It's been almost two years since my dd was born at home. I back labored for about 12 hours. When she was born my midwife went into crazy action to basically revive her, she was floppy, blue and low apgar score. She perked up and her apgar score kept improving as time went on but the midwife didn't feel comfortable leaving us with her in her condition-she was grunting and nostrils flaring, she seemed to be straining to breath. We ended up having to go to the hospital where she was put on the pressurized oxygen because they said she had fluid in her lungs (she was born right on her "due" date, no apparent birth complications, normal healthy pregnancy). It was such a traumatic experience to envision having my baby at home away from all the medical intervention and the needles, beeping machines and yet here we were, it was awful. To see my only hours only old baby lying up on a cold hard table instead of skin to skin with me while I stood by her side (yes standing by her side after being in labor for 12 hours and pushing for 1 hours, no tearing but still the swelling wow!) They kept us there for 5 days, not because she did poorly but because they just kept adding things to keep us there for. First it was to wait for her lungs to clear up, which they did after 12 hours, then they kept us for two more days until the bacterial infection test came back after 2 days, then it was to make sure breastfeeding was established, it was awful, did I already say that, well it was, I so wanted to just be laying in my own bed cuddling with my baby and husband. I replayed that day over and over again for weeks, months. I searched for answers, asked my midwife for answers, to no avail, all I got was she had fluid in her lungs. When I researched it I found that only 1% of babies born don't recover from the fluid in their lungs on their own and usually it's the c-section babies, mom's with diabetes, premature birth, we just didn't fall into any of these categories, it just didn't give me the answer I needed to get over the trauma. I kept thinking if only we had just waited at home a little longer to see if it cleared up on it's own, maybe she just needed more time. Fast forward to almost two years later... I had a conversation that brought this up for me again, this time with clarity, I remembered all the meconium that came out as she was born, I remembered all the meconium that came out of her nose and mouth when she was at the hospital, so I went and looked it up and it makes so much sense that she probably had aspirated meconium and she really did need to be in the hospital. No one ever mentioned that possibility, not the midwife, who told me she didn't have any answers of why we had to go to the hospital and not the doctors, they just kept saying fluid in the lungs. When I look back on the birth, there was no indication that my baby was stressed. My water broke right before I started pushing and it was completely clear. The only time I can imagine when my baby got stressed was during the pushing stage. I had taken hypnobabies birthing class and learned about "breathing the baby down" and my midwife disagreed and believed pushing to be hard work and necessary to actively push. I really was conflicted because I wanted to trust her but also follow what I believe to be the best birthing method there is. So when the time came to push instead of listening to my body, which didn't have any pushing sensations, I followed my midwifes instructions on how to push, she said to imagine wrapping myself around the baby and bearing down. I was squatting and basically doing crunches with every contraction. I can't say whether or not I ever had the urge to push. I was tired, I wanted to meet my baby, I had people telling me how strong I was while pushing, I had the midwife guiding my babies head down and getting all excited of the progress of my pushing. I read a lot of articles saying that this type of pushing can stress a baby out and cause them to have meconium which can be dangerous if they aspirate it, which we found out. So now I feel responsible and am having a really hard time getting over the fact that I didn't listen to my gut instinct about how to push and that I didn't just override her instructions and just listen to my body. Has anyone else experienced this or have any insight to if there may be any other reasons why a baby can release meconium. Maybe my loud scream right after my water broke? I just want to be at peace with this, my baby is healthy, is not affected by this, but I still seem to be and would like to get past it, especially as we think about having a second baby. I want to know what I can do better, and to prevent this from happening again.
Thanks to whomever read this incredibly long email!