BIRTH THE FIRST TIME AROUND
The Human Body is superbly designed to carry out its function efficiently and flexibly. The physiology of birth is fascinating and precise; it is designed to work under normal conditions of gravity and movement that the body is accustomed to. It also runs in sequence, one stage interlocking hormonally and physically with the next. Few civilised peoples can resist the temptation (wherever it came from) to interfere with the process at some point apparently unaware of the destruction they may cause to the delicately balanced (and tried and tested) system that works with such reliability when allowed to run its natural course. (Even the position of birthing may be dictated, which can have huge implications. The position a woman should give birth in is best chosen by the woman at the time... and even if the birth is not interfered with Western women are usually so afraid that the baby is too.) Unfortunately so few of us are aware of that natural course, and afraid because our lack of knowledge and trust that we rely on those who have set themselves up as experts (or whom we have set up), and may only realise afterwards the drawbacks of intervention. Those doing the intervening are not responsible for the care of mothers and babies later so the consequences usually pass unaccounted for. The women do not see the same medical personnel again, the babies are not articulate enough to voice their opinion to insensitive adults who don’t realise they have an opinion, the conclusion the women and society come to is that there are consequences in terms of ill-health and psychological damage that are a normal consequence of birthing and that their bodies are badly designed...
Ideally, when a baby is first born, it is held gently while it experiments with taking its first tentative breaths and rests a little until it is confidently breathing. This may take a few minutes, or it may take half an hour. During this time, the placenta is still working and there is no urgency about the baby breathing independently. It is usual for nature to make sure that there is a wide overlap of two life support systems at time of changeover. In this way, the baby learns to breathe in a state of relaxation and safety, and carries on breathing in this way for the rest of its life. The standard Western practice of removing the baby from its mother and cutting the cord immediately catapults the baby into using an untried system in a state of emergency. The delicate lining of the baby’s lungs is used suddenly in a state of panic and fear for the first time, with no choice but to breathe or die. The lifeline has already been cut off. The combination of being removed from the place of familiarity (the mother) and having the reliable source of oxygen cut off at a time of enormous natural stress is too much for a baby to take calmly in its stride. This is the way most of us have been brought into the world. It is no wonder that we find breathing tense and unpleasant, and believe life is unsafe.