As a woman who has devoted her adult life to childbirth, I have over the last 23 years been a doula, registered midwife, childbirth educator in Canada and now, as a hypnotherapist, I train couples to use hypnosis during their births.
Caroline Oblasser’s book, "The Faceless Caesarean," is a powerful book containing the stories and photos of 162 women who have undergone surgical birth (some as many as four times). While the book cannot even begin to examine the causes of the rising global caesarean rates, it does ask the women themselves their input on this.
Women currently considering caesarean are unaware that the scar can continue be a source of pain and other distress many years later in life. It is interesting to note that more than one woman in Oblasser’s book reported using traditional Chinese medicine to re-establish the energetic flow of (severed) meridians after the birth.
Medical research is best at measuring averages and statistics. What Oblasser has done is connect a woman’s individual story to the picture of her surgical scar(s) – this helps make caesarean more “real” to women considering the procedure.
Most obstetricians I’ve talked to find the rising Canadian caesarean rate distressing and there is active debate in their community on whether or not women should even be allowed the option of asking for a caesarean.
I believe Oblasser’s book is a healthy start to a discussion that is long overdue. The only caveat I would offer is that pregnant women wishing to avoid caesarean may become more alarmed than reassured. More stories about how emotional “scars” can be healed after surgery would be a fascinating follow-up book. As a hypnotherapist, emotional healing after any birth is a significant part of the service I provide. The stories from women who found their physical scars diminishing once their upset resolved are a fascinating testament to the mind-body connection.
In all my years of practice, I have found that reducing maternal fear and encouraging a good fetal position are absolutely critical in encouraging faster, easier births. When you read "The Faceless Caesarean," mentally note how many women mention poor fetal position (breech, posterior, etc). In fact, “cephalo-pelvic disproportion” is a medical term that can describe poor fetal position…the human body has the capacity to birth large babies, assuming that the baby is in an excellent position and women receive good birth support. I know this from all the births I have attended and also personally – I am slightly taller than 5 feet and had two fast, easy, natural home births with bigger than average babies – one was 9 pounds, 1 oz and delivered in less than 2 hours from start to finish!
Statistics tell us that for more than 85% of mothers and babies, vaginal birth is the best approach medically, financially, physically and emotionally. The statistics also tell us that normal birth is in danger of being forgotten. The most powerful members of this dialogue are pregnant women, birthing women and mothers - get informed, join the dialogue and help return birth to safety and health.© Japan Today