What follows is a beautiful birth story as experienced by a mama who attended my prenatal yoga classes. She said that her experience was life changing, and wanted to share her story with other mamas in hopes of helping them feel inspired and empowered by their own stories.
I ended up two weeks overdue...which is really typical for a first pregnancy. I was very lucky with my doctor who had patiently waited until 42 weeks without induction, closely monitoring me and the baby. However, after 42 weeks and 3 cm dilation with no further progress we decided that waiting more would result in complications so we scheduled the induction at Cedars on December 23rd at 2 am, which was the only available time. I felt good about it as I ad read a lot about success of pitocin with stalled labor.
When we arrived we were given a big nice room with a beautiful view. I was told that pitocin takes a few hours to start working... When I was checked at the hospital I went from 3 of dilation to 4cm. To our surprise it took me only an hour and half after pitocin to start the contractions. At this early stage I stayed calm and tried sleeping through while listening to the rainbow relaxation CD. We had agreed the day before with my doula that I would call her when contractions were really close together...
Little by little my contractions were getting stronger and stronger and by 6 am I felt like I had to get out of the bed and start walking around. The most helpful prop for me was a birthing ball - it truly worked like miracle. At 6:55 am I called my doula - this was the point when my contractions were 3 minutes apart and it was becoming harder to talk through them. At 8:30 when she arrived the contractions were very intense - with each wave I would try different positions. It had been now 6.5 hours of labor and the contractions were getting extremely painful.
By 9 am the pain became unbearable - none of the positions I took or noises I made would help the pain which was frustrating because my moving around had been really helpful up to this point.. Both my husband and doula were very helpful. I was especially impressed by my hubby who said and did exactly what I needed him to do. The labor was progressing well and I was already at 6.5 cm. I took this crazy intensity for around an hour but I was getting really weak - after almost a sleepless night and nothing to eat except for some water and juice I realized that my body was giving up.
At around 10:30 am I asked for the epidural. Of course after that I did not feel any of the contractions but I really did not like the feeling of being so passive and helpless not to mention the numbness...in 3 hours I had progressed to 9 cm but after that there was no real progress...
By around 3:30 pm my doctor arrived - he said that I was almost fully dilated and was now 9.5 cm but baby's position was not progressing down... The only sensation that I felt through epidural was feeling the baby's buttocks pushing on the left which felt like an enormous pressure especially when I was turning. The doctor said that we would wait until 5 pm but since we saw some fluctuations in baby's heart rate - emergency c section was now being considered as an option. At this point I totally lost it and started crying - after months of birthing classes, prenatal yoga, acupuncture it felt really unfair.
I was still very lucky that the doctor was so patient with me - but by 5 pm he walked into the room and told me that we need to do a c section asap if I wanted the baby safely out. I also feel very greatful that he comforted me and explained that sometimes in life you just have to make a tough choice without over analyzing which I tend to do a lot. After listening to him I felt much better and agreed for the c section.
After that everything was a little fuzzy. When I was brought into the operating room I suddenly became very cold and started shivering...which continued all the way through the surgery...my doctor looked at me and assured me that it was a normal reaction to tge drugs..But I was really scared.... There were only two thoughts going through my mind - God please make the shivering stop and when will this be over. After they prepared me for the surgery they let my husband in... They only thing that kept me going was the joking between my doctor and his assisting surgeon...I actually remember every single word...including my doctor complementing me on my ovaries. Another thing that was mentioned to me was a bulge on a side of my uterus which meant that if I had not gone through c section there was a very high risk of a uterine rupture... When the baby was out I was still very distressed. The doctor said that the the umbilical card was wrapped around his neck twice and there was no way he would have been able to get out any other way. When I heard the baby cry - I had some mixed feelings of relief but no excitement or happiness yet...until they handed the baby to me - this is when I forgot everything and started crying - he was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen - more beautiful than I could ever imagine...
It's really amazing that one look into your baby's eyes when they arrive erases all the memories of pain and leaves this experience in your head as a true miracle of life regardless of what kind of birth experience you had...and as crazy as it sounds if I had to live through this day again I would not change a thing because my baby boy came into this world exactly how it was meant to be.
This experience has truly liberated me and taught me how to be more accepting and learn how to let go of any expectations...we truly tend to over-analyze and over-plan everything in our lives and often forget that sometimes life does not care about our plans and will surprise us in a wonderful way and change us forever.
I hope this story helps all the future mommies...remember to breathe