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Saturday, November 28, 2009

Birth in Slovania

"I am from Slovenia (neighbour country to Italy and Croatia....).

We dont talk about giving a birth in that "pain" way. We are talking regarding what is the most natural and normal way of giving birth for mother and for baby. That is why we do not have so many epidurals, as they are saying that a lot of babies are then being born with a help of vacuum....possible complications...

My both grandmothers are still alive and one of them had 11 children and the other had 9 childer. They all gave birth at their home, alone, no midwifes....nothing....and all of my aunts and uncles are normal, succesfull people. So we all believe that womens body is "designed" to carry a baby and to give a birth and we shouldnt make out of that experience a mediacal procedure. In Slovenia, you can not have scheduled c-section, unless there is a medical health reason for it. A group of doctors, beside yours, will decide, if you need c-section or not. And it is really rare.

You are talking about mortality of babies...I dont remember if i have heard of maybe 2-3 babies in last 15 years, being born dead or died right after birth in Slovenia.

And another very important thing that my grandmothers told to me....lets say advices: when you feel that the proces of birthing had begun sit on a hot will help you open more easily, warm showers; move, move and move - walk.....; and for the last part of the birth, when you feel urge to push...go into sitting position, hold your self to something solid, and then push. They dont understand how a woman can give birth by lying in bed.

All of my girlfriends and the other women that I know, have given birth in hosptital, totally naturally, or in our meaning normally, with their housbant at their side and midwife. When you see a doctor during birthing process you know that there is something really wrong. Even when you have induced contractions, they dont give a women epidural.

When I was talking to a few friends and my mom that I am thinking about epidural...she told me why? Birthing a baby is a normal end of a carriing process, and why would I like to robb myself from that wonderful experience, of baby being put to your chest right after birth, and of knowing that you did your own birth. She sais that it is very empowering feeling at the end, and that she feels "sorry" for the man, that they do not have privilege to feel that, like we do. And my mom was under induced contractions for 12 hours with me.

And another thing. We also do not have a mesaument for 'timing' a normal birth. If a women is not dialeted at least 4-5 cm, they wont accept you into the hospital.....unless they diagnose, that something is not ok while checking you."*

I thought this was a fascinating look at how culture plays a part in how we view birth. In the US, I feel like birth, and the pains of birth are surrounded in fear. Many, many women fear the pain of birth, yet according to this lady from Slovenia, they don't there. I also thought how neat it was that she was able receive wisdom from her grandmothers regarding birth. Most of our grandparents were part of an era where they were drugged up for birth and don't even remember it. Not only that, but this was something women were often times forced to do. What a neat heritage of birth women can receive. Just having that would be awesome.

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Birth is a Journey: Does it have to be life changing?

  • One woman might have to climb on an overfilled boat, risking her life and nearly dying as she escapes over the ocean to come to this land. This experience could certainly be life altering. It may very well color the rest of her life, positively or negatively. (I overcame this amazing struggle and here I am triumphant! OR Holy crap, that was SO hard I don’t know if I can go on! By the way, neither response is “right”. No one would judge the woman with the 2nd response.)
  • One woman may buy an airplane ticket, sit on a comfortable 747 and fly to America with a nice smooth flight and landing. She is happy to be in America. Those welcoming her are glad she is here safe and sound. She may only travel by plane 2-4 times in her life, so it is pretty memorable. But the journey itself probably wouldn’t be life changing; it would simply be a journey.
  • One woman may learn to fly an ultra-light plane to lead a flock of geese into America teaching them to migrate. This experience could certainly be empowering and life altering.