When in 1994 a group of journalists and social activists initiated the action "Childbirth with Dignity" ("Rodzić po ludzku"), it aroused with its actions, apart from surprise (what a name!), the shy hopes of some women, but also met with a wall of opposition of stagnant, tested, not very friendly, but working, and above all, common procedures. The status quo in every field is fiercely defended, obstetrics turned out to be no exception. Surveys that set off to meet the women, caused the jinn of birth trauma fall out of the bottle with a bang, smashed it into tiny pieces and it quickly became clear that, although it has thousands of faces, in fact they all tell the same cruel story. It was even more obvious that a broken bottle could not be put back together and the problem would have to be tackled. In practice, the voices of thousands of women who responded to the questionnaires showed the reality of childbirth in AD 1994: suffering, humiliation, loneliness, lack of intimacy, lack of information.
Mom in a trap.
The 25 years of work initiated by the social movement and the Childbirth with Dignity Foundation made the following description of the initial situation seem unreal:
Immediately after birth, mothers could not even have seen or hugged the child. The newborn baby was placed in a separate room, and the mother could have only seen him/her when the baby, tightly wrapped in a sleeping bag, was brought to be fed. Because of the ban on visits, the woman was isolated from the world and her loved ones.
/on the website of the Childbirth with Dignity Foundation/
Good childbirth? I heard something...
The situation we have in Poland in 2019 may seem imperfect, but, fortunately, it does not resemble the one from 25 years ago. The concept of good childbirth, whose pillars were created by the foundation, is perfectly described as a set of procedures (!) and equally well "sensed" by families expecting a child, discussed by midwives and doulas.
The foundation's output is enormous. Its activity stimulated changes in hospitals, had a direct impact on the creation of childbirth schools, introduction of family deliveries, enabling the mother to have constant contact with her child, removing the ban on visiting relatives. The Foundation has supported the development of medical personnel - among others through training courses, conferences, such as today's (16.10) in Rzeszów or the next one in November (13.11) in Wrocław. The organization promotes breastfeeding, monitors patient rights in maternity wards, publishes publications, runs an active database of hospitals, midwives and childbirth schools gdzierodzic.info (wheretogivebirth.info). The Foundation's website is a mine of "perinatal" knowledge.
Did you plan everything? Open up to the unknown.
Childbirth is a bit like a computer game - you're looking for the tools you need at some level, you get them, and then you enter a completely new universe equipped with them. Before you can understand how to use these tools, you need to take a look at the new level, where everything is... new, new, new! A good birth is the dream of every woman who is expecting a baby. Many of us were through sleepless nights, hours spent planning, reading, looking at other stories, checking the possibilities, circumstances and skills of those who will (probably) come to accompany us on this journey. However, despite our knowledge and meticulous plans, we can't control everything. Usually, two things are certain:
1. only the experience of childbirth gives us full knowledge of the birth itself
2. every birth is different
These simple truths put us in the face of the unknown, regardless of whether it is a first birth or a second birth - after all, something can always happen differently. It is worth remembering and being open to new, good opportunities.
What's so profound about the essence of the action "To give birth in a human way"? The point is that it is not an action. Every action has a beginning and an end, and the campaign to give birth humanly is about much more than just naming a problem, defining corrective measures, creating procedures, ensuring their observance. All recommendations and procedures are aimed at ensuring that a woman who gives birth to a child during childbirth (the process of giving birth to a human being) does not cease to be a human being, does not have to defend her humanity, resign from it or feel that it is endangered or disrespected. This goal will be achieved when all the participants in the birth are convinced that it is a mistake to treat the child as an unfinished person, a mistake to treat the woman during and around the birth as an incomplete person, with limited rights, incapable of making decisions.
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A man of pedigree
Everyone wants to be well born and every mother wants to give birth well. Life writes its own scenarios. Even if your birth was not or will not be perfect, it is yours, unique, forever and not because it was beautiful because you gave birth at home, in the hospital, in the water, because your husband sang your favorite song into your ear, while your midwife massaged your sore back, but because it was in this very moment that your child was born and you were born as a mother.