Monday, November 26, 2007

If I can help just one...

I have been thinking a lot about how best to help my clients work through a difficult birth. Because attending difficult labors/births take me to close to the emotions surrounding my own birth experience, I have a tendency to suddenly lose all of my energy after a birth, once I am home and with my family again. If it were possible, I would just wipe my hands clean of the woman's trauma and hold my son tighter, thanking whoever, that it wasn't me birthing that baby in that way.
This is just not the right way to go about healing trauma, I know that from experience. What I want to do is hold my clients against my chest so they can feel how similarly our hearts ache and beat with mourning. I want to get angry and rage and bring the same out of them. I want to write letters and start movements and pursue the birth machine with these mothers fighting along side of me.
I don't though, or can't. I feel all too often that my hands are tied and the best thing for both mother and baby is the ensure that nursing goes well and make sure that I follow up with visits and a few phone calls and lots of praise. The need to fill in the blanks for them is so great, but it is best if the process unfolds at a pace that is right for each woman.
I want to scream when horrible things occur at births and women go back to their providers for the their next child. But I get it. I understand how easily one can forget the pain, helplessness and fear that accompanies too many births in this world. Once you hold your baby and smell their head; Turn them over and look at their little butts; clean their bodies and relax into their nursing patterns; it all goes out the window.
I get it, I just don't want to sit back and allow it to happen anymore.

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