My birth story

Posted on 23 August 2016

Louis is now six weeks old and fast asleep beside me. He makes loud grunting noises as he sleeps, sometimes interspersed by soft squeaking and cooing. He’s lying on his back, tightly swaddled to contain his startle reflex. He frowns and smiles, letting out a little cry occasionally when the wind in his tummy gets too much. Last night he fed nearly every hour. We’ve been told he’s going through his first developmental leap, so he’s needing lots of mummy time and feeds. I found myself gently crying after a feed and toilet trip. I was tired. I had started thinking about my birth after feeling how tender my scars still are when I wipe after going to the toilet. I decided that today I would write our story, to process it fully and record it whilst still relatively fresh in my memory.

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For nine months I prepared as much as I could for Louis’ birth. I knew I had a phobia to overcome and my researcher-nature meant that preparation was essential. For as long as I can remember birth has terrified and astonished me. I’m not completely sure why. If you ask anyone in my family, I have never been good at dealing with pain. It’s not just my pain either – I’m an empath. I’m the wimp in the family. Perhaps it was always going to be my nature, but I attribute it to the loss of my identical twin sister to Leukaemia when we were 5 years old. Anything to do with suffering or the body is enough to make me feel faint.

So, when we fell pregnant I embarked on a journey of positive birthing – I attended Calm Birth classes and antenatal classes, did prenatal yoga two to three times a week (complete with positive birth affirmations during the shivasana), listened to hypnotising meditations, read Ina May Gaskin’s “Spiritual Midwifery”, Sarah Buckley’s “Gentle birth, gentle mothering” and Juju Sundin’s “Birth Skills”. Between these three books I was somewhat led to believe that birth will go right by approaching it the right way – surrendering, opening, visualising, relaxing – and through this I would become empowered to deliver my baby without intervention or drugs. Of course, there are occasions where birth goes wrong but these should be rare according to contemporary opinion. All I had to do was remember the countless women who have birthed before me. Besides, I believe in natural birth. How could I not? Once you read the science about procedures like c-sections, epidurals, nitrous oxide gas and synthetic oxytocin injections to birth the placenta it’s very difficult to accept – unless you want to set your child up to be a possible drug addict or myriad health consequences!

My story is not for pregnant women to read. No. If you are pregnant, stop here. This is what some people will classify as a horror story and some will judge it as they read it, imagining they know how everything could have turned out differently.

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I wanted a natural birth but I was willing to accept a caesarean if that was what was the safest option. What I wasn’t prepared for was the birth I had. My phobia wasn’t about my body knowing what to do – I trusted the wisdom of my body but I didn’t think I could cope with the pain. In the end I did cope but it was my body that failed me and I had an instrumental birth.

Around 1030pm Wednesday the 6th July I started leaking amniotic fluid, then at 1230am I felt a pop and a gush of fluid rushed out of me. My contractions started. I continued leaking. I felt nervous but calm and patient. My due date was Friday the 8th July and I imagined that our little boy would be arriving a day early. I could barely sleep as the contractions weren’t too strong but were already regular and distracting. As Thursday progressed we made lactation cookies, made final preparations, checked the hospital bags and started timing the contractions. As the minutes ticked by they became more and more intense. I moved, swayed my hips, held on to the wall, rolled a stress ball in my hands and rubbed my legs together. It had become painful but bearable – like strong period pain.

By 830pm Thursday night I felt like I was tripping. I was high – in another dimension. The contractions were 45 seconds long and just under a minute and a half apart. A midwife visited and checked me, advising that I was nearly fully dilated but there was a membrane between bub’s head and the cervix so we should make our way to the birth centre to have the membrane popped and things would be well and truly on their way. I felt so excited. I couldn’t believe how well I had done. I waddled to the car, and we drove the 15 minutes to the Byron Birth Centre. I had 4 contractions on the way but when we arrived everything had slowed down and I started to worry that I had come in too early.

The next hours I stood in the shower with the water on my back, cycled my legs until a blister formed on my ankle, leant on the exercise ball, tried out the birthing pool, groaned and moaned until we decided to see how dilated I was again. Another membrane needed to be popped and reluctantly my midwife told me I was only 5 cm dilated. How was this possible? Cervixes are tricky things to feel apparently. I continued on for another few hours with Jean diligently by my side, changing the music occasionally to help me through.

Then, the same scenario was repeated. Another membrane to be popped. I was tired, disillusioned and starting to unravel a little. At each membrane popping I had been told labour would well and truly take off and my baby would be there soon… but I didn’t believe anyone anymore. The whole world had fallen away. I asked Jean to turn off the music. We got back in the birthing pool and I threw up.

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I don’t know how much longer it was before baby started transitioning. I can’t remember the pain exactly but those hours must have been overwhelming as I lost focus and asked for a C-section. My midwife called my doctor who came to support me. It was too late for a caesarean – I would have to keep going and deliver this baby. It gave me motivation. Sometimes I felt scared. I remember curling up to Jean and saying  “I want to go home now”. For some reason, whenever I remember this moment emotion bubbles up and tears roll down my cheeks. I remember feeling like a little girl, trying to be a woman. All I wanted was to stop, for it all to go away, to go home, to cuddle up, and to feel comfort and love and safety. I could see from Jean’s face that his heart sunk. “You can’t go home, Carlita”. I knew I couldn’t but I guess it was my way of expressing something – my fear, my helplessness, my vulnerability. Eventually my midwife offered me the nitrous oxide gas which I accepted. That wasn’t in my birth plan. Sometimes my eyes would roll back in my head and Jean asked for the dose to be lowered. I wondered if it had any effect. Of course it did.

Eventually, Friday’s sun started filtering into the room and again I wondered when this baby would be born. I started feeling the pushing reflex and found an energy I didn’t know I had. I gripped Jean’s shirt as I bore down, pushing as hard as I could to get this baby out. No more gas. A poo. Squatting, lying sideways, kneeling. The doctor and Jean held me as I squatted. A mirror was placed beneath me to see the head. Fluid and blood leaked everywhere. For more than two hours I pushed. Everyone could see baby’s head just a centimetre from the outside world. My doctor kept telling me I had to push harder but I couldn’t. I still don’t know how I could have. Baby’s head was on the wrong angle. They tried to rotate him but he kept moving back. Another midwife arrived. Her fresh energy helped me push harder and harder. It was raw – I was complete animal, finding sounds and strengths I didn’t know were possible.

My doctor suggested an episiotomy and a ventouse, to be able to guide baby out. I didn’t want an episiotomy. I searched the four faces surrounding me (Jean, my doctor and 2 midwives) for their reactions. I asked them if this was necessary but none of them looked confident. I felt small. I felt vulnerable. I felt so scared. Eventually one of the midwives told me if we did this, baby would be here so soon and it’ll all be over – that if we didn’t do it, I would tear. I accepted. I was cut from my vagina toward my anus and a ventouse was prepared. A small rubber cup was pushed into my vagina and suctioned onto my baby’s head. This wasn’t in my birth plan. On my next contraction I pushed and my doctor pulled. I screamed “get out!!!”. The ventouse popped off my baby’s head, splattering blood on to my doctor’s face. A second attempt was made. A third is not recommended. I unknowingly peed on my doctor. They checked baby’s heart rate – steady the entire time. He must take after his papa. They let me know regularly that “baby is ok” but at some point I replied “I know, but am I? Am I ok?”. I didn’t feel ok. They assured me I was but again I felt like a little girl, unsure of what was going on, navigating foreign feelings and situations, unable to make decisions.

My pushing contractions kept coming but now my doctor was making arrangements to transfer me to the nearest hospital by ambulance. My midwives decided to insert a catheter to empty my bladder. I decided I didn’t want one and walked – with a baby between my legs, blood running from my episiotomy, pushing contractions continuing – to the toilet.

I was strapped on to a bed and wheeled to the ambulance. That 35 minute journey to the hospital was surreal. I cried out with each contraction. I begged to be “put out”. My doctor said they couldn’t – I still needed to push when I got to the hospital. I sucked on some gas thing that was supposed to be a strong pain killer but it didn’t feel like it to me.

I was wheeled into the birth suite at the hospital, into a room of 9 people. I looked at the obstetrician in charge and said over and over “thank you for helping me, thank you for helping me”. Again I felt like a little girl. My legs were put in stirrups. An obstetrician and her entourage extended my episiotomy and on my next contraction she used forceps to guide my baby into this world. Three pushes actually. So much stretching and pain. My screams came from so deep inside me. I didn’t know I was capable. A student midwife stood beside me and explained everything calmly. She was my rock during that time.

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Baby came out at 930am on his due date, Friday 8th July, and was put on my chest. My leg was injected with oxytocin. I birthed the placenta. This wasn’t in my birth plan. They stitched me up with so many stitches no one bothered counting while I held my slippery little boy. I was in shock. I cried but no tears fell. I gasped, but couldn’t get enough air. Then, my baby boy latched on to my breast and started sucking. I couldn’t believe it. How did he know what to do? I felt my body relax. It was over. 36 hours after my waters broke, it was finally over. I was exhausted, a little broken and in shock. Thank goodness for Jean, my love, who stayed with me every moment of the birth. He was an absolute hero to me. I would have felt very scared and alone if he hadn’t been there. He didn’t leave once, not even for food or a nap.

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Remembering the moment Louis latched on will always make me teary and warm. He had stayed calm the entire time. He heard his papa speaking to him in French and it was clear he knew we were his. He loved us already. He had big red marks on his face from the forceps. He had a round bruise on the back of his head from the ventouse. He had a big egg shape on his head from where I had been pushing him at the wrong angle. He was big – 57cm long and 3.7kg. We were all so sleepy and exhausted, so we curled up and rested as much as possible, despite the adrenalin.

I know when I was pregnant I wanted to hear positive, real birth stories but I think ones like mine are useful too. It might have been scary and unplanned but I also feel empowered and amazed at what I could endure. I feel proud and know with every part of my being that I tried my hardest, I couldn’t have done any more.  I also realised that despite moments of exhaustion, of wanting to stop and sometimes even being scared, I wasn’t actually thinking about my phobia through the whole process. Actually, I was just reacting, present to what was happening, in another world.

Like most things in life, childbirth is different for each of us. For me, it was difficult and messy but it was also empowering. I coped when I didn’t think I would.

My midwife said “at least you had a vaginal birth”.

My doctor said “not sleeping that first night is a first time mum’s rookie mistake – you were just too exhausted”.

My mum said “they don’t call it labour for nothing”.

Others said “all that matters is that the baby is healthy”.

Really? “All that matters is a healthy baby”? Can’t multiple things matter? Doesn’t it matter that I feel wounded, physically and emotionally?

The Friday night after birthing my Louis, I couldn’t sleep. Jean wasn’t there as he couldn’t stay in the hospital. I hadn’t slept since the Tuesday evening but I was wired. I started to process what I had just been through. I was sore. I was fragile. I felt guilty. What had I done wrong? Why couldn’t I do it by myself? The midwives at the hospital were such an amazing support. They talked with me, reassured me, cared for me in such an empathetic way.

Saturday morning I texted Jean early. “I need cuddles.” I looked across to the tiny human in the basinet beside my bed, with all the bruises on him and thought “if I need cuddles at 36 years of age, he must need them too” and I bundled him up in my arms, tears silently running down my face as we helped each other heal from this experience.

I was so swollen and black between my legs that I couldn’t move. Each time Louis cried, I buzzed a midwife to pass him to me. I got put on extra strong painkillers. Louis developed jaundice and needed phototherapy for 24 hours. I would visit him in the nursery every two hours to feed. I quickly missed him between feeds but I was also happy for the rest.

Eventually, we went home. I felt so broken but so in love. Jean called me his lioness and wrote me a card that I will treasure forever.

6 weeks on and where I had the episiotomy is still tender. I’ve discovered I also have a tear near my clitoris, which causes discomfort. I have little control over my sphincter and when a poo calls there is no time to wait. The skin at the top of my stomach (below my breasts) has no sensation, apparently due to stretched nerves. Breastfeeding has been a challenge with an overactive let down, then a low milk supply and latching/attachment issues. Really? All that matters is a healthy baby? I’m in love but that doesn’t take away the trauma. I have a healthy baby but it’s not all that matters.

I’m wounded. I lie in bed some nights, after feeding, with flashbacks of my birth reminding me why I still don’t feel ‘normal’. Tears escape. I don’t know how much of it is from the birth and how much of it is from becoming a mother. Perhaps the two are so very linked – pain and pleasure, loss and love. When I think of the moments during birth that I felt like a little girl, wanting to be held, saved, helped and loved upon it makes me realise that I’m capable of being so many things all at once. I’m still a little girl, a woman and a mother. I am still a wimp, fearful of suffering and pain but capable of enduring so much.
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Photos thanks to my mum at Moments in Time.


 


20 responses to My birth story

  • Carlita… i love, admire, and respect you so much! Thank you for sharing you emotional and moving birth story with us. You did everything right, everything :-).
    love to the 3 of you!

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    bunya Reply:

    Thanks for taking the effort to record your story and be brave enough to share it. I hope that this can be a significant step in healing your trauma. I would love to support you in any way I can to help u in that process. Feel like I am in a process of working with my own physical trauma at the moment n if any of my experiences can be helpful I would love to offer them. So happy to have you and Jean and Louis in my life and hoping to be energetic enough to share more time with u all soon 🙂 ps – u are not a whimp

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Thank you Bunya…we are so looking forward to hanging out with you again soon! Love you xxx

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Thank you Monica. Lots of love to you too xxx

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  • Jennifer says:

    Carly, as your mother, I have tried so hard to prepare my children for the unexpected but I have realised that there really isn’t anything one can do for such events.

    Still as a parent we do our best even if it falls short. Life does throw us some unforgettable moments. Some good and some just horrid. I can assure you that the trauma from Louis birth will fade. The memory will live on but the trauma will dissipate.

    I can hardly recall the trauma of our middle child’s birth. I remember the process but the trauma has gone. Afford yourself time to heal both physically and emotionally. Being a parent is an emotional trip that never ends.

    Louis is beautiful, healthy and already bringing much joy to both you and Jean. Immerse yourself in the present and the rest will take care of it’s self.

    Mum

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    It’s ok. I know I will forget it all, as nature seems to have perfectly intended. I partly wanted to write it down so that I wouldn’t forget. It’s a big moment in my life. To each their own and there is no wrong or right in these situations. Of course, we enjoy the present as much as we can with our beautiful little boy, our precious gift. Love!

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  • Kathy Jarrett says:

    Carly, such a traumatic birth, you poor darling. It was years after I had a similar birthing experience, but not nearly as horrendous as you, that I believe I had post-traumatic stress. My baby was posterior and the first I knew of it was when the doctor came in and said, ‘You’ll be here a long time. Your baby is posterior.” I had to ask what it was!! I had an incredible amount of pethadine and still had non-stop pain and eventually an epidural with no dilation and after 24 hours when his heart beat dropped, a major episiotomy. My baby was turned inside me with forceps and pulled out. My doctor was a local GP! i was so upset with the pain and the trouble I had feeding, I collapsed in the hallway of the hospital and howled. After 7 days the hospital made me go home. There were no home visits. I am lucky I had a mother who came and stayed with us but this was only possible because my father had died 4 months before. I was so, so sad because the baby was his first grandchild. This compounded my pain and grief.
    I wasn’t able to talk to anyone about what happened to me with the birth of my first child. It wasn’t discussed. People can talk about car accidents, illness, cancer but not their birthing experience. I am so happy you are sharing your story and it makes me sad that you didn’t get loving, supportive responses.
    Be aware that the experience does affect you – the crying, anger, disappointment, disbelief – grief!! Things didn’t go as you planned and so much happened to you – a physical assault on your body. It may well be that this is an area of psychology that is not understood and women don’t get support. I have never physically recovered. I am in my 60’s and have had nerve and muscle damage since then, and at the time a broken coccyx which mended after many months of not being able to sit properly.
    My first born is a highly intelligent, wonderful person who has brought us so much joy. I am grateful that he and I survived.
    However, the really good news is, that I went on to have 2 normal, very easy labours with no pain relief or gas. I used self hypnosis which I taught myself. I remember with great surprise and joy that there was actually a break between contractions and I could relax!!!! My 3rd and last one was textbook! This is my wish for you! It doesn’t erase the trauma or the memories but it was wonderful to experience a normal birth.
    Thank you for allowing me to share my story after such a long time!! I’m not sure that our stories would make a best seller, but women should feel that they can share their experience and be supported.
    If you need a hug or someone to talk to, you know where I am. XX

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    Jennifer Reply:

    You are lucky that you got to have an epidural Kathy, I had the exact same birth with Brooke except I had progress so far that an epidural was far too late. I had suction and forceps as she was posterior also. She weighed a whopping 9lbs 2 ozs which is huge for a girl. My tail has never been the same since. Unlike you though I am NOT scared by the experience. It is what it is and I am still here to tell the story. I also had a stillborn boy before Carly & Kim were born that was much more traumatic than Brooke’s birth actually because to go through a complete vaginal birth in the full knowledge that my baby was dead was and remains too much for me to deal with. Carly and I are the only ones who remember his birth date. My poor nameless son

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Each person is different and unique and I like to honor that in how we each process our experiences. It’s wonderful that your birth with Brooke didn’t cause you trauma and I can only imagine the pain of delivering a still born baby.

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Thank you for sharing, Kathy. Thank goodness there seems to be much more support these days and understanding that some women are traumatised by their births. I’m blessed to have such an incredible group of mamas here where everything is openly shared and processed… the power of community!

    Love you xxx

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  • Eva says:

    Hola Carly & Jean!

    You are brave 😉 Yes, a healthy baby matters but all the rest too Carly. Take Care all the rest, enjoy as much as posible every second now “carpe diem”, take your time to release the phisycal and emotional pain…

    I’m also learning by doing that this Adventure brings the most pure love but all kind of challenges to grow together individually and as a family.

    I hope our healthies babies can meet soon, lots of love from Spain, Eva

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Thank you Eva. Sending your little family so much love and hoping we can all meet again one day xxx

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  • Renouf says:

    Dear sister in pain, it’s good that you expelled in words the terrible suffering you’ve been through. What you describe is butchery! No woman, no living créature, no one should suffer that torture!
    Medicine is at the “no pain level”, whatever the circumstance.
    When Jean called me in the night, I could not believe that you still were in labour after so long hours , and that no doctor took the decision to make a cesarian. Above all because of the primaparturiens after 35. Muscles are not as flexible as younger.
    No cesarian, no peridural, what is this made for? The midwives were too static and angelic as if they were too familiar with suffering mothers to be.
    On top of the bloody scenario, you had to move by yourself to another hospital after episiotomia! With Jean who helped all he could but was as anxious as you were! Who dares leaving a birthing mother in this état? I was totally indignated how you were treated! And I still am!
    Of course I don’t know what message you were delivering during the months preparation : did you express the will to have only a natural birth? Did you choose the right hospital? Did the doctors have enough experience?
    Does the mentality continue sticking to the must suffer mother belief?
    I agree with all the comments: time is therapeutical and Louis is your adorable consolation.
    You surpassed yourself, you discovered your tremendous life strength, you made Jean accompany humanity reflex for survival (which he had done in bad war fields), be proud of you woman!
    Do you remember when you asked about Serge birth?
    It was the third cesarian too close to the previous, anesthesia did not work, the surgeon asked my husband: save mother or child? He got a stroke… The civil war was at its peak… Jean got heavy metal poisoned…
    You were not able at that time, to hear the whole story. I hope that your sad nightmare will put down all the blocking barriers that were meant to protect you. Feel free Carlita!
    Entering the mum and dad status is a philosophy : simplicity.
    Every day ( hour, minute!) brings a problem to solve. Better leave the heavy burdens at a distance. Enjoy the moment, now, here.
    Wounds are healing, don’t worry about physical uncertainties, there are good exercises to practice later.
    Welcome to the club dear Carly!
    Suzy

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    Jennifer Reply:

    So beautifully said Suzy. Birth is a labour, it is hard and sometimes it can be brutal. It seems we all have our own story. I had 5 births, the first was to deliver a deceased child, our only boy, the second was un-diagnosed twin girls (Carly & Kim). Such a wonderful surprise, then the fourth, Brooke who was posterior and the MOST painful way to give birth with no epidural, just gas for pain relief, and then suction and forceps. I was ripped, not cut from A to B. Broke my tailbone and still don’t feel normal in that area.
    The fifth, Alyce who was just born with no fuss or commotion. So five babies given birth to and only the last seemed to be the way nature intended. We survive and life goes on.

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Thank you Suzy but I chose to try and have a natural birth. I could never have known his head would get stuck. I’m so proud of what I achieved and what was done, was needed. I blame no one. I do remember Serge’s birth story… you have told it to me a few times and I’m always in awe. All mamas are amazing! We are very happy to be a family and don’t worry, I’m ok. But if I wasn’t we are lucky to have great support here with health nurses, midwives, doctors and female health physios. All repairs in time – physically and emotionally. This is just my story and I wanted to write it. xxx

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  • Making Sense of Things says:

    I’ve had an overwhelming amount of beautiful, supportive responses from so many people, both publicly (through facebook) and privately. I want to thank you all. I know my story is not uncommon. So many women have reached out to me saying ‘me too’ and felt grateful that I opened the conversation up about a topic that people want to just ignore or trivialise. It’s the same regarding life post partum. I’m honored to be that gateway to those conversations and healings. My aim was to simply write my story, without victimhood nor drama. Sharing it with others has already had a profound effect on me. Women need to support women and our war stories are not for competing. I’m blessed to have the most incredible group of women in my life who support, empathise, share, love and communicate without judgment. The power of that is immense.

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  • Annie says:

    My dear Carly, I could not help but cry when I read your birth story. I had for the last few years concentrated only on my son’s birth: how fantastic it was! Below the surface is my daughter’s story and the healing process that needed to take place for the birth of my son to be, what I believe it was. I was, like you, very afraid of giving birth, and so I did prepare like you did. I had a birth plan and I wanted a natural birth. What happened was also very messy: an ambulance transfer from the birth house to the hospital as my baby’s head was in the wrong angle, 3 hours of waiting at the hospital (when I was fully diluted) as the doctor was not available, with a nurse who would not listen to my midwife, but insisted that I needed to push. As a result of the long waiting, the doctor was clear: baby might be in danger. Lets have an episiotomy and forceps… no time however to wait for the anesthesia to work out before the long scalpel cut… Then a look at my daughter, a 2 seconds connexion with my baby, before they leave with her (emergency). My husband (fantastic the whole time) asking my permission to follow the baby (of course!) while they stitch me… Falling asleep and waking up in the middle of the night, hearing a baby, and looking for mine. Begging my husband to get my baby, him being told that its not possible. 2 days separated, being able to see her to feed every few hours. The young pediatrician telling us after 24h that our baby appears slow, and wanting to do a lumbar puncture, brain scan and ultrasound. My husband knowing the risk, accepting only the ultrasound, saying that if the results show something we will consider more. On the 3rd night, finally having my baby with me to sleep, being awaken in the middle of the night by a bright light put for my neighbour, for her baby’s jaundice. Me asking the nurse for another room, being asked that its not possible, and moving with my baby to the living room. The next day leaving for home against the hospital wish. At home my baby thriving, latching, even smiling! At the next visit with the midwife, asking for my hospital report, and then seeing a note saying that they did not consider me to be fit to be a mother! It took me over a year to overcome the trauma of my daughter’s birth. Nobody could understand, as I had at the end an healthy daughter. After all, so many women come through the same kind of birth without feeling the guilt I felt. Then what? I believe that when you are self-aware, when you have this dream about the perfect birth, when you want what is best 9and by best I mean natural) for you and your baby, guilt cannot but pop in, even though you did your BEST. I took a one year distance curriculum in prenatal and perinatal psychology (https://birthpsychology.com/) a few months after my daughter was born, and this helped me a lot dealing with the aftermath of her birth. I went to a few seminaries, I read a lot, and slowly, I started feeling better. When came the moment of my son’s birth, 3 years later, I was ready. I still wanted the perfect birth, but I had inwardly accepted that it may not happened. I was not scared. I knew that I could only do my best. My son was born in 2 hours (from first contraction to birth), in my home. Everything went perfectly. Reflecting on these two different births many years later, I know that I needed to forgive myself, not for what happened (it was not under my control) but for being so hard on myself. Having done so, I was able to go through my second birth without bringing with me the trauma of my first birth. The result of my son’s birth could have been the same as for my daughter. Luckily, it was not. If it was, I know that I would have to re-processed the same thing again, but I am confident that the road to recovery would have been shorter, because of the work I did with myself. Thanks Carly for sharing! I love you! You are a very strong, very caring woman, no matter what you say! I am proud of you! xxx

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    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Wow. Thank you for sharing, Annie. What a story!!! Aren’t mamas amazing? I’m so proud of you too xxx

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  • Michelle says:

    Oh my goodness yours is so similar to my story, although now I feel like I had an easy ride of it compared to you!
    My little man is 7 weeks old, born in the early hours of 6th july.
    We had a very long drawn out early stage, contracting for 3 days before going into hospital. Turned out his head was twisted and he kept moving from back to back, to lying on his side.
    I was in the pool for 5hours before they got me out and intervened.
    I couldn’t wee because his head was in the way of my bladder so I had to have a catheter fitted and I had a hormone drip to speed things up and fluids due to dehydration from the birthing pool.
    Nothing went to the plan!
    They threatened that I might need a c section so prepped me for surgery and gave me a spinal which took away the involuntary pain of pushing (a friend said it’s like being sick backwards!) but didn’t take away the very surreal atmosphere of being in a very bright theatre surrounded by so many people.
    I managed to push well and only needed an episiotomy and ventouse, and it popped off once (I thought the popping sound was him coming out! Lol!)
    Id always wanted a natural placenta delivery by this point I didn’t care and said “do whatever you need to” so I had the injection and they were stitching me up in no time.

    He ended up jaundiced too, apparently it’s very common when the delivery has been arduous.

    My other half wrote the most emotional Facebook post about how id surpassed his every expectation, after he went home to catch up on sleep and made me cry over and over.

    But I still sat there in the post birth fog beating myself up about what I should have done differently. Until I slapped myself round the face and had a word with myself!
    It’s so true when they say you can’t plan what happens in labour, when youre in the moment you just accept anything to make sure your baby comes into the world as safely as possible.

    Massive kudos to you, doesn’t it make you look at every mum in a completely different way!
    Lots of love to your family, I hope things continue to improve for you xxx

    [Reply]

    Making Sense of Things Reply:

    Michelle, I read your story and thought it sounded scary what you went through! Our babies are so close together too 🙂 Thank you for sharing your story. My husband was very touched by the experience also. I think it’s wonderful that they get to be part of it all these days – it’s definitely something that bonds us even deeper. And yes, it makes me look at every mama differently. I am astounded that nearly half the population goes through this… and they are just walking around daily, dealing with life as if nothing. It’s fascinating! I hope you are healing and doing well also. Thank you so much for your comment. xxx

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