Eden Grace: birth story

It starts at week 35. We went in for our check up and in our sonogram we learned Eden was breeched. We discussed my OB flipping her and the possibility of a c-section. I went home and researched every natural way to flip a breeched baby and, instantly, that became my full time job. Essential oils, yoga, feet above my head, walking, exercise ball... You name it I was at home doing it. 

At our 36 week appointment she was still breeched, we learned they couldn't flip her because her umbilical cord looked to be wrapped around her neck. With the chance of strangulation our only option was to schedule a c-section and hope that she flipped on her own so we could cancel it.

I continued doing everything to naturally flip her but ultimately wanted her to be safe. I had an very hard time understanding God because I knew that a natural birth is better for mom and baby generally speaking. I was angry because I knew He could flip her. I was confused because once again my plans may be changing and I knew nothing about a c-section. I also felt like I failed before labor even started, like I wasn't going to get to do what one of the things I was created to do. Scheduling a cesarean and writing an alternate birth plan was extremely hard for me. My original plan had zero intervention, showers, exercise balls, positions... the works.

I discussed the plan I had for a gentle cesarean and by grace alone my OB is one of the few in town that was comfortable with my desires. My main goal was to hold Eden immediately; sterile field or not I was holding that baby as soon as possible. 

Week by week went by and nothing changed. Sometimes I would see her sweet head move from one side on my stomach to the other like she was trying to get where she needed to be but couldn't. There were two very real times when I sat in my closet and cried out to God to flip her safety. But morning by morning I would see her sweet head as close to my heart as she could get.

On Tuesday April 19th we woke up at 4am, I showered and got ready because that's one of the perks with a c-section. We arrived at the hospital a little before 5:30am.

They checked one last time; Eden was happy, healthy, and absolutely still breeched.

They took me back to get a spinal and prep me for surgery. Tim held my hand as we waited to hear her sweet cry. Tim looked over the sheet to see her pulled out of me, with tears in his eyes he said she was beautiful. They immediately brought her over for skin to skin and delayed the newborn exam so I could hold her as they finished up. Those moments were some of the sweetest if my life. The hours after were filled with snuggles as well as some of the most intense recovery and weakness I've ever felt. But the pain and my inability to move didn't overshadow the joy and content I felt watching her eat and sleep.

My cesarean was beautiful. 

You may think that's weird; but it's the way our daughter entered the world and she was able to be here safe and healthy with less concern because of it.

Yes, I mourn the birth I wanted for her. That's ok. I pray that in the future I am able to have a natural birth and experience that as well. I am still confident in the decision we made, I am still so thankful for her birth story.

she's here and the rest, they say, is history. 

I debated whether to share our story or not; because cesarean seem to be looked at as a "lesser birth story". It's spoken of in the context of a weak mother who didn't fight for the natural birth she wanted, she's uneducated, or simply selfish and that's why the cesarean happened. If not that extreme, it just seemed that moms that have had c-sections missed out on an experience for some medical reason; they are sad about it and people feel sorry for them. I have become content with sweet Edens birth. It makes me feel strong and brings immense joy. I had to face a lot of fear and die to myself to have that surgery. It was what God saw to be the best thing for me, and Gods plans are perfect. That surgery was always his plan- I can trust Him. 

My encouragement to you as a mom whose birth went differently than planned or the mom wanting to see her birth story written: trust God. Plan. Educate yourself. Trust God. Don't judge others or yourself. The birth of your baby is beautiful. You are stronger than you know and it takes a lot no matter what to bring a baby into this world. Find joy and peace in your story and enjoy each moment with your baby.

It's all a gift.

Last thing: if a c-section is a real option for you (for whatever reason) or you just want to have a backup plan incase; PLEASE research what a gentle birth entails so you can talk to your doctor about how to make it what you hope for. It can really be so beautiful and more personal than what you assume.