Sunday, March 25, 2012

Unsolicited advice. Again.

I mentioned a couple of times that I took an 8-week prenatal yoga course. It's over now and I thought I'd write about it.

I love yoga. Before IVF got hot and heavy, I taught 3-4 yoga classes a week and I've had a dedicated practice since 2004.

I loved everything about the yoga part of class. The stretches she chose and the sequencing she used always seemed designed just for me. She didn't baby us but pushed us, always reminding everyone that it was okay to take it easy, too. She took several moments during each class to have us place our hands on our bellies and connect with the baby. I always left feeling loose, strong, and relaxed.

What I didn't enjoy about the class was the conversation before each session, and the general advice-giving nature of the teacher.

Our teacher has had three children, all vaginally, all without pain medicine or epidural, all without being induced. And boy does she like to remind you about that!

I think natural birth is great, I do! It's awesome! But I also think there's something to be said for choosing to keep your memories of birth unclouded by extreme pain.

The same holds true for induction. And c-section...oh boy, don't even go there. You might as well say you're going to run into a burning building while giving birth. No matter that your baby might be breech, or that there may be a medical reason you need a c-section.

It's ALL between mom, dad, baby, and doctor. Prenatal yoga instructor's opinion shouldn't factor in. 

Everyone wants something different in their laboring process, and everyone wants the same thing at the end. I sure as hell am not going to be made to feel inferior to a woman who has a different birthing experience than I do.

There's always a lot of judgment being thrown around about, well, everything, but also about how you give birth. I guess I had hoped a yoga class would be a nice safe zone where we acknowledged that every circumstance, every mom, and every baby are different. 

She also liked to repeat (over and over) "Your body was made to do this". She said this in reference to pregnancy, labor, and delivery. She meant it to be comforting, but it really hurt me every time she said it.

If my body was made to do this, I have already failed.

I guess I don't fit in around matter how pregnant I get and how hard I try.


Chickenpig said...

I got incredibly tired of hearing how I should really try to give vaginal birth a try, or that I was "drinking the cool aid" because I was opting for an elective C section. Never mind the fact that I had major uterine surgery, and my doctors literally laughed at me when I asked if a vaginal delivery was a possibility. As far as I'm concerned, a live baby or babies is the goal. Sorry you've been getting pressured. It's only the beginning.

Jem said...

OMG, I had the same emotional response to the agenda-driven midwife at my childbirth class yesterday. I will write more about the experience once I'm on maternity leave, but I cried three times during her whole "natural" childbirth section.

don't they understand that some of us just want the baby born safely? And NO JUDGMENT???!!!

MaryMargaret said...

Isn't that frustrating? Every time I tell people that I'm considering an "elective" c-section, because it might be safer for the twins, I hear all this crap about natural birth and how, if I loved my babies I would choose the most natural way possible, blah, blah, blah. It's all about getting our babies here safely, and if we don't feel like we're dying the whole time... well, that sounds a whole lot better to me! I'm glad you made it through the yoga class. I might not have gone back!

My New Normal said...

I think all pregnancy yoga classes are like that. I just choose to ignore those bits and focus on the yoga part.

Stacy said...

With my son, I was on bedrest for 17 weeks, and I chose an epidural b/c I knew I did not have any stamina, muscle tone, energy to deliver without pain meds. I had an episiotomy and he broke his collar bone coming out. He barely fit, even at 36 weeks.

I will say that I will be having a c-section in about 10 weeks because I have a permanent cerclage. My body hates being pregnant I am pretty sure of it.

You know what, I have never met a kid where I thought: " You know, you are pretty amazing, I bet your mom had you o' natural without any pain meds.." HA!

Alex said...

I hate the comments about your body was meant to do this. If people only knew - or could slightly understand - what we infertiles have gone through to have our babies, what measures we have taken "against nature" to have children, they would shut the F up! I'm sorry, I have a strong reaction to this kind of advice. And unfortunately it doesn't stop. I had a friend this weekend talk about how wonderful it was that we could give birth and then feed our children with no assistance. I had to politely (kind of) remind her that not all of us had the breast feeding experience that she did. That yes, I'm still breast feeding, but also supplementing with formula. And that my baby would have starved if it weren't for the folks that created formula. But she also wouldn't have even existed if it weren't for IVF! Sometimes our bodies were not made to do this...

~ebc~ said...

not fitting in around people who think there's only right way (to get a kid out, to whatever...) regardless of any thought to different situations, opinions, risks or benefits....well, that's no great loss to not fit in around those kinda people.