During my first pregnancy, there was so much information thrown out to me about the labor and delivery part of being pregnant. Of course, birth was still quite unknown with the first, so it made sense that my focus was there. This time, though, my focus has been just surviving this pregnancy and not throwing up absolutely everything I eat, and so I have had little time to think of the baby's actual entrance into the world, other than wishing it was TODAY. So here's a bit about my feelings on that.
I know people are super down about cesareans. The cesarean rate and complications seem to be broadcasted on posters in every single medical facility a woman might encounter, and for a first-time mom, they're made to seem like the devil. Even in my October 2013 birth group, cesareans are talked about in one of two ways: fear, by the first-timers, and in hush-hush tones by those who will be having one again. So let me just begin by saying:
There is no shame in a cesarean.
Need me to say it louder and more clealry?
THERE IS NO SHAME IN A CESAREAN, PLANNED OR OTHERWISE.
If you want an all-natural, doula and midwife-accompanied home birth, more power to you! The choice is yours! But if you don't, or if that's not the way that things work out, you're not inferior! Cesareans don't represent failure - just another CHOICE. I've known women who have literally been to therapy to come to terms with their cesarean, and if you're feeling let down by it, that's a totally valid choice for you. But let it be for your own reasons, not because society or some home-birthing, natural mama made you feel bad, or less than, because of it.
For me, if you're not familiar with Ava's birth story, a cesarean was almost inevitable. I had previous LEEP surgeries for early stage cervical cancer when I was 22 and 23, and the resulting scar tissue made it such that my cervix just said, "Um, hell no" to dilation. Granted, I did insist on being induced at 39w2d with Ava, and that was my choice that I made knowing full well what the results could be, but knowing that even had I gone to 42 weeks and HAD to have an induction that I would have likely ended up not dilating even then validates my choice all the more for me. Some women love being pregnant. Some don't. I definitely fall into the latter category, and given the chance to induce earlier, I would have, now more than ever! But, long story short, my induction resulted in a hyperstimulated uterus, a reaction (projectile vomiting) to the Stadol they gave me since they couldn't give me anything else since I wasn't dilating despite the contractions I was having every 90 seconds, and 15 hours of labor that left me dilated at a 1. ONE CENTIMETER PEOPLE! I would've let them take that baby out of my nose!
So, how do I feel about a repeat cesarean?
HAPPY. JOYFUL. READY!
My doctor asked at my initial prenatal appointment whether or not I would be pursuing a VBAC, and I didn't even have to bat an eyelash. No way, Jose. A VBAC is a great choice for those unhappy with their cesarean experiences, but for me, better the devil you know, right? I mean, I get to schedule my birth a week before my due date, show up in the morning, and then have my baby in my arms thirty minutes later. It's seriously like going to the store and buying a baby (well, a very screwed up store where they cut people open, but you get my drift...)! There are no unknown variables, no fear or anxiety over when and where I may go into labor, or if my doctor will be available, or willing to induce, etc. There's just a definite end point, increasingly in sight, helping me to get through this miserable pregnancy!
And for me? That's the best choice.