Posted by: emjb | September 12, 2006

hard day today

I don’t know why exactly. Maybe because we’re coming up on Nathan’s birthday in a few months. And because thinking of becoming a midwife means dealing with the jealousy I feel, towards women who had good birth experiences. It’s hard not to feel shame about giving in to the pitocin,the epidural, the c/section. It’s hard not to want to go back and talk to myself, make myself fight for the birth I could have had, if I’d only known it. If I’d been stronger, and less trusting, and less passive.

I still have the beginning of the original birth story I was going to write, the one I wrote right before I went in to be induced. I can’t bear to read it, but I’m not going to throw it away. Maybe I’ll be able to face all my own naivete and hope, knowing what was going to happen to it, one day. Or maybe not.

I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to stand thinking for long about how happy I was, how proud I was of my body and my healthy baby before I went into the hospital, how hopeful and eager to try birth. But I was afraid too, and that’s what did me in. That’s how they got me, and that’s why I carry this scar (physical and emotional) now. That’s why all that hope and courage is painful to remember, because it wasn’t enough. Fear was bigger, and the system that took advantage of that fear was bigger.

There’s no excuse for the people who exploited my fear, but to myself, there’s not much excuse for letting myself be exploited either. It’s hard not to despise the person who (I know now) was withdrawn and panicked inside, who wouldn’t read about c/sections because it was too unpleasant, who wouldn’t think that hospitals were really that bad because it made the world too scary a place. Who prided herself on her education and beliefs and was easy pickings all the same.

Poor thing. She didn’t have a clue.

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Responses

  1. Amen amen amen!


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