Tuesday, January 18, 2011

So much to say...

I have had such an extremely busy week, but I hate when my blog posts get old, it just annoys me...so I MUST post something new. Pregnancy news anyone????

This pregnancy is going very well so far (knock on wood). There are a couple of things weighing heavily on my mind:

1) Changing caregivers and hospitals:

While I had a happy experience (what I thought was perfect at that time) with Carson's prenatal care and birth...I am now a changed person, a more informed, educated, and outspoken person when it comes to the birth of MY babies. What was "perfect" then is nowhere near the experience I want this go round. I was the perfect patient back then, I had my list of questions, read through them quickly as to not waste the Doctor's time on little ol' me. I took his answers to be the only truth without batting an eye. And I was oh so wrong.

My attitude back then was "induce me as soon as possible" and "give me every drug available" and "maybe I will breastfeed". After Carson was born I became a mom - I grew up, I realized that there is nothing convenient about birthing or raising a baby. This time, my own convenience will not overshadow what is best for my baby and my health.

My first order of business is to ensure that I will birth in a place that fully supports a VBAC and doesn't just say they do. My current practice says they support it, but their actions and body language don't suggest the same. My first few appointments during this pregnancy I expressed my want for a VBAC and I was made to feel like a student in detention...I was quickly reminded of the rules that are associated with it. They seemed to focus on the negative (which is an extremely small portion). It was almost like I was inconveniencing them by wanting something that they can't control. You see, with a successful VBAC, labor must occur spontaneously, no induction of any kind, no speeding up labor, etc...just wait on labor to take its natural course......imagine that! The only appointment where I felt supported was my most recent visit, this Dr. actually asked ME about VBAC, not me initiating the conversation. He gave me some information on the subject and was very kind...but he is the only person that has made me feel that way....and there is no guarantee that he will be overseeing my labor and delivery on the big day.

One of the main give-aways of the staff's true opinions on VBAC (besides the looks on their faces) is the "right of passage" to get a VBAC. For example, they ask me why I had a c-section with Carson and they sigh and say ok, breech presentation is a good reason to try for VBAC. On the contrary people, unless this pregnancy/labor suggests that a c-section is medically necessary (not conveniently necessary), then women should be allowed to try for VBAC no matter how many c-sections they have had, and no matter how their labor progressed during the last delivery (every, pregnancy, labor, delivery and baby are DIFFERENT). Just because X,Y,Z happened in the first labor, doesn't mean X,Y,Z will happen again. Especially if you change your game plan. Statistics show much better outcomes when labor begins spontaneously rather than when induced (that induction begins a snowball effect of unnecessary interventions).

Multiple c-sections are very dangerous (placenta accreta), but no one discusses those risks with you when they sign you up for this ridiculously routine major surgery.

So..... I am in the process of assessing a supportive birthing team to get the best outcome possible.

2) Ultrasounds:

Among my research of avoiding unnecessary surgery...I have come across many other helpful warnings. Be careful not to have too many unnecessary ultrasounds. This is something else I wish I had known while pregnant with Carson. Don't get me wrong, I love seeing my growing baby, but at what cost? No one really knows...many years ago, women received routine X-rays while pregnant, and they thought that was safe.

Just google ultrasound risks, and there is plenty of info. The FDA said that it is still unknown what effects ultrasounds have on a fetus, they advise against having them if they aren't necessary.


Courtney said...

You know I'm right here with you on this...100 perc. Couldn't agree more!! And just wanted to say to follow your gut on your current clinic...sounds like they are showing their true colors.

A little advice from your doula friend :)...contact the local doulas in your area and ask for their recommendations for vbac friendly drs and hospitals as they will have witnessed many vbacs (many vbac mamas are hiring doulas now). Also contact the leader for Ican in your area as they will probably have a list of very supportive vbac obs/midwives and hospitals. Keep me updated!

The Sweet Life said...

Congrats on baby #2!!

Chrysti said...

You made an excellent point about no matter how many C-sections...Michele Duggar who has had 19 birth experiences has had C-sections mixed in with natural deliveries.
I know how it is not to have things go as planned with a delivery and that just makes you that much more determined to have it done right the next time. Continue to stand up for what you believe in!

Jennifer said...

Hi Kimberly - I just clicked over here from Candace Strickland's blog (I grew up with her). Just wanted to say that I think your new plan is awesome! I had an unmedicated birth four weeks ago today - my first baby. It was the most humbling yet empowering experience of my life. Words cannot even express! And I really believe any woman can do it with a little preparation. 2 things I KNOW made it possible for me: 1. Our doula. Just having someone who supported and believed in our goals was invaluable! 2. My prenatal yoga class. It made a HUGE difference in how I felt when I actually went :) My husband and I took a yoga for labor and delivery class that was awesome! I would not have made it without those skills, that is for sure! And it gave my husband some tools for support so he didn't feel helpless.

I'm no expert by any means, but I loved my birth experience and am happy to talk about it - I know it is kind of hard to find women to talk natural labor with these days! Feel free to email me if you'd like: jennifer.bonds@gmail.com.

Good luck with your pregnancy! I look forward to following your progress! And Carson is a total doll! No wonder you're ready for #2 :)