When Delivery Doesn’t Go As Planned
January 19, 2011 6:02 am
One of the great joys of pregnancy is envisioning a beautiful, perfect delivery day. We plan those first moments when we meet our new baby as our family lovingly gathers around.
Maybe you wrote out your birth plan, carried it dutifully to your final doctor’s or midwife appointments, and made sure you had extra copies for all the nurses, doulas and attendants by your side for delivery. But life doesn’t always go as planned.
Personally, I’ve had three pregnancies, resulting in four children. The brief version goes like this: singleton, twins, singleton; vaginal delivery, vaginal delivery, c-section, VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). You do the math… there’s one definitely not as planned delivery in there. Actually only one of my deliveries went even close to my plan.
I’ll spare you the gory details, but my twin pregnancy resulted in what my obstetrician called “the delivery from hell”. No joke, she actually said those words to me the day after my sons were born.
So what’s a mom to do when delivery plans change in the middle of delivery? It may seem a little oversimplified but I’d say, have a baby by whatever means necessary. Most of us who have deliveries that don’t go exactly as planned, no matter the changes, we still have a healthy baby once it’s all said and done. Unfortunately, even with the amazing knowledge and technology we have today, not every family experiences a happy ending.
I recall a conversation with a friend a few years ago. I expressed how unhappy and uncomfortable I was about my two scars- one from a c-section, one from thyroid surgery. She shared with me wisdom her grandmother had bestowed upon her. I can’t recall the exact words, but the message was “Every scar on my body represents a time my life or my child’s life was saved.” Her words pierced my heart and forever changed how I feel about those (now fading) scars. I could be unhappy about the process, or I could choose to be thankful for medical professionals that did their jobs.
Sure, I recall the scary moments from delivery. I still have the photos of my son, 24 hours old, black and blue from his complicated delivery. He’s healthy today, all four of them are amazing, healthy children. Of course, I share my experiences with other moms when they ask. I tell them what I would have done differently. I share the things I know now that I wish I had known before. But most importantly, I choose to be thankful, no matter the process, that I can hold my children in my arms.
Did your delivery go as planned? If not, how did you deal with the feelings that follow an unexpected delivery? Share your story with us.