“It is said that women in labour leave their bodies… they travel to the stars to collect the souls of their babies, and return to this world together.” – Anonymous
First I think I have to explaining what a VBAC birth is. You will then understand the incredible strength this mom has shown throughout her delivery. VBAC stands for Vaginal Birth After Caesarean section. It’s the term used when you give birth vaginally, having had at least one baby born by caesarean section. There is risk involved here, however many women feel robbed after an unplanned C-section. Having a VBAC birth give them their power back.
This is the story of baby Skylar being collected in the stars and brought back to this world ….
Charlotte, Bruce and I met for coffee about 2 weeks before her due date. Now normally by this time (around 38 weeks) I am already on standby and we have done our “meet and greet”.
Once you meet Charlotte, your will understand that “normally” and Charlotte just don’t fit in the same sentence. I was taken by her strength, courage and determination. And knew that if anybody can deliver this rainbow baby* through VBAC it will be her.
This mom was in no rush to have her baby and she wanted her to “bake” as long as possible. There were also a couple of anniversaries her mom wanted her to miss, like her great grandmothers passing. Charlotte wanted her daughter to have her own special day.
Never the less by 42 weeks we all got a little impatient with this baby…. but she just needed a day or 2 more. At around 03:00 Wednesday morning things started to happened and by 06:00 Charlotte knew it was early labour and contacted her midwife. She was only 1cm dilated by the time they got to hospital at around 9 and decided that a few more hours of home labour sounded much better than an overdue hospital stay. They would return at around15:00 for a check up unless labour progress significantly.
Charlotte is a seamstress so she went about doing some work in between contractions. By 13:30 her water broke but she calmly first took a shower and then a lovely relaxing bath. Hubby timing the contractions. I met them at the hospital around 16:00 and we went to the birthing house around the corner from the hospital. She was dilated around 4cm and active labour would start anytime.
Just after 18:00, we were back at the hospital and contractions were intense enough that she knew her baby was on her way. Surrounded by her midwife, husband, mother and two sisters, she breathed, moaned, and visualized the clouds of Paris to get through particularly painful contractions. “We move in a pack” her mother said to me.
Bruce and the women in her life stood by her side, rubbing her back as she rocked, sat, and walked, trying to get the baby to move into position. Somewhere along the way she got in the bath for the 2nd time, working with each contraction. Riding each wave, bringing her baby closer.
Five hours later her midwife suggest more movement to help get this baby earth side. Charlotte was tiring as she spend some time in the birth chair. Bruce right behind her, her midwife right in front, coaching and soothing. You could see her reaching deep inside, reaching for strength that she did not feel and could not comprehend.
She was moved to a squatting position next to her bed, her sisters taking turns holding her hands, encouraging, comforting and motivating her to reach even deeper. She got terrible calve cramps that just showed how exhausted her body was.
After 4 hours of pushing, she was ready to give up. She wanted out… her body was tired, her mind forgot all the techniques and methods she wanted to apply. She could not stand the pain any longer. She wanted SOMEBODY to do something. But within minutes she realised that no one could do anything. It was up to her, and solely her, to push this baby out.
She closed her eyes and reached into the darkness, into reserves she did not know she had, in order to bring her daughter into the world. At 04:20 am Skylar was born Kiwi assisted. A successful by VBAC.
If you have missed their birth slideshow, click HERE for the link
*a rainbow baby is a child who is born after a miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant/child loss — the rainbow after the storm.