April is Cesarean Awareness Month but I wouldn’t necessarily wish someone a “Happy Cesarean Awareness Month”. From the vast majority of Cesarean Mamas I’ve met and spoken with, it’s not something we remember with joy.
Sure, we remember the joy of our child being born… but Cesarean Sections bring to mind the loss of control. The defeat of the body to birth a baby the way that nature intended.
Sure, Cesarean Section Mamas realize that without it, perhaps we, or our children, or both would not have survived the act of childbirth at all.
But for me, and a great many women, the mention of a Cesarean Section brings forth a great many negative connotations:
Loss of control
A Cesarean Section quite often isn’t a sought out choice. It’s in the back of a pregnant woman’s mind as a possibility, but not a possibility she’s given much thought to, because, surely her body knows what to do. At least, that’s what all of the doctors, nurses, and teachers at all the prenatal appointments and classes say.
Your body knows what to do
But that’s not necessarily true, is it?
In the US alone, the Cesarean Section birth rate has more than tripled since 1990 to more than 20% of all births. This growing number of women leave the hospital with more than just a new baby and a squirt bottle – but also with a scar she carries with her until the day she dies.
This scar is a daily reminder that the process of bringing her baby into this world was different because her body DIDN’T know what to do.
I speak at length with anyone I can about Cesarean Sections, about mine and I always want to hear about everyone else’s too. When I talk to them, I’m always in awe of them. Every time. I wish I could communicate to each and every one of the women I’ve spoken with:
How utterly strong she is
How much of a warrior she is, sometimes more than once!
How proud she should be of herself
How brave she is
How completely selfless she is
Because it’s true.
And then I realize that I should really say all those things to myself, too, and that’s where it’s a challenge.
So, please, as often as you can, and not just in the month of April for Cesarean Awareness Month, tell a Mom who has had a Cesarean Section (or more than one!) what she really is, because chances are she has a very hard time telling herself that, believing it, or even knowing it at all.