"People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them."
~G.B. Shaw, Mrs. Warren's Profession, 1893
Women across the United States are doing this. They are not going to be victim to the circumstances of hospital and interventionist birth, but they will make the circumstances they want: where they can birth peacefully, safely and lovingly without a whole political machine crashing on around them.
Ina May Gaskin is an excellent example of a woman who is making those circumstances. She taught herself the art of midwifery because it had all but died out in the United States by the 1970's. And the women who travel across country to give birth attended by her are making their circumstances that they want not just for the sake of getting what they want but because its empirically shown that its better for women and babies.
Individuals are working to change the circumstances of their maternity care, myself included. Organizations are helping support these efforts. More and more women (and men) are becoming midwives, the optimal caregivers for the majority of pregnant women. The licensing and governing boards of certifying organizations are facilitating that process. Birthing centers are becoming more accessible to more women. National and international governing bodies are reinforcing these efforts.
I hope to be a part of the bands of organizations, individual professionals and the scores of mothers looking for something better. And I am trying to find my path in making those circumstances come to pass.