Reflecting On My VBAC

VBAC = Vaginal birth after caesarean. More progressive communities, hospitals, doctors are now doing them, reflecting on the studies now released showing the low rates of risk and also the benefits to the baby and mother. This was my goal.

Course I should write out the whole experience, and am currently doing so for my Drs and my own "memoirs". However, the most important things to note is my feelings going into it were much like Wrestling With What I Should Have Known. The point she made that, after a c-section, yes, your are thankful and full of gratitude for the safe arrival of your child, but it does not mean there isn't sadness and a feeling of regret you may harbor.

I found my VBAC, seriously, spiritually healing. It validated my place in the world as a mother. Yes, I can birth my children. It gave me an awesome amount of peace in my heart. An awesome amount of power to draw on in the future. Any moment I may doubt myself, just the very memory of my abilities as a woman and mother should be enough to quell a fear in any circumstance or bolster courage when I think I've run out. For me my caesarean birth felt like Creation saying I was not meant to be a mother. That had I been pregnant 200 years ago we both would have died. It wasn't until my VBAC that I could realize it not only was the choices I made but the lack of knowledge by all that surrounded me that lead to the caesarean. What a blessing to have doctors the second time around that went through my medical file with me and decoded it all. Their conclusion: there was no medical reason that a caesarean was urged upon me. 

With supportive doctors, doula, husband, friends, mother, sibling, etc. I was again and again told everything will be fine and "you can do it". I could tell the whole time they all didn't necessarily want to see me get to committed to my own vision that it could only be a natural birth. They didn't want me to get my hopes too high and then carry the disappointment I did after my first birth if it should turn out the same. I was very rational and assured everyone that this time I would be fine with the end result as long as the journey there was different. Still, there wasn't a moment where I really believed that. All I could do each day was recite my "birthing wish list". Visualize the whole thing, over and over. You know what? I got everything on that birthing wish list! Labor at night putting Sidekick to bed, my sister-in-law to come and watch over him, arrived 8 cm dilated after 2.5 hrs at home laboring, the water birthing room was available, which then also allowed me to have the wireless and waterproof fetal heart monitor I was mandated to wear (so I was never limited in the room), amazing nurses, my husband had listened to all my concerns and I could tell because he was doing the little things I needed and again, a really connected doula and doctor, a quick and safe natural labor.

The end result a perfect 8lb 20in healthy boy. Laid directly on my chest, long pulsing cord trailing up my stomach as the whole world stopped. Utter peace. Labor was amazing. Birthing intense. So much pain. So much reward. I'm humbled and awed... by MY OWN SELF this time, not just by the miracle of the baby.

I pray more and more women are aware of the right to make this choice. I pray more and more seek out the information and then the doctors that support VBACs. I pray at least one other woman in the world is gifted the healing in her heart that I have been.


AlePancha said...

Thanks on this post. I am looking forward to a vbac. Encouragement is what I need.

Kate Ogden said...

I've been away from blogging for awhile...
Have you had a second birth yet?
Thinking of you and hoping all is well.


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