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Fears for my Daughter/Women

This morning while reading the news I was shocked and horrified to read about the arrest of Ireena Keeslar, a former obstetrics nurse-turned-midwife who has reportedly assisted in the successful delivery of more than 1,700 babies, 400 of which were born in their families’ homes.  This coming on the heels of the ever so sensitive women’s rights to birth control and other women’s medical services debates here in America. However, I am not here to pick a side of the fence (by reading this I believe you will know where I stand) but to look at a new fear for me, one that being a women and mother to a young daughter stirs much emotion.

“The medical model assumes the woman is passive and her body needs to be acted upon. Every birth is presented as a potential disaster from which every woman needs to be protected and potentially rescued.” This is a powerful statement made by Ms. Ayres who is the president of the Indiana Midwives Association. This statement resonates deep within me.  I have had 4 pregnancies, my first I lost in my fourth month of pregnancy, my second delivered in a hospital with my midwife and two in the hospital delivered by doctor.  Although, the birth of all my children is nothing short of a miracle I do feel I was a bit cheated in the whole birthing process.

Why?  Because of what Ms. Ayres statement implies; that the medical community and society in general believes we (women) need our bodies acted upon.  When did we become so disconnected with our own beautiful female selves?  When did men, society, religion or a government know what was best for me, my womb, or my whole body for that matter?  And what mandates will there be for my daughter?

This truly frightens me.  I can say for a while in my life I turned a blind eye to my own health and to my personal rights as a women. As we grow older we gain insight and wisdom and this is true for me.  I have learned to listen to my own body, mind and spirit and I don’t want anyone “acting upon my body” to do what they think is best for me.  I am not saying all doctors are jerks, but for me, I have made it a priority to find a doctor who listens to me, works with me and respects that I believe in approaching my health naturally.  I have become much more intimate in my own over all care.

I have at times wondered how amazing it could have been having my children at home a place full of love and comfort…And to be truthful I am a bit jealous of women who bravely made the choice to birth their sweet child at home.  I let the scare tactic something “could” go wrong stop me from that experience.  Like things don’t go wrong in hospitals?  A sterile, cold and uninviting place is not the best backdrop for the start of a precious new life and for me I felt overwhelmed and under cared for in the whole processes.

It saddens me that as women we don’t take back what is ours, the basic right to have a baby at home.  When did we as women stop supporting one another and handing down such sacred blessing as becoming a woman, becoming a mother and becoming the wise grandmother?  Why have these right/rites been forgotten?  We are told our period (menses) is a curse, but why?!  It is this very natural and monthly blessing that allows us to one day have our babies, it is also the one thing that as we grow older will leave us knowing we have lived to become a wise sage ready to start a new journey and share our knowledge. Instead we live in a society that wants to dictate to us where to have our  babies, if we should have access to birth control, to surgically alter our bodies to be more “beautiful”, society has created a false image of women guiding us to be less than we are created to be!

I want my daughter to do what she knows is best for her.  To never have laws that prohibit her from things as sacred as choosing where she can and can’t have her baby.  I want my daughter to grow believing having a period is not a curse but a sweet blessing.  I want my daughter to be surrounded by women mentors and teachers who will hand down the wisdom of their years, who will embrace her choices, to allow  her to see her own beauty, and help her to be who she is created to be… a woman.

If you wish to support Ireena Kesslar by helping to cover her legal fees, you can send checks to:

Ireena Keeslar Legal Fund

7570 East 750 North

Howe, Indiana 46746

Some information was taken from one or more news sources.  To read them in their entirety I have provided links:

http://www.news-sentinel.com

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/03/us/03midwife.html

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