Brood Letter 20 | My c-section was a natural birth

by Brood

For those of you who know me, you know I had a planned c-section birth. Living with a chronic illness and pelvic pain issues like fibroids and endometriosis, my conception journey and pregnancy weren’t exactly straightforward. Eight weeks shy of my due date, midwives advised a c-section due to two large fibroids and placenta previa blocking the birth canal—this baby wasn’t coming out the front door! Having undergone abdominal surgeries before, I remained (mostly) calm. I was more worried about not being able to have my partner in the hospital with me as this was March 2020 and it was the first weeks of the Covid-19 Lockdown!

However, I’ve observed fear and apprehension surrounding caesarean births among others in my life. Many experienced birthers and moms I knew had expressed disappointment over not experiencing a “natural” birth. In our prenatal classes, fear of surgical birth is fairly common and understandably, it’s major surgery, coupled with the pressure to recover swiftly to take care of your new family member. 

I want to tell you what I wish someone had told my friends (and me) at the time: all births are natural and with proper support and education, recovery can be smooth (or as smooth as possible with a new baby!). It’s about planning for the unexpected. Whether your birth is at home or in hospital, medicated or not, out of your belly or cervix, the safety of you and your baby is the most important thing. It’s pretty much never going to go as planned, and understanding your options and rights as a birthing person will help you navigate these twists and turns with a little more ease.

It can take years for some people to reconcile with how their babies were born, and we are here to witness that. We all experience enough pressure, guilt and shame in every corner and inch of our lives, and quite frankly, I’m tired of it! I want you to feel educated and supported — it’s our goal to save valuable time in your life by providing support to helping you embrace and celebrate your birth experiences. Your belly birth, your surrogate birth, your home birth… it’s all-natural and good, and you fucking did it. Full stop.

Happy International Cesarean (aka Belly Birth) Month. Light a sparkler or raise a glass with your loved ones!

Gill & the Brood Care Team

*Placenta previa is a condition during pregnancy where the placenta blocks all or part of your baby’s exit from your vagina

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We work and live on the unceded and occupied territories of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish), səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations. Since time immemorial, the original peoples of these lands have cared for their families and communities. We are committed to honouring their teachings, legacy and their sovereignty.

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