When I became pregnant with my daughter I knew that there had to be a better way. I began researching vaginal birth after cesarean, and even began researching home birth. I was newly married and I knew my husband wouldn't go for a home birth so I resigned myself to another hospital birth but decided this time would be better. I prepared my body with evening primrose oil, and red raspberry leaf tea. I had a supportive midwife through Kaiser that seemed to really care. I decided I would labor at home for as long as possible. To my surprise at at 37 weeks 5 days I had a cervical check at the doctors, I was 5 cm. and hadn't had a whole lot of contractions. I sent Sean to work, and went shopping with my mom for last minute items. i began feeling a lot of back pain, it wasn't excruciating, but i did notice it would come in waves. YAY, contractions. I labored most the day upright, and walking through stores. We made our way back to our house that afternoon. I finally had to concentrate on contractions and got into a warm bath. I was so excited, I wasn't in pain, but it was intense. Sean came home from work and I was feeling like I was in transition so we headed to the hospital. Unfortunately, everything stopped once we got to the hospital. They checked me and I was a stretchy 7, but I was not contracting at all. they sent me walking for 30 minutes and still nothing. they wanted to break my water (which in hindsight we should have tried), I was so upset about my previous birth and I just know that the artificial rupture of membranes caused the ultimate cesarean that I refused to have my water broken. So they started pitocin. I was also afraid of pitocin induced contractions so I went for an epidural. The epidural made my blood pressure drop and I almost passed out. This led to other interventions. The night nurse was really rude, took away my call light, yelled at my mom, had my husband sleeping on the floor, turned out my lights when i didn't want her to, didn't empty my catheter (which has led to permanent bladder damage), and didn't up the pitocin all night, until the morning where she upped it to where it SHOULD have been had she done it slowly. For those who know about VBAC's you know inductions with pitocin are not the best panning and upping slowly is the ONLY way it should be done if it is. We got a new nurse the following morning and we had the administrators of the hospital in our room talking to us as I was in heavy labor.the epidueral began wearing off towards the end of labor. My water was broken the following morning and things progressed relatively quickly. I was ready to push around 11:30-noon but chose not to and my nurses and midwife were ok with this. I changed positions, and breathed my baby down. I felt ready to push around 4 and she was born at 4:32 vaginally. SUCCESS. I was still left feeling violated, and abused. Although it was slightly healing.
When my I became pregnant with my third I was set on a home birth, although my husband still was not. The whole pregnancy I felt completely off and I ended up delivering prematurely at 27 weeks and 2 days by cesarean. It was very traumatic and we are still processing the details 2 1/2 year later. (her story and pictures are the bulk of this blog so far)
Now that I am pregnant once again with my 4th, I am facing these fears and replaying the details of all my birth experiences over and over in my mind. I find myself getting anxious and wondering if I can do it. Can I really have a normal birth, will I really be able to have another vaginal birth, Is it possible to be treated with respect? I have found a wonderful home birth midwife, but I know I will need to work through these feelings. Hopefully as the pregnancy progresses I can process these birth traumas and reach a peaceful place before embarking on what will hopefully be a healing birth experience.