The New Normal-Managed Care

It is weird but in today’s society women are made to feel that physiological birth is an eccentric form of madness, crazy that one would even consider a non-medicalized Birth, definitely not normal.

“Normal” pregnancy is now a medically managed pathology treated by doctors. A disease that must be cured.

Non-medicalized, intervention free, vaginal birth is now considered an “abnormality” and is viewed with skepticism and fear.  The stance of obstetricians and hospitals is that childbirth puts a woman’s body at risk and is dangerous to both mother and child if left unmanaged.

As Malcolm Gladwell would put it: you are now an Outlier. A person who is situated away or detached from the main body or system. Hospitals and doctors are more comfortable with the women who use their tools according to their rules.

Then doctors and hospitals can use the women’s resultant “discomfort” to bring them into compliance for more tools and rules. And if that sounds a little opinionated—so be it. Doesn’t make it any less true.

But consider that this wacky notion of yours actually makes you an insider because you have come back to the core of existence. Birth itself. 

Your outlook is different, out of the norm. And while alternate viewpoints often make others uncomfortable having one doesn’t make you crazy or even wrong.

It just sometimes happens that in an ill society a healthy person is thought to be ill.

In American society healthy pregnant women are monitored and treated as if pregnancy was unhealthy, not a natural physiological bodily process but instead as an illness.

The truth is that the vast majority of women who become pregnant are healthy and normal with no particular pathology (other than “Pregnancy”).

You walk into the doctor’s office feeling healthy and fit. Your pregnant body is fulfilling it’s evolutionary imperative. The job it is designed to do.

But as far as medical science is concerned, while you may be normal and healthy, you are not termed that way, you are said to be low risk. But low risk means there’s a risk, right?

You walk out of the doctor’s office a little unsure about your health and fitness to carry and deliver your baby, even though you are as healthy and fit as when you walked through the door.

From that first appointment a low simmering undercurrent of danger, fear and risk is sent to percolate constantly through a pregnant woman’s brain by society, doctors, and hospitals. It starts up the rationale of “Just in Case”, let’s stay on the safe side.

If you are ill, then certainly, treatment is needed. Pregnancy abounds with genuine pathological conditions such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, placenta previa, hemorrhage, postpartum depression, to name a few. And these illnesses often demand and deserve medical treatment, medicine can and often does save lives.

But sometimes an Outlier emerges, a normal healthy pregnant American woman working her way through the system who comes to find herself thinking I’m not sick, I don’t have a disease…I’m pregnant, why am I being treated as if I have an illness? Where is all this fear-mongering coming from?

This analogy might date me, but for whatever reason this woman decides not to drink the Koolaid. It just seems off, not right.

If she then stumbled across this quote about why some people gravitate towards Yoga, she would really relate to it, this type of alternative mindset is exactly what Childbirth needs today.

“Still, they become aware that whatever is called “normal” is futile, whatever is called “health” is of no use. Something more is needed, something greater is needed; something more whole is needed.” OSHO

Yoga is a discipline that works well for healthy people, even so, sometimes your medical treatment will bring you to Yoga. There are many paths to this door.

Modern society itself is often viewed as an illness and one can certainly apply this view to the “pathology” that represents Birth in America today.

I personally do not believe that America does this right, and we need to re-think how we help mothers bring children into the world, and how we help these mothers care for themselves and their infants through, during, and after the birth process.

A different mind set, a different way of being and doing, is what Yoga provides and what Birth deserves.

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