This guest post by Marilyn C and entry in our non-fiction writing contest.
This contest will end on April 22 2013 – prizes include:
- First Place winner will receive – A $500 dollar gift certificate courtesy of LPC Survival that is good for $500 off anything on their site. And a Wonder Junior Deluxe hand-mill courtesy of Kitchen Kneads,
- Second Place winner will receive – Two cases of MRE’s courtesy of Camping Survival and a $150 gift certificate off of Hornady Ammo from LuckyGunner.
- Third Place winner will receive - a one year subscription to Personal VPN service courtesy of unspyable.
You have a years worth of food, water, ammo, and batteries. You have a well stocked first-aid kit including sutures. Are you ready for something else that happens within a year? Are you prepared for childbirth? Babies don’t wait for anybody or anything. They arrive on their own time-table despite what is happening around you. Knowledge about prenatal, birth and postpartum are important topics to either make you a wise consumer of services or to give you the tools to cope with an emergency situation .Do you know what to do if your midwife doesn’t get there in time or you end up birthing a baby on the side of the road on the way to the hospital? Do you feel confident that if the SHTF you will have the skills and supplies to handle birth in your bunker?
These are all important topics to think about. Many women feel comfortable with birth. Many men would rather set a broken leg or remove shrapnel. Of course this is stereo-typing. I have worked with many couples in my 36 years of midwifery where the men could not wait to “catch” their babies. They also had the luxury of me by their side gloved and ready to take over if necessary. The good news is that most of the time everything went just as planned and a smooth transition to the world was experienced by the baby.
But remember “stuff “ happens. It would be foolish to think that all births have no problems. I can tell you that most problems can be handled by a cool head and quick knowledgeable hands. Can I teach you how to birth a baby safely? Well that depends on the circumstances. Do you have the luxury of a quick 911 call if an emergency presents itself ? Or are you eight feet under ground with no communication? How you deal with each possible situation will depend on the circumstances surrounding the event .
The nice thing about preparing for childbirth is that you may have months of preparation time. If you use it well there is no reason that under most situations you will have a positive outcome. Having said that I do need to point out that like life birth is unpredictable. Hospitals and some doctors have caused many problems such as high caesarean rates, unnecessary inductions, infections and other iatrogenic mistakes that take the lives of mothers and babies. They also can be a life saver in the instances where the mom or baby need advanced care.
We can all reminisce about the good old days but some of those days weren’t that great. Women did die from things such as hemorrhage that can be treated now with drugs and fluids. There were tools for extracting dead babies in pieces for the ones that truly were stuck and finally gave up. I don’t want anyone to take this subject lightly.
If you plan a birth without a trained assistant such as a midwife or doctor you need to know when you have reached you limit of expertise. If you have the option of a call for help it could be the difference between life and death for two people you love very much. On the other hand if there is no option of help then you need to be as knowledgeable as possible and always know that in the end you are not in control. Prayer is always helpful.
So lets talk about some basic strategy. I can not teach you my 36 years of birth knowledge in one article. I am working on a four-part course to offer preppers who want some insight into what to do in case they find themselves birthing a baby either by choice or necessity
1. Start considering this scenario. By reading this article you should have more questions than answers. You have taken the first step to childbirth preparedness. Now ask yourself these questions. What are the odds that someone in my family or prepper community would need my help? If not you then who?
Does your bug out plans include a larger circle of people who may have the skills you need for birth? Do you feel that all families should have this knowledge? If your wife has these skills she may be a little preoccupied at the time to make emergency decisions. Can you step up? Ai my last two births my husband caught our babies but I had a knowledgeable apprentice there so that I could enjoy the birth and she could watch for situations that may need tending to. There were not any but better prepared than sorry.
2. The internet is an amazing tool to research just about anything. You can get great information from the internet but you can also have the —- scared out of you by some of the information out there. I tell my clients to read all they want to but remember if you read enough you will get opinions from one end of the spectrum to another. Most of the information out there is someone’s opinion. Make sure you read enough to form your own educated opinions. I recently helped a couple in the birth of their twins.
I am always very excited to meet people who have such faith in the birth process that they can shut out all the negative comments that they are subjected to and stay positive and remember that birth is a well designed event that is meant to work. I purposely did not go on the internet and trusted my skills and the knowledge that I had gained from the other wonderful twin births I have had the privilege to attend.
The birth went very well as I expected. After it was over I asked my assistant if she had looked on the internet for information about twin births as this was her first time attending a twin birth and her comment was “ yes and it was awful “. It seems that there is not much positive information out there. This is an example on how you can get good positive helpful information on the web but you can also fill your self with fear. When it comes to birth there is no shortage of fear.
3. People can be a positive influence in your birth plans but they also can be very negative. One of my recent clients had to stop going to her favorite nail salon because every time she went and they saw her bulging belly the workers and other clients would start telling their horror stories.
To many people in this sometimes backwards world a good birth story is boring and they love to tell you about what went wrong with either them or someone they know or heard about. They never stop to think that they don’t have the facts. I used to work with a midwife who when someone would say “ so and so had to have a cesarean “ She would answer “ how was the baby when it was born?” The usual answer was “ just fine “ and she would reply “ so the baby was in such distress that they had to operate but it was fine at the birth.
What caused that? The knife cutting the stomach? “ Of course this is a bit cynical but there is a lot of truth there also. While a cesarean can be a wonderful life saving event it is often done for reasons other than it’s purpose and instead can be a life changing event. It is major abdominal surgery that requires a longer recovery time and has an increased chance of infection. It makes taking care of the new baby much more difficult not to mention how hard it is if you already have a house full of little ones.
If you are planning a large family having a cesarean limit’s the number of babies you can safely have if you go by traditional medical advise. Of course there is the option of having a v-bac ( vaginal birth after cesarean ) but it is sometimes very hard to find a doctor or midwife who will attend one at home or even in the hospital in some areas. If you want help you will need to network.
4. Having a plan in place is paramount. You planned your bug out bag, stocked your home and have a second stash somewhere else “ just in case “. What is your plan for birth? Do you have supplies? Do you have any idea what you need ? The good news is that you probably have time to ponder these question and you now are aware that in this area you may not be as prepared as you thought because remember BIRTH HAPPENS
Please add your thoughts in the comments section below…