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I am so scared

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 

I'm not sure why I'm writing this as I have such a good support network, but I am alone with my son during a lot of each day and the fear is killing me.  Two years ago the natural, birth center birth I had planned turned into an emergency c/s followed by months of PTSD.  Now I'm almost 36 weeks along with my second, and babe is still breech.  I am doing EVERYTHING everyone has ever suggested on this site or another to get him/her to turn, but am facing version in a week or so, and having to schedule c/s if that is unsuccessful.  I just cry all the time; I can't tell you how frightened I am.  This is like a waking nightmare.  I should say that by most measures the one last time was what they call gentle, or family centered (though I didn't find it so), so there is not much room for improvement there.  I have doulas, nice doctors, etc.  I have seen psychologists; I have done it all.  Has anyone else dealt with this fear and overcome it?  I feel like I'm going to go crazy with fear.  Please help.

post #2 of 25

I've just had the one baby so far so I don't know exactly what you're going through and I don't know how to help.  But I want to give you a hug! hug2.gif  I hope your baby turns!  

Are you afraid of the operation? Are you afraid of revisiting the emotions of your previous birth?  I think that when my second baby comes I'll be afraid of the latter... so I feel you if that's what you're scared of.

 There's a silver lining that if you do need the scheduled c-sec you will have a knowledge you didn't have before.  You know how the operation and recovery works, you know what helped you and didn't help you.  And because it won't be a surprise/emergency c-sec, you can take back some control.  You can make plans for photos, music, a birth plan that will help you heal the trauma of last time.  I don't mean to gloss over any of your legitimate PTSD causes or stimuli.  I hope you can find peace.  I hope I can swallow my own advice if I need it in the future.  

post #3 of 25

I haven't dealt with this specific fear, Arete, but I know how immobilizing fear can be especially when you're home alone with a little one. Are you part of any support group for vaginal births after a cesarean? Do you know about the organization ICAN? International Cesarean Awareness Network? Looks like there is a chapter in Madison. And, here are some other mom support groups in Madison.


I know the worst thing with fear is being alone with it. I hope you can find someone to talk to. Would it help to talk to your doula right now? 


Do you know about the breach tilt position?


What about seeing an acupuncturist?


I wish you grace. Talk to a friend. 

post #4 of 25

I don't know that my story will be helpful to you, but I wanted to offer you a hug Mama....I have had paralyzing fear, and it is utterly incapacitating. 


In my case alleviating it was having a course of action for a given scenario.  For me, these were essentially highly unlikely, worse-case scenario type things, like if the car plunged of the bridge we needed to take to get out of town, how would I get the baby and myself out before we drowned.  Highly unlikely, perhaps silly, but something that consumed me nonetheless.  My response was to buy a seatbelt cutter/window breaker thing that attached to my keyring, and then mentally run through the process of what I would need to do.  Knowing that I had a plan made me feel prepared and eliminated the fear.   

I also had a baby that would not turn and who was breech until 39 weeks, and I was petrified of the risks associated with turning him, and the consequences if he did not turn.  I tried to be proactive and did accupuncture and spent forever on my hands and knees.  He did turn, but being proactive gave me a sense of peace...that I was doing what I could to alleviate the situation, and if it did not resolve itself I knew that I had done what I could.  Perhaps something like this can help you...if this then I'll do that, etc.


However you can, I hope that you find some solace....I know that its not a good place to be. 

post #5 of 25

Have you and your caregiver (physician or midwife) discussed the option of vaginal breech delivery?  It is rare these days but there are still some midwives and maybe even a few physicians who are skilled in managing vaginal breech.  My own daughter born by vaginal breech (over 40 years ago when this was still a skill that every OB resident was taught).  Ask the birth center midwives to help you find a midwife in WI who is skilled in this procedure or, if you would like, I could put you in touch with the leadership if the state midwives guild.  There is a good deal of new research about bringing back this option which I would also be glad to share with you and your caregivers.

post #6 of 25

i worried so much before i had my second, but when i went to do pre-op, the nurse told me that i would find a planned c so much better than the unplanned one we had first.  there is a feeling of control, and you are able to specify what you need or want, and focus on the birth plan. 

my recovery with the planned one was so much better.  there's a chance your babe will turn on his/her own, too, you know.  hugs.

post #7 of 25
Thread Starter 

Update: 36.5 weeks and despite wearing myself to nothing with appts. w/ chiros, acupucture, cranio-sacral, and hypnosis, plus constant exercises at home (I even scrubbed all the floors on my hands and knees!), baby has not moved an inch.  Next Tuesday will be the version, which I am already freaking out about.  I maybe ought to have mentioned before that I have a sexual assault by a male dr. in my past (I was 13), so on top of everything else I have to be terrified of coming into contact with them.  There will be an anesthesiologist and a resident involved, and though my dr. said they will try for all female team no one can promise.  I have tried to find a dr. or midwife in the area who would consider breech, and there are a couple, but none who will do a breech VBAC.  I am in ICAN too.  I have to be honest here; I don't understand how it can be better this time.  Last time I already had the things going that are supposed to make it okay: support person, no chitchat, handed baby and encouraged to breast feed, rooming in, etc.  How can I feel in control?  It will still be no choice of mine to do it; I will have no choice.  I will still be on the awful table, in the freezing cold and under the glaring light.  I will still feel that horrible tugging and pulling like my intestines are coming out.  I will still hear the baby cry where I can't see him and, since we're stopping here, I'll never have any idea what it feels like to give birth to a child.  I know I sound very self-pitying; I am sorry about that.  But some of my PTSD symptoms are already coming back and I don't know how to deal.

post #8 of 25

I had my first (and what will be only) child via a planned c-section due to breech lie.  The placenta was firmly wedged on my DD's head and I had no room left for her to turn.  I was literally having kittens!  It would be my first time in a hospital, first time with stitches, drip etc.  When I realised that I had no choice i cried terribly and mourned the loss of a natural birth, never feeling your waters break and all those things that other mothers talk about.


The only thing that got me through the weeks before hand were taking control.  I stocked the freezer up until bursting, scrubbed the house, got a hair cut, got my nails done and packed 3 bags for the hospital with everything I would ever need for at least 2 months.  DH and I went out for a last meal as just the two of us on Sat, on Sun I had a bath that lasted about an hour and Monday morning i got up early, blow dried my hair nicely and went to buy newspapers for DD from the day she was born.  None of this makes up for missing a natural birth but it was just my way of making the best of it.  I still find it difficult today but I just have to remember that my beautiful DD was delivered in the safest way possible for her and she's just perfect.  I longed for a natural delivery but sometimes the risks are just too great.


I have heard of lots of babies turning by themselves or with version at this point so i'm crossing everything for you, wishing you the very best of luck!

post #9 of 25



If its any consolation, I felt the same way with my first CS for breech.  Like, AHHH, ARG!   I felt like I had gone to these people for help and instead they just ramrodded me into something that I didn't really need.  I cried and cried and was so mad, but my response is my responsibility, in the end I had to suck it up and say, it sucked, but I'm not doing "if onlys", and I'm not saying "if I did it again," not for the last baby not for this one.  I'm walking in the light that I know.  And its not whiney to say it sucked, because it did, period, its a fact.  And the way you are being treated sucks and that too is a fact.  To the credit of your doc, at least they are trying a version.  My version came too late for it to do any good, so as hard as it is, I pray you can relax and get it to work.


Maybe G_d will turn the baby.  


Maybe it will be the same ARG experience.


Maybe it will be better because the doc will talk to you more, you'll hold your DS's hand, or something that you decide will make it better because you decide to just make it that way gosh darn it they can decide how to treat you but you can decide how you will enjoy it and if you want to enjoy it badly enough it might just work.  


Either way, please just let the baby have as much time as it can have.  You never know when it will turn or not or what will work or not.  They can make you do a CS when you get there but mama, you have to decide to go.  


PS, Just my thoughts from my own one-CS experience now planning VBA1C.  In some cases you could get an HBAC with breech, depending on where you live (here in Oregon, all MWs can deliver breech VBAC at home, but mostly its the unliscensed ones who do it.  My sister's ULMW said she would do it but only with an ambulence sitting in the driveway after transition).   I would also take a peek at the UC boards (no, its not my first plan either but I have it on the list as Plan D, because while there is risk, its not like I can't call "oops, 911!."  and have an ambulence come get me if I change my mind in the middle).  The ideal plan is plan A,  but for me, its nice to have thought out other, less ideal options so that when I get to that moment, I know what I am choosing to do.  I know when I call the MW or the OB or whoever that I am choosing that plan, because its currently superior to the others, not because I havn't got any other choices.  

post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 

Update #2:


Thanks for the kind thoughts to all.  I had the version on Tues., and it did not work.  My heart tells me the baby is not going to turn, probably because of some physical impediment.  I pictured the poor little thing saying to me, "I TRIED to turn, mama!  I couldn't!"  So I am out of options.  A very important thing now is this: that I have an all female team for surgery.  Because they knew in advance, the hospital staff found a female resident to help with the version (I think if it had been a man I could not have done it.  I would have had to walk right back out), and even a female anesthesiologist to come in and talk to me, in case something went wrong.  Don't get me wrong: I am still terribly, horribly, unspeakably terrified of this operation.  I keep picturing the scalpel slicing back through my old scar.  But it will be 1000 times worse if male doctors are involved.  SO, I had to balance the need for optimal inside time with the advantage of scheduling when I am 99% guaranteed all women.  (BTW, because I needed genetic screening, I had an age-establishing ultrasound at the right, early time for that. So we are pretty darn sure the due date is accurate.)  After much soul searching, I scheduled it for next Thurs., the day I reach 39 weeks.  I would love to let little one pick his/her own birthday, I really would.  But if that means going in possibly in the middle of the night and getting you know who for resident and anesth., I know it will mean guaranteed PTSD again and all that goes with it.  I just can't do it.  I admire women with the courage and calmness to try UC, but never having given birth at all, I would not have 1/10 the guts.  And the 911 call might summon a whole army of male doctors!  Now I have nothing left to do but try to keep it together every day for a week.  And that isn't easy, but I hate to have DS see mama so sad and not understand it.

post #11 of 25
Fwiw, my version did not work either. Another mama I know had a baby that turned at the last minute. You never know. Having had a cs, I would say...just do your best to reframe it in your mind ahead of time. You know who your providers will be; you can get everything ready; you know when you will get to meet your baby, which will be awesome and exciting no matter how it happens . And who knows, you might have a really easy recovery. And less lochia smile.gif
post #12 of 25



Sending you big hugs. Good for you for knowing what you need (an all-female team) and insisting on getting it. That takes some inner strength, mama.


Keep us posted on how you are doing!



post #13 of 25

I'm sorry baby couldn't turn but I'm so glad that you'll get your female team.  You have the power to make this c/s so much better and you're proving it.  Your choice to schedule your c/s is great and you are great!  I truly believe that your sense of control will be heightened because of your planning and your knowledge and perhaps all the ickiness that you remember so vividly will be re-preceived in this new birth. You are so incredibly strong and your baby is so lucky to have such a beautiful warrior mama.  

We'll be thinking of you grouphug.gif

post #14 of 25
Originally Posted by Caracol8 View Post

I'm sorry baby couldn't turn but I'm so glad that you'll get your female team.  You have the power to make this c/s so much better and you're proving it.  Your choice to schedule your c/s is great and you are great!  I truly believe that your sense of control will be heightened because of your planning and your knowledge and perhaps all the ickiness that you remember so vividly will be re-preceived in this new birth. You are so incredibly strong and your baby is so lucky to have such a beautiful warrior mama.  

We'll be thinking of you grouphug.gif



Ask them to make sure teh baby hasn't turned before the surgery starts, just in case.  But you are wise to ask for what you need. I'll be praying for you.

post #15 of 25

First, I am sorry about your experience with a male HCP.  That is totally horrifying and should never have happened.  I am also empathetic about the role of PTSD in life.  It is quite a challenge, but one that there are healthy avenues you can (and have, apparently) followed to ease things along.


Second, I send BIG congratulations your way for facing and discussing your fears and doing what you could to have as close to what you want as you can get.  You had other options for dealing with your fears:  you could have drank or drugged your way through the pregnancy, you could have shut down and ended up with a less personalized (and more traumatizing) birth, you could have done lots of destructive things to NOT deal with what you are facing.  Instead, you did every healthy and pro-active thing that you knew to do and to which you had access.  You have given both yourself and your unborn child the best possible path.  You have already been a wonderful mom to this baby.


I am glad you have both IRL and online support and send you lots of love and light for the upcoming birth of your baby.  I can't imagine things not being MUCH better this time.  Of course they will be.



post #16 of 25

Talk simply to DS about fear; he understands that. Talk from your heart. He will understand that. "I'm scared about the new baby coming. So many changes. I'm trying not to be scared, but you know how hard that is some time."


How is your nutrition? Would more B vitamins help your anxiety? Have you tried any homeopathics or herbals that might be calming?


Good luck, hon.

post #17 of 25
Hello Friend,

I don't know whether you will read this before your birth, but, no matter. I will be thinking of you and your family on the day you give birth. Yes, you are giving birth for the second time. And you are giving birth to yourself, too.

You have a wonderful team of strong women who are going to be there to support you during your baby's birth. You are going to triumph, I know it.

I know what that fear is like. I know it is hard when survivors like us give birth, but it can also be the time for the most special healing.

This may be traumatic for you, as you anticipate, but I am holding a vision of you and your team, welcoming Baby together. I hope you will be gentle with yourself and see yourself as your children see you, as the Whole Universe.

Love and healing to you,
post #18 of 25

Holding the vision of you as a birth warrior triumphant.

post #19 of 25
Thread Starter 

Thanks to all, and particularly the PMs (which I didn't respond to, but read with great appreciation) for all your kind thoughts.  My little girl was born 8/16, very healthy and with a gorgeous head of dark hair, but unbelievably tangled up in the cord, which went tightly around her neck three times--no wonder she couldn't turn!!!  Since I am still nursing DS I already had milk, and she got going right in the recovery room and has barely stopped since.  I won't say it was an easy thing--I walked into the or on my feet, and the sight of it was terrifying.  But the hospital came through with my all female team, and every last one of them was so very, very, VERY kind and understanding that I was able to get through it and actually have not had one minute's worth of bad thoughts or any of the other many symptoms from last time.  It seems that almost any awful experience in life can be got through if you are only treated with compassion.  Two doulas from my doula group stayed with me the nights I was in the hospital, which was also incredibly helpful (my husband was at home with DS--he doesn't know his grandma that well, and we didn't want him to wake up and be scared), but I was still happy to get home after that as co-sleeping is pretty well impossible in the hospital.  I would say recovery has gone perfectly, except that that unfortunately they are watching me for septic pelvic thrombophlebitis (what a name!) right now.  But I wanted to let everyone know how things turned out.

post #20 of 25

Yeah!!! Jumping up an down with joy. joy.gifHealthy little girl. Tangled up in the cord, well, guess she had her own plan for coming out. I'm so glad it was relatively gentle on you. Glad you're home safe with your Lovies. Blessings to you and your family. 

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