Guest Post: VBAC Two Ways

**This is the second in a series of guest posts about VBACs (vaginal births after cesareans). In an attempt to prepare for my own VBAC (hopefully next year), I’m hearing stories. Trying to get over my fear. Trying to learn. This post comes from Michelle–mama to 3–who experienced two different kinds of VBAC. Please read her story below and check out her blog.**

VBAC Two Ways

My first thought after finding out I was pregnant for the second time was ‘wooohooo’! My second thought was ‘This baby is so NOT coming out the fire escape’.

I was determined right from the start that I wanted a natural birth following the cesarean section I’d had with my 1st son, Jayden. Here in the UK we are admittedly very fortunate – depending on the reason for the c-sec, you are generally expected to have a ‘Trial of Labour’ (TOL) for subsequent labours. It didn’t occur to me though to ask about a homebirth though, I was just fixated on having a VBAC.

The day before my due date I started having irregular contractions early in the morning and at 6am my waters broke. I rang the labour ward and they told me to hurry on up. At the hospital they immediately hooked me up to the monitoring equipment. I stayed on my feet,.swaying and looking out the window down to the beach and I think standing up helped my labour progress – let gravity do its bit! Reuben was born after 20 minutes of pushing with only gas & air for pain relief, after I’d been at the hospital for 3.5 hours. It was an amazing experience and the feeling of achievement was incredible. I won’t lie to you, it did hurt but it was worth every moment!

The success of my 1st VBAC gave me increased confidence when planning our next child but when I said I wanted a homebirth, my husband went a peculiar shade of grey and my midwife basically said no due to it being a VBAC and the associated risks. I personally thought it would be ok however it was also important to me that hubby felt good about it too so as our last hospital VBAC was good, we decided to go there again.

My due date came and went and I was beyond fed up with being an oversized lump of a pregnant woman.

A week after my date, at 2pm I waddled to my midwifes office and talked her into giving me a sweep and then I went home to wait… for something… anything… to happen. Finally around 8pm I was having regular contractions and at around 9.40pm I rang the hospital to tell them I was labouring, but all was ok, I was in no rush to go to the labour ward.

At this point though my body started to take matters into its own hands. A few minutes after putting the phone down, my waters broke. I assumed that I’d have a couple of hours left so I instructed hubby to get my bag and we’d go to hospital. I went to get up off the sofa… and started to push!

Daisy was born on my living room floor, in a beautifully calm environment with lovely lowered lighting and music. Her Daddy ‘caught’ her at 10.08pm, just 20 minutes after my waters broke.

You’d think that a labour that happened so quickly would be stressful but it wasn’t at all. I was confident that my body could do this – and it did! I’m not saying that a medical environment doesn’t have its plusses, in fact I was happy to birth in hospital but I felt so relaxed and happy at home and those feelings are known to help labour.

If we have any more children * cough splutter* then I would definitely plan to birth at home, for one, I’m now confident my body can birth… for another, to try to get to hospital would probably result in a baby born in the car!

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