One thing I learned about myself after becoming a mom is that I love hearing other women’s birth stories. I am fascinated by them, because each varies from my own. I don’t consider the birth of either of my children particularly extraordinary (other than the amazing achievement of growing and presenting a fully formed human being to the world) but I have yet to hear someone share an experience exactly like mine. One factor is the inclusion of drugs, in my case. While medicated births are common, there are things no one will tell you about having a medicated birth; Things that shape how we talk about medicated births; Things that made each birth, medicated or otherwise, completely unique for the woman experiencing them.
I’m in awe of moms who choose (or have no other option) to have unmedicated births. Honestly, I think every woman who had any type of birth, whether it was in her living room or a scheduled c-section in a hospital, deserves major props and endless celebratory praise. By talking to other moms about birth I have become acutely aware that any kind of childbirth, under any circumstances, includes moments of stress, worry, and pain. Pain medication or any other drug being administered during childbirth can't take every stress and every worry and every pain away. In the end, while there are so many different ways to give birth and every birth is unique, all women who have given birth know what it is like to experience a very specific kind of stress and worry and pain. The degree might be different and the way in which it was handled might be different, but we are all connected by having experienced it.
So, if anyone tries to tell you that including medicine as part of your childbirth is an “easy” way out, send them my way and I'll share things no one will tell you about having a medicated birth. After all, I had two of them.