This year on May 2nd at our 3rd annual Pregnancy Awareness Month kickoff event up at Tree People Ricki Lake (producer of The Business of Being Born and advisor on our team) shared with me that just days before the midwives in New York City had lost their right to attend home births and that Saint Vincent’s (a progressive hospital/birthing center) had shut it’s doors.
I was shocked and stunned, tears welled up in my eyes. That New York City, one of the most progressive, hip and advanced cities in the world would allow this to pass was astonishing and sad. It suddenly felt that the work we do at Pregnancy Awareness Month, to empower women as they move into pregnancy and birth seemed futile.
Then weeks later a friend and supporter of natural child birth in San Diego County, OBGYN Dr. Robert Biter had his hospital rights suspended, literally from one day to the next for no apparent reason. A man nicknamed Dr. Wonderful and who happens to have the lowest C-section rate in the county suddenly barred from his privileges to service his patients?
I ask you, what the heck is going on here?
I recently attended a rally for Dr. Biter, over 400 women, many who had given birth with him, many who had not and many pregnant women who were suddenly left without the doctor hey had chosen and entrusted all stood outside of Scripps Memorial Hospital with signs that read: BRING BITER BACK and OUR BODIES~ OUR BABIES~ OUR BITER!
It was a call to action. Some women such as Ricki Lake and myself, who had not birthed with Dr. Biter were there because we wanted to support a wonderful doctor who believes that a woman’s body has the wisdom and strength to birth the way nature intended. But we were all there because at the end of the day: EVERY WOMAN HAS THE RIGHT TO BIRTH HOW, WHERE AND WITH WHOM SHE DAMN WELL PLEASES!
This is our birth right, it always has been and unless we stand up and let the powers that be know how we feel, city by city and state by state the medical industry (out of fear or greed or whatever their reasons are) will close birthing centers, suspend wonderful and competent doctors, outlaw midwives and we will lose that birth right, to birth the way nature intended. So please…speak up and let the powers that be know how you feel.