Lessons of Birth From a Giraffe


By now, most people have heard of April the giraffe, the seemingly forever pregnant giraffe. She has taken the world by storm and left us all on edge as we await the birth. People from all over the globe are joining together, watching and waiting for a glimpse of mother nature at work.

Animal Adventure Park is informing us that everything is going as it should; April and her calf are both healthy and safe. She is not yet in labor and they may have been wrong on her due date. Due dates are really just estimates and, in fact, can have a range of 4 weeks!

Typically, only 5% of babies are actually born on their due date.

As a doula, I am very aware of how mother nature and labor works. In most cases, if left alone, it works beautifully. And if working with pregnant women and going through my own four pregnancies has taught me anything, it’s patience.

I’m seeing so many commenters on the internet (I know, why do I read them?!) asking why the park has not intervened or if there’s anything they can do to help this mama giraffe just have this baby already!  The internet commenters of the world tend to take things to the extreme and are not exactly know for their patience.

Thankfully, April has no clue she’s being watched by millions of people and can take her good old time. Women, on the other hand, feel the constant scrutiny during the last few weeks of their pregnancy. The questions about what’s going on with her cervix and when is she going to have that baby.

As April is so unknowingly teaching us, labor takes time! The wait for it to begin is hard. Inducing labor has its risks. It is a serious decision that should always be made with your health care provider. But for low risk women, sometimes all we need is a little time and patience.

So to all the Aprils of the world, we support you.


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