Sheila Kitzinger was a natural birth advocate that inspired generations of birthing women and their carers. An inspiring Natural Birth Advocate who campaigned against the medicalisation of childbirth. Sheila Kitzinger died calmly on April 11, 2015. I stopped my tracks when I heard the news. I felt complete love and gratitude for her. I still do. Today I honour you Sheila and for all the inspiration you gave and others.
If you are pregnant, look up Sheila Kitzinger. I really don’t know what I would have done without her. As I huddled under the covers in both my pregnancies, her book “The complete guide to pregnancy and childbirth” , along with Janet Balaskas “New Active Birth” were the two voices of clarity and support I could rely upon to help me in my pregnancies. This is pre-internet so I had to seek these ‘specialist’ books out. Sheila is American. Janet is English. From across the oceans, they were my voice of facts, support and reason and they allowed me to explore and trust myself in ways I could never have imagined. I had great births because of these women. I only got there because of them and my beautiful midwife KL. I had two stunning homebirth despite everyone else’s fears and worries. For me, it was the most trusting way to birth and Sheila you helped me get there. Not because you advocated it, your words got me their on my own.
So much of your work and support Sheila has been regurgitated by other authors and web writers . They do not reference you. If you are pregnant right now reading this, remember all this knowledge came revolutionaries like Sheila who paved the way for hew voices.
Standard ideas now were once radical. Sheila was just that beautiful voice of physical facts with a hint of trust yourself mamma.
As you explore pregnancy and baby sites on the internet, keep in mind the authors of the work. Find a voice you love and go explore just them. You can’t read everything, you would end up so confused. I wish you great love and support as you find the voice of your doula, your midwife and your author who speaks to you and your wishes for a beautiful birth.
Thank you Sheila for the grace and wisdom you brought to us birthing women and for your contribution to this earth. You never knew me, but I loved you and thank you again and again.
You can read more about her campaign against the medicalisation of birth here