Birth Photography | Moné Vermeulen
“If the plan doesn’t work, change the plan but never the goal” – Unknown
As we are preparing for the birth of our children, most of us have very set ideas or plans for these sacred moments. Most of us don’t like change and almost all of us hate it when things don’t go the way WE planned. But with life and specifically with birth, it doesn’t always go as we plan. This is the birth story of baby Moné and all the plans mom Mia had for this life changing experience.
“I had this wonderful birthing plan: I wanted to go all natural with as little pain meds as possible, with a c-section only an option if either me or baby went into distress.
My contractions started Friday morning at 3am. I initially thought that it may be Braxton Hicks contractions, as it wasn’t painful at all and very sporadic. Luckily I had my final (39 week) check up at the gynecologist later that day, so I planned on asking her. A few hours later after having our morning coffee, my husband deliberated if he should go to work or not. My mucus plug came out as we were still discussing whether this was labor or not, and I gave the doctor a call asking if we should come in earlier. She said yes! So we started getting ready and were off to the doctor’s just after 7. I had not started dilating yet and she asked if I wanted to induce labor or let things play out naturally.
I opted for naturally, so we went home.
At home we had breakfast, and relaxed while watching series. My husband timed the contractions, and round about 3pm when they were 8 minutes apart he called the labor ward asking when we should come in. They said that we can start making our way there, as it was a half hour drive to the hospital. So we packed the last few things in my hospital bag and drove to the hospital. All the while timing the contractions.
At the hospital I was hooked up to machines to monitor baby’s heartbeat and my contractions. They were now 7 minutes apart and still bearable. I was examined and was still not dilated. We were again sent home and told to come back at 7pm.
At about 5pm the contractions started getting painful, but I waited it out until 7pm.
We had dinner at home, fed our cats and were off to the hospital for a second time at half past 8.
There I was again hooked up to the machines and examined, where the nurse found that I was only 1cm dilated. By that time the contractions were 5 minutes apart, so I was admitted. We called Sam and explained what was going on. As things were progressing very slowly, she told us to wait it out and keep her posted.
At 10pm I could not handle the pain anymore and asked for pain medication. It did not feel any different before and after the pain meds!! So I then later asked for laughing gas as well (which also made no difference in the intensity of the pain I felt).
I tried sleeping through the contractions, with little success.
I was examined by the nurse at 1am and was 2cm dilated, slowly showing progress. My doctor came and examined me at 5am and found that I was only 4cm dilated. I then asked for an epidural, after which they started with augmentation. The doctor found that my baby was posterior and not low enough, so that was why I was not dilating faster. I was again checked at 6am – 4.5cm, and again at 7am – 5cm. Sam then arrived a few minutes after 8am.
At around 9am I was examined again and the doctor found that I was still at 5cm, so no dilation in 4hours!! They broke my water and found that there was a bit of meconium in the water, which was a sign of an unhappy baby. We then made the choice to rather do a c-section, to spare myself and baby a traumatic natural birth.
I was prepped and wheeled into theater at 09:45, and our gorgeous baby girl was born at 09:57.
She was perfect! And even though I was in extreme pain throughout the surgery (I experienced all the side effects to the drugs administered), I was elated when they said we had a healthy 3.1kg baby girl. And all the while Sam was there capturing this life changing event.
Even though the birth did not in the slightest turn out the way I planned, everything worked out like it was supposed to. And now we are the proud parents of baby Moné Vermeulen.”
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“I have been delaying writing my birth story. It has taken me a while to process the events from that day, and the days and few weeks following, and to be okay with not writing a ‘perfect’ story with perfect English. I truly hope that being real about the latter, and that which follows, will make at least one other mom out there, facing a similar experience, feel less alone in having had a ‘good but not perfect’ birth
I have had the privilege to work with many wonderful doulas and I would like to say thank you! Thank you not only for your servant heart but also for what you are doing for woman. In a place of vulnerability you aid us in being strong, in a place of insecurities you reassure, in a place of fear you speak hope!
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