Thinking. Birth Options

 

I'm growing steadily larger and larger in my pregnancy, and finally I made it to the first visit to the hospital obstetrician. 

I haven't had a baby at this hospital before, so I was a bit surprised when he said, "So, what would you like to do?" with emphasis on the 'you'.

"Um, about what?" I said.

"Well, the birth..." he replied.

"You're asking me?" I queried. "This has never happened before!"

Either hospitals have changed, or doctors think I'm somehow more qualified to say what happens to me the fourth time around.

After I asked if there was a new special pill that just magicked the baby out (there wasn't), we talked about the decision to go for either a VBAC (vaginal birth after caesarean) or an elective caesarean. 

I never thought I would get stressed about something like this, but I am quite uptight.

On the VBAC side I see these positives: better recovery time and better for the baby, presuming nothing goes wrong; and these negatives: potential for uterine rupture (and there are some pretty nasty stories out there involving seriously ill or dead babies), the 50% chance according to my OB friend that it will become a c-section anyway, not to mention the fact that I have not laboured well or delivered easily with any of my previous babies.

On the c-section side there are these positives: it's planned, no labour pains and the uterine rupture risk reduced; and these negatives: it's major surgery, it's not as good for the baby, and the recovery time is much greater and more painful.

I'm not sure I'm truly committed to labouring, and I am not keen on taking even the small risk of uterine rupture. But then again, I'm not thrilled about the prospect of 4-6 weeks recovery and a third abdominal cut.

Tomorrow I'm going to talk with a midwife friend and see what she has to say. I've been told by friends who've had her at their births that she's 'supernaturally gifted' at her job. And although it sounds silly, I can actually believe it.