Saturday, August 16, 2008

Aaron's Birth

Me, right before Aaron was born....I had no idea what was in store...

I'd like to tell the story of Aaron's entry into the world. I need to start with my pregnancy. I really liked being pregnant. OK, so not every second of it, and I did my share of complaining at the end, but generally I loved the idea of the baby inside of me. My first son was born by CS because he was breech and I never wanted to have a C section. I had been at a lot of them for my job and I just wanted the other experience. However, everything went fine with Sam (baby 1). When I got pregnant with Aaron, I very much wanted to try a VBAC (vaginal birth after C secton). I talked incessantly with my doctors about it, read about it, talked more about it, and we decided to do it. There was a 1/200 risk of uterine rupture, but that included ruptures that were not catastrophic. I was a good candidate due to my having gone into labor naturally with Sam and the spacing between kids. I figured I would be at a great hospital, monitored closely, and at the first sign of any problem, I would be more than happy to abandon the idea and have a CS.

The pregnancy was smooth. Where I had delivered before my due date with Sam, Aaron didn't seem to want to leave the womb. We had scheduled a C section for a few days after my due date. By that time, I was having very frequent contractions and felt I wanted to give my body just a few more days. My doctor and her partner said this was OK, and even said it would be OK to go until after 41 weeks and consider induction. I said no to both and was scheduled for a CS on March 7. We went to the doctor on the 5th and the baby looked great. I told my husband I felt at peace with the C section on the 7th. We made plans to go to the movies on the 6th for one last date before our baby was born. I did take some castor oil on the 5th in the early afternoon, with the doctor's blessing.

We went to bed at 11 pm on the 5th. I was having some Braxton Hicks contractions but nothing unusual. I woke up at midnight and was having more intense contractions. I woke my husband and we called the doctor and my parents. We were laughing and joking and contractions were manageable. I went to get ready to leave. Within a half hour, I was in agony on my bathroom floor with contractions one on top of the other. This was not what we expected. My husband tried to get our son ready to go to the hospital with us. I couldn't move to get dressed. I thought the baby was going to be born at home. Then, the contractions slowed way down. At the time, I thought G-d was giving me a chance to get out the door. Now, I think this is probably when my uterine scar began to tear.

When I got to the hospital, I am told I slumped over in the wheelchair. I remember being in triage and the baby's heartrate was in the 70s. I was bleeding. They checked me and I realized what had happened. My uterus had ruptured and the baby was out in my abdomen. I was taken to a crash C section. I was certain my son had died and that my decision to try for a vaginal delivery had killed him.

I still flash back on my pregnancy and that horrible night fairly frequently. I still feel responsible for what happened to my baby and I think I always will. But on most days, I realize that I can't change the past and I am trying to make it up to him with every day we have together now.
I know that a miserable mother racked with guilt will just hurt him again.