Caesarean Awareness is for EVERYMOM

I’ve given birth to 4 babies. The first 2 were born naturally (drug-free, intervention-free and vaginally). The labour for the first was long and steady and short and intense for the second. I was free to move and squat while they were born. There was music, relaxation and visualization.

Both of them got stuck and the doctor had to break their clavicles (shoulder bones) to get them out.

When I became pregnant with my next baby (and then the next), it was a discussion with my obstetrician about birth choices. He felt that my first two kids were very lucky that they didn’t suffer any long-term paralysis or damage from their births. He provided statistics about Bell's and Erb's Palsy and explained how a caesarean could avoid them from happening. He didn’t think it would be worth tempting fate for the next babies and I agreed.

I’m a childbirth nurse, a doula and a Lamaze educator and I agreed to having two caesarean births.

I wasn’t bullied. I wasn’t pressured. It was explained that I obviously have a smaller pelvis and bigger babies. And he was right; my babies all ranged from 9-10 pounds each.

When I think of Caesarean Awareness Month, I don’t necessarily think about spreading statistics about how risky and costly they are. When a woman is faced with a caesarean she’s thinking about getting her baby out safely. It’s really her first emotionally-charged decision as a mom and it always comes from a place of love. Informed consent means that the mother has received all of the information about a procedure so she can make a decision that works for her. It doesn’t mean scaring her or fluffing things off- it means giving her the information. If she decides that an elective caesarean is right for her that’s her decision to make.

It isn’t my job to judge or yours.

Reasons a Mom May Choose Vaginal Birth

  • Safer outcomes for mom and baby
  • Faster recovery
  • Easier time bonding with the baby
  • Easier time with breastfeeding

If you'd like resources for a vaginal birth, check out Lamaze

Reasons a Mom May Choose Caesarean Birth

  • Previous birth trauma (physical or emotional)
  • Physical impairments that will make vaginal birth more difficult
  • History of sexual abuse/trauma
  • Placental issues

If you'd like resources for a caearean birth, check out International Cesarean Awareness Network

The lists can go on and on and there are arguments for both sides. As a health professional I can sit here spew off all of the data and recommendations, but not today. Today, I’m just going to love and support every mama who’s ever given birth. No matter how a woman gives birth she’s had to make decisions that will affect her for the rest of her life, that’s how epic it is to give birth.

I’ve thought a lot about how to support "normal birth" over the years, and I’ve come to the conclusion that it means something different for every woman.

Maybe we should be calling it “normal birth for me”?

If you'd like resources for support and information as a mom, joinus at Mamasoup

In love and support,



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Joanne Ilaqua - CEO of MamaSoup

Hey there, I’m Joanne.

I’ve spent about 20 years serving women as a nurse, doula and Lamaze educator. I have 4 kids and I know firsthand how lonely and isolating motherhood can be, so I created MamaSoup. I'm mostly known for my love of red wine, spontaneously singing and my confidence in being my true self on social media. When I’m not busy building women up, you can catch me taking Instagram stories of my bulldog Ruby, watching The Handmaid’s Tale, playing MUber (Mom Uber) to my kids or vacationing in my favourite town: Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

I love serving the world by providing a space for moms to connect and support each other. In my opinion, moms are the backbone of communities because they are (literally) raising the future!

As the founder and CEO of MamaSoup, I’ve been featured on CHEX TV Morning Show, KawarthaNOW, Economic Development- The City of Kawartha Lakes and MyKawartha.

Still with me? Join me over at MamaSoup to keep the conversation going!

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