Anyone still having flashbacks? - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-02-2010, 06:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know this sounds crazy, but at 18 months PP, I still have flashbacks to DD's birth now and then. It was really frequent in the months right after her birth, and now it's like once a month or so. I mean, I guess it's what you would call a flashback. It's like being in shock for a minute or two--like I'm right back there, and I can feel the chill of the OR and the fear, and I'm paralyzed, and I can smell my skin being cut.... Weird, right? Shock is the only real feeling.

I really feel like I've processed DD's birth, and I'm at peace with it, but every now and then these waves wash over me and I'm right back there. The only time I've had this before was after a car accident, where I could think about it and the impact would hit me again. It took about six months for that to stop. So when is the birth stuff going to stop?

Does anyone else have this, or am I losing my mind?

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Old 08-03-2010, 03:25 PM
 
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I just want to respond and say that I don't think this is weird and I don't think you're losing your mind. Some part of you is still processing the experience, and that sounds like a normal part of healing from a traumatic experience.

For me there were two major "thresholds" in my healing...the first around the time of my daughter's first birthday, and the next at 18 months after her birth. These were times when I noticed a significant improvement in my ability to think about the birth without feeling anxiety, as well as a reduction in feeling "triggered" by any mention of birth or c-section. As her 2nd birthday approaches, I'm hoping that maybe another layer of grief and remorse will fall away. At any rate, that's just my journey...I expect it's different for everyone.

If your flashbacks are interfering with your life or causing you grief or pain, therapy might be helpful. But it sounds like you've done a lot of healing work already, and those deep parts of yourself have their own time frame for letting things go.

Living in Wisconsin with my partner of 20+ years and our DDenergy.gif(Born 10/09/08 ribboncesarean.gif). Why CI Mama? Because I love contact improvisation!

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Old 08-03-2010, 03:49 PM
 
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Wow I remember those days of the flash backs.. Its not so nice.. It took me about 18 months for those to go away.. Everyone heals diffrently.. Have you looked into ICAN, (international cesarean awareness network) I know talking with other moms that went through the same thing helped..

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Old 08-05-2010, 03:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for your thoughts. Reading here, writing a thank you letter to my midwife, writing DD's birth story, and seeing no longlasting scars on DD has helped a lot. I read a lot on the VBAC subforum too. It's good to know I'm not the only one who had/has them.

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Old 08-07-2010, 03:38 PM
 
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- i could have written your post, so yes - normal, not losing your mind!

yes - with both births - with ds1 i can flip to the first time i really got to see him, in the nicu, in an isolette with a tube in his nose and monitors and machines - sadness. it hurts less to think about it but it still does hurt 3+yrs later

ds2 - my uterine rupture - lots of anxiety - i didn't even get to see him, no apgars given, just rushed out with him - my dh's face...the fear. so anxiety and deep sadness.

i think part of the flashbacks for me is mourning the fact that i will never have a "normal" birthing experience and although i have 2 healthy boys, i will always have those little twinges of sadness or envy when i hear, so matter-of-factly of all the wonderful, normal birthing experiences - i wish it didn't affect me, but if i am really honest about it...it does.

mama to callum (april 8,07) and everett (sept 24,09) - blessed to be married to my life's love since '98. novaxnocirc.gif

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Old 08-09-2010, 10:43 AM
 
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EFT (emotional freedom technique) is EXCELLENT for flashbacks and 'feeling' the traumatic event in your body.
You could do it on your own but for something like this I'd recommend seeing an EFT practitioner who can help you tear down the 'scene' and eliminate the negative emotional charge.

hth!


Helping women overcome postpartum depression and birth trauma. http://www.postmommyhood.com

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Old 08-11-2010, 05:48 PM
 
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I've been getting them a lot recently - people I know on facebook are having babies, and I feel like every-other person is having a c-section. seeing the pictures of them looking like i felt, lying on the table and trying to hold their babies - totally getting some bad flashbacks and full-body chills. I thought I was over all of that, too. My DS is 17-months. You're not alone!

Lisa mama to Adrian born 3/09 by unnecessarean
#2 is coming in May 2011! planning for a home vbac.gif
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Old 08-12-2010, 12:13 AM
 
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Today is one month since my son's birthday, and yesterday and today the flashbacks have been bad. I keep thinking of the most awful language--mutilated, gutted, having a gaping hole torn in me. And--this being the part I have the hardest time communicating to my husband or anyone--I feel like I failed, that I did not do what I was supposed to do, what I was made to do. And this wretched scar will be with me to remind me of that failure every day of my life. I know a month is nothing, and I may have years yet before I come to terms with this. But that is just such a frightening thought!
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