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On Mother’s Day, Let’s Celebrate the True Strength and Empowerment Motherhood Brings

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At just 11 years old, I watched as a midwife cared for my mother and delivered my baby sister. A spark burst into a flame inside of me, and I knew from that moment on that I wanted to be a part of the beauty and wonder of birth and be a mother myself one day.

One of the most rewarding aspects of my now almost 40-year career as a nurse and a midwife has been seeing women tap into their truest potential as they become mothers.

Unfortunately, many women today are being misled by the false notion that motherhood is too much for them to handle and that abortion is their pathway to empowerment.

Even the centuries-old practice of midwifery has fallen prey to this misguided notion.

Leading medical organizations such as the American College of Nurse-Midwives and the International Confederation of Midwives, which this past Sunday celebrated the International Day of the Midwife, have abandoned the historical focus of midwives walking beside women in pregnancy and birth in favor of abortion politics.

The American College of Nurse-Midwives, for example, no longer focuses on the physiological process of birth for women. Instead, the refrain ‚Äúabortion is necessary care‚ÄĚ resounds as the association has made the shift away from things that used to matter toward the idea that abortion is health care, and that midwives should be providers of that care.

In truth, we are failing women by telling them that abortion is their only option‚ÄĒor that it is empowering. Women deserve to know that¬†abortion¬†doesn‚Äôt fulfill the promises of going back to what you were before, nor does it solve life‚Äôs problems.

We limit women’s true power and potential by pushing the notion that power can only come externally and that ending the life inside of them can help them find it.

This Mother‚Äôs Day, we should recommit to encouraging women to work with their bodies, instead of against them, by offering them holistic medical care instead of the one-size-fits-all ‚Äúsolution‚ÄĚ of¬†abortion.

Thankfully, there are programs out there that can help women discover the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual transformation of motherhood.

Backed by 45 years of evidence-based research, the Nurse-Family Partnership program is a national effort supporting vulnerable first-time moms for the first 1,000 days of their children’s lives. The program’s goals are a healthier pregnancy, a full-term delivery, supporting mom/baby attachment, and helping moms work toward wholeness in their lives.

We support new moms both physically and emotionally by offering education and resources as they journey through pregnancy and birth, and into the new world of parenthood. Through home visits, we establish trust and support moms as they work toward achieving the future goals they have always dreamed about.

Listening to women is essential to midwifery, and that’s something I have carried to my visits with moms in my current role as director of Tennessee’s Erlanger Nurse-Family Partnership program. I’ve had the privilege of creating deep bonds with women during the months of pregnancy, through birth, and into parenthood. I’ve heard women tell their stories, share their joys and fears, and the excitement that new life brings for them.

Simply listening to and encouraging women to trust their bodies can reset their whole outlook about what’s ahead for them.

As we know, moms who are healthy in mind, body, and soul have a better chance of delivering healthy babies. At the end of the day, mothers need to feel seen, safe, confident, and capable, not only in pregnancy, but also in the transition to motherhood.

I’ve had the privilege in my roles as a nurse and a midwife, and especially as a mother, to experience key times in life where a women’s natural power and strength is showcased; namely, during pregnancy and birth.

For this Mother’s Day, let’s celebrate the true strength and empowerment that motherhood brings, and commit to supporting mothers through pregnancy and birth, and in the wonders and challenges of bringing new life into the world.

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This article is republished from The Daily Signal.

Image credit: Unsplash