Since I have been part of JustMommies for over 5 years I have seen a lot of discussions about childbirth. I have had two medicated vaginal births, an emergency csection, an unmedicated vbac, a really long and arduous childbirth, a really fast labor, and childbirth that didn’t go according to plan more than once. I think I have had a taste of it all.
It has taken me time to realize how magical childbirth is no matter how it happens. After I had my son, I remember defensively telling everyone about how long his childbirth was and having to explain to everyone why I ended up getting an epidural – like I really had to explain this. Lots of women get epidurals and they shouldn’t have to feel guilty about it, but for some reason we do – or I did.
When I had Angie, I didn’t even bother trying. After all, my first attempt at that prestigious prize of having natural childbirth was a complete and utter failure. I just didn’t even try the second time. It was as if now it didn’t matter. Now that I had caved and been just like every other wimpy mom, why bother. Even if I did have natural childbirth now what did it matter? I was already scarred for life as a childbirth failure. These were the crazy thoughts that went through my head anyway. And, I just thought last time it hurt like heck and I already know that I don’t like pain so no, no thank you. This time can you please get me that epidural and get it to me as fast as you can.
Then there was Brandon. I went into labor with him entirely too early. My placenta abrupted when I was 33 weeks pregnant. I was 5 cm dilated when I went to the hospital. Initially they tried to stop my labor but then they decided it was better if I had him that day. I can’t remember everything that happened now but I do remember that I was at 8 to 9 cm and was doing great. I hadn’t had anything for pain and hadn’t had an epidural yet either. This is when they told me I needed to get up on all fours that something was wrong. They made me do this quickly. I was in the middle of a contraction and wasn’t quite ready to move yet. They moved me, checked my cervix again and said that I needed a csection. I remember thinking but I am almost 9cm, can’t you give me a few more minutes? Followed by a thought of panic, something must be seriously wrong if they are moving me to a csection this quickly. Tears streamed down my eyes as they moved me to operating room to do the csection. My birth hadn’t gone according to plan and again I didn’t have that natural childbirth that I kept hoping that one day I would have. I was now a csection mommy. It felt so weird. I have no regrets about my csection because I know that my doctor did the best thing to get him into the world safely. I have grief about it but not because of regrets.
Then I had Lyndsey. She was supposed to be born via csection because doctors these days don’t like to do vbacs. I didn’t like the situation but decided to just work on coming to terms with it. She ended up coming early like my other kids. I went into labor with her before my scheduled csection. They gave me two shots of terbutaline and sent me home. Then the next day my contractions started up, my water broke, and by the time I got to the hospital I was 5cm dilated. Thirty five minutes later – and before the doctor could arrive – I was complete. They wouldn’t give me anything for pain because they still planned to do a csection. But, when the doctor got there Lyndsey was pretty much ready to come out so they just had me push. It was so exhilarating. I finally was doing it. I never thought that I could do it without medication but now I know that I can. I didn’t plan it that way and it seems that none of my childbirths have gone according to plan.
Now that we are trying to conceive again I am thinking in my head about my last childbirth. I want my last childbirth experience to be my most magical. And, since I know from my last experiences that childbirth does not usually happen the way you plan it, I have set in my mind that no matter how it happens –unmedicated, epidural, csection, or any other possible way that I just haven’t thought of – it is going to be magical. There will be no regrets, no second thoughts, no guilt. The moment my baby comes into this world alive is going to be magical. And, this is how it should be for all moms.