Everyone is born, but how many of us understand the process? Become a fly on the wall during one woman’s unmedicated labor at home, getting first-hand insight from everyone directly present. Is birth as scary as it seems? How painful is labor? Is the experience positive or negative? What influences our perceptions of the experience? Take a journey into the mindset of birth in its rawest form, and your assumptions and preconceived notions may be challenged in the process.
Historically, women attended births within their family and community prior to having their own children. Today, most women witness birth for the first time when they go into labor themselves. This film facilitates the vicarious attendance of one unmedicated birth. In so doing, it illuminates the qualities associated with the experience, shatters misconceptions around the subjective perceptions of labor, and ultimately speaks to the psychologically transformative power of birth, for those who are open to it.
Every expecting parent faces a mountain of uncertainty. Having no direct familiarity with birth, we try to prepare for it as best we can, reading books, watching movies, going to classes, and talking to others. But as educated as we may become in the abstract, when we finally experience the real thing, we discover we hadn’t actually understood it beforehand. If only this newfound understanding could be communicated. While many have tried, and while much valuable information has been communicated through the existing resources and mediums, the fundamental essence of birth continues to evade description and popular understanding. This is no accident, as it is quite difficult to articulate something intangible. And yet, it is important that we find a way to accomplish this, as birth entails so much more than a baby - our failure to know or appreciate this puts us at risk of losing touch with something truly profound.
So while most tend to fixate on the physiology, the practitioners, the methods of delivery, the outcome statistics, etc that surround birth, we must understand the psychology of birth if we are to properly navigate the experience and make the best informed choices we can. Thus, this film reflects my effort to communicate the essence of birth, unpacking the subjective experience - because what it looks like to an outside observer can be very different from what it feels like internally to the laboring woman. The film doesn’t tell you how to birth. It doesn’t render judgement. It simply presents the experience in raw form, as objectively as one can. What you take from it, how you interpret it, how you feel about it, and what you do with it is up to you. It’s an intense ride, even as a viewer - but for those willing to take the journey, something awaits on the other side.