Melixxa, I wanted to comment on some things you said. Also my Cbirth plan is somewhere in this thread. Take a look at it!
<<I don't know how women do that in such a setting. I am in awe of women who do. Soooo medicalized. Maybe I'm crazy, but I don't see any middle way between natural birth at home and surgery. I just know that I cannot labor and deliver in that environment. I know that I tried it once - albeit under bad conditions - and I know it won't happen for me the second time around, either. I just wish I still had my 100% faith in the natural birth process working, which I had the first time.>>
I was wondering if some meditation might would change this for you or some other type of therapy. You say there is no middle ground because of it being medicalized, is that because you would want an all natural birth and think that VBACing in a hospital is contrary to that? Or are you in some way, fearful of VBACing and using the interventions to cope and then that would really go against your beliefs?
When I thought about VBACing I knew I would go to a hospital and do it. I pretty much knew that when the pain got bad I would get an epidural. I have read all about them and have read conflicting medical evidence on the hinderance/slowing down of labor. Also, I knew that by having one in place should a csection be necessary my pain management would already be in place. Besides a few homebirthers, all the others I know who had successful VBACs had them in the hospital with epidurals. Most waited until 4-5 cm to get them and did not have labor augmented with pit. One woman was induced, but her labor was short (4hrs with a short pushing stage) and she was already dilated. They seemed happy with their outcomes and their VBACs.
However if you somehow have doubt that you can birth vaginally in that kind of enviroment, I know that can create a mental block which could just throw a monkey wrench into the whole process. Most the mamas I knew who VBACed were pretty mainstream and easy going about medical intervention in one way or another.
<<<If I do decide for the c-birth, I am wondering: What are my options for making it the way we want? Last time around, my midwife, my doula, my sister and my partner were all there, making certain that my baby was brought to me as soon as I entered Recovery and that he could go to the breast right away. That was the most important thing, I guess. But there are certainly many other, small things I'm not thinking of right now and may not think of later. My partner knew from the get-go that our son was not to leave his sight. When you opt for a c-section, how much leeway do you have in deciding these things?>>>
I had a lot of leeway with my last csection and it appears I will get the same this time around (even more so). I've had a lot of leeway with this pregnancy, but its my third and because I am having a planned csection well before my due date, my doctor is very accomadating. Besides my ultrasounds, I've not had a lot of medical intervention during my pregnancy or testing. (unlike my last) I am not even doing the glucose test.
I am one of those people who is all in favor of the scheduled csection before labor begins. I believe it is safer (research tells me this) and I believe it is emotionally better for mothers. Afer having an unplanned, emergency csection I was relieved to have had a major role in picking the day, doctors involved, nursing care, and obtaining the things I wanted for the birth. Every request I had was met. Also, because of my "control" issues, I also did not have any drugs in my IV that caused mental confusion, sleepiness, etc. No mind altering drugs. I also requested Zofran over phenegran for nausea if it was needed. I also held my baby on the table and recovered in a L&D room. We were seperated maybe 15minutes total. The time went by quickly as I was running my mouth. I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have. if the birthing plan doesnt answer it for you or its not elsewhere on this thread.