A woman’s decision on how she will birth is a very personal one, and it is one that only she can make. I respect other women’s opinions and choices as I realize they might not be the same as mine and of course I would want them to respect mine just the same. I created this blog to help document my journey from a cesarean to a (hopefully) vaginal birth, and not only a natural birth but one where I am respected. Along the way I hope to be able to help other women. I worry for women who are pregnant with their first child and don’t know what to expect in the hospital, I also worry for those mom’s that have had hospital births and are going in for another. The birthing system in the US is scary and the statistics prove it. I hope they will be better than me in becoming educated and in knowing their rights as a mother. I hope they will learn the statistics and find what is best for them and their unborn babies. There are so many things I didn’t know going into my pregnancy and ultimately into the hospital. I feel that my experiences and challenges with my birth happened for a reason and I use them now as fuel to drive me to a better birth experience. All I know is that next time it’s going to be different, and it’s going to be better.
VBAC on the brain
Six weeks after my cesarean section I went in to my OB/GYN to have my postpartum check up. After the exam I asked the Nurse Practitioner about having a VBAC with my next pregnancy. “Oh no, we don’t reccomend those,” she quickly replied. “There is just too much risk involved.” Little did I know that the risk she was referring to, the risk of uterine rupture, is a low 0.4%. Quite a risk indeed. Fortunately my quest for a vbac didn’t stop there and for the last 17 months I have had what I like to call VBAC on the brain. I’ve spent hours on end researching about c-section prevention, vbacs and birth altogether in an attempt to have a better birth experience with the rest of my pregnancies. I’ve joined groups like ICAN and AZ Birthing Circle and have even gone to meetings. I’ve also read up on the vbacs that have gone wrong and learned more about why they did. I’m striving to gain all perspectives. There hasn’t been a day that has gone by that I haven’t thought about my next birthing experience and how I can improve my chance at a better birth. It has become something very important to me and my role as a mother. Especially as a resident of Arizona, where VBACs are not greatly supported, where it is hard to find a real Pro-Vbac provider and it is illegal to have a HBAC (homebirth after cesearean) assisted by a midwife. Women who want a VBAC in AZ have their work cut out for them (no pun intended).
This is Sarah Curtis. I used to be in your ward until we moved last year. You might not remember me, but I just wanted to thank you for your blog post. I didn’t have to have a C-section with my first, but the Dr. did threaten one possibly during delivery. I didn’t love my experience with my dr. or at the hospital (except for a few nurses that were total rockstars…seriously, angels through it all.) For me, I just know I want something different than the experience I had the first time. I’ve thought a lot (and researched a lot) about how I will want the next one to be when I have another one. I’ve thought a lot about birthing centers and midwives. I know we can’t “plan” perfectly because there is so much out of our control, but I think that the way the system is set up, it makes us feel like we have less control than we do. Seriously, it can be really hard to go “against dr. orders” if you don’t agree when the moment comes. It is the woman who should get to choose, once she has the facts, and all of the facts should be available to her. She should have every choice available as an option. I wish you seriously nothing but the best. Sorry this is such a long comment. Really, in short, I just wanted to say thank you for sharing. Thank you for the facts. And thank you for sharing your “smarts” with us.
I definately remember you and your cute family. I am sorry that the Dr. threatened you with a c/s, unfortunately that seems to happen a lot now a days. Good for you for doing your research, that is truly (in my opinion) one of the best ways to gain a better experience. I completely agree with you that even with planning and research, things might not turn out to be perfect, but you know things can definately be better and you can look back on it and know that you did your part. It’s great when we as mothers realize that we have a say in how we birth and that we don’t have to just sit back and let the Dr or whomever make all the decisions for us.Thanks so much for commenting, it means a lot to me. I’m glad this has been a help to you and I wish you the best as well:)
I love what you are doing with this and I will definitely be following since I too had to have a c-section with my little girl. My experience wasn’t quit as horrible as yours but during the whole process for me, there were unanswered questions as to why they felt it necessary to do one on me. My nurses were amazing. My doctor on the other hand hardly said anything to me. He would come in to check on me when needed and if I didn’t say something or ask a question he would have just walked out of my room without a word. He made me feel like I was an inconvenience. The only thing that the nurses and doctor could tell me as to why I had to have surgery was that I was running a little fever and that my baby was stuck in the canal and was showing signs of stress. They could never really explain to me why. Maybe a c-section was what had to be done in my case, but I can’t help but feel, ever since I left the hospital with Gemma, that things could have been different. I felt unresolved. (Does that make sence?)
Thank you for commenting and sharing your experience. I’ve met many mothers who have felt that same feeling, not quite understanding why everything happened the way it did. I am so sorry that your Dr. made you feel like an inconvienence, it’s sad that you had to be treated that way. Whether or not the c/s was completely necessary I feel that a mom has every right to know why it happened. Even though I understand why my c/s happened, I am considering getting a copy of my operative report just so I can have a complete account of what happened on the record. I hope my blog can be a help to you but also know that the ICAN website has a lot of great resources and sometimes it’s nice just to read the other mom’s stories and know that you aren’t alone and that your next birthing experience can be different if you want it to be. Best wishes:)