The midwives and people surrounding me tried to comfort me with the words; at least you have a healthy baby, yes this was true but it didn’t make me feel any better. As a matter a fact it made me feel worse. My beautiful baby whom I cared for with so much love and positive energy and being healthy was born at the cost of severe bodily trauma, a major abdominal surgery.
Not only did I and so many other women undergo this major abdominal surgery willingly or unwillingly but no one informed me about the emotional scarring that comes with it. Never did I think that the “healing” of my emotional state would take longer but actually come later. At the time I was so caught up in the state of labor, the adrenaline of doctors and the meds given to me that I wasn’t a 100% aware of what really was going on, it all goes so fast.
So with my second pregnancy I told myself to be more laid back be less adamant in wanting this home birth in the birth pool, this time I was actually OK with birthing in the hospital “home rooms” just in case something didn’t go as “planned”. So that said and done I had my bag packed at 37 weeks and ready for that option. I did tell myself there would be a vaginal birth and not another c section as I’m perfectly healthy and so is my baby and I trust my body. Affirmation after affirmation, thought after thought as the weeks to my due date came nearer. Labor started and again I went from 0-10 in seconds when it comes to the intensity of the contractions. We waited a little bit to call the midwife out as we didn’t want to be to early admitted into the hospital since we agreed to labor the first stage at home. The midwife came when I had my contractions every 3-4 minutes apart, she found me at 2cm dilation and suggested to go in to hospital as she felt I’d have my baby soon.
Once arrived in the hospital in the middle of the night for some reason the contractions died down until there was no contraction left, at the end of the following afternoon we decided to go back home as we all agreed labor would most likely pick back up as I’d be most comfortable at home. Back home in the night the contractions came back again (day 2) I managed to breath through them regardless of the pain. A few things I was paying attention to was a constant pain around my scar, after a few hours of contractions that night I noticed that constant pain. As I live a good amount of time away from the hospital I decided to check myself in that morning leaving my dear hubby and son at home. When I arrived I was constantly monitored with the opportunity to walk and move around, minutes felt like hours and contractions seemed to die down again. The monitor showed signs of my son his heartbeat dropping with every contraction but picking back up right after, this would be normal in active labor but since I still didn’t go into active labor and no more than 4cm dilated this was a concern to the doctors and certainly something to keep your eye on.
I called my loved ones to come in as things could change rapidly from this moment on and there was no way I’d birth my son without his dad and brother there. Hours went by and we discussed options, what to do next as this has been going on for 3 days now and the baby can only handle so much before he gets tired on top of that my waters ruptured a little bit. That made us decide to artificially fully break my waters to see if my contractions would pick up and dilate more. This didn’t happen. The next step was of course pitocin and an epidural, reluctantly I agreed with my focus still on my vaginal birth.
The monitor didn’t look great my son his heartbeat still dropping and picking up but now much slower than before raising a big concern with my ob gyn. At a certain point I agreed for them to check my cervix and there it was 7cm I was very happy with this news and in my head I screamed YES it will be a vaginal. Only to be disappointed straight away as my ob gyn said we have to go into the operating room right now. 5 minutes later I was prepped and another 5 minutes later my son was born. I cried and cried during the whole procedure. Again I felt I failed, what was wrong with me? Going over and over what could I have done differently, did any thoughts of doubt I had for a split second cause this outcome?
Laying there under that blue sheet, tears running down my cheeks, uncontrollably shaking of my whole body but at least I had a healthy baby.
Next: The emotional scars