Painful labor/difficult birth tribe - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 02-01-2007, 03:19 AM - Thread Starter
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I've noticed several of us having been posting on the Birth and Beyond forum, so I thought I'd start a tribe.

This tribe is for anyone who thought they were going to have a beautiful, natural birth, and found that nothing went as they'd expected, for those of us who had back labor and got an epidural because the pain was unbearable, for those who pushed naturally for hours on end and never got anywhere and ended up with a c-section, for those whose babies were born naturally but it hurt so much there was still nothing beautiful about it ... and anyone else with a similar story.

I don't intend this so much as a tribe for those whose only problem with birth was medical mismanagement, and who found that everything went smoothly once they'd had more education, but for those of us who *were* educated and were betrayed by our bodies, and are having a hard time dealing with it.

My own experience was with a posterior baby, back labor, an epidural, and pushing for three screaming, torturous hours before agreeing to a c-section. He was so stuck that it took three doctors 20 minutes and a vacuum extractor to get him back out! It was not what I expected, but I've come to terms with it.

Anyone else feel like sharing?
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#2 of 5 Old 02-01-2007, 10:06 AM
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My dh and I took Hypnobirth classes, planned a water birth, had a birth plan a mile long...I had a perfect pregnancy, good nutrition, lots of walking and yoga, plenty of rest...I went into labor on Tuesday and had Liam by c section Friday night, after almost 3 hours of pushing. I was totally unprepared for anything but a natural delivery! but by the time he was born I was ok with it -I was totally exhausted and my contractions were unbearably painful - I had felt myself starting to loose control, which was pretty scary. I knew that I didn't have much strength left, and that it shouldn't have been taking so long. As soon I saw his poor, huge, misshapen head, I knew that the intervention had been neccessary.

What ended up being the hardest thing for me was I got an infection and had to be in the hospital for two weeks. I am still mourning the loss of our "babymoon". I won't be having more babies so that was it, my one chance, and I do feel sad about it. My sil and best friend are both pregnant now, and I feel jealous ( and embarressed that I'm jealous) that they'll probably get to have the birth I wanted. Of course I'm really happy for anyone who gets to experience birth as natural, beautiful, and safe - and I still believe it's a possibility for most women. It's just so frustrating that I should be one of the minority of women to need intervention when I so much wanted the opposite.

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#3 of 5 Old 02-01-2007, 01:21 PM
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preceeding my daughter's birth is long and boring, but suffice to say, i was induced a week early for what i believe was convenience (she was due on christmas) and annoyance with me as a patient. within a few hours, she was showing "distress" and the overseeing doctor for my midwife played the dead baby card on me to get me in for a c-section.
i planned an hbac with my son and had a wonderful easy pregnancy, going into labor naturally the day after christmas (he was due on christmas as well). about 12 hours after the first contractions and bloody show, labor got more painful and my midwife came to check me-- i was 2 cm, after having been completely closed a week prior. very exciting! however, 24 hours and regular, painful, horrific contraction patterns later, i was still 2cm. i hadn't slept in two days and wanted to be dead. my midwife said she would do whatever i wanted, and i begged to go to the hospital. because i was a vbac, i had to have internal monitering, which meant i needed my water broken. they immediatly tried to get me to take antibiotics because they "suspected" i had an "intrauterine infection" (funny how THEY broke my water), which i refused. i was given a spinal right before the epidural and was in bliss. i got to take a nap. then the spinal wore off and only my right leg was numb. they turned up the epidural multiple times before realizing the epi had missed and hit a nerve. finally the doc was called back in to reinsert it and it took this time. then it wore off on the right side of my abdomen. throughout all of this, i was confined flat on my back in the world's longest transition. they started pitocin (which they were supposed to have started when administering the first epidural). i was crying. had i not been so psychotically (probably dellusional even at this point) attached to my vbac, i would have begged for a c-section. finally, finally, 2 days after i first went into labor, i was ready to push-- i pushed for 15 minutes and birthed a 9lb boy. he was blue and had a true knot in his cord, so they yanked him away (the husband barely had time to cut the cord) to check him (he was perfectly fine, pink and screaming before he even hit the table). the doctor started jabbing me in the belly to expell my placenta. shortly after birth, a nurse tried to convince me that my "large for gestational age" baby needed formula. another nurse tried to get me to take antibiotics for the "fever" i had during labor. they ordered an ekg on me in the middle of the night. they tried once more to get me to take antibiotics because of my unknown gbs status. they subjected my son to multiple heal pricks because of his (perfectly fine) blood sugar levels. outside of getting my vbac, most of my son's labor and birth was a nightmare.
so, there's that, heh.
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#4 of 5 Old 02-01-2007, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by pookel View Post

This tribe is for anyone who thought they were going to have a beautiful, natural birth, and found that nothing went as they'd expected
That is me. Thank you for this thread. My birth story is linked in my signature. Writing out the story of my son's birth was the most healing thing I have done for myself since his birth. I wrote it out longhand first and then typed it up for posting. I read it over and over, proofread it, wrote it again, and finally posted it.

Posting it removed so much of my anxiety about his birth. I wrote about how every day I would have flashbacks or dreams about the birth and the unpleasant hospital experience, but after posting those flashbacks died down. I would urge anybody who is still processing a bad birth experience to write it out if they haven't already. I'm so thankful that I had MDC to share my experience with.
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#5 of 5 Old 02-01-2007, 07:04 PM
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I was due on April 20th 2006 and went into labor April 28th. I believe that early labor had actually started on the 27th, but the morning of the 28th I knew I was in labor. He had flipped to being posterior a couple days before I had gone into labor. I had horrible back labor the entire time. When my contractions were about two minutes apart and a minute long (at night on the 28th), I went to see my midwife. I was 2 cm. She sent me back home. She told me if it didn't pick up to have a glass of red wine and take a bath so that it would back off. I was having back labor with close together contractions all through the night. I tried some red wine and a bath, and the minute I stood up out of the bath, I vomited all of the red wine during a contraction. I tossed and turned on my bed trying to make myself sleep because I knew it was going to be a long process at that point. I didn't sleep the entire night. I don't remember exactly what time it was, but I think around 6 or 7 am on the 29th, we went back to the midwives office. I was 4 cm so she let me stay, and I was very excited to be making progress (even though it took more than a day). She had me walk around town for an hour and a half. I got back and I was 5 cm. Great. Perfect. My best friend, auntie (who used to be a midwife) and dp were with me and helping me through everything, and I was in a good mood to know I was finally getting somewhere. I labored on the bed and I labored in the tub. After laboring in the tub for a couple hours, she checked me again. 6 cm. Amazing. This is really happening. I was getting tired though. My midwife had asked earlier if I wanted her to break my water and I had said no. She asked again once I reached 6 cm, and I was in such a zone that I told dp to decide. He was hesitant, but said ok. She broke my water...hardly any came out. I labored for another hour in the tub. 5 cm. What? I didn't know you could go backwards. I was having piggy back contractions and back labor and my cervix was closing. Another hour? Who knows how long it was. 4 cm. I believe at that point it was about 4 pm (please forgive me if the above math doesn't add up- I'm just trying to go from experience...). I had been in labor for close to two days at that point, and I was 4 cm again. I was falling asleep between contractions. We did everything to make my contractions strong and productive. We transferred to the hospital for an epi to see if it would help me sleep, and at least then I could still have a vaginal. I was in horrible pain and they made me answer tons of questions so they could fill out paperwork when I got there. I had to go to the local hospital that had a 50% c/s rate because the UW hospital wouldn't take me (I refused the GD testing). I got my epi. The doc checked me. 4 cm. He asked how I felt about pitocin. I told him I'd prefer to not have any and see if resting would help me. He came back a few hours later. 4 cm. They gave me pitocin. 4 cm. They gave me more pitocin. 4cm. They cranked the f-ing pitocin. 4cm. The doc told me at that point that he was thinking we should consider a c/s. Thank God, the baby was not in distress, but my water had been broken for some time, and it was possibly a matter of time before the baby would be distressed after such a long labor. Between me, dp, and the midwives that came with me (bless their hearts, I wouldn't have made it without them), we decided a c/s was best at that point. I was so scared. Dp was scared. 20 minutes after we made the decision they wheeled me into the OR. Not a lot of time to absorb what was happening. I was crying. I had practiced my breathing techniques. I had meditated. I drank the rrl tea. I did the kegels. I read about thirty books. Why couldn't I have the birth that I wanted? They gave me the second epi for my c/s. My mouth was completely dry and I was very scared. They wouldn't give me any water. I begged for some water. I couldn't swallow and it was making me panic. One of the sweet nurses got me a wet wash rag and put it in my mouth and I sucked the water out of it. I know she probably shouldn't have- but I am so glad she did. I wish I could've given her a hug. They let dp into the OR. I am an optimist, and I sat there saying ' the baby is coming- it doesn't matter how he gets here as long as he's safe, and I will be happy'. I got myself excited. My baby was coming. Not the way I wanted, but it's ok....I guess. They made the first cut...I could feel it!!!!! I swear to God I felt them cutting my skin! I told them, I need more anesthesia, I can feel it! The anesthesiologist told me that he'd given me all he could and that he'd have to put me out if I could feel it. I told him no...I didn't want to miss my baby being born. I can handle the pain- even if it's someone cutting into my insides.

I fainted. Or he put me out. I'm not sure. If he put me out, I sure as hell fought it! I woke up to them TUGGING TUGGING TUGGING the baby out. I fainted again. I woke up and they are taking the baby over to weigh him (they had let dp cut the cord and I didn't even know ) I hear them scream something...I tell dp to 'go take pictures! What were they screaming?????' I thought they said he was 9lbs. I was thinking- what a good sized baby! Dp says to me, 10lbs, 2 oz! Holy sh*t! No wonder I was so hungry during my pregnancy! I was growing a linebacker!

Dp sat behind me the entire time they sewed me up. I kept fainting and coming to. Every time I'd come to, I'd tell dp- 'show me the baby!!!!!!' And then I'd faint and dp would sit back down.

It's not the birth I wanted. But it's the birth I got and I am grateful for some things. Some people might think I'm crazy, but I'm grateful that I got to experience labor even though it ended in surgery. I am proud that I handled two days of labor with no drugs! C/s or no, I don't know many people that would've made it that long. I'm grateful that they allowed dp to cut the cord. I'm grateful dp was in the room with me. And I'm greatful that they allowed him to hold the baby the entire time I was in surgery, and we got the baby directly after that and for the entire time we were there. We even co-slept in the hospital

I think the thing that scares me most is never having my natural birth. I want more kids, but what if I have c/s after c/s? It's always in the back of my mind. I want my vaginal birth

I have never written that all down before. I'm sorry it's so long. I know this probably isn't a thread for entire birth stories per se, but I feel comfortable writing it here. I don't want it to be the c/s story among natural birth stories. I'm just so jealous and I feel like I've really missed something beautiful. :
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