Sunday, October 14, 2007

Joyous Birth

This photo captures the essence of this "Joyous Birth" - the emotion and the triumph. I was honoured to be present as a midwife and it was a wonderful first birth after coming back from having time off from Midwifery. The journey to birth often has its challenges and this birth was no different. Claire had moments of doubt of being able to "do this" and a fantastic long stage of peace and rest before the challenges of pushing out her newborn baby. For Claire the most important part was the circle of womanly support she had gathered to take with her on this miraculous journey.

If only midwives could see birth as it truly is - most never have the privilege of being present at such a birth. All midwives have their initial practical experience in the hospital system - which, on the most part, is quite medicalised. Time limits are placed on labour, birth is managed in a prescribed format and intervention rates are high. For example in 2005 the average caesarean rate for New South Wales was 28% (the range for different hospitals ranges from 15.8% for Bankstown-Lidcome to a high of 46.8% for Kareena Private in South Eastern Sydney).

Giving birth at home is a safe option - but is often see unfoundedly as being risky and only for hippies. However research across the word smashes these myths on homebirth - homebirth is safe with a skilled midwife and access to medical care should this become necessary. Of women seeking my care 80% gave birth in their chosen birth place. Of the other 20% - 6% gave birth vaginally and the remaining 14% had a caesarean birth. My clientele is not always low risk - as I believe all women benefit from having midwifery care. The type of women seeking a homebirth come from many and varied walks of life - and many are from the so called middle class.

Claire has given me permission to share this photos which gives you a glimpse into her wonderful journey and welcoming her new baby.

1 comment:

Laura McIntyre said...

Hello i have just came by your blog, what a wonderful experience and pictures. A homebirth is my dream and i have finally made up my mind to go for it with (not yet conceived) child 3