Monday, July 2, 2012
Save some energy for the next bit
A couple of bloggers I follow are examples of this second type and it feels a little like watching a train-wreck about to happen.
Because I spend my life working with women on the other side of birth, I get to see the fall-out of women who worked right up until labour began, those who were exhausted before birthing, those who have no energy left for the really hard-yards that are the postnatal weeks.
Gone are the days when maternity leave commenced 6 weeks before the due date and the mother-to-be spent her time resting with her feet up, organising those tiny singlets in drawers and re-reading her books about birth and beyond.
And women adding another child to their family are often in an even less ideal situation - one blogger, having an elective caserean today, has spent the past weeks overhauling her entire household so her family will cope with her absence and her status update just last night showed an exhausted woman trying to conquer Mt Fold-More before falling into bed. Let alone a bad way to approach the birth of a baby, it is destined to be a harder recovery from surgery.
Again, I reflect on unexpected outcomes of the Women's Movement, where women simply wanted the option to do it all but sadly ended up with the expectation to do it all at once. "Pregnancy is not an illness!" they told us. "Women birth at the side of their fields and quietly keep working" is a dreadful myth, based on no traditional practices and completely overlooking the culture of mothers to be withdrawing into a women's-only space for the birth and a 40 day recovery period.