, positive, and emotional view on the art of midwifery and birthing at home. It is a must see film for all concerned about homebirth or hospital birth. It gives real concrete evidence that birthing at home, or a birth center is profoundly safer and more relaxing than birthing in a hospital. Michel Odnt (M.D) a medical doctor who was interviewed for the documentary states, “Unfortunately, the role of obstetrics has never been to help women give birth. There is a big difference between the medical discipline we call obstetrics and something completely different, the art of midwifery. If we want to find safe alternatives to obstetrics, we must rediscover midwifery” (Lake, 2008). The documentary explores the dynamic of hospital vs. home birthing; it is easy to see why so many women now are turning towards home birth as their first option. The film opens women’s eyes to the choices they have when it comes to birth and letting them seek information coming from a place of concern rather than a place of fear. People are sadly misinformed about midwifery in the United States. Unlike being a doctor, being a midwife is not a profitable business; it is an amazing profession in which a person must have a passion for birth, mother, and baby. A midwife is trained to help birth along by providing support for the mother and teaching her to be strong while delivering using breathing techniques, positions that help the birth process unlike lying on her back which hinders the baby’s ability to move. Midwives are trained first at four year nurses in the medical profession but continue on to obtain a four year certification in midwifery while attending over 200 natural births. Unlike at a hospital, a midwife partners with the mother-to-be to achieve the best outcome for her child, instead of telling the woman how to feel or bear her child. A client can meet with their midwife in the relaxation of their own home or place of their choice and are constantly encouraged to give input and ask questions about the process of pregnancy. A midwife is available to the family 24/7 and women can find comfort in knowing that she will not have a stranger come in to deliver her baby but rather a friend and mentor that she has grown to love over nine short months. Midwives come to the home on the day of delivery equipped with not only love and genuine excitement for the mother, but with oxygen, medication, and anesthetic and a planned hospital contact if problems do arise throughout the birth. Everywhere else in the world we see midwives attending 70, 80, 90% of births and the United States stands alone because of the fact that our government is money hungry and childbirth is a billion dollar business. According to Hariet Hall of Science