Many of you know my story. For those who need to catch up, read all about my other birthing stories here.
After everything we've been though, we were really hoping for a VBAC this time around. So, we had a plan. As soon as we moved here (you remember that we moved a year ago, right?), I set up an appointment with a highly recommended midwife. My intent was not to have a midwife care for me this time, but to find a doctor who would understand where I was coming from and whose views aligned with mine. I figured the best place to look for a recommendation was from a midwife, and I was right!
The doctor we chose was absolutely wonderful. He was known for helping mothers have successful VBACs after multiple c-sections, and he was one of the kindest doctors I've known.
A bit more than half-way through the pregnancy, we heard what we were getting pretty used to at this point: the baby was breech. The doctor was so kind and just assured me over and over again that we still had time.
As things progressed, I hired a doula. She was also amazing. Really, we couldn't have asked for a better care team than the people we were finding. She helped me to realize that I hadn't been embracing this new little baby like I should. I guess the thought of four kids in our tiny apartment was just a little too much for me for a long time. Thanks to her, I was able to really embrace the blessing coming to our lives.
The baby, however, continued to be breech. I tried every home remedy I could think of, and nothing would turn our little Delta.
Finally, the due date came and went and my doctor and I decided to schedule a version (a manual turning of the baby). Usually, this would be done around the due date, but doctors prefer if you go into labor soon after the baby is turned and I don't go into labor until around 42 weeks (that's 2 weeks over). We scheduled for Monday at 7am.
Sunday came and so did a phone call from my doctor. The hospital was refusing to allow the version to take place in their facility. Because they're against turning breech babies? No. Because they're against VBACs after three c-sections. They knew what the eventual goal was, and they weren't going to help us reach it. They said so themselves.
No, I don't hold it against them. From their perspective, we were doing something that was too risky. Really, I'm not upset at them anymore. I was at first, but I'm good now.
So, after a very emotional few minutes, we decided to change our scheduled version to a scheduled c-section. That means within 15 hours of finding out what the hospital's decision was, I was the mother of a third little boy.
I totally look like I'm undergoing major surgery, don't I? I can't lie - this was the best c-section experience I've had (and I'm becoming quite a pro).
I'm learning that the anesthesiologist makes a big difference. I have had a different one for each baby, and my two best c-sections were when I absolutely loved my anesthesiologists. I think I'll be taking references and hand picking him next time. I've never felt so good while still on the operating table, and this was the second time I didn't need any pain medication once the anesthetic wore off! The trick is that he didn't over-medicate me, and he watched closely to make sure I was reacting well to everything he was doing.
True, I did end up with a spinal headache, but that was easily remedied with bed rest and lots of chocolate. Really, what woman wouldn't enjoy two days of reading, cuddling a cute baby, and eating chocolate?!
The doctor was also really good at looking at the bright side of a sad situation. He determined that, since he had to perform the surgery anyway, he would really make it count. He would find out why our babies turn breech and let me know if there was any concern at all with us continuing to have kids (which many doctors tell you not to do after four c-sections). The verdict? There is no apparent cause for any of the babies turning breech. I'm a medical mystery. Well, I had to get famous somehow, right? The good news is that I heal so well we could have "a dozen of these" according to the doctor. So, expect more cute little babies in the future.
Our biggest concern, however, was about to be tested: the JoJo reaction.
JoJo has always been a Mama's boy. From day 1, he figured out how to get his little newborn arm around my neck and hug me. I'm not kidding! He has hardly taken his eyes off of me for the last two years. How was he going to react to a baby on my lap? Do you see our reason for concern?
That wonderful look of love in his eyes when he sees me...that was the same look he shared with his new little brother the moment they met.
It was absolute love at first sight. He is so protective of his little brother. His happiest times of the day come when he sees that Delta is up and ready to "play" (which, at this age, means staring into space and kicking his legs). It's like his best friend finally made it into the family. We've gone from worrying that JoJo would hurt him over jealousy to worrying that JoJo will hurt him by loving him just a little too roughly.
And, you know what? We haven't had a hard baby homecoming yet. And if our babies survive the outpouring of toddler love, they turn out to be pretty good kids.