Your thoughts have been going through MY head, and this is my second child.....here's some of what I think........
First of all, I have come to the conclusion that birthing in a hospital is kind of setting yourself up to fail. It's all there...the epidurals, the forcepts....everything. I was watching one of those dumb birth shows on TV and realized...they will often ask a woman in hard labor "So, do you want any pain relief?". And, I guess it makes sense....but asking LABORING WOMAN if she wants that pain to end...well, crap....I'd probably have taken the epidural too. And even if you put in your birth plan "don't offer it" I think that, culturally, it's so ingrained in us women that it's THERE AND WAITING that many women end up asking because they KNOW it's there. My dirty confession? I asked with my daughter...luckily I also had a wonderful skilled doula who killed enough time until my daughter was crowning....I'm so glad I had her there.
And thats just the tip of the iceburg. Birthing in a hospital just makes it so easy to get all those things you didn't want done DONE to you and your baby...they make it seem normal and routine. I talk to mother after mother about it and they all say the same thing....it wasn't till after they got home they got that dissapointment.
So, I know it's a sad and jaded thing to say...but I think that women who try to really idealize birth, and yet birth in a hospital are really getting set up for at least a little bit of dissapointment. Sure, it can happen, and there are women out there who've had GREAT hospital experiences with NO regrets...and unfortunately they are the exception to the rule. I think it's just a really hard thing.
On another note....I think that we live in a culture that for SO LONG hasn't trusted birth or women....and we tend to bog ourselves down with the "what ifs". And it's because we are TAUGHT to think that way from the second we can forumalte cognative thought.
This has been a real thinker for me.....I'm gearing up for the birth of my second child and we're having a homebirth. I'm reading all sorts of inspirational things about birth...and I stopped myself and thought "Oh my goodness....maybe I'm being TOO positive about this...maybe I'm being unrealistic.....maybe *something* will go wrong!!!".
After weeks of these thoughts, what I decided is I'm going to LET myself be NOTHING but optimistic about this. The facts speak for themselves.....it's not AT ALL likely that anything will go really wrong with my birth. But society has trained us all to doubt ourselves....and I'm gonna stop listening.
Birth ISN"T like what you'll expect. I don't think it ever can be. So one must be open to that part, of course. But I think we do ourselves and our babies more harm than good worrying about "what if what if what if?!!".
I don't know if any of that makes sense.....sorry so long winded!!