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My first birth was a vaginal, medicated birth and everything went according to plan. My second birth, however, did not. I ended up with a crash c-section and was not able to experience my baby being born the way I had envisioned.
When I woke up in the recovery room about an hour after the birth, one of the first things I asked was, “Will I be able to have a VBAC in the future?”
When I got pregnant with my third baby, I committed myself to learning everything I possibly could about VBACs. I learned so much about advocating for myself, and ended up switching doctors at 20 weeks after I was given a terrible c-section consent form, saying that I would let him perform the c section if I did not go into labor on my own by 39 weeks. He also required his patients to get an epidural, which was something I did not want.
With the help of my local ICAN group, I found a provider that was very VBAC friendly, and was more than willing to respect my wishes for an unmedicated birth. My first baby was born at 39 weeks and my second was born at 38 weeks, so I never expected that this would be my longest pregnancy.
I went into labor on my due date, and labored at home until I was sure it was the real deal. With the help of a wonderful nurse, a supportive doctor, and an amazing husband and mom, I was able to have my unmedicated birth in a hospital setting. It was the empowering experience I needed to recover from my traumatic second birth, and ended up being one the greatest experiences of my life.
You can see the sheer relief in my face in the first picture, and the second picture was taken about 5 minutes after the birth. I felt so good! I have no regrets and would do it all over again if I could.