So before I get into the actual birth story/birth trauma I want to preface by saying a few things. I did not have any extra money while pregnant, I did not get to take these beautiful updated bump photos and I certainly did not have people around me for support. Me and Adam lived in a tiny one bedroom apartment in an awful and dangerous part of town. We had spent months moving from Clear Lake to Austin, to Cuero and then to Houston. This was not a magical time of wonderment. My life was hard and I went through a lot prior to and during my pregnancy… That is a whole different post though. What I am trying to say is, my pregnancy was hard, I was a high risk pregnancy and the life we were living was rough. I was alone almost all the time because Adam was working, I was sick constantly and we were flat broke. Would I change any of it if I could? Of course, but that is not how life works. Without further ado, my birthing story.
In late December my doctor told me they were keeping a close eye on my blood pressure and if it continued to climb, they would have to induce. I had to go into the hospital a few times for braxton hicks, pain, illness and what we all thought was labor. January rolls around and it’s time to see my doctor on January 5, 2015. I go in and he tells me they will have to induce that day because my vitals were not great. He then scraped my membranes, but did not tell me what he was even doing. After he did this he told us to go directly to the hospital. So you can imagine my horror as I noticed I was in much pain and bleeding. I had no idea what was going on and I was terrified. Due to some traumatic events that happened to me, my whole pregnancy was an anxiety attack. I wanted to make this a separate post but, I feel I must explain why I had such trauma and anxiety. Right before i found out I was pregnant, I was raped in between two buildings at my old job. So the whole time I did not know if I was pregnant by who raped me, or by Adam. I did not even tell Adam until halfway through the pregnancy. I never told my doctor or anyone else. I did not like or trust my doctor, but I thought it was too far in to get a new one. Please believe me when I tell you if I knew what I knew now-things would be different. So we get to the hospital and are waiting on a room.
Finally I am admitted to a room where I have to wait forever for them to give me pitocin. Mind you, he has already stropped my membranes and I had to ask the nurse why I was in so much pain and bleeding. Why did my doctor not tell me? Am I okay, is my baby okay? So many questions and they made me feel like I was annoying them. So this was around noon that all of this started. The meds, the talks and the waiting game. I was in so much pain and was having active contractions but something was wrong because I was not dilating AT ALL. This caused worry and they kept telling me to relax, but I was relaxed and I was ready to do this. The pain got so bad around 11 that night they gave me the epidural. I should also mention from the get go I was put on a fall risk for some reason. My blood pressure and vitals had been going crazy…but thinking back on it if I was allowed to get up and walk this may have gone differently. I know what some of you might be thinking… that this was my fault, I should have known to say this or do that. Obviously a woman fixing to give birth knows what to do in this situation… WRONG. As I said I was terrified, traumatized and just all around living in a constant panic attack. I did not know what to do, I was naive at the time and was someone who believed doctors and nurses always do the best…
So the next morning around 11am on January 6th, 2015 my doctor finally waltzes in nonchalantly. He examines me and tells me that I am not dilating and my water is still intact. He broke my water, and it seemed to be trickling out slowly. He told me that my vitals were not getting better and that we needed to keep an eye out for fetal distress. Then walked out, he fucking just walked out. Do you understand how scary that is to hear? Not only have I been in and out of the doctors constantly, I am a high risk pregnancy, I have constant anxiety and now I am stuck in a bed not knowing what is going to happen.
So around noon, probably a bit after I started feeling just totally out of it. I was trying to remain calm but inside I felt like I was looking at myself from another persons POV. My blood pressure was plummeting and my baby was in stress. Things took a very quick turn for the worse and I did not know what was going to happen. I kept telling him to let me try to push and I was hysterical and I could just see eyes rolling. I got a shot of some kind, I am guessing it was to try to help with my vitals dropping. I kept asking my doctor what was happening and that I was scared and to help me. he told me somehow my son has got turned around and was lodged sideways and everything was fading. Hours before I was telling them I had a horrid pain on my left side and that something was wrong, no one listened to me. They all brushed it off as contractions, but I had contractions and this was not that. This pain had started in the middle of the night, so for hours I was having this and no one cared or listened. Turned out the pain I was feeling was my son and he was in something called transverse lie position and my body was not dilating. I believe my doctor had my dates off and that I was not as pregnant as he thought I was, but that is neither here nor there. So he comes in says emergency c-section and that they are prepping the OR right now. I freaked out, this was not how i thought my birth would go. I was so upset with myself, why could I not even give birth right? How did I mess this up? I was begging for them to let me try, but that was no longer an option. As I got wheeled away I just thought…. I am going to die and my son is going to die all because my body is not working right.
So being in the operating room was terrifying there were all these people around, all these sheets going up and I was in a daze. I remember them “numbing” me and asking me if I could still feel it, to which I was like yes. Now it’s not like I was 100% able to feel it, lol… It was still extremely painful though. They started the process and i could feel every cut, movement and hands pulling and pushing inside of me. I looked over to my left and just saw a ton blood in these vats, which I am guessing was mine seeing as the tubes were coming from me. The pressure was unlike anything I have ever felt, I honestly can not even describe it. It felt like a horror movie, you know the one where he takes the intestines and wraps it around the machine… Yeah that one. Finally I hear my son cry and all the pain kind of went away at that moment. Then I was overcome immediately with anxiety about the entire situation with the rape and pregnancy and I remember the first thing I said to my mom is “What color is his hair”? She said “It is bright red”, in that moment I knew there was 0% that my baby was caused by the rape I endured. Now don’t get me wrong, even if it was this would have been our child. Adam and i discussed the whole “what if” scenario and we decided even if it did come down to that, it would still be ours. I held him and looked at him and he looked just like me, but with the red hair that runs so strongly in Adam’s family.
The next week was a total blur or pain and mental torment. I could not forgive myself for somehow allowing my body to fail me. Now I know this is common and my body was not failing me. Every woman is different and we all go through birth different-this was my journey. I have been in mom groups where I have been told i took the easy way out, I should have tried harder, I should have done this or that. The most hurtful was another mother telling me “If your son was meant to be here, he would have came out of you normally” I still have those words play in my head on hard days, but deep down I know that’s bullshit. It does not matter if it was at home, in the hospital, planned csection or emergency csection. Whatever ends up happening is just the way it is. No woman is more than another for giving birth differently My son chose me and it does not matter how he got here. He is alive, I am alive and we are here to do this thing called life.
In the future I will write a more detailed blog post about why I had such mistrust for my doctor, but I am not ready to talk about that yet. There is more to this, but much of it was in the moment fear, machines beeping, vitals plummeting and them saying we need to get the baby out now. While mine is not the scariest, our lives were in danger and it was terrifying. My issues and feelings were brushed to the side, my doctor did not give a shit about me. I was just some patient who he was trying to rush to move on to the next. I have always been so scared to get pregnant again because I know due to my age and health issues, I am even higher risk now. I have had multiple miscarriages since I had my son, so I feel like it’s just not in my cards. That is fine with me, I got this one sweet ginger boy and he makes my world go round… That’s all I need in life.