You may hear from a lot of people that how you give birth doesn’t matter. Vaginal, cesarean, epidural, unmedicated, hospital, birth center or home—plenty of folks will assure you that it doesn’t matter and it’s all the same.
We passionately disagree.
It’s not because we think certain types of births are superior to others (we don’t) or because medical intervention is bad (it isn’t). We passionately disagree because how you give birth DOES matter—it matters to you. And, therefore, it matters to us.
We have attended many births and no two of them have been alike. Not one has perfectly followed its birth plan (though a handful have gotten close). We do not hold a bias in favor of or against certain birth choices or directions. We have seen countless births that have followed a myriad of paths, and each one of them has been profoundly moving.
But the path of your birth and the choices you make DO have an impact on you and your baby. They may affect how and when you bond with your baby after birth, how easy or difficult feeding your baby is (whether by breast, bottle, or both), and even your and/or baby’s health. We know you have likely agonized over some of these decisions, and they matter.
They matter because you have made deliberate choices to bring your baby into the world in the safest and most meaningful way you can provide. They matter because you chose a provider who you trust to follow their expert advice. They matter because you will remember details from your birth for the rest of your life. They matter because they impact you and your baby in a variety of physical, mental, and emotional ways.
But here’s the thing: There aren’t “right” choices to make your birth a good one, there isn’t a best way to give birth, and your birth doesn’t have to go according to plan to impact you and baby in positive ways. Your birth can (and probably will) take major detours from your carefully crafted plan and still be a wonderful birth, so long as you feel supported, respected, and empowered to embrace (or at least accept) those detours.
This is why we believe your birth team is so important. We want every birthing person to have a medical team they trust and feel comfortable with, the loved one/s who make them feel most safe and supported, and a knowledgeable and compassionate doula who can help guide and support them through the unknown terrain of labor and birth.
How you birth matters. But there’s no one way to do it “right.” So do it your way, and make sure you surround yourself with loving and empowering support while you do.