What's A-Parent is a series highlighting those who get real about the hardships that come with raising kids. These often untold stories help show parents they are not alone in their struggle, and are doing an amazing job.
In most instances in life, there is not a singular "right" way to do anything as everyone's experiences and circumstances are different. This applies to everything from how you cut your sandwich, to how you style your hair. And the same thing can be true in larger situations.
One mom is making it crystal clear that there isn't only one way to give birth.
New mom Raye Lee wrote a powerful post on Facebook after she had an emergency cesarean section. Her intention was to clear up the misconception that those who have c-sections are "taking the easy way out."
LONG DRAMATIC POST WARNING: "Oh. A c-section? So you didn't actually give birth. It must have been nice to take the easy way out like that." Ah, yes. My emergency c-section was absolutely a matter of convenience. It was really convenient to be in labor for 38 hours before my baby went into distress and then every contraction was literally STOPPING his HEART. Being told at the beginning that I was displaying great progress and wouldn't need a cesarean section ... and then being told that I was being prepped for major abdominal surgery was not a shock at all. It had nothing to do with the fact that I physically couldn't because I was given no other choice to save the life of my child. Oh, and that surgery is super easy peasy to recover from. WRONG, That is all sarcasm. This was the most painful thing I have experienced in my life. I now belong to a badass tribe of mamas with the scar to prove that I had a baby cut out of me and lived to tell the tale. (Because you can die from this, you know.) Having a shrieking infant pulled out of an incision that is only 5 inches long, but is cut and shredded and pulled until it rips apart through all of your layers of fat, muscle, and organs (which they lay on the table next to your body, in order to continue to cut until they reach your child) is a completely different experience than I had imagined my son's birth to be. This was not pleasant. It still isn't. You use your core muscles for literally everything ... even sitting down, imagine not being able to use them because they have literally been shredded and mangled by a doctor and [imagine] not being able to repair them for 6+ weeks because your body has to do it naturally. When that first nurse asked you to try getting out of bed and the ripping pain of a body cut apart and stitched back together seared through you, you realized the irony of anybody who talks about it being the 'easy way out.' So fuck you and fuck how you see what I did. I am the strongest woman that I know. Not only for myself, but for my beautiful son ... and I would honestly go through this every single day just to make sure I am able to see his smiling face.
Lee's passionate post and the accompanying images clearly show that c-section births are not necessarily the easier alternative to vaginal births.
In fact, when it comes to childbirth, there is often no easy option at all. Nor is there a universal "right" way when everyone has different health and emotional needs.
Lee's message was posted on August 19 and it has already received a terrific response. It has been shared over 19,000 times so far, and has helped open discussion about women's different experiences of childbirth. Many commenters are vouching for Lee and stating that c-sections are anything but easy.
A Facebook commenter wrote, "Dear fellow warrior mama: Thank you for this post. I had two c-sections myself, and they were brutal. Damn [nearly] died on the table the first time after I went into cardiac arrest. It's not the easy way out, and never will be. Thank you for shining a light on this. And by the way, your scars are beautiful."
One mother who has had vaginal and c-section births summed everything up best. She wrote, "I've had both and they both come with their own set of challenges. I don't understand why women have to make everything a competition. Can't we all just be supportive of each other? Every mom who is there for their children is a badass, no matter how we brought them into this world."
Everyone is unique and everyone will do things differently.
Lee's post reminds us that one way should not be criticized over another. Instead, we should focus on what different methods of childbirth have in common: welcoming a new life into the world.
And that is certainly worth celebrating.
(H/T: Huffington Post)