I have been fighting some regret lately about both my girls births. While J and I have been working on baby #3, I have been researching everything I can about VBACs. I know in my heart that is what I want at the end of our next pregnancy (whenever that may be). I have gone through labor, been dilated to 10cm and even pushed but never had the chance to complete a vaginal birth. I feel like it is all my fault for the way BooBoo's birth turned out and while most days it does not bother me, others I feel like a failure.
With BooBoo, I was young and uneducated in the labor and delivery department. I had wanted to take birth classes but J felt that we did not need them and we did not have the money. As two college students this was slightly understandable. When I went into labor with BooBoo I had no idea what to expect. My water broke on it's own (with meconium present) and I remeber being given Pitocin when I got to the hospital. I vaguely remember the painful contractions (which I now know was the transition phase) and agreeing to the epidural; which I had wanted under no circumstances. When I started pushing, I had no clue what to do. The nurses were of no help, they offered no words of advice or encouragement. After 15 hours of labor and three hours of pushing, I was told I would be having an emergency cesarean for "failure to progress". The experience of the cesarean was awful. I remembering telling the anesthesiologist that I was going to throw up and her arguing with me until I had her running for a bowl. After BooBoo was pulled from me I got to see her for about two seconds after they cleaned her up. Then I was given drugs to knock me out and J said it seriously looked like I was dead. Back in the recovery room I did not want to wake up. It was so hard to come out of the fog of the drugs I was given. I don't even remember my family coming in to see me because I was so out of it. BooBoo was brought in about an hour after the birth to eat but I could not feed her. I just wanted to sleep. So I agreed to let the nurses give her a bottle. About two hours of rest and I was ready for my baby. We tried to breastfeed and after a couple of beginner's latch problems we were off and running. I know that J gave her a bottle at one point but she threw everything back up immediately so we stuck with breastfeeding only. I had a rough recovery and wish things had been different. I regret not taking birth classes or doing more research. But you cannot change the past.
When I first pregnant with Bug I was told by my OB that she would be a repeat cesarean. Which I was fine with except for the voice at the very dark corner of my mind telling me to ask about a VBAC. After my labor with BooBoo I did not think I could go through all of labor only to have to have a cesarean anyways. I set the date for Bug's birth (too early now that I reflect) and started preparing for my repeat c-section. When the day came I was prepped for surgery and given a spinal. When I felt like I would throw up the anesthesiologist explained to me why I felt like that, putting me a little at ease. I loved being able to see Bug's little face lifted over the dressings right after she was born. I was wide awake for recovery and able to nurse Bug almost immediately. I was up and walking the next day. I was constantly told by the nurses how amazed they were at my progress. One even asked "Are you sure you just had a c-section?" After we came home from the hospital I started to think about VBACs again. I thought about how perfect my pregnancy with Bug had been and how well I was recovering from the cesarean. I think that I could have had her vaginally if I had been allowed. Again, you cannot change the past.
I decided that if J and I had anymore children I would want VBACs. So before we even began trying to conceive I started researching. Because I will have my VBAC and not because of regrets or missed opportunities but because it is what I want. I want to be able to say that I did it, I succeeded. And now that I am even more into the trying to get pregnant and doing research area, I am slowly becoming more open to another birth option, homebirth.
I never thought I would say that homebirth is something I might want to try. I remeber wanting a water birth with BooBoo but it was not an option with my OB. The thought of using a midwife and giving birth in my own home freaked me out. I know that I watched an episode of TLC's A Baby Story where the homebirth had problems and 911 had to be called. It scared me that I would not have emergency services while delivering. But now I am researching homebirths and midwives in addition to VBACs. I still am deciding what I want but I know that when I finally am pregnant again I will be interviewing OB/GYNs and midwives and exploring all options. Because I don't want to regret a decision just to please a doctor. I love my girls and am so glad that they are here, no matter what birth method we used. I just wish things had started out differently is all.
J knows that I want a VBAC and I know that he will agree to it because he knows it is what I want. He will read whatever research I give him and he will educate himself. But I have NO idea how to bring up the possiblity of a homebirth to him. Maybe I will wait until we are actually pregant and are interviewing midwives. I don't know but I do know that we are taking a break from babymaking until at least December so I have plenty of time to talk.