I’ve been working on a post for several days now. It is, at the core, a criticism of a response from a legislator to citizens who contacted him about midwifery. I’ve been writing only bits at a time, partially because I have too much on my plate to sit and write it all at once and partially because I have to take time to get to a less emotional place in order to write with any amount of clarity.
However, my news feed is filled with the very human responses to a horrible tragedy and I can’t help thinking how trivial it is to be dealing with birth rights when people are dying/dead.
But is it trivial? Are women and babies not dying/dead because of the decades-long fight over birth rights? No one, on either side of the debate, NO ONE can deny that our maternity care system is broken. It’s a fact. Why is it broken? Why has it only gotten more broken instead of being fixed? Why does it take twenty years for good, evidence-based practice to take hold? Why are women coming from their birthing times broken, battered, bruised, traumatized or worse….why are they not coming out at all? Why are babies being cut out of their mothers at alarming rates? Why are they being poked, prodded, put on schedules, given substances against their parents express wishes? Where is our humanity in birth?
I’m tired of the fighting. I’m tired of watching women, babies and families be mistreated, of bearing witness to their very real abuses, of listening to their stories of horror. I’m tired of trying to appeal to the humanity of people who seem to forget that not only are they human, but I am as well. We all are.
I don’t know what the answers are. I only know that right now, today, I can’t come up with any kind of an argument about anything. Instead, I see before me the very real human-ness of each of us. I see you. I see me. I acknowledge that you are doing what you think is right, as am I. I hope that we can see each other and find a common ground in our shared humanity, a way to respect each other even though we may disagree.
Maybe tomorrow I can compose a different response, state the facts, find rebuttals. But not today. Today, I only have a human response.