I went to my cousin’s baby shower today. I love baby showers. I hate them too. I love the camaraderie and all the baby and birth talk. I hate that I feel like a know it all. I also hate that my views are so very different from everybody else’s on so many things.
I always come away from them wishing that I could have said more, or explained more fully. And yet, I always say as much as I feel I can politely say. I don’t want to offend other ladies just because they make different mothering choices than mine. Mothering is hard and there are so many right ways to do it. I certainly can’t tell another woman what will work best for her or her family. I just like to tell details I have learned over the years.
Over the years, I have had hundreds of conversations in my head where I actually say all that I want to and the person responds exactly as I would want them to. I am tired of repeating myself to myself, so I have decided to type it all up here so that my thoughts have a chance of being heard. Feel free to disagree, argue or call me a fool. It is my hope that you respond by thinking, “huh? I hadn’t thought of it like that. I might want to remember that.”
So anyways… back to the topic of being a baby shower know it all… I never got around to taking a birthing or baby-care class. I didn’t want to go to the one to learn about the hospital procedures. I didn’t want to learn about breathing techniques. I didn’t want to learn about pain relief options.
Instead I talked to my mom and I read. With each pregnancy, I read more. After Kati’s birth, where I had an emergency C-section, I read everything I could find about birthing and having a vbac (a vaginal birth) after a classical C-section. I read books, blogs, forums, pamphlets, Facebook threads… I joined an online group, specialscars.org for women who have unusual scars on their uteruses. Many of them have dedicated themselves for a time to learning everything they can about their own childbearing situation and then have fought to find a provider willing to allow them to make their own decisions.
I have learned a ton of things, but I never thought to cite them. Now I feel like a know it all, because I don’t have the citations or the degree to back them up. Some of my favorite childbirth books are these…
Husband Coached Childbirth by Dr. Bradley
Essential Exercises for the Childbearing Year by Elizabeth Noble
The Silent Knife by Lois J Estner and Nancy Wainer Cohen