Good day and welcome to Part 3 of Laura’s journey to her VBAC. Last time, we followed Laura and her family as they prepare for their VBAC. They had an extensive list but they didn’t want to leave anything out! Now, we go with her as she shares her learnings from her two previous births.
Learnings from My Two Previous Births
By: Laura Lyn Magat
We have been blessed with two happy and healthy children. We had generally safe deliveries and had different experiences in each birth with a lot of lessons learned.
Year 2005: First birth (Danielle) – NSD with Epidural
I called this a successful birth. My husband and I went through arms and lengths looking for an OB who advocates normal deliveries. We found our OB who had a very low CS rate. To date, all women I know who gave birth with her gave birth through NSD. Back in 2005, this was our only definition of births: Normal Spontaneous Delivery or Caesarian Birth.
I had friends taking Lamaze classes and trying for natural birthing. I admired them but at that time I wasn’t interested to try. Our preference was simple: we will have a vaginal delivery. The only request I hadin my birth plan was that I wanted an epidural given at 5cm. I still wanted to feel contractions during the first part of labor.
My request was carried out according to our preference. I was admitted five hours after I had a trickle of amniotic fluid. I was 5cm fora few hours, but once I got past that I dilated faster. The next dose of the epidural I had was at 9cm. When the medications kicked in, I felt numb. I gave birth eight hours after admission.
With what I know now, I realized that my birthing experience here wasn’t as pleasant as I thought. I just accepted the fact thatI’m safe, the baby is safe and soon I’ll see our first bundle of joy.
What are the experiences here that I liked? Prior to the birth, I felt safe and secure.Jonathan and I put our trust in our OB and the hospital’s long-tested system then. I wasn’t induced, and we waited for the baby’s timing.
What I didn’t like? I was lying down from start to finish–from 6 PM to the time I gave birth at 2:48 AM. It drove me crazy! I was waiting while lying down. I couldn’t move and was not allowed to move. At that time, I just wanted it to be done. What I dislike the most was when it was time to push, someone was pushing down my belly with such force that I threw up.
In just two pushes, baby Danielle was out. After birth, I was so groggy and tired, I dozedoff right after for hours! My whole body felt sore.
Still, I believe that it is the right of every mother to have their birth of choice. Since my choice was executed according to what I wanted, I was happy. I still am. Could it have been better? Perhaps.
Second birth(Dyllon) – Emergency CS due to cord prolapse
Jonathan was working abroad as an OFW at this time.Again, we put our trust in our OB. I wasn’t as involved as I was during the first birth. Since I previously gave birth viaNSD, I thought it will be the same. At38 weeks, during my check-up, I was 2cm dilated with no signs of labor. But due to GDM, and having been informed that the baby might come out faster since it’s my second, I was confined that afternoon. I was lying down the whole time waiting for the “time.” At midnight, there was still no improvement.
So many unfortunate things happened on this birth. I was induced. I was given epidural too early even when I specifically asked for it at 5cm. At 7 am, since nothing was happening, they broke my water bag. This was when I felt everything went wrong–cord prolapse happened! It was one intervention after another that caused the umbilical cord to drop through the vaginal canal ahead of the baby. They had todo an emergency CS. At 7:11 am, our Baby Dyllon was born.
My major disappointment was that I was sedated during birth. I was not awake and didn’t know what happened. I understand it was an emergency, but I wanted to be awake. I wanted to be there when things were happening. If possible, I wanted to see what was happening. I am just glad that my pediatrician was there to see to it that we had skin-to-skin and latching as soon as the baby was born.
Each time I recall this part of my birthing experience, I still get emotional and teary eyed. I felt robbed of the experience of giving birth. I am not against CS but what happened was definitely not my desire for me and our son.
I have been trying to convince myself that CS was the only option due to cord prolapse and the emergency CS actually saved our son’s life. Researching and talking to people convinced me that it was a good call for cord prolapse. But all these years, I have this nagging feeling that something went wrong during that birth. I then had to let it go since there was nothing else I could do.
Pregnant with our third, 6 years later, I learned that artificially rupturing the water bag especially if the head hasn’t been engaged results to a high risk for cord prolapse.
“To start (induce)or speed up labor, the doctor may rupture your membranes. This should only be done after your cervix has started to open (dilate) and the baby’s head is firmly descended (engaged) in your pelvis. If the membranes are ruptured too early,there is a risk of the umbilical cord slipping down around or below the baby’s head (cord prolapse). If the cord gets squeezed between the baby’s head and the pelvis bones, the blood supply to the baby may be decreased or stopped.” (http://www.webmd.com/baby/rupture-of-the-membranes)
I believe the reason I had CS last time, was because I didn’t listen to my body. I was just 2cm when I was admitted. Baby said, “Not yet!” But I didn’t listen to him, I listened to my doctor.
Have you experienced the same births as Laura did? Which one of her experiences resonated with you the most?
We’re nearing the end of Laura’s journey. Up next on our blog will be THE birth story you’ve been waiting for: her healing birth and gentle VBAC.