Biological birth is not simply “vaginal,” nor “unmedicated,” nor “natural.” It is what nature intended. It is if a mother were able to instinctively labor without being hindered in any way – from interventions, from watching eyes, or limits. Esali Birth doesn’t teach about biological birth to make mothers feel guilty about their choices – but to educate how we control the situation and the effects that our choices have. This allows us to make fully informed decisions, understand our birth experience, and be proud of how our births commence – no matter how far from biological they may become. True biological birth is rare – mostly because of the fear placed upon birth, and human’s instinct to do everything they know of to survive and allow others to survive. However, we have to understand the implications of these urges in order to understand how our birth experience affects our livelihood.
When a caterpillar is ready for their transformative stage, they spin a tight chrysalis that protects them during the process. When the butterfly is ready to emerge, it moves about in the chrysalis and makes a tiny hole. Upon observation, it would appear that the butterfly struggles through the hole – and to someone who is unable to simply watch nature’s intention, they may feel a strong urge to interfere with the process and “help” the butterfly with their struggle. The problem is, this does not help the butterfly, but actually affects their quality of life. During the emergence, the pressure from the hole squeezes the butterfly’s body and pushes fluid to the wings. Without this process, the butterfly weakens and will not fly – but will be forced to crawl around, and will be unable to feed and continue their life cycle as nature intended. This is the importance of biological birth. Biological birth is intended so that humans can be transformed into the butterfly that has the strength to parent, to breastfeed, to walk, crawl, breathe, and everything else throughout our lives. Our birth experience is one of the biggest events that will affect the rest of our life.
During pregnancy, the mother who takes responsibility for her nutrition and well being will create the optimal situation for a biological birth. If she eats well, exercises, and is emotionally healthy, she will create an environment for her little one to thrive, and reduce risks associated with birth which enable her to make numerous choices for her experience. If a mother does not take care of herself, then her body will have more difficulty accommodating the biological process, and interventions would become necessary. However, the important thing to remember is that our bodies were made to birth. Out of every human function, the female system was designed for reproduction and is not flawed from the beginning. We do, nevertheless, affect the way our bodies work – so it is important to think of how our lifestyles will affect our reproductive years.
Just as with the butterfly, the perinatal period is simple, yet at the same time intricately full of survival mechanisms. If mothers are supported in a positive manner and not educated to fear birth, they have the ability to birth their baby without taking a class or understanding much about the process. A change to any of these mechanisms is a change to the biological process, and what is intended for our species. Everything from the scent of amniotic fluid, to the positions used in labor – there is a reason for each unique system. Spontaneous labor allows the newborn optimal time for development. Reducing limits during birth allow the mother to move freely and work the baby through the pelvis, as well as keep up energy levels with food and drink. Contractions help to move fluid through the newborn’s body and create the optimal setting for efficient oxygenation at birth. An unmedicated birth allows the newborn the strength to crawl to the breast, and self-latch for the first breastfeeding. Various biological measures are in place to reduce bacterial infection in the mother and newborn. And, even after birth, the organ [placenta] that supported the baby’s life for so long, continues to contribute to the health and well being of the mother and baby. These are just a few of the many methods our bodies use for survival during this spiritual period.
What happens when you veer from the biological process? Sometimes, there are severe complications – sometimes, there are treatable complications. Every time, there are implications that we may not be aware of until years down the road, or we may never notice the connection. Does that mean they shouldn’t matter? The most immediate complications usually involve breastfeeding difficulties which in turn may end up affecting breastfeeding success entirely. Other common complications include assisted/cesarean deliveries, vaginal and perineal tears, postpartum hemorrhage, newborn jaundice, and newborn breathing. These are all complications that often result in further complications – and the truth is, we just don’t know when or what complications will occur. So, you be the judge. Get educated about the biological process, how you affect the biological process, and then make informed decisions for your situation.
If you would like to learn about the survival mechanisms during the perinatal stages, and the amazing way our bodies work, join Esali Birth for a Butterfly Birth workshop. Not in the Mid-Ohio Valley? Contact us about a Butterfly Birth Webinar. These, free, workshops are wonderful opportunities to learn about the significant impact we have on our birth experience, and for developing a positive attitude towards biological birth. Hope to see you there!