I had a wonderful pregnancy (minus the 24 hr morning sickness in the beginning weeks;) ) with my first daughter, Charley.
The week before I had my daughter I had a dream that I had the baby but didn’t remember what labor was like and I kept saying it over and over to my husband. Sadly, this dream turned out to be true.
I researched the whole time I was pregnant on vaccines and natural health. I knew that I would not be vaccinating, I wanted skin-to skin contact with my baby immediately and that I would breast feed. My birth plan was to have her natural but I wasn’t completely against drugs if I absolutely decided I needed them when the time came.
I was certain that I would have her early because well I don’t think a single person has had a baby full term in my family! Well 3 days past my due date I was at the hospital for a mandatory NST (non stress test). It was 3 p.m. Soooo boring, for those of you who haven’t had one you sit in a chair by yourself hooked up to a monitor for an hour. At the end of my test a scruffy looking guy said to me in his monotone voice, ” Your baby’s heart is failing this test”. Wow dude you really know how to put things nicely, I was not concerned at all though because I knew my baby was fine, I hadn’t had any problems and she was moving like normal. Apparently the concern was that she wasn’t responding to the contractions that I was having (I had been having 2 min apart contractions for probably a month at that point) I mentioned that I wasn’t concerned because I had been having those same contractions for a while and it made sense to me that the baby was used to them. (I was apparently dumb for thinking that, so he called my Dr.) He came back and said that my Dr. was on call so he talked to my second choice Dr., they decided they should admit me just to be safe and give me a pill to soften my cervix and maybe by that night I would have my baby. I didn’t eat before the test so I asked if I could eat first and go get my bags since we didn’t bring it to the hospital, they told me I couldn’t eat (so apparently I was suposed to go 7 plus hours without eating and deliver a baby- wish I would have noticed this red flag then!) Since they reassured me I had plenty of time I sent my husband, Dave, home to get the camera and my bag (at the time we lived about 25 miles from the hospital).
Once admitted they checked me (dilated to 2) ,hooked me to an IV ,and told me that I needed to poop…so the nice nurse took me to the bathroom and stood outside the door. Obviously that wasn’t gonna work for me… when I said I hadn’t eaten so not likely that it was gonna happen she told me I could have a small sip of apple juice- thanks. Then it was back to the bed to wait. Not 5 minutes later a different nurse walked in and said,” Hi, I’m here to break your water”. I told her she was in the wrong room because I was supposed to have a pill to just soften my cervix, her response?…”Your too far along for that.” Umm…. I guess I missed something because in 5 minutes nothing changed. I called Dave (who hadn’t even made it home yet) and told him he needed to come back because they wanted to break my water. So there I was mad at the staff and alone as they broke my water, which sucked. After that the nurse showed me the line on the graph that was for my contractions , she asked me to rate my pain, I said none, she didn’t like my answer I guess because she then asked me to rate it 1-10 and then questioned me as if maybe I didn’t understand what she was asking me. After a little bit of back and forth she then told me the baby’s heart was going up but would not tell me the rate heart. I wasn’t surprised if it went up since they just broke my water and were pissing me off so I am sure my heart rate would go up too! When I mentioned maybe it was because they were freaking me out (keep in mind Im still by myself trying to battle a different nurse every few minutes) they came at me with an oxygen mask- this was the last thing I wanted, I absolutely hate those things!!!! I was then told that they needed to internally monitor the baby, which I was completely against, but of course that doesn’t matter…. so after they get a reading I am told the baby’s heart rate was higher then expected and had to take me for a c-section right then. (still no one would tell me the actual heart rate). I was really mad now -I DID NOT want to have a c-section and my husband was not even back yet. I fought as much as I could about them waiting for him to get there. I had him on the phone and as he was parking they were trying to wheel me out of my room. They told me they would have someone get him ready to come into the operating room. My Dr. was all of a sudden there. As they were starting, after asking multiple times about my husband coming in, the one male nurse next to me asked about getting him. Dave finally got to come in and see my insides on my outside…oh it is just so beautiful. I remember looking at Dave thinking this is exactly what I didn’t want to happen. He kept asking me if I was okay, I just kept saying yeah ,wishing that the blue tarp they put up across your body was sound proof so I could say how pissed off I was and tell Dave about the bs in the room! They held up a mirror so I could see them pull our our daughter out of my bloody sliced body at 5:54p.m. (remember I said I got to the hospital at 3 and after the test they told me that MAYBE I would have the baby by that night but less than 3 hrs later here she was). Our daughter was 8lbs 3 oz and 21 inches long, she scored a 9 on the apgar, she was absolutely perfect and I was glad I heard a nurse instantly yell ” no shots!” ( she WAS listening to me when I was reading her all the vaccine labels I brought with me ). When they started to put me back together my Dr. congratulated me and said she had to get back to the other c-section that she started just before mine. Ohhh… now I get it….. thats why she wasn’t available on the phone and gosh how lucky for her that I needed a C-section at the exact time she had 25 min open.
Dave and I were told that when we saw our daughter we would know for sure on the name (we were deciding between 2) but that didn’t happen, When he asked me what I thought, I said “she looks like my grandpa” 🙂 I took off the little hat they put on her so I could see all of her black hair! I didn’t count her fingers and toes- I never thought about that – I just stared at her and she looked right back at us, she was totally aware and content. After I was all put back together they took me to the recovery room where I was able to continue holding her, have visitors, shake like crazy (from the drugs) , start breast feeding, and after I could wiggle my toes go to my room. We kept her with us the whole time, they gave her a bath in our room, Dave changed every diaper, I feed her every time and that night when she slept all night I stayed awake ALL night and just looked at her. Yes, I loved her more than I could ever imagine but I hated feeling like I didn’t bring her into this world, it was like someone just handed me a baby and said, “here ya go”.
I know that there are times that c-sections are necessary but every woman should be given the chance to at least be in labor, to let their body do what it is supposed to do and to let that baby come into the world when it is ready. The hormones that happen at birth bonding you to your child are so important and you do not have them when you deliver by c-section, also the Th1 that is so important for immunity is not activated like it would be when the baby is born vaginally. I also can say that Dave felt really alienated too, he wasn’t a part of it and couldn’t help me. I am very grateful that I breastfeed her because through that I was able to bond with her.
I was under my Dr’s care for years before that, I always thought she was wonderful. At one of my last appointments I asked her if I would be able to delivery naturally since I am smaller and they knew the baby was over 8 lbs. she reassured me that I would be fine. I really felt she would always do what was best for me, but it wasn’t until it happened that I realized in many cases, it isn’t about the mother and baby, it is about convenience.
It was very hard for me to get over and I feel like that is the biggest reason of why I waited longer than originally planned to have another child, I knew I didn’t want to do that again, I didn’t think I could emotional handle it. After I learned about other options I knew that I could have a baby and I could have it the way nature intended. This is why I decided I wanted to work with a midwife . (my next entry will talk more about that!) This is the motivation of my blog to educate other woman and make people aware. Plus, I know it helped me tons when I was able to talk about it with other women so hopefully I can offer the same.
I am so sorry to hear that your hospital experience was that way! I am shocked that they did not take your feelings more to heart. The hospital that I delivered at worked with my midwife to help me follow my “plan” as best they could until we had to make other plans! I am proud of your for sharing your story since so many people do not know their true options when giving birth!
Thanks Shannon!! 🙂
Candice, this post pissed me off so bad and scares the hell out of me too! My biggest fear is having to have a c-section. I was lucky to be able to experience labor on my own with Brady and can’t imagine not doing it again. I look forward to reading more about your mid-wife and home birthing experience 🙂
Yeah for the longest time I could not talk about it without yelling or crying! I can now make it through the story because I hope that my story can help others! Just remember Hayley you had a healthy beautiful son once and you can do it again!!! 🙂 Thanks for reading!
How upsetting to read your birth story. I knew that it did not go the way you planned and you were upset, now I why. I had Cash completely natural with no drugs, and I let him come when he was ready. I know what a strong woman you are, and I know you will do awesome this time around!
Thank you Kristin!! That is wonderful about your delivery with Cash!!
I totally understand where you’re coming from when it comes to the feeling of “feeling robbed of your natural birth experience”. I felt that way as well with the twins. My story though is somewhat different in the fact that I delivered 5 wks early and was worried about their health. I went in at 35 wks. My body couldn’t handle carrying them any longer. At 22 wks my body wanted to get rid of them then. I was sewn up and put on bedrest. Not what I wanted but it was neccesary to try and “save” my pregnancy.
So there I was at 35 wks going in for my Non stress test and bio-physical and I felt miserable. My body went into labor. I wanted to deliver naturally, that was my plan as well and the drs were on board. (everyone wants to believe that all dr’s are for c-sections with twins but thats not the case). So there I was with family and hubby axiously awaiting the birth of our little peanuts. I went into labor at 10am, the gave me an epidural then to get me past the pain of taking the cerclage out and then breaking my water. They also put me on a pitosin drip to speed up the contractions. At 4pm I was dilated to 4 and my pain medicine had worn off. The pain was unbearable, really! I kept asking for more and all I got was fentanly which basically was like motrin for me, no relief at all. At 8 pm I was still dilated till only 4. I was getting pissed, c’mon my body was telling me they wanted out so how come its not cooperating I thought! I asked for more pain meds then got another epidural which failed after and hr but for that hr I was on cloud nine thinking I could totally handle it. At midnight i was still no further along. And i was getting tired and I was still in PAIN!
Finally after eduring all of this until 5 am the next morning, and still not dilating past 4, I knew my body wasn’t cooperating and I could not endure the pain any longer. I gave in and told them to get the fucking dr in the room bc I couldnt handle the pain anymore. At 532 Hailey was born and at 534 Liam was born and I saw them for a split second and that was it, they had some minor health issues and needed to go to the nicu…..they sewed me back up, I listened to my hubby tell me how cool it was to watch them place my uterus on my stomach and sew it up and I felt like dying inside. I felt robbed, I was hurt emotionally and felt really mad at the world.
I guess after all that, no matter how I felt, I came to the conclusion that nature doesnt always run smoothly either. Sometimes its meant for medical to intervene. I mean back in the days women died and babies died from childbirth, and they had a healthy 9 month pregnancies.
As mad and as hurt as I was, I look at my children and thank God I have them and they made everything worth it. And believe me my troubles didnt stop after I gave birth, they were in the NICU for two weeks and I almost lost my daughter from sepsis…I endured alot…and although it didnt go the way I wanted or planned, it was the way that it was…..I am happy and my kids are wonderful and I remember everything and I can tell them the story of their birth and even though it wasn’t what we wanted, they are and thats all that matters. I hope this next one goes well for you and Dave!
Thank you for sharing your story Jen!! I am surprised they gave you an epidural before being dilated to 4. That must have been very frustrating for you to be so tired and not progressing! But it is wonderful that you and your babies were all okay!!! 🙂
Candice, what an awesome blog you have started! I look forward to following your journey. Although I was able to have my daughter last year without a c-section, my hospital experience wasn’t the greatest. I am thinking about getting pregnant again some time this summer and am interested in using a midwife. So glad Tana told me about your blog. Thank you for sharing your experience! 🙂
Shauna (friends with Mishelle & Tana)
Thank you so much for reading!! 🙂
Candice, first off, I am so sorry to hear about your terrible experience! It is obvious by reading it that you are a very intelligent woman and know what you wanted. When I got pregnant at 22, I had already heard tons of experiences like yours. That’s why I knew I had to prevent it. I live in a small town and there are no midwifes. So I went ahead and made an appt. with the “best” OB/GYN in town, the “most popular” for reasons I do not know. But he was awful. I told him I defnitely wanted a natural birth with absolutely no fake oxytocin, no episiotomy, no induction, and absolutely no c-section if at all possible! (Which are only necessary about 5% of the time) He was extremely rude about it, saying most women can’t do a natural birth, (I don’t care about most women), and his wife actually WANTED a c-section (again, why is he telling me this?) He also said that he would be making all the decisions. So I made the decision to get rid of him and get a midwife, even though the closest one was 45 minutes away. *Best decision I ever made* I wouldn’t have had the awesome, calm, all-natural birth that I had with my daughter. It was amazing…. I was in labor for 27 hours, but it went by fast. When I was pregant, I read so many books about childbirth, and all the books say to avoid an OB/GYN unless you have a high-risk pregnancy, which I did not have. I did not go to any birth classes, because all of the natural birth classes were over $350 and 2 hrs. away. So all I did was read the book “Hypnobirthing”. It is an awesome book and teaches you to relax during labor, and to ride the waves! I also got into a bath tub with warm water which really took away the edge. The stupid hospital I was at…. were annoying, but still let me do what I wanted. I did not have any pitocin or any IV, most of the time they are not necessary. Your body knows what to do! Go with a midwife all the way! Congrats on your baby, and Good luck with your next birth! 🙂 🙂 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing your story with me and I am so happy that you stood up for yourself, your body, and your baby!!! That is wonderful!! Thank you for the kind wishes!
Thank you! I would totally recommend any woman standing up for yourself and your baby 100%, you won’t regret it. Again, good luck! You’ll do great!
Thank you! 😀
((Hugs)) mama. Your story is truly heartbreaking. I loved reading how you just stared at her all night ❤ I'm so excited for your next birth! I hope it may help you heal even further! You are intelligent and strong! Love your blog too! Great idea!
Thank you so very much!! 🙂