Birth Isn’t Amazing… it’s normal
Birth isn't amazing.
Birth is normal.
Birth is a biological function that in some ways we've glorified beyond necessity. Or maybe it is necessary right now, but what will it do to future generations? What is it already doing right now? Being positive and believing in your body is important - and our culture has taken that away due to the fear we've instilled in children for oh so many reasons. Humans simply grow up in fear. However, in some ways, we have tried to make women so unafraid of biology that we've told them to trick their mind into believing birth has made them superhuman. But, that's not true.
Birth doesn't make you superhuman. Birth is normal.
Do we tell our best friends, "WOW, that is amazing! I could not have a bowel movement at home! You're so brave!"?
Do we say, "You did so well feeding yourself today!"? Not to most adults, no.
Do we pride ourselves for the deep full breath we take in the afternoon as the sun warms our face? Do we applaud our heart for every beat it makes? We can feel blessed for these things. We can give thanks for these things. We can be amazed by these things - but these thing are our design.
Biology works when it is nourished with physical, emotional, and spiritual means. Birth is normal biology.
The ability to hike Mt. Everest is through determination and preparation and is a feat above what we were intended for - accomplishing this is great for those that desire it, but for those that don't or can't, no big deal. Birth is normal - it is something that happens with normal healthy living; no practice necessary. Healthy choices and healthy lifestyles, yes - but not anything above normal biologically living (you know, before screens and grocery stores ruled our lives).
The ability to slam dunk a basketball might be encouraged by physical stature, but is created by practice, interest, and learning techniques to do so. Birth is normal; no techniques need to be learned.
Digesting your food well is determined by your nutrient balance, hydration, and movement. Digestion is normal - environment changes the function. Though we may realize our body's abilities when we nourish it well, each function is a normal part of its intended biology. Birth is normal - the environment changes the function.
Sometimes, when we glorify the biological function of the body, instead of the nature of what truly is amazing, women start to doubt themselves more or believe they have failed at some certain part of birth if it didn't go perfectly as planned (especially if they didn't learn healthy habits until late in the pregnancy or if their birth team wasn't conducive to a biological birth). Of course, you can't plan birth. You can create the conditions that allow the ability of birth to go as biologically intended - just as you can create the conditions for all parts of biology to function smoothly. But you can't plan birth.
Conception is fascinating. The fact that humans can create other humans is incredible and evenso, conception is normal.
The moment of birth can be empowering. And yet, the rise in hormones that should occur after birth is designed for survival - for a mother to desire to care for this child and the child to be able to be soothed and nourished by their mother. Birth is normal.
Birth may feel amazing. Birth may feel empowering. Birth may feel superhuman. But birth isn't amazing - not in the way that it is perceived that it takes a unique woman to be able to do it in a certain way. Birth is normal. Your body can feel amazing in birth. That's normal. Your body may feel empowered through birth. That is normal. Your body may feel superhuman. That is normal. Your body may also feel tired and intense and disappointed and unsure. That is normal.
The fact that our body is designed to experience normal biology in such a profound, empowering, and spiritual way - that is amazing.
Normal is relative to the conditions, including the culture, that a person lives in. Birth experience is not wholly something we can create, only influence - but something we are intended to experience however that experience plays out. Biological intention is present in all humans and we must support that intention physically, emotionally, and spiritually the best way we are able to do at that time. We are neither successes nor failures at biology - there are too many factors at play. However, we can be amazed at that biology as a whole and its intended design and find that the journey of every birth story is amazing.