Sunday, May 11, 2008

The legacy my mother leaves

I am the oldest of seven children. There are five girls and two boys. The boys are right in the middle: girl, girl, girl, boy, boy, girl, girl. Seven singletons. No twins (and, because we were often asked: no, we’re not Catholic).

My mother had three vaginal births, then a c-section, then three VBACs. Her VBACs were in the late 80s, early 90s.

All seven of my mother’s births were epidural-free hospital births. For her cesarean she had general anesthesia because it was an emergency situation and there was no time for an epidural or spinal.

I am 27 years old and my youngest sibling will be 16 in June.

This is the birth legacy my mother left to her children:

Birth is usually safe.

Judicious use of life-saving medical technology is imperative.

A mother’s pain or discomfort should not trump her child’s well-being.

Babies should be born vaginally if at all possible.

Cesareans should be considered carefully, and should only be performed when the life of the mother or child is in immediate danger.

This is the legacy I hope to leave my children as well.

Happy Mother’s Day!


tie-dyed doula said...

Wise Women!

Just Pure Lovely said...

I agree with you! Hospitals have caused me a lot of grief with all 4 of my babies -- errors and poor advice on their part, lack of a spine to say 'no' on mine. And bad luck. That, too. Anyway, I still got 4 healthy babies out of the deal and am happy for that!

Anyway, I wanted to write and say THANKS for your beautiful Where I'm From poem you put on my blog. I hope you'll copy/paste it for yourself -- I think you'd want to keep that. Wonderfully written!

Shannon said...

I stumbled on your blog via a friend, Angela's blog. I found our history's surprising similar. I am 27, Mama to one little girl born via c/s due to breech and a host of other reasons. I'm the oldest of 7 children, all singletons, and not Catholic, thank you very much. (at one point I theoried that if I had a nickel for every time a stranger asked us that, I would be a millionaire by now!) =) I was born via c/s due to my surprise breech presentation after my Mom's water broke 3 weeks prior to her EDD. My six siblings were all VBAC's in a hospital with not a drop of pain medicine. I was blessed to watch my last sister slide into this world. My Mom has left me a similar legacy as yours. She was one of the only people in my life who "got it" when I mourned my c/s, God bless our Mothers. =)