This past summer is one for the history books. It was one of the happiest moments of my life when we found out that our first child was on her way.
We couldn't be anymore excited - never did I think I (of all people) would feel the way I do. My world already revolves around my wife and child, I can only imagine what it will be like once this munchkin is in our arms. Exciting times for sure. I must say, it has been a bit discouraging at the same time but that isn't a reason to not continue forward, pursuing our dreams.
Let me start by saying this is my point of view and solely meant to help you understand what I have learned in hopes of helping someone else make informed decisions. It didn't take too long for me realize I was a salve to society, believing everything "professionals" told me. It wasn't until I got the curiosity itch and began reading everyday that I realized I was being fooled on many fronts - from car dealerships to doctors. Although I am no longer surprised, life is a game and requires one to think critically, finding the lies along the way. Just like a car salesman will try to sell you a car with all the bells and whistles, a doctor will sell you on a medication that temporarily takes away all of your aches and pains. Should you trust either of them? It depends on how informed you are.
A couple weeks ago when I was researching vaccines, I learned there was a national conversation taking place regarding the efficacy of vaccines. This is what happens when you go on a mainstream media blackout. The bottom line is it depends on the situations - doesn't it always? As a parent, you need to feel comfortable and understand your decision. You might chose to give your child the Polio vaccine because you plan on traveling out of country and don't want to take the chance. On the flip side, you may not be going anywhere and wish to limit your child's exposure to chemicals which aren't required. This too would be a perfectly valid choice as you have a better chance to be struck by lightening than contracting Polio in the United Stated.
Becoming a parent comes along with many questions which need to be considered as they could impact the wellbeing of said child. In fact, the decisions you make (not your doctor) could save their life or help them avoid crippling diseases. No matter what decisions you make, there is no silver bullet but it helps to be informed and in control. In most cases, a hospital is not about life and death. It is about the bottom line so it is important we are informed and prepared for what is to come.
Some of the important questions to consider are:
Will my chid be breastfed and/or consume formula at any point even if it is not medically necessary?
Where does American fall in terms of child-birth in the industrialized world (the results might shock you. Hint: It is not good)?
What are my expectations of my child's pediatrician?
Assuming there are no complications, do I require that skin-to-skin contact happen for the first hour or two before doing anything else?
The child might require antibiotics and/or vaccines - what am I uncomfortable with? Where is the "line"?
Should I hire a Doula for the birth to reduce stress and help keep everyone in check?
Will I hire a midwife or use traditional protocols with an OBGYN?
If the labor is too intense, will I consider the option of an epidural?
Inducing labor is a controversial topic, what do I think is in the best interest for the well being of my baby?
Would I consider an alternative ways to give birth (C-section, water birth etc..)?
What about vitamin-K? Are we OK with the child getting this shot directly following child birth?
Once my child is born, will I request that my child not be bathed (hint: there are endless benefits not to bathe the child unless certain conditions are present)?
Do you want to cut the umbilical cord right away?
You see, there are topics woven into these questions that rarely get discussed out in the open. For example, most vaccines and even vitamin-K have large amounts of the heavy metal, Aluminum (in place of lead), a proven neurotoxin. Yes, aluminum is in our body but we are best suited to limit the amount we inject for a myriad of reasons. The worst part is that most hospitals and doctors offices do not carry Aluminum-free vaccines and vitamin-K. You might get lucky with vitamin-K but it is no likely. Luckily, there are options with vitamin-K but few doctors will tell you that.
Taking the positive route, assuming a healthy full term mom and baby, these are all questions and decisions you are empowered to make despite what you might be told. These are decisions that only you can be making for your child. It never occurred to me how important these questions were (and there are many more) until we were considering our first child. My intention is not to give you all of the answers but rather give you a guide to research on your own - it is important you arrive at your own decision without being influenced by someone like myself, mainstream news or even a doctor for that matter. After all, I would be biased and would not generally side in favor of the traditional doctor for what I believe to be solid reasons (the opposite would be true for a doctor answering the question - in my experience, the answer is probably somewhere in the middle). It is important you know what the risk factors are for everything that is done to your child. You will have to trust me when I say doctors will not give you the full scoop - I promise. If they do, you have found a gem and we want their number.
Those of us who question the status quo won't be liked nor will we be considered "normal" but that is OK by me. Being inquisitive and informed will always win out over what someone "thinks" or read in a textbook one time. Most importantly, this inquiry could save the life of your child and/or children.
Let us know your thoughts by contacting us, writing in the comments below or reaching out on social media!