Sunday, March 22, 2009

Labor of Love

I haven't posted in months, mostly because, as you've probably guessed, I'm being kept busy by the daily adventures of life with Babycakes, who is now a little over three months old! Motherhood is an amazing journey and I'm truly enjoying the ride.

Babycakes arrived on Tuesday, December 16th at 7:28 a.m. He weighed 7 pounds, 13.6 ounces and was 20.5 inches long, so not quite the 10-pounder my perinatologist had predicted. After a marathon labor of 46 hours, the last three of which I pushed, Babycakes was born via c-section. Because his head was positioned sideways, so that he was facing my right hip (called Left Occiput Transverse), my labor was incredibly slow and he was unable to descend at all, though not for lack of trying.

I wanted and prepared for a natural birth, and I was able to labor naturally for 36 hours in various positions, though exhaustion overwhelmed me eventually, and an epidural became necessary. It was not the birth I had hoped for at all, and dealing with the emotional aspect of an unplanned cesarean has been tough. It's definitely been a grieving process, but I'm getting better every day and learning so much in the process.

As a teacher, I believe there is nothing more powerful than knowledge, so I'm arming myself with the tools needed to make my next birth a better experience. I knew so much going into the delivery room, and I know even more now. I still believe that my body is capable of birthing a baby, and I refuse to listen to anyone who says otherwise. That's why I'm taking steps now to prepare for my next birth, which will, hopefully, be a VBAC.

So far, I've decided to fire my obstetrician and find one who is completely supportive of my plans. A doctor nearby recently gained access for her midwives to assist in deliveries at my hospital, so I'm thinking her practice might be the one for me. I'll fight the high risk label and not worry about fears of a "big baby," which were unfounded this time around. I'm also reading and researching statistics, and I know that my chances of achieving a VBAC are high. It's a few years off, but it's something I hope to achieve.

And all this while caring for my sweet little son, who is growing daily before my very eyes. He is such a joy and a handful, and I wouldn't have it any other way.