After going nine days after my due date my partner and I came to the conclusion that the unassisted homebirth we had felt mostly comfortable with was no longer in the cards for us. I had days of what felt like early labor that had varied in intensity but never really picked up. About three days before delivery I had a night of very painful, regular contractions that felt like bone on bone in my pelvis. The next day he was significantly lower and I had that bowling ball in my crotch feeling but labor continued to be sporadic. I woke up at 3 a.m. to a few painful contractions and woke my DP up. I proceeded to have a break-down of sorts where I measured the pros and cons of our situation, how I felt my intense focus on controlling the 'how's' and 'wheres' of labor and delivery had interfered with focusing on the actual baby part. How I didn't want this birth to negatively effect my relationship (my ex-husband and I hit a major turning point following the birth of my son. I was not able to forgive him for things that happened and we ended up breaking up. We remain close and great friends, but I knew I would never have any more children with him and still carry a lot of baggage from my son's 'birth rape'.) After an hour or so of crying and talking through my feelings, and DP confessing that although he wanted to support me and help me heal in whatever way I needed he always felt anxious about assisting me at home, we packed our bags and went into the hospital at 41 weeks, 3 days. At this point no hospital in our area would have allowed me to VBAC, so we went the two blocks to the hospital where I had my son, the no VBAC hospital where we were already preregistered in case of emergency. The doctor I had initially wanted just so happened to be on call- a happy, spunky cheerleader of an OB who teared up when I told her my birth story and was so compassionate and positive about the whole thing. She looked me in the eye and told me this was NOT my son's birth, and we were going to have a GREAT birthday. From 7:30 to 8:30 they monitored me and baby. I was dilated to a 3, 100% effaced. I was prepped for surgery and Marlowe was born at 10:30 via cesarean section. It was a fabulous experience. Everyone was positive and light-hearted, my DP was right there holding my hand. They allowed the cord to pulse for as long as she could without compromising me, DP cut the cord. He was 8 lbs. 5 oz, 20.5 inches long with a 14.5 inch head. After he was wiped down and had his airway cleared DP was allowed to hold him to my chest. He nursed right away and was back up to birth weight four days PP. I was able to leave the hospital after 48 hours and am now recovering at home while my mom takes care of my older son and the house. We have been flooded with dinners, gifts, baked goods and loving visitors and couldn't be more blessed. The best part, though, was that in recovery my nurse asked me if I had heard what the doctor said about baby's position. She said that he was positioned ear first and that in her opinion there was no way he would have been able to be born vaginally. That we would have continued to have a long and unproductive labor and ended up in the hospital anyway with a more emergency-type situation and that it was unlikely he would have tolerated labor because of the way his neck was positioned. I'll never know what would have been had we stayed home, but I've tried to find information on ear first presentations and it seems like the nurse might be right. I choose to believe that mother nature gave me a solid dose of intuition that night and spared me and Marlowe what could have been a long and arduous road trying in vain to have our ideal birth. His poor little ear is still folded over but it's coming unfurled a bit more every day. :) I'm happy to say I'm totally in love with him and very much at peace with his birth. When I was lying on the table in the OR I had a realization... that I had been so determined to have this peaceful home vbac because I felt like I needed that to heal from my previous birth trauma. Never would I have expected to have a healing, loving C-section experience, which is what ended up happening. And the lesson is the same either way. Birth transforms you, despite your expectations it can never be controlled. I am grateful and so very happy!
Birth story of Marlowe Shade
hotsauce - I am so grateful that you were able to have a positive experience, and that you are both doing well. Yes, birth transforms us. I would love it if you would fill out my birth survey - https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/spiritualbirth - not many people report highly positive experiences of surgical birth.
Much love to you!
thanks so much, ladies. :) Marlowe is just as lovely as can be! Everything is pretty blissful around here. He's nursing well and at one week old I feel virtually recovered. I just wanted to say that I sincerely appreciate all the support and well wishes. Sometimes 'natural' communities can be a bit judgmental of less natural courses of action and I'm happy that everyone IRL as well as online has shown me nothing but love. As it should be. :) Being a mama is hard enough and I love it when women are so supportive of one another. That support has meant the world to me, so thank you!