Well, mamas, when I heard about this recent outcome for a mama I know IRL, I had a very emotional reaction to the news. First I felt grief, and then some anger, most of it directed toward the World of Obstetrical Birthing.
I felt grief because this mama didn't want a c-sec; she scheduled a vaginal induction, not a c-section.
I am angry, because I think the huberis of obstetrics is out of this world.....to me, this smaller, breech baby sounds like it could be a bit premature. Iagtrogenic prematurity, THE risk of inducted labors.
I wanted to ask my initial question without sharing my powerful bias because I wanted some reactions that aren't as emotionally charged as mine....I chose an elective induction with my first baby, and at the time I joked with my OB that I was "calling his bluff" and that I didn't want to end up w/ a c-section. I think I'm bringing a little extra drama to my reaction for that reason; I'm seeing my first birth with a different ending.
I thought my fellow IRL mama might
run into a little "failure to progress" and then a c-sec, but I didn't imagine that breech could happen. It just didn't occur to me, so I am feeing very SHOCKED.
I spoke to some mamas IRL and their first thoughts were like mine, oh jeez, that baby must've been early, since it was breech and much lighter than the first baby. I wanted to ask the open-ended question here, to see if other mamas thought that could be a reason for the breech presentation, and to hear some other reasons or reactions.
I am not interested in judging if what my friend did was wrong or right...because I think she did make the best and safest decision she could. She feels comfortable and happy with a caregiver that offers elective induction, who has the arrogance to know better than nature and decide when baby is ready to be plucked, and then gets the "ohmygoodness baby was breech, thank GOD for the doctor!" laurels to rest upon. She just another American woman choosing the 'safest' and best way of birth in our culture...I understand her motivations for making the choices she made. I am just sad that in my eyes, she was hornswaggled and her baby was put at risk, because maybe her baby was interested in a longer stay in mama, who knows.
Pam says in her situation, "I NEVER felt like baby was breech - it definitely felt like a hard, firm head down there with heart tones down low!" Gee, that's the same humble, human, respectable attitude I keep hearing from midwives, that I'm not hearing from OBs that rely on the u/s scan done by the radiology tech and don't bother to learn the "primitive" skills of human touch.
The LDR buzz before wheeling into the OR was "this baby had fooled us," which I overreact to and charachterize as another way of docs faulting the woman and her fetus for things "going wrong," rather than entertaining the notion that, yeah, it IS hard to tell what's what in the belly sometimes, and yeah, mistakes BY the caregiver can be made. Let's just use our best judgement and use evidence to make the best guess (i.e., low heart tones) rather than basing it all on arrogance (heck, I'll just schmear this Doptone around the belly at this 37 week appt.) And I know mama had a vaginal exam in the office...can't ya have one hand in mom and the other on the belly to get an idea of what's presenting?
Whatever. The prevaling attitude is: we are doctors, we will induce you, you'd better dialate 1 cm/hr, your kid better be presenting normal, otherwise it's a DISASTER because your female body is a FREAK SHOW and now we gotta prep the OR.
When I talked to this mama on the phone, twice, before the birth, she asked me about *my* elective induction, and both times I characterized it as "successful" because my baby was born vaginally (the goal of an induction is a vaginal birth) and I did tell her that my primary worry about all modes of scheduled births is iatrogenic prematurity, "but you're pretty sure of your dates, right?" I said....
....and now I have learned that of course mama can be sure of her dates, but it's still possible that baby wanted LONGER than math might suggest. (I do not doubt this mama's datekeeping, and I assume her OB believes her dates, and she had u/s to confirm it, I'm sure.)
Thanks for your thoughts about this scenario...I just want to think all my reactions through, knowing that this birth scenario is a learning oppertunity, as it is a scenario I hadn't imagined, and it's not all that outlandish!
So now that ya'll know my motives...
and Pam, this breech babe was reported to have had her feet up by her ears...isn't that a frank breech, the 'preferred' breech presentaion? (Not that this mama's OB would deliver a breech vaginally! :LOL Just that there might be other
caregivers and other situations when this would be concidered a pretty do-able delivery.)(edited to add above caveat about breech birth)