A Special Birth

 

A Special Birth

20160122_053129So, this was my first patient who went to c-section. I feel a bit… sad. Sometimes, the labor we plan, is not the labor that happens. I was looking into the mothers tired, exhausted eyes, she was barely able to keep them open, after 2 days of hard labor, baby’s heartbeat was going up… it was not looking good. I knew I had to make the call before I wanted to make the call. I had never had to do this before, and I didn’t like it. I didn’t like the feeling, maybe if I asked her to move more, maybe if I advised her to rest longer, maybe if I hadn’t come so early, was this my fault? Then, telling her, it was time to give up her dream of a water birth at home. I felt like I was slapping her in the face. Her supportive family (who took a lot of persuading to be that way) were all looking at me. I felt the full weight of being a midwife on my shoulders. The hopes and dreams of a woman, her life and her baby’s, her family’s expectations, and so much more… Am I the reason that she is going to hear “I told you so” when she tells people how the story ended? I was hoping they could give her some medicine to help her sleep and maybe she could get some strength back. But that wasn’t in the cards. We went to the “non-emergency” hospital of her choice and met with my back up OB. He checked the baby’s heartbeat, it was still going up, the contractions were disappearing and I knew this wasn’t going to end well. After talking over the options, c-section was chosen as the best option. Her family was grateful to me for keeping the first baby in their family in 19 years safe, and their beautiful, strong, amazing daughter/sister/niece/girlfriend safe. The doctor confirmed that I made the right decision to bring her when I did. I was able to be there, next to the new dad, as I watched the OB pull the little guy out of her womb. The doctor was nice and held the baby for a minute, the surgical lights were turned away from the baby, so he wasn’t looking into the bright lights, and the baby was quickly examined and then placed skin-to-skin with mom. It was a beautiful, gentle, surgical birth. It made it almost sadder- would she have been better if she had just done that in the first place? Either way, she and the baby were healthy, and finally done. I know this was not a failure for anyone, not me, not her. But I do, I feel like a bit of a failure. I realize this birth was not about me, obviously, yet it represents something I knew would eventually come, but always dreaded it – my first transfer to a section. In the end, everyone is safe and happy, and healthy, and that is exactly why I am a midwife. I may not have been able to give her the birth she wanted, but I was there when she and that precious baby, and her family needed me. So, I shouldn’t feel like I failed. That makes me feel better. This birth has taught me more than any other birth so far…

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