Monday, June 30, 2008

I Don't Need a Doctor

This essay was written by Marcela Valle and was posted to ICAN online 5/19/07. It was written after she'd had a coversation in which she explained why she was choosing a midwife for her second birth.
It is reprinted here with her permission

Don't you want a doctor?...

It is a question I have been asked, "Don't you want someone who can handle *anything*?" When I heard this question, so many feelings boiled inside me so fast that my answer constituted: "No, because I don't want someone waiting for the slightest opportunity to cut me open again." And, while that holds true, there's so much more than that and it deserves to be put into words…

I don't want a doctor because I believe in my ability to birth. I believe that Mother Nature/Creation/ God(s)-or whomever you revere- have given us the ability and the opportunity to birth, and to go through that passage for a reason. Over the years in North American culture, we have lost sight of such experience and its purpose. It has been said before, that "A child is born, and so is a mother."

I don't want a doctor because they are experts in many things, but not normal birth.

I don't want a doctor because I want a birth attendant who believes in me. An attendant who will empower me, and support me, and tell me to get it together and birth this baby. I choose someone who will encourage me to be educated and make decisions with me, not for me.

I don't want a doctor because I am not making decisions based on fear. I make decisions based on research, and logic and, all the while, I also follow my heart.

I don't want a doctor because, despite widely held beliefs, birth in a hospital is not as safe as birth outside a hospital. Birth with a midwife, at home, is a rational choice.

I do not want a doctor because I am more than a paycheck, a liability, or a 'difficult' patient.

I do not want a doctor because I do not need to wait an hour in a waiting room to be seen for 5 minutes and by someone who needs to look at my chart to know my name. Instead, I want to be welcomed with a hug, offered water, a snack, and have an hour talking about my pregnancy, my feelings, and my birth plans.

I do not want a doctor because I do not need to feel scared about being an inconvenience, or have questions, take too much time, be too "needy" or have too many expectations.

I don't want a doctor because I want to be regarded as a healthy birthing mother. I am not sick, I am not a patient. I am full with life.

I don't want a doctor because birth is NOT an emergency waiting to happen, it is NOT dangerous. A doctor makes you believe birth is unsafe and you need them. After all, they would not have a job otherwise. A midwife trusts the process and allows it to take its course without fitting it into a box or random standards.

I don't want a doctor because I want someone who can handle things without a knife and someone who knows how to help me get the baby into a better position and over a pubic bone, and whatever else, without slicing me open or using torture devices.

I don't want a doctor because my body works. And it works best if not surrounded by strangers poking, probing and interrupting my concentration.

I don't want a doctor because I know I WILL go into labor, my hips are NOT small, they're the perfect size. My baby is NOT too big, my body CAN dilate, I am NOT a failure to progress…I DO NOT need to be saved. By not having a doctor, I AM saving myself.

I don't want a doctor because I don't want him, or a calendar, or a clock to tell me when I HAVE to birth and how fast I need to dilate. My body knows it, my baby knows it. We'll do it when it's time for the baby to be born, and time for me to birth my child.

I don't want a doctor because I don't want to be offered an induction (or be cut open) because it's close to Christmas, Mother's Day, or Labor Day. I won't be hurried because there's a golf game, a cruise, or a date to be made, or it's just inconvenient for me to wake them up at night or to take too long.

I don't want a doctor because I don't want to be imprisoned in a bed "just in case" and I don't want to have to stay still so a machine can work properly and the nurse doesn't have time to come into my room.

I don't want a doctor because I do not need to ask for permission to use the rest room, move around, eat, or have an opinion. Nor, do I need scare tactics and a "dead baby" card when I opt out of a procedure done only to cover the doctor's legal butt.

I do not want a doctor because I appreciate being talked to respectfully, and acknowledged, and being taken into account. I DO WANT TO KNOW, AND I WILL worry my little head about it, after all, it is my birth, my child, and my responsibility to do so.

I don't want a doctor because I don't want an electronic monitor to tell someone how I'm doing or whether I am in pain or not, or if my baby hugs are adequate enough.

I don't want a doctor because I don't want someone to "manage" my birth, and "solve" things by using interventions, which may lead to more interventions, which would be solved with even more interventions

I don't want a doctor because I don't want to be silent. I will groan, and moan, and sing if I want to, and my midwife may sing with me.

I don't want a doctor because* I *will birth my baby. My midwife will be present at my birth but nothing (besides food) will be *delivered*.

I do not want a doctor because I am not birthing on my back, or holding my breath or counting to 10.

I don't want a doctor because I don't want my child to be poked and prodded before we have a chance to hold each other. I want my baby to hear my voice first.

I don't want a doctor because I cannot bear another cut into my uterus and my heart, nor can I bear to watch another baby of mine born into blinding bright lights, deep suctioning, IV's and antibiotics.

I don't want a doctor because I have all it takes: wisdom, strength, courage, faith and a vagina.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

New Blog on Blogroll- Please Pray

I am a frequent poster on some message boards/forums on and my community leader for my November 2008 Expecting Board developed a tear in her bag of amniotic fluid. She was just shy of 18 weeks when this happened. The Dr's only gave her a 3% chance of making it to viability (24/25 weeks). It's been almost 2 weeks and she still had lots of fluid, no infection, and was given a 25%-50% chance of making it to viability!! This is a wonderful Christian family. Please join me in praying that their baby will make it to viability and beyond. God CAN work miracles!!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Fail Blog

I found a new blog. I have enjoyed some wonderful belly laughs (and I have quite a belly these days) that are healing to the soul. I thought my readers (hi Jen! LOL) might enjoy this as well. :o)

Monday, June 02, 2008


Love is the center of everything in our society. But our society's view on love versus the Christian's view on love are VERY different. I guess I've started reflecting upon this because my husband and I are very quickly approaching our 6th anniversary. We love each other. We love each other more now than we did the day we were married, but the love we have for each other is NOT the "mushy heart's all aflutter" kind. The love we have for each other is very deep, it has substance. So, here are my thoughts and beliefs on what love actually is...and is not.

Some believe that love is the aforementioned feelings. If you don't have the butterflies, or feel the sheer euphoria then you must not be in love and so why stay married? Right? Why stay together as boy/girl friend? What IS love?

What is love?

Love is a choice. Pure and simple. I have days where I truly can not stand my husband. I look forward to him leaving for work and taking his sour mood and ill temper with him...and being in bed by the time he returns. But I still LOVE him. (PS, Baby, these days are few and far between...just so you know). Most days I hate to see him go because he IS my best friend, we have such awesome conversations, and are quickly arriving at the same page in regards to parenting and our goals/desires/dreams/prayers for our family. I miss him while he's gone. But, even on the days when I wish I could send him off without the pomp and circumstance, shoo his back side off to the car to go in to work early, I still make the CHOICE to LOVE my husband.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a says, "Love is patient, love is kind, and it is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant. Does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account the wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails."

No where does God say that Love is a warm, gooey, mushy feeling and that lovers will never fight or get frustrated with each other.

Love IS patient and kind. Husbands and wives must learn to be patient with one another. The loss of patience leads to fights, misunderstandings and hurt feelings. If you CHOOSE to love your husband (or wife) you choose to try to be patient with one another, to learn to understand his/her perspective, and to try and see the other's point of view as you work through your issues. It does NOT say that when you love someone you put your own desires first, or that you love them as long as it feels good or is convenient.

My husband and I have our own issues that we have to work through, and they change from week to week, month to month, and year to year. This is normal. But we CHOOSE to work through our problems. I will admit that I believe that lately I've become, in some areas, rather selfish. I am not feeling well and I crave his help and attention because to ME it tells me that he loves me. If I am thirsty and ask for a glass of ice water. It's mundane and irritating to him, but when he brings me the glass of ice water (when I'm lying in bed w/ our son trying to get him to sleep, or simply exhausted) then to ME that says, "Darling, I hate doing this, it's a pain, you have two good legs, but I love you and know you are tired right now so I will bring this for you anyway."

This brings me to my next point. Lovers don't' speak the same love language. Everyone expresses love in different ways. For me, it's acts of service. I will do ANYTHING for those I love and go to any length for those I care about to help them. When I see it reciprocated to me, this tells me that I am loved and cared about. My husband does happen to have the same love language, but we speak different dialects. To me, him picking up a room that is cluttered with the children's toys without being prompted, or simply without complaining when I DO ask for help, tells me that he loves me. For my husband, doing things for his family and reaching out to them tells him that I love him. This is NOT an action that comes naturally to me, and I struggle with it. But I try because this tells my husband that I love him and I will do what I need to so that HE understands this in his own language.

Anyway, that's about it for my current musings on this very important topic. I love my husband, I always have and I always will. I CHOOSE to love him every day.