Empowered Birth: You Are Not Alone

It was such a delight to see an email from one of the mommies who visited this site early this year and who got inspired to go for VBAC for her second childbirth. With the many emails I’ve received for the past months, I haven’t tracked all the senders. I remember some mommies who asked about how I did it and expressed that they too wanted to try it for themselves, but only a few really took the road less traveled and courageously tried VBAC. These few women who aspired to give birth naturally after a Cesarean (or two) and became successful wrote me to say “thank you” for sharing my story and for inspiring them to believe that VBAC is possible. Mommy Osang is one of the few women who took this path and successfully hurdled the challenges of a VBAC experience.

Below is an excerpt of her VBAC journey. You can read the whole account in this site. Here’s her story . . .

Our VBAC journey:

The term VBAC was alien to me; I never thought there is such a process “Vaginal birth after Caesarean”? Who had not heard;

“Once a Cesarean always a cesarean”?!

No one right? It seems like the term will remain forever in our minds.

I started from scratch! I want to find a way to beat the “being a cesarean always a cesarean” belief  at least for my family and friends.

SO, the search began . . . ( Yay! the power of Internet)

I searched, searched, and searched and became frustrated because so little I have information about successful VBAC in the Philippines and so little of our doctors who support the process.

Until, I found Ms. Cathy’s Blog. My inspiration. Her VBA2C story gave me the willpower to continue with what I believe I can do. My determination kicks a little too high and said to myself,

 “I ALSO WANT A NATURAL BIRTH!!!”

I did not waste any more time.

I started planning (which I was not able to do with my first pregnancy) and of course part of the plan is to have a pro VBAC OB, which I thought I had.

First appointment with my OB was really smooth and awesome. I liked her (I really do!).

I discussed my VBAC decision. She said that I’ll have 75 percent chance of success since it’s been seven years, but she requires me to undergo further laboratory test to see how thick my uterine lining, since possible rapture might arise. Other procedure shall be discuss further once I am already at my 34 and up weeks. But for now, we will continue to monitor my baby’s development.

Every monthly prenatal checkup, I never failed to discuss my VBAC plan to her until I noticed my OB is being more and more negative about my choice of birth. (I had the feeling this would happen.) She insists I need to weight the risk of my baby’s health and mine if I pursue. She added at 39 weeks if my baby won’t come out, then a repeat cesarean!

I was so angry and frustrated about the situation. It seems like I wasted my time on thinking she will support me.  I thought, “How come the person you entrusted your birth gives you the negativity of something you know for yourself you are capable of doing?”

So, moms, not to worry; I know the feeling of every people around you being NEGATIVE about your VBAC. I was at a point where I don’t talk about my pregnancy at all, and if people asked where will I have my surgery, I just smiled. (Besides, why would they conclude it is another surgery? ) 

A piece of advice: Make them your inspiration.  When people argue about your decision, just say,

 “WATCH ME.” 

Going back . . .

Since my OB is a pain. I cannot waste time and energy for her negativity, I had to do a REROUTE.

  • I printed out VBAC Manuals; facts, myths, risk and every bit of information I can gather online—you name it!

I have to be educated to win the battle.  (Oh, and to mention Davao is my escape route if ever my plan here in Manila failed.)

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To continue . . .

  • I added myself in every forum I could find via the Internet.
  • I also joined VBAC community on Facebook, I asked every question I can think and received an immediate answers from the members.

As what successful VBAC moms say, “ VBAC has risk, so does Repeat Cesarean.” So choose wisely and be informed. The well informed you are, the more the PLAN is to be into place and the less negative people will be able to persuade you.

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On the Facebook group, I learned about the word “DOULA.”

The word doula (doo-la), an old Greek word, which means “one who serves.” Doulas are also called Labor Coach, Labor Support Professionals, Birth Companions, or Childbirth Assistants.

I checked if we have doula in my country (Philippines). Then I found her. For me, she is one of the angel sent from heaven.

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(http://birthingisablessing.com/)

Fast forward to April 18, 2014

Around 2 to 3 AM I started pushing, my husband at my back giving me support strength, he whispers every now and then that I am doing great, he massage my nipples for contraction purposes. It helps. It really does! Four midwifes are all over the room to support me, giving me instruction on how to properly push others are checking my vitals and the heart rate of my baby and keeping it on records.

“Sige, te, kita na namin yung buhok.”

“Sige, te, kita na naming yung ulo.”

“Ayan, te, isa pa. Ire pa. Kaya mo ‘yan.”

And the next thirty minutes?  We saw our wonderful VBAC baby. My husband whispered to my ear, “THANK YOU,” which made my VBAC journey complete (to be appreciated with what you fought and believed for 9 months is the simplest yet incredibly uplifting things you can ever hear).

The best part? The SKIN-TO-SKIN moment.  The feeling no words can be used to describe.

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I hope our story will  inspire you that VBAC  is possible, there is a WAY and there are people who is willing to help you with your choice. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! 

Remember: Woman’s body is designed to give birth, trust your Instinct, you will know what to do when you get there. This is a matter of how much you want your natural birth, how determine you are.. and please at least try  the process of labor, you and your baby will benefit out of it. The outcome might not be PERFECT but It’ll be OKAY!

I can’t help but feel so proud of you, Mommy Osang. I can remember myself in the story. I love all the affirmations you posted here. If you won’t do it, no one will do it for you. I had to read a lot of positive/successful VBAC stories myself just to affirm what I know and get the energy and strength from women all over the world who had successful VBAC as well. We are not alone. In the end, your courage and efforts really paid off. I salute and admire you. Thank you, Mommy Osang, for inspiring us with your VBAC story. It is an unforgettable journey indeed:)

 

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About themilklady

a mother of 4 wonderful kids. a social entrepreneur. an advocate of natural childbirth, VBAC, and breast-feeding.
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