Sunday, April 1, 2012

Revival! Cesarean Awareness Month and ICAN

I discovered the International Cesarean Awareness Network a few weeks after my cesarean with my son, Miles. I was sorely mourning the loss of my natural, vaginal birth and didn't have words to describe what I was feeling, let alone resources to explain to (hopefully) well-wishing loved ones that my healthy baby was not all that mattered.

I was surfing around the web and found some of the white papers from ICAN's main website. Holy cow! There were people giving language to what I was feeling, to what I had experienced. These voices out in the Internet "got it" and I wanted to meet them. But, alas, there was no chapter locally. I was shocked at that--Pittsburgh seemed like a big place.

A few months passed, months in which I hired and fired a therapist, and when I checked again, I saw a brand new chapter was starting in my area! I couldn't make that first meeting, but I made it to the second and shared my birth story with other women who had similar birth stories. I can barely describe how healing it was to share and feel heard in that room.

I gained so much from the support of women who had both experienced what I did and then gone on to have more children, VBAC and CBAC babies. It was like finding my tribe.

So, now with a 2.75 year-old son and 6-8 weeks to go until my second son is born, I am a co-leader of ICAN of Southwestern PA. And I'm reviving our long-lost blog in honor of both Cesarean Awareness Month and the 30th Birthday of ICAN.

For the length of my entire life, this organization has been helping women to recover from/prevent unnecessary cesarean and advocate for/learn about birth options. I'm so thankful! Happy Birthday, ICAN!

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