I used to think that phrase was cliche and all until December 18th, 2017. She was born 19″ long and 6 pounds 9 ounces at 8:03 am in West Palm Beach, Florida. Hendrix Rae, my miracle rainbow baby was here and perfectly healthy.
My journey to having a baby was very long, emotional (sometimes painful) and totally perfect. I will be writing another blog post soon to share my experience of that! Stay tuned.
This specific blog post is to share my experience about having a gentle cesarean. You may ask, what’s that? I know I did. Let’s back up just a tad…without getting into the journey of getting pregnant, we were able to conceive with the amazing process called IVF (In-Vetro Fertilization).
The journey to getting pregnant was an arduous one, and very sad in moments, so I should note, I did A LOT of personal development and therapy work prior to getting pregnant.
I didn’t know if that would actually happen but I was committed to having a very relaxed, open-minded approach when I got pregnant.
From the beginning i alternated every other week with specialist and the OBGYN so we saw the baby’s positioning a lot. It was so cool!
As the baby grew and her little limbs were developing and becoming more prominent we noticed she was folded in half, feet up over her head (she was super duper flexible) with her butt down by my pelvis and her head up in my ribs. This is called Frank Breech. It made for a few interesting attempts to get ultra-sound measurements. They always said, “oh wow, she’s persistent and comfy in that position. She will probably move out of it soon”. Nope! She stayed like that the ENTIRE PREGNANCY.
I had done acupuncture for several months prior to getting pregnant so I chose to continue during pregnancy. It made me feel so relaxed and gave me a good hour to de-stress and rest. I highly recommend it! I think it’s pretty normal for most women to imagine they will have a vaginal birth, I know I did. Remember I said I was committed to being relaxed and open-minded…yeah, I was quickly seeing I would have to shift my thoughts & plans of a vaginal birth if my baby girl didn’t change position. This day in age it’s very uncommon for doctors to delivery Breech babies. So, I was committed to doing all of the natural things possible to turn the baby. It became kind of comical in moments. I mean, I tried typical acupuncture methods where they used certain points to try to initiate a turn of the baby (there is a point on the outside of the pinky toe they focus on) and if you didn’t know, it’s super sensitive. They also have a process called moxibution. Think a huge incense stick (that kind of smells like pot…yes, weed) that you wave the smoke that comes off of it while you lay inverted (yes, your feet up and your head down) by the pinky toe spot. It works in about 50-60% of women. I was obviously not one of them.
Another method to turning a baby are chiropractic adjustments. Although I loved them and had done them prior to pregnancy, they didn’t work for me. They did support me in keeping me aligned and comfortable though! I also tried laying on my ironing board inverted from the couch, placed an ice pack on the top of my belly and heat on my pelvis trying to draw the baby to the warmth. I used a flashlight down by my groin area, had my husband talking to my vagina area to call the baby towards the sound and most comical of all…8 months pregnant, jumped in my 60 degree cold swimming pool to do handstands to try to create a weightless feeling in order to turn the baby. Yeah, imagine that! A buoyant huge belly who already struggled breathing because the baby’s head was up in my ribs pushing my lungs so tight, flipping upside down trying to hold my breath freezing my ass off all to turn the baby. HA! What a joke!
Ok, so back to what a gentle cesarean is. When it became clear I was not going to have a vaginal birth, I started doing research on the cesarean process. I had heard many women say they loved having a c-section and some say it was the worst experience ever. I honestly just wanted to have my baby come out healthy and I would deal with what else came with it. I began asking my OBGYN about what the hospital would and wouldn’t let me do. The really fortunate thing was, my OB was the Chief Medical Officer of the hospital so he basically said, “you can have whatever you want”. Wow! How cool was that? Now, I know that won’t be the case for everyone, and it might not even be if I get pregnant again and he isn’t practicing.
In a normal, safe vaginal delivery, they put the baby right up on your chest (if you want to) in order for you and the baby to begin bonding immediately. I knew I wanted to create the most similar experience in my cesarean, so I asked if Hendrix could be placed skin to skin on me as soon as she was born. I feared the answer would no since we were in an operating room, but my doctor said, if there is no emergency with the baby or you, sure! I also asked if they could delay the bath process and if I could be brought right into recovery ASAP in order to allow Hendrix the ability to try to breast-crawl. They did great and had me in the room in no time and she was able to right away! It was the most beautiful moment!
During the actual cesarean process, I heard the doctor call for backup of additional surgeons but didn’t think much of it. Here is why I say everything happens for a reason. Apparently, as soon as my doctor went to deliver Hendrix, he noticed the placenta was attached to my uterus. This is called placenta accreta which have different levels of severity. Because mine was moderate he was able to remove the baby without any problem and then operate on me to close up the lining of the uterus after detaching my placenta.
Here is what I was told after I was settled in my room and loving on my daughter. IF I had successfully gotten her to turn and had a vaginal birth, and tried to deliver the placenta, I most likely would have ruptured my uterus and 99% would have ended up in the operating room due to the emergency. Many women have major complications and some even end up having to have a hysterectomy. So, Hendrix being persistent and staying in the breech position actually saved me a lot of pain, recovery time and has given me the possibility of carrying another baby. Everything happens for a reason, right?I really own my experience, feelings, and interpretations of it (even when things were completely out of my control). Yes, things were out of my control a lot of times, and I didn’t necessarily have complete say in things, especially when it came to nature and science, but the way I handled them and viewed them is what mattered most and made it the most beautiful experience ever. I would do it 1000 x’s over if I had the chance. Ok, maybe not 1000 but at least once or twice more