Prayer eliminates the need for Caesarean delivery
Susan Norris, member of Menlo Park church since <year>
(Originally published in the April 5, 2004 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel)
When I was pregnant with my oldest daughter, I was just starting to study Christian Science. Every month after my checkup at the doctor’s office, I would meet with a Christian Science practitioner. She was supporting this pregnancy with prayer, and shared wonderful spiritual concepts with me.
I learned to think of my baby’s identity as spiritual. I saw her as a child of God—already perfectly formed. As the Mind of all creation, God knows us each as His fully developed ideas. Understanding this has practical, healing effects on our lives. The pregnancy proceeded smoothly, and I didn’t have any unpleasant symptoms.
About five weeks before the baby was due to be born, she spent one entire day moving. At the end of the day, I could tell she had turned around and was no longer in the best position for delivery. My next check up confirmed this—the baby was heads-up, in an impossible position for a normal delivery. The doctor said the baby was now too large to turn around on her own, and that she would have to be delivered by Caesarean section.
I really wanted this baby to be born normally. And I was learning in my study of Christian Science that I could rely on prayer for the birth to proceed harmoniously. This passage from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy was very meaningful to me as I prayed about the situation: “The relations of God and man, divine Principle and idea, are indestructible in Science; and Science knows no lapse from norreturn to harmony, but holds the divine order or spiritual law, in which God and all that He creates are perfect and eternal, to have remained unchanged in its eternal history” (pp. 470-471).
I also prayed to understand better this statement, also from Science and Health: “The universe is filled with spiritual ideas, which He [God] evolves, and they are obedient to the Mind that makes them” (p. 295). I prayed to see that this baby—as a spiritual idea—was obedient to the divine Mind that created her, and that therefore, I could expect this to be seen in her correct positioning for a natural, normal birth.
One evening a couple of weeks later, I was marking my favorite citations from the Bible and Science and Health that I’d been praying with over the past months. The practitioner had suggested I do this so that I would have them on hand for the delivery. My husband and mother-in-law were in the baby’s room, putting together the crib. I was really praying for God’s will to be done, and I remember suddenly feeling very peaceful. I just knew that He could and would take care of everything. It was then that the baby moved for about five minutes, and I felt her repositioning. At that moment, I knew that all was well. And it was subsequently confirmed that she had slipped into place for a normal birth.
Our daughter Stephanie was born a couple of weeks later with no need for surgery. The doctor was quite surprised that the baby had been able to turn completely around again that close to delivery. She stated that it must have been our prayers that did it. I was so grateful to the practitioner for her loving prayers during this time. It was an example of something I am learning—that all things are possible to God.
San Carlos, California