Where did we end?
Oh yes, the complications. Joy.
I was terrified.
Sitting at 29 hours of contractions and being 20% effaced and 2 cm dilated, the only way for her to come out was via C-section.
I’m pretty sure that there were nurses lined outside of our door because within seconds, we were surrounded by a team of people prepping me for surgery. It was insane in the membrane (no pun intended).
It was really scary. I was being pricked and prodded at and I just remember Daniel and I trying to say a prayer together. I was terrified not only of the C-section but terrified about whether our baby was okay. This baby whom I had loved and carried in my body for 41 weeks was obviously not doing well in the womb anymore.
I’ll spare you the details of the actual C-section since no one wants to hear about them cutting open layers of my body and pulling out a baby. My one request to Daniel during the surgery was that he didn’t watch the action… primarily because I was petrified he would faint or something.
This is not an irrational fear, as my own father fainted when the doctors pulled me out via C-section.
Felicity was born at 4:53 pm with heavy meconium. She was 9 pounds and 3 ounces. She was a big baby! Her Agpar scores were perfect, and her heart rate returned to normal once she was out of the womb. I was able to get a couple of minutes of skin-to-skin before they took her for further testing. That skin-to-skin time was the most beautiful five minutes I could’ve experienced. And I know that it’s rare that you get that after a C-section, so I am blessed indeed.
We later found out that we had an infection in the amniotic fluid, which just goes to show that she needed to come out sooner rather than later. It took me a while to come to grips with the fact that we had a C-section. Because, like I said, it was not what we planned. The last thing I wanted to do was to have an unnecessary C-section. After a well-intentioned text while I was at the hospital sent me into a panic thinking that the horror I had just suffered through was not actually necessary, I found this: “Managing Complications in Pregnancy and Childbirth – A Guide for Midwives and Doctors.”
My doctor followed that guide basically to a T, and I could see clearly why we ended up with the C-section. The peace I felt after seeing all that my doctor let us try and knowing that we did everything we could to give birth vaginally was so healing. I know that every birth is so different, and I am finally at peace with our C-section. I’d like to avoid them in the future, which is why I’ll be attempting a V-BAC for future kiddos — but I’m finally not afraid to talk about my C-section.
I didn’t fail at giving birth. I didn’t miss out on some passage into motherhood because my baby came through my incision rather than my… ahem, vagina.
Whether your birth story turns out to be exactly what you imagined, or it turns into something completely different, never believe the lie that it wasn’t good enough. Because it is your story. Embrace it. Write about it. Share it. Let it be healed, if necessary.
Our motherhood is defined by our love, and to remind myself of this, I’ve decided to start the Defined by Love project! Do you need a reminder that you aren’t defined by your past? Are you overwhelmed with your current situation or do you feel like there are things trying to steal your joy? Use the hashtag #DefinedbyLove to see other photos from other moms that remind them that they are defined by their love and not by their circumstance. So share with me some pictures on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and remember, you are defined by love… nothing else!