The “Better” Birth: Considering Two Sides of Labor and Delivery

jaiden 12hrs after birth
Today’s guest post is from wife, mom and writer Kristi Bothur. I am so excited to share Kristi’s post today because it’s a wonderful example of the grace-based conversation we want to host here at Grace for Moms about everything from marriage to pregnancy to delivery to motherhood. I hope her story encourages you – especially our pregnant mamas currently considering their plans for labor and delivery.

When my daughter was born, my husband and I had been married for five years and trying to conceive for three.  After so many years of trying and praying for a baby, I was determined to do this “right” – which to me meant “natural”, which meant going to a midwife instead of a doctor and delivering without medication if possible. Amazingly, everything went according to my plan. I found an incredible nurse midwives group. Labor started naturally one week early, and I delivered our baby girl without medication, the way women have done it for thousands of years. I felt strong. Empowered. Sure it hurt, but I had done it! I enjoyed telling others that I had given birth naturally, and seeing the look of admiration on their faces. Would I do it again? Absolutely.

Four years later, I was facing delivery again. But in those intervening years, I had experienced three miscarriages, including the loss of our second daughter at 18 weeks of pregnancy. The last nine months had been filled with anxious prayers and desperate pleas for this baby to live. It had been guided not by midwives, but by an incredibly understanding obstetrician. We scheduled the birth, wanting my doctor to be on call when I delivered our son. And at the last minute, I chose to get an epidural.  In many ways I felt guilty, taking the “easy” way out.

But you know what? The birth of my son was just as wonderful and miraculous as the birth of my daughter. I was able to relax. I didn’t yell at anyone. And I was comfortable enough to enjoy watching my son’s entry into this world, a moment I will never forget. Would I do it again? Absolutely.

The births of my children taught me something important – not to look for my value in the opinions of others. I didn’t need to prove to anyone that I was stronger, or more natural, or smarter, or better. Paul said in 2 Corinthians 3:5 (NASB),

“Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God.”

My worth doesn’t come from what others think. It comes from God, and my job is to simply be faithful to what He has called me to do – including being my children’s mother. I have equally precious, but very unique, memories from the way each of my children came into this world. And as I raise two very unique children, I hope to pass that lesson along to them as well.

Did your birthing experiences go according to plan? What did you learn from your labor and delivery?

Kristi Bothur is a pastor’s wife, writer, and mother of five – two on Earth and three in Heaven. She and her husband are Yankees transplanted in South Carolina, where they met in seminary over ten years ago. Their Naomi’s Circle ministry {www.naomiscircle.org} is an outreach to parents who have lost babies during pregnancy or early infancy. In her “free” time she enjoys reading, music, scrapbooking, and trying to beat her five-year-old daughter’s score in bowling. Kristi blogs at This Side of Heaven.

{Photo Credit}

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Comments

  1. 1

    says

    What a wonderful story.
    My one birth did not turn the way I had imagined it and for the longest time, I was very mad about that. It took me five years, surviving cancer followed by infertility and two more babies carried by other women to realize that at the end, it doesn’t matter HOW my babies came into this world. It matters WHAT KIND of mother I am to them, teaching them about God and the miracles that they are. Today, I have three beautiful children given to me by God, and I am forever thankful and honored to be chosen as their mother.

    • 2

      says

      What an amazing story of your own! I absolutely agree. The moment of birth is not nearly as important as the mothering that occurs from that day forward – just as the wedding day is not nearly as important as the marriage that follows. Praise the Lord for the gift He gave you, both in your children and in your life as a cancer survivor!

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