Peace on Earth Begins with Birth.
This phrase keeps turning around in my head today as I spent Earth Day outside with my two children and our friends. I wanted to share some quotes from the Midwifery Today book The Heart & Science of Homebirth (in the article "Remembering Why We are Midwives" by Judy Edmunds):
"...I believe in the beauty and dignity inherent in all women. I am awed by their strength and power and am fortunate to be able to attend births where these qualities are so clearly displayed. Having a share in drawing out that power, respecting that dignity and nurturing the spirit of courage is being privy to a bit of creation itself. It is an incredible privilege."
"Midwives try to convey these simple truths: Birth is not a clinical exercise. It is not a medical procedure. In nearly every instance, it should not be major surgery. Nor should it even routinely include minor surgery. Rather than being a time of weakness with beds, shots, fasting, IVs and wheelchairs, it is time of energy and strength. Raw power. Mightiness. Courage."
This is a beautiful summation. If more women and babies began their journeys together with this attitude towards birth behind them, perhaps we really would have peace on earth!
I also wanted to link to two great blog posts I read today. First, at Stand & Deliver, a review of the book Policing Pregnancy that includes a thought-provoking analysis of using the term "obstetric conflict" instead of "maternal-fetal conflict." Second, at The Unnecesarean a discussion about a new British study "Maternal Request Not Reason for Rising Cesarean Rate."