If you're looking for inspiration as you research for your birth plan, we recommend this video of one midwife's talk where she beautifully describes how the journey of welcoming your child can begin.
Bettina Breunig, a midwife from the University Medical Center in Hamburg Eppendorf, has assisted in many births since she started in 2007, and in TEDTalk she delivered early this year, she spoke about "why it matters how we are born." She compares a baby's journey into this world with climbing Mt. Everest and cited its similarities.
"You gather everything you need, you find a trusted partner to accompany you, and you decide when it's time to start the journey," she said, adding that while mother and baby are partners, the baby decides when he's ready to come out.
"The contractions set the pace of childbirth, and there are breaks in between contractions when the mother and child can rest and draw strength,” Breunig went on to explain. "It is a journey they have to accomplish together, and it's a very necessary journey that builds trust and [lays down the foundation] of an incredibly rooted bond."
Throughout the process, the baby hears the reassuring heartbeat of his or her mother, as well as her voice, and her love. This is opposed to a C-section or induced childbirth, wherein the baby is rushed to come out into a new, bright, and cold environment, and where he or she is forced to abruptly adjust to a new kind of breathing -- just like when one is catapulted to the summit of the highest peak in the world without proper preparation or pacing.
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According to Breunig, over 50 percent of babies around the world are born in an unnatural way, making childbirth a matter of personal preference -- which it is, to a certain extent. Many pregnant women today choose to exercise their right to decide what happens to their bodies and how they want their child to be born. Yet many women also fear childbirth and pain, as well as doubt their capacity to go through it. This is why it’s essential to set aside time to sit down with your doctor and/or midwife to discuss a detailed birth plan. Know your options and choose which one you're comfortable with or suites your ideologies or beliefs.
"Regardless of setting, I see a very strong and courageous woman rising to meet her personal challenge. And I see her using her inner power to fuel that process," Breunig explains. The role of your trusted health professionals is to guide you in the childbirth journey of you and your baby, “to support her and help her find that confidence to be able to bring a baby into this world,” she stresses.
Breunig, however, acknowledged that there are situations where intervention is necessary, or a Caesarian section is the only option, but urges soon-to-be-moms to be involved in the decision-making and to have faith in the people who share your vision of how you want to welcome your child into this world. Making a birth plan can help out your mind at ease.
"It matters how we enter into this world. And it is my wish that every woman is aware of the impact and importance of her decision on how she wants her child to enter into this world," she says.