Fear.

So I’m scheduled to have a c-section to bring Lucinda into the world on Thursday October 7th. That’s nearly nine weeks away.

In the beginning, I was apprehensive to the idea of simply having another c-section without trying for a VBAC. I remember feeling so robbed of the experience when I was in labor with James. It was awful and I felt like a failure when my doctor announced we no longer had any choice but to have an emergency c-section. Maybe it’s because I was in the irrational throes of labor, but I was devastated. What should have been one of the happiest days of my life, in essence, became one of the worst memories I have. My son was born perfectly healthy and I made a pretty quick recovery. Both things I am grateful for, but in the long run, that feeling of failure was pretty hard to shake. I’ve come to terms with it. I know I can’t change anything about what happened.

But it took me a long time to come to grips with that.

And now here’s the part where I talk about something I’ve almost never mentioned out loud.

After James was born, and after I struggled with breastfeeding to no avail, I was emotionally crushed. I would take James, sit in the rocking chair (or on the bed), cradle him in my arms and just weep. I cried for all the things that went wrong. I apologized to my newborn son for being such a dud, such a failure. I didn’t want anyone to know about it. I was certain I was being ridiculous and over-dramatic. Truth be told, I wasn’t prepared for any of it. I wasn’t prepared for things to go wrong. I wasn’t prepared to recover from major surgery. I wasn’t prepared to be unsuccessful at breastfeeding (clear proof I was doomed to be a bad mother).

Eventually the hurt subsided and I was able to pay my undivided attention to the new joys I had in my life.

James and I learned how to smile together.

Though that’s not to say that I was back in tip-top emotional shape by the time James was two months old, I was much more stable and much less likely to profess apologies over being a terrible mother due to things ultimately beyond my control.

In a little over nine weeks, I will have another c-section. I’m trying not to be terrified. I’m taking the time to mentally and emotionally prepare myself for the recovery. I have some amount of confidence that being prepared will aid me greatly. I have some amount of confidence that Dr. Awesome will assist me in my recovery to a greater extent than my previous doctor. I admit that I’m still concerned that I will have some small amount of postpartum depression (again). It’s something I hadn’t really thought about until somebody recently asked me point blank if I’d had trouble with it when I had my son. I realize that seems like an extremely personal question, and it is, but I wasn’t bothered by it. I was more bothered by the fact that when I got to talking about it with him, his wife and I pretty much have the same birth story. I confessed that the bulk of my depression was related to my feeling like a failure and my lack of control over the situation. But ultimately, I can’t speak for his wife.

In the past year or so, I’ve come to know some really great people through the blogosphere and the twittersphere. I find myself wishing I knew these people when I was in recovery the first time around. Maybe I would not have felt so alone. Maybe I would have reached out. I have some amount of confidence that should I find myself in the dumps again, I will have all of you to help pull me back out.

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5 Responses to “Fear.”

  1. spudrph Says:

    You can count on that, my friend.

    We will be here, for whatever comes, in whatever mood, in whatever shape it comes, for however long it’s here.

    You’ve probably heard this before, but you are NOT alone in feeling unfit. Parenting is by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done, and I still have no idea what I’m doing.

    You are brave to go through all this again, and if you know nothing else, know this: you are not alone.

  2. Meagan Says:

    What an honest post. I’m sure it was must be difficult to put yourself out there in the blogosphere in such a real way. But thanks for your honesty. I stumbled across your blog thanks to Google alerts. I am currently working on a project called Unexpectant: Exploring the realities of birth, babies and beyond. We are seeking real birth stories from real moms. We want to be a resource for moms-to-be so they are better equipped for their journey to motherhood. And we want to be a point of catharsis for those who are further along the journey. If you would like to share your first birth with us, we would be honored. And, of course, keep us in mind for your birth to come. Check us out at http://www.Unexpectant.com.

    Good luck with #2. With your first experience and what you learned, I hope it will be an easier transition and a happier outcome.

  3. *clap clap* Defense! *clap clap* Defense! « Leigh's Blog Says:

    […] Leigh's Blog Just another WordPress.com weblog « Fear. […]

  4. @hereslizz Says:

    Awwww 😦 I had an unplanned C/s with my first, also was a 1st time breastfeeding failure AND had PPD. I so know how it is. I went for aVBAC the 2nd and 3rd time and was scared out of my wits. Both VBACs were successful. One nursing was. And one with no PPD and one with late PPD. My 3 experiences greatly varied. Hope yours improves this time.

  5. Stacy Says:

    Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!

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