Me? a Lactivist and Birth Junkie?

So I'm at work a couple of weeks ago discussing about a baby with failure to thrive with some co-workers (failure to thrive means VERY small baby who's lacking developmentally). One co-worker says something to the effect that formula feeding is better than breastfeeding and another co-worker says don't say that in front of Märia, she's entirely pro-breastfeeding. I went on to state the benefits of breastfeeding and why it was significantly better. It seemed kind of strange to me though, before I had Seporah I knew breast was best and I even knew quite a few reasons why, but that's about as much as I knew about it, I don't think I ever would have been known as a lactivist (lactation or breastfeeding activist). I don't think I ever would have discussed it, it wasn't the most interesting subject in my opinion. I've now read just about every website known to man about it (and boy are there a LOT), read 10 or so books on the matter (with at least 300 others in circulation and waiting to be read) and discussed boobie juice (I think that's the best term, makes me laugh) with literally hundreds of women (most of them helping moms get latched on and such in the pediatric ward). I could tell you just about anything you ever wanted to know about breastfeeding. Seporah and I only breastfed for 4 1/2 months, I thought I knew about breastfeeding before hand, but I never had a clue.

I can not imagine how women who don't prepare for it ever last more than 24 hours. The lack of support for breastfeeding is very unfortunate and the free samples at the hospital, well they seem pretty darn innocent. Occasionally I get sent to work at the Mother-Baby Ward in the hospital and it shocks me how many post-partum nurses will say just give them a bottle at the drop of a hat, it's just no wonder so many women bottle feed. So many women think they can't breastfeed for one reason or another. I didn't have any milk (milk doesn't come in until the 3-7 day postpartum, you're not suppose to have breastmilk until then, you have colostrum). I had twins, you can't make enough (women have successfully exclusively breastfed quadruplets, that's 4). My baby wasn't getting enough because he wanted to eat every hour (some babies do in fact eat every hour, that's just their schedule, every 4 hours is inappropriate). I lost my milk supply (from feeding only every 4 hours, which is again inappropriate). My baby was allergic (HIGHLY unlikely, I'm not even going into this one). There are indeed reasons why women cannot breastfeed, I'm not saying there aren't, but most likely at least 95% of woman can successfully breastfeed.

The same holds true for childbirthing. Before I had Seporah, well labor was slightly more interesting a topic than breastfeeding, but it's not something I would have discussed in detail with anyone. Did you know that the US spends more money on pregnancy, childbirth and post-partum than any other country, but is ranked 40th for maternity morbidity and mortality? We think if we spend more money it must be better, but honey that's just not true. Seporah's birth was by c/section and yes it was necessary, but at least half of c/s in this country are very unnecessary because of "failure-to-progress" and "cephalic-pelvic disproportion." Which means someone wasn't laboring fast enough (it's not a race, and believe me the baby's not gonna stay in there) and that the the baby's too big to come out (I thought this one was true before research, however, believe me it's load of crap). Then there's electronic fetal monitoring and inductions and episiotomies and no food or drink during labor and if your water breaks it's an emergency, yeah it's all crap and lies. It really pisses me off for the women who figure out they were screwed. I'm just really glad I wasn't one of the ones who were seriously screwed. And if you think a c/section is easier than a vaginal birth, well I haven't given birth vaginally yet, but I bet it doesn't hurt after 9 months every single day. If I hadn't needed it and it took 9 months to get rid of the pain, I'd be really pissed.

So I'm a birth junkie now, which is also strange considering I was very ambivalent before Seporah. Yeah I'm pregnant, but I promise there's plenty of pregnant women who don't read a pregnancy book a day and discuss with others the importance of avoiding inductions and hiring a doula.

And just in case someone is wondering uterine rupture in a vaginal birth after cesarean is highly unlikely, in a non-induced labor the chance of wound dehiscence (where the scar separates somewhat) is only 1/200. True medical emergency uterine ruptures only happen in 1/1200 vaginal births after cesareans. Significantly lower than what the public thinks.