Well ladies, today is the last day of January. We had some early (beautiful!) arrivals (congratulations!!), but as we move into February where the bulk of us will be giving birth I thought I would share this file I've been collecting. These are quotes about birth. I have no idea where they came from (this has been sitting here for years, since my DS' birth), so I hope I don't step on any toes by putting it up here.
I plan to have these on hand so my DH can read from them for inspiration during birth.
Regarding VBAC: "Women shouldn't need permission from their doctor to use their own vagina"
Mothers have as powerful an influence over the welfare of future generations as all other earthly causes combined. ~ John S. C. Abbott
The beauty of my body is not measured by the size of the clothes it can fit into, but by the stories that it tells. I have a belly and hips that say, "We grew a child in here," and breasts that say, "We nourished life." My hands, with bitten nails and a writer's callus, say, "We create amazing things."
~Sarah, from I Am Beautiful: A Celebration of Women in Their Own Words
Anything I’ve ever done that ultimately was worthwhile…initially scared me to death.
You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. ~Eleanor Roosevelt
Birthing is the most profound initiation to spirituality a woman can have. ~Robin Lim
We are made to do this work and its not easy...I would say that pain is part of the glory, or the tremendous mystery of life. And that if anything, it's a kind of a privilege to stand so close to such an incredible miracle. ~Simone in Klasson 2001
Just as a woman's heart knows how and when to pump, her lungs to inhale, and her hand to pull back from fire, so she knows when and how to give birth. ~Virginia Di Orio
Only with trust, faith, and support can the woman allow the birth experience to enlighten and empower her. ~Claudia Lowe
Women's bodies have their own wisdom, and a system of birth refined over 100,000 generations is not so easily overpowered. ~Sarah Buckley
Rain, after all is only rain; it is not bad weather. So also, pain is only pain; unless we resist it, then it becomes torment. ~I Ching
We have a secret in our culture, and it's not that birth is painful. It's that women are strong.
~Laura Stavoe Harm
The power and intensity of your contractions cannot be stronger than you, because it is you.
If I had my life to live over, instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I'd have cherished every moment and realized that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle. ~Irma Bombeck
In the sheltered simplicity of the first days after a baby is born, one sees again the magical closed circle, the miraculous sense of two people existing only for each other, the tranquil sky reflected on the face of the mother nursing her child. ~Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Natural childbirth has evolved to suit the species, and if mankind chooses to ignore her advice and interfere with her workings we must not complain about the consequences. We have only ourselves to blame. ~Margaret Jowitt
~Most people are so consumed by fear about birth they have no idea how magical it can actually be. Take away the drugs and machinery, take away the watchful concerned eyes, take away the fear, and a whole new world opens up to us. Many women encounter their own creative power for the first time. ~Laura Shanley
Babies are bits of star-dust blown from the hand of God. Lucky the woman who knows the pangs of birth, for she has held a star.
~ Larry Barretto
The knowledge of how to give birth without outside intervention lies deep within each woman. Successful childbirth depends on an acceptance of the process. ~Suzanne Arms
There is no way out of the experience except through it, because it is not really your experience at all but the baby's. Your body is the child's instrument of birth. ~Penelope Leach
There is power that comes to women when they give birth. They don't ask for it, it simply invades them. Accumulates like clouds on the horizon and passes through, carrying the child with it. ~Sheryl Feldman
"We have not lost faith, but we have transferred it from God to the medical profession." ~George Bernard Shaw
We’ve put birth in the same category with illness and disease and it’s never belonged there. Birth is naturally safe, but we’ve allowed it to be taken over by the medical community.
~Carla Hartley, founder of Trust Birth and the Ancient Art of Midwifery Institute
The greatest danger arises from ruthless application of partial knowledge on a vast scale.
~E. F. Schumacher
If we are to heal the planet, we must begin by healing birthing. ~Agnes Sallet Von Tannenberg
Making the decision to have a baby – it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. ~Elizabeth Stone
What's done to children, they will do to society. ~Karl Menninger
Some writers have observed that, for a woman, having a baby has a lot of parallels with making a baby: same hormones, same parts of the body, same sounds, and the same needs for feelings of safety and privacy. How would it be to attempt to make love in the conditions under which we expect women to give birth?
-- Sarah Buckley, MD, Ecstatic Birth: The Hormonal Blueprint of Labor
Humanizing birth means understanding that the woman giving birth is a human being, not a machine and not just a container for making babies. Showing women---half of all people---that they are inferior and inadequate by taking away their power to give birth is a tragedy for all society. On the other hand, respecting the woman as an important and valuable human being and making certain that the woman's experience while giving birth is fulfilling and empowering is not just a nice extra, it is absolutely essential as it makes the woman strong and therefore makes society strong.
-- Marsden Wagner, MD, Fish Can't See Water: The Need to Humanize Birth in Australia
Women have learned collectively, though not necessarily consciously, to fear the birth experience, and every obstacle has been put in our collective paths to keep us from experiencing this power...
Imagine what might happen if the majority of women emerged from their labor beds with a renewed sense of power of their bodies, and of their capacity for ecstasy through giving birth. When enough women realize that birth is a time of great opportunity to get in touch with their true power, and when they are willing to assume responsibility for this, we will reclaim the power of birth and help move technology where it belongs -- in the service of birthing women, not as their master.
--Christiane Northrup, MD, Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom
Wishing everyone a powerful, magical, amazing birth experience and a big congratulations to our baby mooners! I can't wait to join you!!