To Regret or Not?

So the saying is so true.

Don't have a birth plan.

As soon as you start planning for how you want your birth to go down, that's when the exact opposite will happen.

As I sat in my hospital bed after we began my induction (something I didn't want to do, but ended up being necessary), my nurse asked if I had a birth plan.

Well yeah, I did, and I spent hours upon hours typing it up, but of course I left it at home. **cue irony**

When I told her this, she said, "honestly, you don't need it. because births will happen the way they are supposed to."

Boy, was she she right.

I wanted a natural birth.

Instead I was induced, had my water broken, had pitocin, had an epidural, and had a c section.

None of that was in my plan.

Here was my plan.
And I will tell you not ONE part of this birth I got. Not even breastfeeding. Which breaks my heart the most. Even though it's not because I couldn't produce milk. My sweet one's cleft palate doesn't allow her to. Praying she can after her surgery in October.

I have struggled with regretting how everything went down. Had a waited longer would she had come on her own?

After Raegan was born the doctor confirmed that she would not have come on her own no matter how long we waited. She wasn't descending into the birth canal therefore wasn't putting pressure on my cervix to dilate. Even though I've been told that by my doctor, I still can't help but feel guilty for not pushing for my "birth plan."

When my doctor came to check me at 9am, she ended up breaking my water while checking me and putting an internal fetal monitor next to Raegan's cheek to monitor the strength of my contractions. She didn't tell me this until after she did it. I think she knew I would have protested. And even though that did happen, I still love my doctor and trust her. And in the end she knew what she was doing.

After she walked out of the room I just started crying. I had already accepted I was having to do pitocin and induction, but was going to be allowed to move around the room and labor in other positions besides the bed. But once she had put that monitor on Raegan, I was told I had to stay in bed because if I moved around I could dislodge it.

Well that was the end. There was no way I'd be able to labor in that bed without an epidural for a long period of time. But I told myself I was going to give it my all and I did. For 8 hours I labored in that bed on high levels of pitocin without an epidural. At one point, I told my nurse I was getting up and I didn't care what she said. I had to labor in a different position. So she allowed me to labor on the ball for a few hours and it really helped the pain level.

Getting the epidural was something I wanted to strive to not do, but it wasn't the end of the world when I got it. I was always open to it. And even when I wasn't progressing and the talk of a c-section began, I wasn't upset because I knew I had given it my all.

But it was just the idea that I didn't allow my body to go into labor on its own. I know I know. She wouldn't have come on her own. But still.

My doctor is on board for a VBAC though. Thank goodness! Her only stipulation is that I go into labor on my own. She can't induce a previously c-sectioned momma. So crossing fingers I can go into labor on my own for one of my births.

Then there's breastfeeding. Ugh. I know Raegan can't breastfeed right now because of her cleft palate, but it still breaks my heart. I produce so much milk. Like enough to have twins! And I can't feed my baby in the most natural way. Yes, she is still getting my milk, but I want that bonding time with her. My body reacts to her. I start producing milk when she cries and my body is doing what it's made to do. But when she starts to cry and my body is doing what it's made to do, I have to go warm up a bottle. It breaks my little momma heart.

But in the end, my sweet miracle baby is here and who cares how she got here? Honestly. I do have lots of feelings of how everything went down, but I don't regret it. And I never did until talking to friends after she arrived.

All of the feelings I've had have been brought on by other moms who didn't agree with how I gave birth. Being told numerous times "you should have waited" or "don't back down from what you want" breaks my heart because it wouldn't have mattered. My baby was stuck in my hip. My doctor is a doctor for a reason. She knows what she's doing!

These days so many mommas judge other mommas for their choices of how they birth, how they feed their baby, what they feed their baby, and so much more.

Mommas, we must STOP! Each of us is the most perfect momma for our baby and we know what's best for our OWN baby.

The best thing you can do for a momma friend who didn't get the birth they wanted is say, "I know it didn't go down the way you wanted, but your sweet bundle of joy is HERE!"

Because in the end, that's all that matters.

And there's always baby #2 to try for a natural birth, right? :)

8 comments

  1. I love this post. I'm not writing a birth plan for this exact reason! I have a few things I would like. Such as laboring out of the bed for as long as possible. But not stuck on any one thing. My sister in law said that after her C-Section she was disappointed in herself for not pushing herself more to have a vaginal birth. I immediately thought it was ridiculous that she said that. Your baby is here, safe & healthy. That's the whole point, isn't it? I'm sorry other people are making you feel this way. I think your brave and heroic. Seems like there is nothing easy about birth!!!

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  2. Oh it just hurts my heart to think someone would question any choice of any kind that you make in your role as a momma. I'm sure you are the best mom and you have the most precious lil baby girl :)

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  3. I completely understand where you are coming from. I had this whole idea in my head for how things would go, but of course things don't go as planned! You are a wonderful mom and your little one is so lucky you as her mommy!

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  4. I'm trying to get myself NOT to have a birth plan. But it's totally against my personality not to plan. Sigh!

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  5. I love this post! Your little Rae came into this world just the way she was supposed to!!! We didn't want to write a birth plan at all, but our midwife insisted we get our thoughts on paper. So our plan includes things like "we want to have a healthy baby in the most natural way possible, but we are not opposed to doctor's recommendations and ask that we have time adequate time to consider such recommendations." Thankfully, I've heard enough birth stories to know that it *almost* never goes to plan!

    Whatever happens, happens and we can't wait to meet our son!!

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  6. I didn't have a birth plan written out, but in my head, I had my ideas. I wanted no epidural, if possible, but after the hours on pitocin and extreme back labor, I gave in. I had the epidural in hopes of moving things along quicker. My water had broken on its own, but I needed the pitocin as I wasn't contracting. Later, after long hours of labor and almost 3 hours of pushing, I ended up with a c section, with a dr I didn't like, but couldn't change. I had wanted to breastfeed, too, but thanks to a mistake by my dr, I was unable to after being on antibiotics for a week, which dried up my milk. I felt horribly guilty for the first few months (especially after I went back to work), but over time, I have let the guilt go (there will be a million more things to feel guilty for!). I did what I could for my baby, but in the end, she was born healthy and is now a smart, funny energetic 8 year old! She is my one and only, so there were no re-do's for me. I can play the what-if game, but there are too many other things to think about.

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  7. I can absolutely relate to this post. I had my boys in THE MOST unconventional of ways- completely knocked out under general anesthesia. I was so sick with pre eclampsia (HELP, the most severe) and also had low platelets so an epidural for my c section wasn't an option. I gave birth to my boys without even getting to hear their cries or seeing their faces until 24 hours later. My husband wasn't in the room with me and we don't have one of those c section delivery pictures of me with my surgery cap on and my husband up by my head holding the boys. BUT! I'm alive! The boys are healthy!! And in the end: that's what matters most :). And yes- there's always the next time!!! XOXO

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  8. Girl, you are preaching to the choir on this one. I can't believe someone told you "You should have waited." I really hope that person has a medical degree waving fingers like that. You gave it a valiant effort and should be proud. One thing I learned in our extended stay at the hospital is that we could be dealing with MUCH worse things that mommy guilt from a birth not going as planned. Your baby is home, and healthy, and you're making her oodles of milk (beyond awesome!). What more can you really ask for, right? We need to learn to let it go and keep what matters most in perspective. I know it's hard...doing the same and it's a back and forth in my brain, so I get it!

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I enjoy reading every comment!

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