In honor of my daughter's 4th birthday, I would like to share her birth story. My journey through this first birth is part of what led me to start Northshore Birth Options. In preparation for becoming a mother, I threw myself into as much research as possible trying to find the best support system for as intervention-free a birth as possible. Information on area birth options was difficult to come by, but my inquiries to friends and my online searches led me to the conclusion that to have the environment I wanted, I would have to travel away from the Northshore. My sister recommended Bradley Method so my husband and I took the class, bought the book, and did everything we knew to prepare for a "natural" birth. My biggest fear was of a cesarean. I did nothing to prepare for a surgical delivery because all my focus was on AVOIDING one. I had a healthy pregnancy and was not surprised when I went past my due date. I really wasn't worried. My baby was also breech, but though we did what we knew to do (chiropractor, spinning babies) baby stayed breech. I wasn't really worried about that either, because my doctor was experienced and comfortable with a vaginal breech delivery. (Which I strongly preferred over surgery).
Well, 10 days past my due date I was still pregnant. We failed the NST and had to go to the hospital for further monitoring. I had a feeling where this was headed. During my pregnancy God had given me a song that spoke of peace in a storm. I didn't know why, but I knew that this was meant to carry me through my delivery.
An ultrasound showed that baby was no longer in a frank breech position, but had changed to footling breech with her head back. She was also measuring large. All these factors, coupled with the fact that I had never delivered before prompted my doctor to make the call to deliver via cesarean. I burst into tears at this point, and was thankful that I had just eaten and thus had to wait a bit for surgery- enough time for my mom to come and for me to pray and process my fears and prepare myself to meet my baby through an entirely different means than anticipated.
My husband was a rock through it all. When the baby was delivered, we discovered her cord insertion site was at the top of my uterus near her head, and it was wrapped nicely around her neck. It was also the most puny cord I have ever seen. I believe that a vaginal delivery could have been devastating. While it took me over a year to process my birth and come to peace with the idea that a cesarean was truly necessary, I can now reflect back and thank God that He placed me under the care of an excellent physician and brought me through with a healthy baby and easy recovery. While it was not the birth I had hoped for, I am thankful that I can better relate to so many of the mothers in our area who have also faced a cesarean for whatever reason. I fully realize the need for VBAC resources and availability, as well as family-centered cesarean options. I also recognize that in certain circumstances, a surgical delivery can be the best option and am thankful that we have it available.