After having been here nearly 8 months, I am still in shock about the lack of options for expectant moms in central coast.
I have come to learn that there are a couple of hospitals, and one or two home-birth midwives in the area as far as birthing options, and THAT IS IT.
The nearest freestanding birth clinic is in Ventura.
That is quite a jaunt for a pregnant person. Maybe not for the first little while when you only have to have a check-up once a month. But toward the end? When you have to go weekly?
It's a lot.
And what about that whole labor thing? I don't think anyone wants to be on the road, and in labor.
People might wonder what I am "bellyaching" about since there are several hospitals around.
Well, I have had a hospital birth, AND a birth clinic birth.
I will never (barring any unforeseen circumstances) willingly have another hospital birth.
Doctors are far too willing, as a rule, to suggest an unnecessary c-section, or insist you take this drug or that, when the laboring mama just wants to be left alone.
What good is having a "birth plan" if the doctor on call is just going to ignore it?
It just seems to me, that in an area with this population, there should be options.
Sure, there are a few home-birth midwives, but I've learned that California is one of the more "litigious" states, and midwives are becoming more and more scarce.
Don't get me wrong, I really liked my doctor and the nurses that delivered my son, when I experienced my hospital birth.
But the overall experience with midwives and a birthing clinic that I experienced when I delivered my daughter was amazing.
I could go on and on about the benefits, for DAYS!
It allowed me to take my birthing body BACK.
It was not a medical event.
It was just me, giving birth.
I realize that some moms are at certain risks and need that medical environment to ensure safety for both her baby and herself.
But for the others out there that don't need to be monitored, and who don't want (or need!) drugs coursing through their veins, with their potential repercussions, options should be available.
Women have choices about pregnancy--shouldn't they have choices about birth, too?
Don't think that not having birth options isn't a big deal? Think again!
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Brittany is a director of the Toxic Free Foundation and created the first ever Toxic Free Certification Program. Weekly, Brittany publishes the Toxic Free Blog and provides coaching to over 10,000 families in the United States alone. She is the author of a Toxic Free educational series and co-author of several Toxic Free learning programs. Brittany is also an award winning author.