Wishful thinking- how long did you do it? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 05-31-2010, 12:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi Friends,
I had my baby girl almost 8 months ago. I was at a birth center, my water broke b/4 labor started, and after 24 hours I was made to go to the hospital for augmentation. The pit caused decelerations, which caused my very traumatic c-section. It has been so hard. I am in therapy (I wrote about it in another thread), and am definitely on the mend. I am trying to take care of my body, my spirit and my soul. At times though, probably a few times a day, I engage in wishful thinking. I go back over the events, and try to think of things I could have done differently that could have prevented my hospital transfer. There were many of those moments, other choices I could have made, things I should have known.
I really think I would be fine if I felt my c-section had been necessary. My baby girl is my prize, and I am one lucky Mama. But, it didn't have to happen that way, she wasn't meant to be born in that violent and cold place. I lost my voice, allowed them to lead me around and agree to things I knew were wrong. I let their policy dictate my birth. I didn't know that I could say no. Oh, how I wish I had known that! Which leads me to my question-
For those who have been there and had traumatic birth experiences, was there ever a point when you could truthfully not wish you could go back and do it all over again? What does it feel like? I can't imagine it, and I guess I am looking for some insight. Thanks, you all have been a really big help to me.
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#2 of 9 Old 05-31-2010, 12:47 AM
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I think your are fortunate to get a chance to grieve and heal now. I didn't realize how my first birth affected me until I became pregnant with my second. It sounds crazy though--I felt healed after the birth of my second. I now look at my first birth as the catalyst to learn more & grow and become the birth advocate I am today. It would be harder if she had some long lasting damage, but she didn't.

Good luck,


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#3 of 9 Old 06-02-2010, 01:16 PM
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mamalade, hugs to you! It can be so hard when our heads go back to the birth so many times and we go through all the possibilities of different choices for a better outcome. My daughter is 16 months old and I am nowhere near healed. The few people I have talked to have not been understanding at all because all they see is that both my DD and I are still alive right now.

My experience did not involve a c-section, but it was extremely traumatic and had every single kind of intervention other than a c-section that you can get in a hospital setting. What kills me is that I had read all the books, watched all the documentaries and birth films, etc....so in my mind "I knew better!" which makes it so much worse. I can`t hide or justify my guilt behind ignorance. It just got to a point in my labor where I had no support from my now ex husband and I was in too much pain and too tired to keep going on my own, so I went to the hospital....and once there it became a nightmare.....they injured me and almost killed my daughter.

Lots of love and healing thoughts going your way. I have thought many times about having a second child and trying a home birth again, but then question my desire to do so and wonder if it would be just so I could heal or to prove myself that I can do it, or to feel what it`s really like to have a good birth. Then I wonder, if I do have a good home birth, how bad I would feel for my DD1 since I wasn`t able to provide that for her. As you can see, I am still torn up about it. But it has gotten a lot easier to deal with. I used to cry remembering the birth for quite a few months after my little treasure was born. I don`t cry any more, but the mental and emotional anguish persist inside my head.

May we both find ways to bring peace and leave the pain behind.
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#4 of 9 Old 06-14-2010, 01:41 PM
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My traumatic experience was not a birth, but what you are doing, the wishful thinking/what-ifs, is normal and really necessary to heal. You can't skip this stage and you actually are healing by doing it. I did this for about 2 months in a different situation, and then one day, the urge to do it just stopped, and I felt a whole lot better. It is like the "bargaining" stage of grieving.

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#5 of 9 Old 06-15-2010, 11:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you so much for responding. I am feeling better, though some days are better than others. A friend came across photo albums of her first baby's beautiful birth, and she casually tossed them to me saying,"hey, I thought you might want to look at these". I was stunned, I looked at them all and went home and cried for hours and hours. So, things set me off, I am still bargaining with myself, I guess. But thanks for caring enough to respond. I know I will heal eventually. It is good to be reminded ot to try to hurry it up. Thanks, big hugs to you!
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#6 of 9 Old 06-16-2010, 04:42 PM
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hey, marmalade, i am pretty much in the same situation you are. i had an unecessary c-section b/c my water had broke so i was put on pit which caused late decels. my story is here.

i spent the first 3 months thinking every detail through over and over, wishing i done things differently...i like that you call it wishful thinking. i just felt like i was being constantly weighted down with regrets and resentments.

not so much now. although they do rear their ugly head

this has a lot to do with the fact that i am now obsessed with doing the research necessary to convince DH that we should have a HBAC next go around. this is a big battle, so it has consumed most of my energy.

what has also helped me was getting my medical records and now knowing for a fact that the c/s was not necessary. now i have no doubt that my anger with the OB and the hospital is totally justified, and although i could have done a lot of things different, i am letting myself off the hook.

that was my first time in labor, there was no dress rehearsal. i did the best i could....as for the OB and hospital, they have birthed hundreds and hundreds of babies, they should have done better!!!!
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#7 of 9 Old 06-18-2010, 06:31 PM
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For me there was a real turning point with my daughter's first birthday. It was like I needed to get through a whole cycle of the seasons before I could make room in my head for fresh thinking about the whole thing. I stopped being quite so obsessed with re-hashing the whole ordeal, and I started feeling stronger, not just freaked out and traumatized all the time.

Another turning point for me was 18 months after the birth, which is also when I signed up for the MDC forums and started sharing my experience here. Connecting with other moms with experiences that I could relate to and really finding my voice in this community has been incredibly healing.

Things change over time. It's just how it is. Healing does happen.

Good luck to you, mama! I hope you will keep sharing your experiences here.

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#8 of 9 Old 06-18-2010, 07:12 PM
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I don't have anything to add, but I wanted to wish you Mama's much healing vibes and love. I haven't gone through this, but it always breaks my heart when I read stories of birth trauma.

Lovin my sweet babygirl 3-17-10love.gif and expecting another in March! love.gif

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#9 of 9 Old 06-24-2010, 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by AAK View Post
I now look at my first birth as the catalyst to learn more & grow and become the birth advocate I am today.
This is how I feel now. It took a long time. My first and 3rd births were traumatic, and for a long time I would look back at my first and see so many things that I wanted to do over, but I'm at a point now where I've let it go. That was 6 1/2 years ago, and it's taken that long, as well as the 2nd traumatic birth to make me realize (for my own experiences) that what's done is done. I don't want to go back, I've let go now.

That's not to say that I'm not emotionally affected by my traumatic births, I am very much so and I still can't read birth stories because of the anxiety and emotions that swell inside of me, but as for wanting to go back and do it over, no, I don't. I hope that made sense!

I'm so sorry you're in pain

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