I tried to be a "crunchy" mom for a while. It felt natural to me, to some extent, until I started seeing the devastation that unquestioning loyalty to crunchiness was costing some families. At the beginning of my motherhood journey, I was petrified of anything that I thought was "unnatural," including labor and delivery interventions. Thankfully, by the time I needed a whole bunch of them, I was over it. If you're struggling, I want to help you, too, by sharing the ways my induction made me feel like a badass mom.
I wasn't positive when my partner and I went into the hospital, 6 and 4 year olds in tow, that I would be coming out with a baby. However, I knew my sudden swelling, headache, and buzzing skin indicated that the chances were high I was going to be induced due to pre-eclampsia. Honestly, dear reader, I had always been petrified of induction. A combination of my crunchy values and 16 and Pregnant pitocin horror stories fed my fevered fears.
Given that history of fear, I am as surprised as anyone else that, ultimately, my induction totally made me feel like a badass mom. Here are just a few of the ways how:
When I Reassured My Kids
I'm not going to lie, my children were kind of freaked out. Seeing their all-powerful mom on a hospital bed getting blood drawn was a new experience for them. While we waited for my mom to make the two hour trek to pick them up, I reassured them that everything was going to be OK. When I told them, though I spared them the details of a likely-induction, I was reassuring myself, tool. Everything was going to be OK, and acknowledging that to myself when what I feared most was about to happen? Badass.
When My Body Was F*cking Amazing
It is capable of having a balloon inserted into its cervix and enduring bone-shattering pitocin contractions. That is totally badass.
When I Had Time
Crazy thing? Induction gives you the gift of time. When I went into labor with my first baby, I didn't even realize I was going into labor. When I went into labor with child number tow, it happened so quickly I barely had time to breathe. However, when child number three having to be induced, I had "me time" to contemplate the coming changes. It gave me time to set intention and meditate before the real contractions began. I'm not saying it's better or worse to have time, it's just different. Honestly, I'm so grateful for that gift of time. As it turns out, meditating before labor really sets in makes me feel like a total badass.
When I Told My Kids The Birth Story
My daughter is a fantastically nerdy science lover. Her favorite show is Cosmos, starring Neil DeGrasse Tyson. She memorized all the episodes before she was 5 years old and then requested to watch the original starring Carl Sagan. Needless to say, she absolutely loved hearing her sibling's birth story. She prefers the interventionist story of my youngest's birth to either of the less "medical" first birth stories. She thinks I'm a badass.
When I Gave Birth
Strictly speaking, this wasn't specifically because of the induction. I don't know about you, but when that baby comes out of my body I feel indescribably badass. I've experienced it three times. It's always different and it's always, clearly, a tremendously badass experience.
When I Felt Empowered
A formerly-crunchy, glorifying unmedicated childbirth mama (that's me) yelled from the bottom of her guts for that epidural on birth number three. I was empowered AF, ya'll.
When I Lived
Preeclampsia is scary as hell, everyone. In my case, the doctors caught it in time so that it didn't have any lasting effects on me or my baby. The medically necessary induction means I lived. I lived, you guys.
There is nothing more badass than staying alive.
When Science Helped
Science is awesome, you guys. It gave us cell phones, movies, contraception, painkillers, and noise-cancelling headphones! How can we not love science? I love science. I loved it when it saved my meconium-aspirated first child. I loved it when it corrected my second baby's cleft. I loved it when it removed the articles of conception from miscarriage one and miscarriage three, thus saving me from possible-sepsis and infertility. And, like a total badass, I loved it when it allowed me to not have a preeclampsia induced seizure and risk my own and my third child's death by inducing labor.
Like me, science is a total badass.