An Unplanned C-Section: Kami’s Birth Story
My early pregnancy was an absolute breeze. If we hadn’t been actively trying to conceive it may have been weeks before I realized I was even pregnant. I had zero symptoms except being a little more tired than usual, but with twins who were just shy of their first birthday being tired is no surprise! That all changed around 24 weeks. Baby boy had flipped head down and because of the placement of my placenta I could no longer feel those sweet baby movements. After failing kick count after kick count and being sent into labor and delivery for non-stress tests almost every day, but baby looking perfect every time Dr McCarter decided to just do in office NSTs twice a week. I was so incredibly blessed that even though it was scary to not know, our baby boy was perfectly fine. Around week 36 during one of my ultrasounds they noticed my fluid was on the low side, and they sent me home over the weekend to drink as much water as I possibly could and hopefully when I came back the next week it was higher and maybe I was just a little dehydrated. I went back in that next Tuesday and it was still low, but not low enough to warrant an early delivery so again I went back home praying it wouldn’t get worse and somehow it was all a fluke. Two days later I went back in for my NST and as usual, baby boy looked perfect. I talked to Dr McCarter briefly and he sent me off to my ultrasound reminding me that as long as my fluid was above a 7 I’d get to stay pregnant. I remember holding my breath while the technician measured my fluid and the wave of nerves that came washing over me when she said my fluid was a FIVE! I walked out of the ultrasound room and saw Dr McCarter in the hallway, I just handed him the paper that the ultrasound tech had gave me and I’ll never forget how he just looked up and smiled at me, “Want to have a baby tomorrow?” I went home that night, only 37 weeks (and some change) to make arrangements for my twins and pack my hospital bags.
We got to the hospital around 6am the next morning and we were SO ready to meet this little boy. I was planning on a VBAC, but because I was being induced my options were very limited. I was already 3cm dilated, but was maybe 70% effaced. They started me on a low dose of pitocin and the contractions were coming on the monitor but I felt nothing. They broke my water and still, nothing. They upped my pitocin to the max dosage I was allowed and I just wasn’t progressing. Finally around 10pm I wasn’t even dilated to a 4 and Dr McCarter gave me the choice to either labor through the night or to go ahead and have a C-Section. I struggled with feeling defeated. I had in my head the ideal labor and delivery in my head, but as soon as we realized a C Section is what was going to be best for our baby, all of my “ideals” went out the window. My body wasn’t a fan of the epidural and I don’t remember much of anything from the actual delivery. I was in and out for most of it. I briefly remember the anesthesiologist narrating what was happening as they made the initial cut, and then I’ll never forget the moment our baby cried his first cry and my husband brought him over for me to see and love on. As soon as he was here I just kind of gave up fighting my body’s reaction to the epidural and I fell asleep and woke up again in recovery. I found out later that the reason I wasn’t progressing was because the cord was wrapped around his neck and wasn’t allowing him to lower into the birth canal and that my uterus was also very thin. I’m so thankful for a provider that always equips me with all the information I could possibly need so that I was able to make informed decisions on what was best for me and my baby. It was such an empowering feeling to know that regardless of what I decided to do he was supporting me and that because of his support and education I was able to make the decision that ultimately may have saved us from something bad happening. (Luckily, we’ll never know what would have happened if I had tried to labor all night)