Medical vs. Natural Childbirth: A Personal Story

Medical vs. Natural Childbirth: A Personal Story - Visionary Womanhood

Twenty years ago I was pregnant with our first baby and determined to have a mid-wife and experience pregnancy and birth in the most “natural” way possible.  Nineteen weeks into the pregnancy I began to spot a little.  Since I could feel the baby moving and had no other symptoms, I wasn’t too worried as I went to the Dr. to have things checked out.

Much to our shock, after doing an internal exam, the Dr. informed Joe and I that our baby would likely be born that day and would obviously not survive.  I was dilated to a three, and the bag of waters was bulging into the birth canal.  After an emotional drive to the hospital, it was decided that I would be put on some heavy medications to stop labor, and a stitch would be placed around my cervix to hopefully prevent it from further dilation and hold the baby inside.

For two weeks I laid in a hospital bed doped up with medication hoping and praying for a miracle.  The miracle came, but not in the way I had hoped.  Our otherwise healthy daughter, Elizabeth Anne, was born at 21 weeks gestation, and died 30 minutes after birth, going to be with her Creator.

My dreams of being a mother were buried with her for a short time, but also, my dreams of having a “natural” and “normal” pregnancy and birth experience were also lost.  I had an incompetent cervix.  There was nothing “natural” about that.

Three months later, I was pregnant again.  At 12 weeks I had to go in to the hospital, get a spinal block, and have a cervical cerclage surgically placed to protect and maintain the pregnancy.  In spite of this, and after several months on bed rest, our second child, Sam, was born at 29 weeks gestation after a group B strep infection invaded my uterus, causing me to spike a high fever and go into labor.  I gave birth to Samuel without pain meds, but he was immediately intubated after birth and placed in an incubator for seven weeks.

Again, not very “natural”.  I was learning that life doesn’t always go the “natural” way.

With my third pregnancy, I was on a low dose of drugs administered through my leg to stop pre-term labor for several weeks, I spent over 5 months on bed rest, and, of course, I had to have the cerclage surgery at 12 weeks.  BUT…this time we went full term, and I “naturally” gave birth to a 8 1/2 pound boy after a relatively normal labor and delivery.  The pain of laboring to deliver a full term baby was a bit shocking, but I don’t remember being afraid of doing it again.

Until after I gave birth to my fourth.  For this birth, I had studied the Bradley method, practiced it for a few months before the birth, and felt very ready to “do it” again.  My daughter, Aimee, was miraculously born on Elizabeth’s birthday, 7 years to the day.  It was a wonderful gift from God.

But my labor and delivery were horrific this time. I lost control, the pain was so unlike anything I had ever experienced before, and I had a hemorrhage shortly after giving birth due to the stress on my body.  (Needless to say, the Bradley method went out the door during the course of this experience.)  While in labor, I seriously wanted to die…just to escape the pain.  For several hours after Aimee was born, I was in so much pain, it was hard to focus on my new baby.

I was very, very frightened to go through childbirth again.  It didn’t strike me as very “natural” anymore.

Pain in childbirth was not God’s original plan. It was one of the consequences God put on the woman for her sin in the Garden.

To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children.”  Genesis 3:16

Childbirth is not a curse.  Pain in childbirth is a curse.  In other words, it wasn’t originally “natural”.

Peacefully visiting with Joe while in labor with Peter

But back to my story.

I became pregnant with our fifth child, and while many of my pre-term labor issues were not an issue anymore, I still had to have that cerclage placed.  And this time, I was scared to death to have to go through labor again.  Several family members and friends encouraged me to have an epidural and just enjoy the birth experience without the pain and stress.  Others told me that was a cop out, and I should “google” epidurals just to find out what could happen to me if I chose to go this route.

So I did.  I googled “epidurals”.  I found nothing positive.  Instead, I learned that doctors were all in a conspiracy to work against women, and epidurals would cause terrible and long lasting side effects, not to mention the risk to the baby’s very life and limb.  It sounded ominous and grim. I also discovered that many women firmly believed it was a “spiritually” related issue, whether they were self-proclaimed “Christians” or aligned with some other type of religion.

Side Note:

Don’t get me wrong here.  I’m not saying giving birth is NOT a spiritual thing.  I’m saying it is NO MORE spiritual (in an emphasis kind of way) than, say, changing that baby’s diaper a thousand (million?) times, or praying for that child every morning of his or her life, or feeding that child nourishing food that will help him/her to grow strong and healthy.  ALL of life is spiritual, because we are created in God’s image and have connection with Him.

This is one of the principles discussed in our Visionary Womanhood Gatherings “Book of the quarter”…Assumptions That Affect Our Lives, by Christian Overman.  There is NO SPLIT between the “secular” and the “spiritual” as our culture would have us believe.  We don’t put certain things in the “spiritual box” and other things in the “secular box”.  Why?  Simple. Because God doesn’t do it.

The day we give birth IS a beautiful, life changing, spiritual thing.  And so is every single day afterward.… If only we all prepared/prayed/desperately sought God for those days…as much as we do for the birth dayTo have vision for that one day…and miss the rest…is a tragic problem with eternal consequences.

Back to my story…

Yet, everyone I talked to that had given birth with an epidural on board had nothing but wonderful things to say about them.

I was confused.  What to do?  I decided the bottom line for me was, what does GOD want me to do?  I really, truly, wanted to be clay in His hand…to be willing to do whatever it was that He had planned for me.  Even if that meant a really painful labor and delivery.

I was due New Years Day of 2002.  On January 9…yes…9 days after my due date…I finally went into labor.  After waiting until it got pretty painful and had really “kicked in”, we went to the hospital and checked in.  I was dilated to a 1.  My cervix was rigid.  Yet, I was feeling like I do when I’m at a 5-6.

After 2 more hours, I was feeling really awful…and yet was still only dilated to a 1.  Something was obviously wrong.  I kept saying, “What if part of the stitch is still in there?  Could that be it?”  Two different doctors had already examined me, not to mention the nurses, and they all concurred that my cervix felt like it “had a rubber band around it”, but they could feel no stitch.  The medical records showed that the stitch had been fully removed 5 weeks prior in the Dr. office.

I was beginning to feel out of control, pain-wise…only now I was making zero progress, and nobody seemed to know what to do.  My doctor recommended that, under the circumstances, I should have an epidural, in case anything should go wrong and they would need to do an emergency c-section.  Joe and I talked about it and decided that this would be the best option at that point.  I was prepped and given an epidural.

It was the same procedure I had had with all of my spinal blocks to prepare for all the surgeries to place my cerclages, so I was familiar with the protocol…and it did not scare me in the least.  The relief from the pain was such a huge blessing.  I was overwhelmed with gratefulness to God for “rescuing” me in this way.

The hours went by, and I remained dilated at a 1, but at least I was not in pain.  Finally, the Dr. who had originally taken out my stitch five weeks prior happened to stop by the hospital for an unrelated reason.  I was within 30 minutes of a c-section.  When the medical team saw her there, they told her about my situation, and she came in to examine me.  She determined that the stitch was, indeed, intact, and was preventing me from giving birth.

Because my cervix was swollen and the stitch was embedded so deep, my cervix had to be surgically cut to get the stitch out.  This would have required an epidural had I not already had one on board.  I was amazed.  We do not know what lies ahead of us, but God certainly does.  He knew exactly what was going to happen…indeed, had planned it all along.

Within 10 minutes of the stitch being removed, I went from a 1 to a 10, and Timothy was born.  I felt him coming out of me…all the glory of it without any of the pain…it took three pushes…and I got to watch the whole thing…with a smile on my face.  It was the most beautiful and incredible birth experience I had had thus far.  I was able to enjoy my baby while they stitched up a small tear in my perineum, and I suffered no ill side effects from the epidural.

The other interesting thing about his birth is that he was “sunny side up”…he came out looking at me!!  This meant that I had been in back labor the entire time.  Back labor is one of the most painful types of labor you can go through!  God spared me several unnecessary hours of that type of pain during labor while waiting for the doctors to discover what was wrong.

Not only was I grateful to God for His obvious, Providential guidance through that situation, but He once again showed me that He sometimes uses medicine and medical intervention to spare humans from unnecessary pain and even death.  We should not view the medical world as a necessary “evil”, but as a tool for the good of mankind and the preservation of life, which is precious in God’s sight.

I’ve had four more babies since Tim’s birth.  All with epidurals.  All without any ill side effects or complications.  All of those births were incredibly beautiful experiences that resulted in healthy babies.  I’ve interviewed many labor and delivery nurses and doctors personally, asking them if, in their personal experience, childbirth usually goes well when an epidural is involved, OR, if it often goes better when the childbirth is “natural”.

Every single one has testified that there are more complications with “natural” childbirth than when the women have an epidural. Could they all be in a conspiracy of deception together?  I doubt it.  I have too many friends who have experienced the beauty of pain free childbirth without associated complications to collaborate with this testimony.  Unfortunately, you won’t be reading the success stories on the internet.  For some reason, gloom and doom spreads faster than good news.

(My OB Doc, an older, Christian man, has told me that the internet is definitely skewed in a very unbalanced direction when it comes to this issue.)

That is not to say that complications don’t happen with epidurals, and you need to know what the risks as well as the benefits for both “natural” childbirth as well as childbirth that utilizes modern medicine, but complications are more likely to occur when the woman is under physical duress.

Enjoying Peter right after delivery

I’m not advocating one method over the other.  I just want to encourage couples to earnestly look to God, not Wemmicks, for direction in this matter.  We need to put our faith in HIM…not in doctors or epidurals or “natural” childbirth or water tubs or doulas.  His plan for each of us will look different. We need to give one another some breathing space to do what God is leading us to do based on our own unique set of circumstances that He has specifically designed to help us grow in our faith in Him.

I firmly believe, based on my personal experience as well as talking to countless women who have given birth multiple times, that every labor can have different levels of pain.  Some are very tolerable, while others are traumatic experiences pain-wise.  So we have to be careful (especially when we’ve only had 1-2 babies so far!) not to put everyone into our own “category” if we’ve had it fairly easy a time or two.  Experience has a way of building a bit of humility into our lives, don’t you think?  God is gracious and good to us little Wemmicks!

At the time of this post, I’m 11 weeks away from giving birth to our 9th living child.  (We’ve lost four other babies to earlier miscarriage since the loss of Elizabeth.) I anticipate having an epidural, if it is the Lord’s will, but need to be open to His direction.  He doesn’t always enable us to have our own way!  And if I should get to the hospital too late, perhaps I will experience childbirth “au naturale” once again.  If that happens, God will give grace, strength, and endurance.  And the bottom line is…no matter how the baby comes out…if God blesses any of us with a life to raise for His glory…we are blessed indeed.

Childbirth is not the end-all…it is only the beginning…of a soul destined for an eternity of knowing, loving and enjoying his/her Creator.

And that’s a vision we can all share!

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Natalie Klejwa is a Wemmick, loved by the Woodcarver, wife of 22 years to Joe, and mother to 9 Wemmicks ages 2-20. She is a business owner (Apple Valley Natural Soap), founder and administrator of the Visionary Womanhood blog, publisher and contributing author of Three Decades of Fertility, You Can Do it Too! 25 Families Share Their Stories, and The Heart of Simplicity: Foundations for Christian Homemaking.

You can hear her being interviewed on Kevin Swanson's Generations with Vision radio program.

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20 thoughts on “Medical vs. Natural Childbirth: A Personal Story

  1. Thanks for this post! I live in a community where not having a “natural” birth seems to be viewed as being a bad mom, perhaps even a “bad” Christian. My daughter, our first child, was stillborn last year. During my pregnancy with our son I gave myself daily injections to reduce the risk of blood clots. He was born healthy in June in a hospital with my having an epidural. My father has been an anesthesiologist for 25 years, has given numerous epidurals and has never had a patient with serious problem or side effect. Medical literature shows it to be safe for the majority of women and babies. The pressure to have a “natural” birth though I couldn’t, and didn’t want to, was difficult for me to face. Things do not always go as we plan and I appreciate you writing this.

    • THANK YOU for sharing your story. My sincere hope is that this post will bring a bit of balance to the table…and encourage the MANY women out there who have found that, in God’s Providence, “natural” childbirth is not an option for them. I especially appreciate hearing about your father and his personal experience. That is exactly what I’ve heard from 100% of the medical community in which I’ve had contact with over the past 20 years. We have to put our hope in God…whether we are able to have a “natural” birth…or a birth that required medical assistance. Either option requires our faith to deepen.

    • By the way, I’m so sorry to hear of the tragic loss of your daughter. It is a life altering event that you really never get “over”. I pray this Christmas will be a celebration of hope and renewal as you enjoy the beautiful blessing of your baby boy…and the birth of a baby boy 2,000 years ago that resulted in our Salvation.

  2. Oh, gosh… I began writing a comment to this post but it’s turning out to be waaaaaaaaaaaaay too long. I might turn it into a post in my blog at a later date. For now, i will say that WE ARE ALL BIAS to what we believe and know (experience). I have had 2 vaginal deliveries with 3 epidurals at the hospital. I have had one homebirth au natural. I had one hospital birth au natural also. I prefer the homebirth with no interventions in the comfort of my house. I believe hospitals are for emergencies, like yours.

    I also believe as Christians we need to listen to God. He says in His Word that He guides us, that the ways of a believer are directed by Him. He works all things for our good and as Christians are also under NO condemnation. We are free.

    I think we need to go with the lead of the Spirit and encourage one another. We need to stop condemning others because they are doing something different from what we are. i think we can share, we can share knowledge, we can impart wisdom but the decision has to be left to them and God. HE says what He has begun in us He will complete. I believe He is ultimately in control and He knows best.

    I commend you for living a life of faith and not fear. I know many women who stopped at the first child because they had complications with an epidural, or their cervix, were afraid of the pain, or financial trouble or the future. I don’t condemn them because that is what they chose and they have to live with that and God will use that for their good. :)

    I think God is always wanting to stretch us and our faith in Him. Some people are more willing than others to have their faith stretched. :) I am seeking to have my faith stretched. I want to believe for the impossible. I want a big vision. I want to see what God sees. :)

    So good to talk to you, Blessings, :)
    tereza

    PS did you see the video letter Mrs Duggar did for the baby girl she lost? You can see it in their website. Very touching and so inspirational.

    • Thank you for sharing this Tereza. I did not see the video you are referring to. I will have to go check that out. Thanks for the heads up. : ) Have a Merry Christmas!

  3. Thank you for this post. I am not a mother nor married (although hope to be both married and a mother one day) but this has crossed my mind more than once. I don’t know if I could do natural and not take something for the pain. I know its different for everyone though.
    Thank you for this post. You are a wonderful woman of God!
    God bless you and Merry Christmas!

  4. Thanks for your post. I love reading labor and birth stories! I have had 3 live births, the first a c-section. I was induced with the second and third children. My first VBAC was a breeze, in the hospital, with a midwife. All calm and lights dimmed and painful, but only took 3 hours ,start to finish. I did not have an epidural, because I was afraid after the section they would be all too quick to cut me again.
    Third child was in the hospital, with a regular OB rushing in to catch him at the last second.very painful, they wouldn’t let me push, they said I was not fully dilated. Truth is, i was ready, they were not. He was actually crawling out of me. I still can remember that sensation,15 years later.
    I was there with my sisters 3 births. She had an epidural with the first..the Nurse let her have it too late( the nurse even said I’m not going to check you cause you are most likely too far along and the dr won’t let you have it) and she pushed for 4 hours straight. The vacuum had to be used on him. It was not pretty at all.The second child she said no epidural…then when the pain hit she said “yes!!epidural!!” (NOT judging at all…I was saying ‘YES!! Cut me open!!spit me in half!! I do not care!!’) and on the second one she ended up pushing for 3 hours. 3rd child, another epidual, and 3 hours pushing. The whole time, with all 3 births, the dr is pacing..saying “OK, this much longer and you have to have a c-section..” I was not in labor but the stress in that room was thick,even to me. i hated it for her, and wished she never had the epidurals. And afterward, shed say the same thing.
    I had pain meds, don’t get me wrong..my longest labor was 3 hours, and that’s INTENSE.

  5. This is a good post. My first baby was a c-section. She was breach. In truth I was so afraid of labor and such (I had body phobia issues as well) that I actually prayed ( long before we knew she was breach) that God would let me have a c-section. God did. I can admit this 17 years later but I was pretty ashamed at the time. I felt so weak and like I lacked faith. What kind of horrible mother would I be if I can not overcome my selfish fears! My next 7 babies were all v-backs and I did have epidurals with all of them. I remember only the i-vs were put in because I was a v-back but the epidurals were my choice. I do remember being in conversations over the years about natural verses epidural but the more children we had the less those discusions bothered me. I agree we have freedom in Christ. There will be SO many opportunties in our lifetime here on earth that will require faith and our need to lean and trust in God so I do not think we will miss growing in our character as mothers with whatever childbirth choice we choose. Just my thoughts.

  6. This post makes me love your blog even more. To see that an issue that is quickly becoming one of contention among Christian sisters can be handled in such a graceful way without being wishy-washy or relativistic is so, so encouraging.

    I could not agree with you more about seeking the face of the Father, not the opinion of even respected believing friends. I have felt that in the past 5 or so years, within many conservative Christian circles (and the internet is this beautiful and hateful two-edged sword that makes the world a much smaller place), natural living (and everything that could possibly fall under that umbrella, including birth) has become so elevated, lifted up, and idolized that it frightens me. It is one thing to want to feed our families a healthier, more whole-foods diet. It is another entirely to place removing all refined sugar from the home on par with grace alone. I love how you said that we do not have the privilege of fooling ourselves into compartmentalizing our lives into sacred and secular boxes, because as believers, all is sacred. But the judgments, vitriol, and passion with which people debate the issue makes me feel heartbroken.

    I have had 2 epidural births, and 2 natural ones, in that order. My first epidural birth was lovely, even if not exactly what I wanted. My second was not so much. My 2 natural births were amazing, and God willing, that is the only way I’ll do it. My body handles the intensity of labor much better than it metabolizes pitocin and the epidural stuff. :) (I’ve blogged about it.) But if He who knit me (and my babies) together should take us down a different path in the future, I’ll walk that way in peace, and covered by grace.

    Also, love love love what you said about over-preparing for the birthing day, and not giving much thought to what comes after. How horrified would we be if a Christian brother or sister told us that they had spent months and months planning the perfect wedding day but had not given even one hour to prayer or premarital counseling with their intended and a pastor!!

    Excellent thoughts here, as always, Natalie. :)

    • VERY encouraging Lauren. Thank you for beautifully highlighting some more of that “pendulum” swinging that we Wemmicks love to do. : ) We won’t stop swinging unless we can “see” how we’re doing it first. Love sharing the “view” with you. : )

    • Lauren,
      I know exactly what you mean…I find it hard to swallow that so many people will judge you based on what kind of birth you have. I see that a lot with homeschooling as well. I do home school, but all of my children went to PS for a year. You would’ve thought I was feeding them to wolves!!

      • Stephanie,
        I do believe that there are HUGE eternal and cultural differences between whether or not we need medicine during the birth process and whether or not we educate our children with a Christian worldview vs. a secular humanist worldview. As parents we have the privilege and responsibility to raise up our children in the fear of the Living God. There is Biblical precedent for delegating that responsibility into the hands of other God-fearing adults, but no Biblical precedent for delegating that responsibility to a God-hating government system. I really believe in less than 50 years, this issue will once again be a “no-brainer” issue for the majority of Christians, but for now, it is a battle of worldviews due to our current cultural immersion.

        While I do not condone Christians getting into bitter arguments and “fighting” over issues like this one, I did want to clarify for our readers that these two issues (natural childbirth vs. discipleship of children) are unrelated, have very different consequences (eternal and cultural) in their working out, and have different Biblical precedents. The Word of God, for a Christian, is our foundational plumb line in all issues and helps us avoid swinging on the pendulums of our feelings or our current, personal decisions about things. (We Wemmicks always think we’ve made the right decision and others are making the wrong decision. It’s just the way we are. Hence, our need of an objective source for direction…the Word of the Creator!)

        I’m not coming down on your comment Stephanie…I believe it was a very helpful comment, and I welcome the opportunity to address it briefly here for the sake of other readers. I’m sure we all have Christian friends and relatives who have their children in public school. I’m certain some of our readers do as well. Once a couple has made that decision, it is not our responsibility to “change their mind” or preach at them about their choice. That’s God’s jurisdiction. On the other hand, God has given us the responsibility to be faithful to the plumb line of His Word, to speak truth when we are asked to give testimony to His Word, and to represent His interests in all our opportunities with others. All in a spirit of love and humility, of course. : )

        Thank you for your interaction here, sister!

  7. I want to thank you for this post! I have had 12 babies and going to have my 13th. I also have 4 babies in heaven. With 10 of my babies I had an epideral and always had this self-imposed and society imposed guilt. Like I was not “woman” enough to do it natually. I always kept telling myself that I would not have a tooth pulled without pain meds, why would I have a baby knowing full well there will be pain, and not have an epideral! Well, with the first un-epideral birth, it was just plain to late and the baby came fast. I said I would NEVER do it without one again! However, He had MANY health complications the first few weeks of life, and I have often wondered what an epideral would have done to him. Would it have effected him and made his first few weeks of life worse. God knew! The last baby I had, the dr tried for an hour to administer an epideral and he started getting blood in the catheter so he had to quit. I was on my own. I was only dialated to 5 and thought it was going to be a REALLY long labor. One hour later I was fully dialated and the baby literally came out on her own with the doctor hardly making it there for the delivery! It was amazing! I felt great after her birth and realized how God carried me through. With my next one, I don’t know which way I will go. I am really scared to attempt an epideral after the previous complications of not being able to get one. However, your post relaxed me knowing that God knows and He will provide all the wisdom I need to birth this baby in His way! Thank you for being on the other side of the “table”, especially those of us who have large families! I was always a little embarrassed to say I have had 10 epiderals!

    Blessings to you and I will pray for a safe and God-filled delivery for you and your little one!

    • “I was always a little embarrassed to say I have had 10 epiderals!” I laughed out loud when I read that! Heather…I’d be willing to bet you are not the only one!! Everyone else is afraid to admit it! : ) Thanks for sharing your story. God is faithful.

  8. I love your blog, and I have read much of it! I thought this post was good…and beneficial. BUT when you cite that (your) doctors believe that women with epidurals have less complicated births versus women without interventions, I believe you are presenting faulty advice. Physical duress in labor does not result in complications. Usually it is the interventions themselves and pushy time parameters that cause complications. (I said usually, not always.) You might have meant to say that apprehension and ANXIETY can cause complications, but pain from labor does not.
    While I believe you have been told that by doctors, the medical and scientific evidence DOES show that ALL interventions, esp. epidurals, actually **do** slow down labor, babies heart rate, lower mothers blood pressure and raise body temperature, and the chances of other interventions being used rise exponentially when an epidural is in place. The chances a c-section will be needed after an epidural is also MUCH higher.
    As an educated woman in the field if childbirth and midwifery, I feel that it is wrong to present non-medicated, non-intervention childbirth as MORE RISKY than a medicalized birth.
    I agree God does use medicine and doctors for our benefit and that we should seek HIM. I have studied childbirth and obstetrics for many years and have had my own babies, both at home and in the hospital with drugs. The scientific evidence does show that each intervention increases the likelihood of more interventions and c-sections.

    The women who (statistically) birth the safest (and whose babies have the best outcomes) are the women who birth undisturbed, without vaginal exams and without medicine (i.e narcotics or epidurals.) I wanted to present the truth here, because I did not feel like you did it adequately. What you said your doctors told you is just not backed by science.
    It have been their experience since epidurals DO make it easier for a doctor to do his job, but that doesn’t mean its best for the women or the babies.

    With that said, there is no shame in epidurals. Personally, I have had one myself. I have also had an unassisted birth at home with a midwife overlooking me, so I have experience from both sides of the spectrum. There is no “right” or “wrong” choice. God should be our guide. I also agree that to focus on the birth day and forget the rest will have grave consequences. The life is more important than the day of birth. But…the day of birth IS important, too. :-)

    • The medical statistics are actually skewed (not completely truthful!) when it comes to epidurals in that epidurals are often given to women who are stuck in long labors anyway…and are headed toward c-section or other intervention. When it comes to “statistics” we always need to be careful. The way they are presented, and the background information that is either offered or withheld along with those statistics can make all the difference in the world in our interpretation of them.

      My Dr. who is an older, experienced OB just shared with me this past week that in his practice, he has only had ONE complication caused by an epidural, and it was a minor problem that did not cause any long term problems for the mother or child. For someone who births babies almost every day (and he’s married to an OB also) that’s pretty amazing! He has a missionary friend who is on a four year rotation of working as an OB in Africa for three years and teaching at John Hopkins University for a year…and the maternal/fetal death rate over there is extremely high due to lack of medical facilities in that country and all the “natural” childbirths. The fact is, in countries where natural childbirth is the norm, the mortality rate is a night and day difference from America where we have easy access to prenatal care, hospital facilities and medicine. While I believe every couple should be able to make their own personal decision about how they want to birth their baby, I do feel that a more balanced perspective that is not rooted in fear was very needed on the internet. I’ve talked to too many young moms scared to death of hospital births and medication during labor and delivery. Something is not right about that. My voice will hopefully provide some much needed balance. Visit a graveyard from 150 years ago and compare it to a modern day graveyard. You will find a lot of mommies and babies in those earlier graveyards. Not so much anymore. That’s something we can all be grateful to God for!