Control. That’s what I had to give up today. And it was really hard. This photo was right after finding out my entire birth plan was out the window. Read down below for birth story part 1. 👇
Around 2pm today, I started getting some lower cramping and a back ache. I took a bath, laid down to relax and waited to see if things were progressing. I started to get some intense contractions so I called the midwife and my Intended Mom just after 3pm. I was getting excited and wanted to get back in the bath, get my headphones with my birth playlist and start the unmedicated VBAC birth I desired.
The midwife came around 4:30 to do an assessment. At this point, I was having more painful contractions and a horrible back ache. But I had everything ready to manage labour at home for a while. I did have a bit of an emotional moment just feeling flooded and overwhelmed that it was actually happening! She checked me and I was only 2-3cm but his heart rate was quite high. Staying in the 190’s-200’s. Everything changed very quickly after that and we needed to go to the hospital ASAP in case there was an emergency reason his heart rate was so high. My midwife called an ambulance, put my IV in and we were being transported to the hospital just after 5pm.
I didn’t have much time to process. 2 hours prior I was having early labour contractions and ready to get in the zone and suddenly, everyone was moving and I felt completely shocked and a little numb and extremely out of control. Something that is hard for me.
We arrived at the hospital around 5:30pm and got hooked up to the monitor. Baby’s heart rate was still quite high but coming down at times so it was possible he was just being active. We called the IPs to start heading to the hospital because we were having a baby regardless that day, we just didn’t know how yet. At this point, the plan was still a vaginal delivery but I started developing a fever and my heart rate was quite high. I was given a choice:
1. Start the induction process as I was 2-3cm and hope that we both could make it through labour. This option has a risk of further complications that could lead to an emergeency c-section
2. Plan a c-section, calmly and on my own terms that I could be awake for and that would be not be an emergency.
If you have followed me for a while, you know how strongly I wanted another vbac, how prepared I was and how I did everything “right” to have the birth I wanted. In the end, I chose the option I could have control over; where I could know the outcome and have no surprises. I chose to be brave and do the very thing I was most afraid of. I chose the c-section. And you know what, I am really happy with that choice. I felt in a situation out of my control, I picked something I could predict and be comfortable with. Even if it was extremely different than the birth I wanted, maybe it was the birth that I needed.
I felt heard, validated, informed and like my needs were valued. Brandon was able to be there right beside me the whole time. I felt calm and confident in my choice of birth.
I have realized that positive birth isn’t about how it happens or where it happens or under what circumstance. Positive birth happens when you feel like you have a choice and that you are listened to. And that is exactly the birth that I got. And you know what, I feel like a total badass for it.
Dear surrogate baby, you truly were carried with love.
After baby “J” was born, he was taken right to his parents who were conveniently just walking into the ward when the midwife met them with their baby! I am so happy they made it just in time! They even got to do skin to skin right away and be there for all of his initial testing and checks.
The rest of my surgery went well and I was in recovery about 45 minutes later. Due to my fever and waiting for my covid test, I couldn’t come in contact with the intended parents or the baby just in case but our rooms were across the hall from each other and they sent me pictures and videos while we waited for results.
I finally got to meet him the next day and he is just perfect! This is the moment that makes surrogacy so special. I got to grow this tiny human for the most amazing family and to meet him for the first time really feels so wonderful.
I developed a fever again that evening so I had to have more blood cultures done and a third round of antibiotics but overall I feel really good except for the fever. Thankfully, it is under control now but we will be here another night or two to make sure everything is ok with me. I am anxiously waiting to get home and see my kids and my puppy ❤️❤️
I am overwhelmed with all the love and support I have received from everyone in this community. I am so thankful for our family members, and our village who has taken care of our kids, our dog, our house and just been so encouraging through everything. This has felt like such a team effort and I can feel the love from everyone involved.
Birth story by: Ariel Taylor @carried.with.love