Delivering my baby by C-section was, for me, something that would be only done in an emergency — if the baby’s heart rate was falling during labor or something else serious that would have threatened my baby or myself.
I delivered my first baby vaginally, and I intended to do the same for this one. My due date is March 21, 2011, and I have already started reading my “Hypnobirthing” book that got me through the beginning of labor with my first. I hadn’t ruled out having an epidural again, but if things happened too fast, I wanted to have some relaxation tricks up my sleeve.
At 35 weeks last week, I was already ½ centimeter dilated! This didn’t alarm me because I walked around for the last two weeks being 3 centimeters dilated with my first child. But, I was excited that things were happening. My body was planning on birthing this baby!
But, things have recently taken a turn in a different direction…
You see, at my 20 week sonogram the doctors found that I had a partial placenta previa, which means that the placenta was partially covering my cervix and not leaving enough room for the baby to come out. There would be plenty of time for the placenta to move in time for birth. And, according to my neonatalogist, 95% of these do move.
I wasn’t worried because I had the same exact situation with my first pregnancy, and the placenta moved out of the way. So, I’ve been completely nonchalant about the whole issue.
I’ve been going for sonograms to check on the whereabouts of the placenta every 5 weeks. And, it’s been inching itself away. At 30 weeks, it was only slightly touching the edge of my cervix. So, it was on its way out!
Then, at 35 weeks, the final check….it hadn’t moved since then. So what does this mean? The neonatalogist said that if I had a vaginal birth I could bleed profusely if the placenta got forcefully pushed during birth.
He wanted to take the baby out by C-section the following week.
This really blew my mind. Who wants surgery? I had such a tough time conceiving this child (IVF with genetic testing) that I was looking forward to having a somewhat normal birth.
I was really disappointed. Only because I had been mentally preparing for my birthing experience and thinking about my last birthing experience a lot to get myself ready.
Many of my friends had to have C-sections for one reason or another, and they were fine, so I’m not deathly afraid of them. It just wasn’t what I was expecting, so I had to change my mind-set.
What’s most important to me?
A healthy baby.
And, after that?
A healthy mother that can take care of the healthy baby and her 3-year-old sister.
The doctors will do one more check of my placenta the day before they schedule a C-section for the first week of March, when I’ll be 37 weeks along. But, they told me to get into the mind-set that I would be delivering by C-section because the placenta has to move 2 centimeters for them to reverse their decision toward a vaginal birth.
So, I’m nervous, but remaining not too nervous. Many people and many friends have been through this procedure before. I know I can do it. I plan on doing acupuncture to keep me calm beforehand and to help me heal from the surgery afterwards. And, I will get to stay in the hospital for a few days longer to recover.
It’s not the birth I had hoped for, but in the end, the anticipation of meeting my new daughter is FAR greater than how she gets delivered. At this point, I’ll do whatever it takes to meet her!
From 1996-2007 (the latest time period for these statistics by the US Government’s Center for Disease Control) the C-section rate rose 53% and accounted for 32% of births in the US in 2007. Are C-sections common in your country? If you have delivered a baby, how did you deliver?
For statistics on C-section birth rates in the United States go to:
Photo credit to http://www.flickr.com/photos/isafmedia/5382774586/. This photo has a creative commons attribution license.