PPD, dealing with EMCS and also loss of bf'ing - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 08-19-2012, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am new here. This is my first post. My little girl is 11 weeks old. I had planned a peaceful, natural birth. Had originally wanted a homebirth but it is hard to come by in my area a good midwife who will do it. Anyway I loved my OB's office and the hospital Family Birth Center is beautiful and very naturally oriented.

 

I went into labor on my own with my water breaking at 37 w 6 days. I went in and they admitted me. I was having mild contractions for a long time.

 

Ended up on Pitocin, still no progress, got in the tub-no progress,cranked up the Pitocin, leading me to beg for an epidural, I was in such pain although only at 3cm. (reason being I found out later)

 

went all thru the night on the epidural, only dilated 3cm in 7 hours.

 

I had a fever since before they put in the epidural and by the next day it was high, I was purely exhausted and still in pain even thru a maxed out epidural

 

They finally came in and said I was at 10 cm (after 30 hours) and said I could try to push. I pushed for an hour to no avail the dr had 3 fingers inside me and could not touch my daughter's head

 

they finally said I needed to go for EMCS as I had been ROM for 31 hours, high fever, and some distress on the monitor. exhausted delirious and demoralized I didn't even care

 

The surgery itself was ok, I remember feeling some tugging and stuff and then a healthy baby screaming and wailing and I thought, she's OK! and then I passed out on and off on the table. turns out the reason she could not come down was that she had somehow moved to a transverse position, unbelievable

 

went to recovery where I got to see her as soon as I was coherent and latched her on. She seemed like a total stranger to me, I was so disoriented and still very exhausted (i hadn't had food or water in 18 hrs) I was begging for water and they kept saying no since I was still shortly post-op

 

I stayed in the hospital for a week, I had an infection, she had jaundice and lost 12% of her weight as my milk was very delayed. When we finally went home she was nursing ok but had very bad reflux. she fed, vomited and screamed constantly

 

i kept on like this for 6 weeks, even visiting the pediatrician who gave her meds, gave me tips on feeding, and things **** got worse. I was just too tired and also disturbed by her discomfort that on the dr's suggestion gave her some hypoallergenic formula. she was like a completely different baby after that. I felt so relieved that she was feeling better but then plagued by horrible guilt and shame that I was now formula feeding. Also still overwhelmed with trauma and guilt over my EMCS

 

I just don't know what to do. I am also suffering from PPD and I just feel terrible.I feel badly that nursing didn't work, that I couldn't give birth to her the way I planned, I couldn't do extended bf'ing the way i wanted, etc. I am just drowning in sadness, guilt and shame.

 

don't know if we will have more children so feel like that was my one chance

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#2 of 8 Old 08-19-2012, 09:14 PM
 
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Welcome to MDC firsttimer2012 and congratulations on your little girl. My thoughts and sympathies are with you for the birth trauma that you experienced, the losses you've experienced, and sadness, guilt, and shame that you are feeling; all of those things are very hard. The mamas on this Healing Birth Trauma board are very supportive; in addition, many Mamas have shared their stories and perhaps reading those will provide comfort to you and give you some ideas of what's helped others and might help you. I noticed you mentioned that you are dealing with PPD and I wanted to let you know about MDC's PPD forum as another forum for support.

 

When I'm dealing with painful or traumatic things, I find that taking things one day (or one hour or one minute) at a time helps. Also, accepting support from others helps. So I think it's great that you posted here. In addition, are there people in your family, circle of friends, community that can support you--either practically or with emotional support?

 

I'm sending support and hug.gif to you!
 


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#3 of 8 Old 08-20-2012, 09:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thank you for your post and the info

 

the people around me are nice but tend to just say, you're fine and the baby's fine, what's the big deal. so I have stopped talking about it.

 

I had wanted to have a natural birth so bad, I wanted to BF so bad, none of it worked out.

 

I just feel like a failure in many areas. I know that my baby is ok and the c section doesn't matter to her, formula is helping her thrive but it's still a real bummer

 

i will check out the PPD board as well, thank you!

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#4 of 8 Old 08-20-2012, 09:30 AM
 
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I was lucky and got a nice enough birth (on paper at least, my memories of it are something else) with DD1 but then my relationship fell apart, my thyroid gland went crazy (i ended up being finally dx with something i'd had undx for years and getting on medication) and my supply bombed.  I tried to "top up" with formula and ended up weaning instead.

 

I felt soooo guilty.  I had failed to feed her "properly", i didn't even provide her with a proper family!  I felt AWFUL.

 

I'm not going to lie, it took a long time to heal, but it is all about context.

 

In the context of your 11 short weeks of parenting how you give birth and how you feed your baby are really big important things.  When she is 3 she won't be formula fed, nor will any of her peers and very very few of her peers will still be breastfed even if they once were.  You will have been through dozens of tough times with her utterly unrelated to how she was born or fed.  Your abilities will have been measured by longer yardsticks, your courage and strength will have been tested and found ample in many other ways.  When she is 6 (my eldest is 6 now) she will be in school and no one around her will be able to tell how she was born or fed and it really WON'T matter as much, even to you.  In the grand scheme of the task of parenting those are going to end up being fairly small things, i promise.  Right now they aren't.  That's ok, that's totally normal.  You have every right to grieve for as long as it takes over those things.

 

Live every day with your LO, get as much help as you need with your PPD, don't struggle alone, try to enjoy your baby as much as you can (i know that's hard with PPD casting it's shadow).  Be gentle with yourself, you've been through some really really hard things.  Other people blowing them off as "no big deal" doesn't make them so.  Keep on keeping on.  This is motherhood, it's hard, it's confronting, alot of the time it's disappointing and even devastating.  But it's a long road, your shaky start will end up being a major bonus - just think when your LO has a fit of screaming in the supermarket and knocks down the cans-of-beans display it WON'T be your hardest parenting moment!  Not by a long way!  You have this in reserve, the harsh lessons your birth and feeding journey have taught you (i.e. life as a mother: it's not always perfect, it's not even always particularly bearable!), where other mums who got exactly what they wanted and expected will Some Day have to face what you already know.  

 

You are stronger than you know.  Best of luck and a big hug. xxx

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#5 of 8 Old 08-20-2012, 09:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thank you for your lovely response.

 

I guess because it is all fresh in my head it just seems insurmountable.

 

My cousin just had a baby last week. I went to visit her since she gave birth in the same hosp. as me. I was telling her about my delivery and stuff. She had induction, epidural, etc and pushed for 2.5 hours they were almost about to call time on her and then she got the baby out. She made a comment that she was so "motivated" that she was able to do it and she absolutely didn't want a c section. I was thinking did you just hear what I told you? Of course I was motivated too. In fact I went on a lot longer than I should have and I was nearly declared AMA.I was very hurt and then later on thought maybe I'm too sensitive but it still hurt

 

I know that in the future this won't seem like anything. I guess it's just getting thru this immediate time that will be hard. I would maybe like to have one more so that might be a completely different and healing experience, but who knows.

 

in the meantime I feel like I can't talk to or listen to anyone because it's an emotional minefield. :(

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#6 of 8 Old 08-20-2012, 07:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by firsttimer2012 View Post
the people around me are nice but tend to just say, you're fine and the baby's fine, what's the big deal. so I have stopped talking about it.

 

I had wanted to have a natural birth so bad, I wanted to BF so bad, none of it worked out.

 

I have not experienced birth trauma (though I have experienced trauma), but my birth experience and breastfeeding experiences were not what I expected or hoped for. I too had a lot of people say "you're fine, your baby's fine" and it was so frustrating. yes, I was glad to be fine and I was glad my baby was fine and (in my case) I was glad that Ifelt the birth experience was positive, but I was also experiencing loss. Loss of the birth I hoped for and believed I would have. Loss of the type of breastfeeding relationship I thought I would have (I ended up EPing). And those losses are real and can be so painful. It's ok to feel the way you're feeling. I am sending empathy on the losses and trauma you've experienced.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by GoBecGo View Post
get as much help as you need with your PPD, don't struggle alone, try to enjoy your baby as much as you can (i know that's hard with PPD casting it's shadow).  Be gentle with yourself, you've been through some really really hard things.  Other people blowing them off as "no big deal" doesn't make them so.  Keep on keeping on.  

...

You are stronger than you know.  Best of luck and a big hug. xxx

yeahthat.gif

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by firsttimer2012 View Post

My cousin just had a baby last week. I went to visit her since she gave birth in the same hosp. as me. I was telling her about my delivery and stuff. She had induction, epidural, etc and pushed for 2.5 hours they were almost about to call time on her and then she got the baby out. She made a comment that she was so "motivated" that she was able to do it and she absolutely didn't want a c section. I was thinking did you just hear what I told you? Of course I was motivated too. In fact I went on a lot longer than I should have and I was nearly declared AMA.I was very hurt and then later on thought maybe I'm too sensitive but it still hurt

 

That would be hard for me to hear too. Friends of mine sent out a birth announcement that started with "Born the best way possible...all natural, no drugs!" And although I fully support natural birth (and wanted a drug-free birth for myself), it hurt to read. Within their announcement they went onto to say that she was "tougher than most moms" and "few people could do the amazing thing that she did" and that's when I stopped reading. I was happy for her but it hurt. Because regardless of what it was intended to say, it ready to me as "you're not tough" or "what you did wasn't amazing" and you know, we are tough. We did amazingly. And we continue to be strong in facing the difficulties and losses we've had.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by firsttimer2012 View Post
in the meantime I feel like I can't talk to or listen to anyone because it's an emotional minefield. :(

 

I hope you will find comfort and support in reading the stories and "meeting" the mothers on this board and in the PPD forum. Also, are there any support groups in your area? A friend of mine attended a support group for PPD and really found it helpful (as she said "I was glad to have a place to go where other moms were struggling too because at mommy and me classes, I felt like the only one with challenges."). In my experience, support for birth trauma is sometimes less well-advertised, but I know someone who found a counselor and support group by calling a local rape crisis center and they had referrals to counselors with experience not only with sexual assault, but with other kinds of trauma as well.

 

Sending a big hug your way. hug.gif


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#7 of 8 Old 08-22-2012, 03:49 AM
 
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thank you for your lovely response.

 

I guess because it is all fresh in my head it just seems insurmountable.

 

My cousin just had a baby last week. I went to visit her since she gave birth in the same hosp. as me. I was telling her about my delivery and stuff. She had induction, epidural, etc and pushed for 2.5 hours they were almost about to call time on her and then she got the baby out. She made a comment that she was so "motivated" that she was able to do it and she absolutely didn't want a c section. I was thinking did you just hear what I told you? Of course I was motivated too. In fact I went on a lot longer than I should have and I was nearly declared AMA.I was very hurt and then later on thought maybe I'm too sensitive but it still hurt

 

I know that in the future this won't seem like anything. I guess it's just getting thru this immediate time that will be hard. I would maybe like to have one more so that might be a completely different and healing experience, but who knows.

 

in the meantime I feel like I can't talk to or listen to anyone because it's an emotional minefield. :(

 

Aaah, human beings are superstitious creatures though.  We don't like to feel as helpless in the hands of random chance as we really are.  So of course your cousin ascribes her "success" to motivation and not blind luck, because that's easier to live with, and it means she might be able to recreate it next time, and thus feel less scared next time.  Just as you blame yourself for a labour which, to me, an unattached random person, seems to have been complicated by a uterine infection (which is non-avoidable on your part, and probably weakened the membranes enough that they broke long before baby was planning to be born, thus the labour didn't really go anywhere and had to be augmented, and she didn't cooperate with that ultimately either, turning aside at the 11th hour - there is no "motivation" that could get one around that medical complication, rationally, but still, you count it as your own failure).

 

Rationality is hard right after a baby, when suffering from trauma or when under the cloud of PPD.  But it can be your friend.  We all narrate the story of our lives as it happens.  One person thanks their luck that their prayers for rain were answered and their vegetable garden thrived when their finances were tight, another feels bitter that every summer since they were 11 SOMETHING has gone wrong and this year it was their basement flooding.  Rationally, it just rained.  For no one's benefit and for no one's ruin, rain is just rain.  But we narrate events, contextualise everything.  It's just how we are.  Natural birth is a doozy - are the teens who give birth in their bedrooms in secret and hide the baby and placenta in the wardrobe super motivated and determined to have a natural birth?  No.  Just too scared to tell anyone they made a mistake 9 months ago.  Most of those girls and babies are ok, some of them die.  Luck.

 

We all have control TO SOME EXTENT, but unfortunately it is to a much smaller extent than we like to imagine/tell ourselves - maybe your cousin's labour was going ok-enough that the adrenalin kick of terror at being told her birth would be a cs in a little wile made her uterus eject her baby, but if her birth HADN'T been going ok, chances are that would have made no difference.  Chances are, for example, that by the time YOU were given that news you "didn't even care" because you were already flooded to saturation with adrenalin, and your uterus had done what it could with that, which with a transverse baby inside it is not much. But imagine it had happened to her the same, then where would her motivation have been?  There are certainly things one can do to avoid some outcomes, but they aren't silver bullets, ultimately things can always go wrong, we can NEVER plan for every possible variation in events.

 

I think you are very wise to see this as insurmountable, it's a pretty harsh fact that we have so little control.  You won't surmount it, you'll just learn to live with it.  One day your cousin will have to do the same.  Everyone does.  My mother always used to say you could tell people who'd "been through something" because they were more peaceful in themselves.  There are things we cannot change, and the medical problems surrounding your labour were one of yours.  It is going to HURT to be faced with others for whom that wasn't one of those unchangeable things.  That's ok.  I was abused as a child and i spent a lot of time hurting when people who hadn't been abused told me about their lovely childhoods which they ascribed to their wonderful family being really loving and attentive.  My family WAS loving and attentive, i wanted to yell at them.  It's been decades and don't hurt any more.  I know people with perfect childhoods and abusive partners, or horrible children (i'm sure they like them!), or massive financial problems, or infertility, or cancer, or or or...i could go on.  No one gets a free pass in this life, pain will touch all of us eventually, and knowing it, having recovered from it, i'm a bit less scared of it.  That's why i think you're stronger than you know.  

 

DO keep talking wherever you can.  Come here.  Talk IRL to a PPD group in your area.  Call the helplines, chat to the child health nurse (or whatever they have where you are).  Don't hide, you did nothing wrong and have nothing to feel ashamed about.  You are processing a very traumatic and painful event.  You have every right to feel as you do and to talk about it.  

 

More hugs xxx

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