When I got pregnant with my second daughter, I knew I wanted a VBAC. My doctor told me that I was a perfect candidate, but we would "see how things were further along". Flash forward to 37 weeks (November 2011), my water broke and I went into labor naturally. I labored at home most of the day and then went on to the hospital.
My third pregnancy I armed myself with as much knowledge as I could and was determined to have a VBA2C, the doctor agreed - and I believed her. All went well until about 34 weeks when she started pushing me to schedule a RCS. I reached out on Facebook - that's where I found Heather. She gave me amazing advice and even went to an appointment with me to talk with my doctor about my VBA2C - where my doctor lied to both of us, even making up an organization to dispute facts from ACOG. The next appointment (38 weeks) my doctor threatened to drop me as a patient if I refused to schedule a RCS and told me that no doctor at that hospital would deliver my son if I just showed up and refused the surgery... Defeated, I had my third cesarean a week later - January 2013. Heather was amazingly supportive and showed up at the hospital before I went back for surgery - even though she knew she didn't have to - and was there when I came out. She stayed with me through recovery, helped us get started breastfeeding, and even took our first picture with our son.
Now here is the success story I've taken so long to get to. When found out I was pregnant with baby number four, I called Heather. I didn't think a VBA3C was possible, especially not as close together as my births were. She assured me I COULD do it, she sent me other success stories, recommended supportive doctors, and supported me. Unfortunately, I had medicaid and they wouldn't cover any doctor I wanted to use - I was stuck at the same hospital that forced the last 2 cesareans on me.
I was 18 weeks my first appointment, they were already talking cesareans and telling me I was not allowed to have a vaginal birth. I didn't go back until I was 32 weeks pregnant. They tried to schedule my cesarean and I refused. They, again, told me I wasn't allowed the birth I wanted. I told them I wasn't asking permission and walked out. I called my caseworker to see about changing doctors and they told me no, because my doctor had already been paid for my cesarean. (What?!) I was transferred to the Complications Clinic at UAB at 36 weeks.
Initially, they were extremely unsupportive. My fiancé, Blake, and I were told that I would kill myself and our daughter if I even attempted it. I was able to speak with a doctor who heard me out, told me what they would and wouldn't allow during labor/delivery, and then told me that it was ultimately my decision. The next appointment they had gotten my records - apparently the doctor that did my last cesarean wrote in my operative report that I had a uterine window (which is technically a rupture, according to the current doctors). They did ultrasounds, a non-stress test, and a biophysical profile to make sure my daughter was OK for me to continue my pregnancy.
At 38 weeks, on a Tuesday, I started getting sharp pains - only on my right side. It got pretty unbearable, so we went to the hospital. I was having contractions, but it was early labor so we went back home. That night I started to feel the contractions in my back. They went on from about 8:30pm - 4am - Every. Single. Night. Heather was on standby waiting for my call and I felt like it would never actually keep going without stalling out.
The following Saturday at 39w3d, I called Heather because I thought my water broke, my contractions started about 20 minutes later. I called Blake to come home from work and we headed to the hospital - we met Heather there.
The doctors checked me, I was 2 cm and my water was still intact. They hooked me up to the monitors and left me, Blake, and Heather in the evaluation room to see if things picked up. I don't remember much during actual labor, back labor HURTS. Heather was telling Blake where and how to rub - and reassuring me through every painful contraction that I did NOT want a cesarean, though I begged for one at this point. A couple of hours later they came in to check me again and I was 6cm, I asked for pain meds so I could relax. It just made the pain bearable.
About 45 minuted later I had the urge to push, so they got the doctor and I was 10 cm. They wheeled me up to labor and delivery - the nurse as getting all of my information when my body started pushing on its own. I felt a pop and knew it was my water breaking - Blake lifted the blanket to check.. Love him. - From this point, I had no control- just let my body go.
The doctor came in with a couple of nurses a minute or so later, they all started scrambling to get gloves on and pull the stirrups up. They had me roll from my side to my back and told me to stop pushing - the nurses face was priceless.
I was able to watch myself in a light above the bed. A couple of pushes later, Heather excitedly told me to feel her head. I was doing it, it was actually happening. Two more pushes and my daughter was born. She was taken to be checked out because they said she had passed meconium, but she was perfect.
For the first time, I was able to sit up and hold my baby minutes after birth. I got up and walked to the bathroom without any help. The nurse that took me to labor and delivery helped me clean up and told me I gave her hope that SHE can VBAC - and told me I was the easiest birth all week. (Fist pump)
I had my VBA3C August 10, 2014 at 3:20am.