twice in the last week this question has come up. why on earth would anyone post their birth video on Youtube? well.
years before my children were born, i got the chance to be a part of the births of my friend Jess. i got to see her belly grow, i got to help do a work trade for her birth pool, i got to see her work through early labor, i got to hold her child’s hand as she birthed his little sister. it was such an honor to be with her and her family. but more, it was a blessing. it let me witness a woman laboring, doing the work of giving birth. it let me imagine myself in her place. seeing Jess birth at home made me sure that that’s where i wanted my babies born too.
Ina May Gaskin says that only .5% of babies in the U.S. are born at home. most women don’t get to see their friends or their sisters giving birth. but that doesn’t mean we don’t need that knowledge and depth of experience. anytime you stand at the beginning of a new thing, it helps to know that others have been where you are. that others have tried to do what you are doing. that others have even had a measure of success and joy in the midst of the experience.
i also happen to love watching birth videos! my favorite slideshow was a family in England playing Scrabble in between contractions. although i can’t really imagine enjoying Scrabble at any time, especially between contractions, the pictures showed a warmth and care that was really amazing. sadly, it’s not available online any more. while Mabel was in the belly, i loved reading Journey Into Motherhood, an excellent collection of all kinds of positive birth stories. here’s my favorite slideshow on Youtube. and of course, our girl’s birth…