Crunchy moms tend to shoot for natural births, not all of them do… but most. I am in the majority there. Birth number one was unfortunately induced (pitocin is the Devil, I can say for sure now having had that coursing through my body for 24ish hours) but the drugs stopped there, thanks to my husband, my doula, and a tub. That tub there basically changed everything for planning birth number two, or so I thought. If you have ever been in the water for a birth or just during a contraction, I don’t really need to say much more. If you haven’t, it’s borderline blissful. Yea the contractions still hurt, but so much less. Water magically relieves so much of the pressure. I wanted to cry when I had to get out. Never mind that I went in too early and it slowed my labor down, even if I went in right on time I would have still had to get out because they don’t allow water births where I was. LAME. And the reason I decided not to go back there for number two. If water makes contractions that much better then what of transition and crowning? I had to pursue that! And so mid pregnancy I made the decision and switched to one of about 3 hospitals around here that allow water births and I was psyched! I decided to add in some hypnobirthing tools this time around too. Those birth stories where the mama is in the tub and seemingly zoned out? Yes! That would be me this time!
I can’t even remember when but somewhere in the early 30 weeks we found out he was breech. Oh boo….but we still have time. So it’s all good. Yet the weeks passed and he was still breech… Hmmm. I looked into all the things I can do to hopefully get him to turn and then I started them one by one. All the while I hear if he isn’t turned by 37 weeks then that’s when they would want to manually turn him. Mm. The external cephalic version. Pretty much any mention of it raised a red flag. I was torn though. If I try everything and he doesn’t turn and that’s the last option….what if I am passing on the last option for a normal delivery? What a pickle. I brushed it off as best as I could and just kept on trying to get him to turn…..Webster’s technique with my chiropractor, cold peas on his head (the baby, not the chiropractor), music and light down low low low, inversions, breech tilts, acupuncture/moxibustion double whammy, self-hypnotherapy, EFT to reduce my anxiety over the possible outcomes if he doesn’t turn…and still had a few things left to try. While I tried these things I had this weight on my shoulders about this ECV. Would it be my only shot for a natural delivery? Oh there’s that red flag again. Here’s the thing about red flags…you just don’t ignore them. There’s a reason they are flailing around in your subconscious face. Only a 58% chance it would even work….and he could turn back if it does work….and it could lead to an emergency c-section right then and there. I finally let go and decided I would be declining this invasive procedure. (There is the first set of weights off my shoulders!) I just kept thinking if he doesn’t turn with all these things I am trying (especially the chiropractor and acupuncture/moxibustion that have super high success rates) then I feel in my gut he just isn’t turning for a reason. Week 36….I am trying to decide if I will be going back to my old OB because I have a relationship with him and I want him to do the C if it ends up happening. Oh but then I am giving up a water birth if he ends up turning….and they can turn way up until the end, even in labor. Oh sweet baby, you sure are making your mama think.
Here’s where I wished for a minute that I didn’t care about these things. That I didn’t know what I know and didn’t accept the responsibility of looking into my options instead of just doing what an OB says. I mean, there is a new hospital about 5 minutes from our house. I wish I was like, “Ok cool! Whenever you want to do the C, let’s just do it! Let me check my calendar for when’s good and maybe we can find something that works for us and you can still make your tee time.” Holy cow would this all have been SO much easier! “To know better is to do better” though, so I’m brought back to reality. Amidst all of these big decisions one after the other, I am compelled to meet with another midwife/OB group (my poor husband. He is the BEST husband!) How odd….like I don’t have enough to think about. I follow my gut though and we go meet her and chat. They just started water births there…and even more recently started something called a “Gentle Cesarean”. She gives me the basics and said I will find way more info if I Google it. I’m a Googler so I do. Oh, I see. About as close as I can get to the kind of C I would hope for. Hm. So if he turns I can still have the water birth option and if he doesn’t then I have this Gentle C option. Ohhhh that’s why I felt compelled to meet with her. I check on feedback for her and the docs and the hospital. Vast majority good, some bad….no place is perfect. Another 9th inning switch for me! 😀 (All the while my awesome doula Karry, listened to me go/talk through all of these decisions, gave advice when asked and supported me with whatever decisions I made, love her.) And here was the second set of weights off my shoulder!
I realized after my EFT session that this was a lesson in faith for me. And just because you realize that doesn’t mean you are suddenly squared away and good to go apparently either. 😀 I went to my personal library and asked God to show me what I needed. I grabbed two books, “Amazing Freedom: Devotions to Free Your Spirit and Fill Your Heart” by those lovely Women of Faith ladies and “The Remarkable Prayers of the Bible: Transforming Power for Your Life Today” by Jim George.
The first message He sends me from the first book, “In a strange but marvelous way, her belief gives her a sense of freedom because she knows she doesn’t have to figure out the big picture by herself. She doesn’t have to see how each piece of her life fits into God’s big, glorious picture. She just keeps believing. Keeps praying. Keeps trusting. And she knows that in the end, God’s plan will be revealed to her, and she’ll be able to see her life as God sees it.” Here’s where my science brain shoves her hands in her pockets and kicks a rock.
The second message from the second book is from the chapter on Abraham “a man of remarkable faith”…yea I better read this one seeing as I know this is a lesson in faith. Here’s what jumped right off the page and all but slapped me in the face, “Fear is a good indicator that we have strayed away from God’s will, for when we have fear, we are not trusting God.” DOH! My science brain throws her hands up and just leaves. And then a reminder through Abraham’s prayers, that they should be motivated by a desire to see God glorified. I had been praying, though not fervently. I kept in mind that prayers aren’t always answered immediately, and sometimes they never are. I kept in mind that it really is His Will Be Done, and I was ok with that….or was I? If I could just know what’s going on here, why he is breech, why hasn’t he turned, will he turn in time? I felt so much closer to peace, but just wasn’t quite there. Lessons can be such a pain. And I picture God doing the 9172981273 things a minute that He does and peeking in on me to see how my progress is going and thinking to Himself, “She’s almost there….”
So my prayers changed to focus on whatever the outcome, I would be glorifying God. If he turns head down, then God did that by His own hands. I mean He is knitting him in my womb (Psalm 139:13) so He will certainly turn him if He wants. If he doesn’t turn, then God left him in place for reasons I may not get to know this side of Heaven, but glory to Him for bringing me this child, His child on loan to me, however He planned to bring Him to me.
I stared writing this blog several days ago, maybe even a couple weeks ago, I’m not even sure anymore. But just yesterday the last set of weights were lifted off my shoulders by my Father….and not because He turned the baby. I woke up from a nap and was sitting there in the quiet, gazing out the window at the greenery and listening to the birds. My mind wandered to this baby boy as it often does, but not him in my belly in the “wrong” position and wondering when will he turn or will he turn or why hasn’t he turned, but of him on my chest making those heavenly baby noises and within kissing distance of my lips. And that was it. Oh sweet peace. It just didn’t matter anymore how he arrives, God has that covered. Free at last! And oh look at that, this IS true! “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36.
And on that note…
Update: He was born the day after I finished writing this. Excuse me while I crack up at how God works….yes yes, touché Lord, touché! Here is his birth story. There’s a link in it for the news clip….because we kind of made the news. 😀