BIRTH STORY PART 5 – Kaia Chooses Her Birth

As I was helped quickly into a wheelchair, I remember hearing Shell shout “Remember – babies come out of the Yoni!”…this still echoes in my mind…I ended up in a tiny room full of nurses and staff, without Jason, and with Marinah by my side holding my hand. After a quick exam, the doctor confirmed I was 9cm dilated and sat down on a chair. As I looked over at her, she proceeded to tell me why she recommended a C-section and what the risks were of a vaginal birth. I still had some strength in me and managed to say “I want to deliver this baby vaginally. What are my options?” She took a deep breath, mustered a sympathetic smile, and said “I understand that’s what you want…” From there on, she again gave her opinion on the safety of C-section, risks to baby of the vaginal birth. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me. Here I was, in my moment of vulnerability, asking to make a decision of my lifetime. Jason arrived shortly and asked me what had occurred. He told me “You are SO strong. I’ve never seen anyone as strong as you. You can do this, I know you can.” I could hear the desperation in his voice and knew that it matched the desperation I was feeling inside. I began to cry. I looked over at Marinah and searched her eyes, begging her silently to make the decision for me. But again, I was alone…I had to make my own decision. I felt so lost.
I held Jason, stared into his tired eyes and said the words I’d dreaded “I think I want the C-section”. I could sense his fear and disappointment as he tried to talk to me…My thoughts came out of my body:”I’m so scared…I’m so tired…I want this to be over.” I’m sure that in those moments, the words I spoke through my tears seemed to be coming from a place of weakness. I felt like I was waving the white flag to the medical establishment and I was angry with myself. Marinah reassured me that to listen to my heart, talk to my baby and ask how she wants to be born…that whatever decision I make is right. I did just that and searched deep within my heart. I talked to Kaia….I looked at Jason and said “I want the C-section”. I was resigned and he knew it. I begged him to not be disappointed in me, that I didn’t want to be a failure. And with all the courage he had displayed that night, he continued with the reassurance that I would never be a failure. I believed him. With that, the staff quickly prepared. I had asked if Marinah could attend the birth and the doctor agreed. I knew I could only make it through this with Jason and Marinah by my side. They threw scrubs over to Jason and Marinah, and everything moved in fast forward. As Jason helped wheel me to the Operating Room, I blurted out “Don’t forget the camera!” We were having a baby, after all, and I didn’t want to miss it.
I remember closing my eyes intentionally as we made the trek to the OR. I didn’t want to see the bright lights or the instruments. I wanted to remember our daughter’s birth my way. The doors opened and I heard a radio playing rather loudly. Jason immediately asked if it could be turned off. When the doctor said “Yes, but I’m busy right now”, Jason went and turned it off himself. I knew that he wanted the same thing for our daughter’s unexpected entry into the world – as much love, support, and peace as possible. I vividly recall “hugging” the anesthesiologist as he prepared to administer the spinal. As my legs dangled over the bed, I was so very scared. I couldn’t help but wonder what I would do if I a contraction came on while they were trying to administer the spinal, or what would happen if I had contractions on the operating room table. I mustered every single bit of energy I had to ensure that contractions didn’t come…Both the spinal and the IV, two things I was terrified of, were painless. I was at least proud of myself for making it through those. The blue sheet went up, I felt my legs going numb, and thus began Kaia’s quick birth.
I tried to detach myself from the actual surgery as much as possible, and simply think about seeing Kaia soon. I had even asked Jason not to look, mainly because I knew he wouldn’t want to and I didn’t want him to feel guilty about it. Our journey, which had started out so perfectly, was coming to and end in a place we had tried our best to avoid. We hadn’t prepared or planned a bit for this outcome. However, I was beginning to surrender to the mystery of birth. After some pulling and tugging sensations, I remember hearing Marinah say “It’s almost over – she’s out”. I immediately asked “Why don’t I hear her?” Unbeknownst to me at the time, Kaia was lifted from my womb and immediately given some breaths. After what seemed like an eternity, we heard a cry and the staff showed me my perfect little purplish girl. The first two things I noticed was that she had hair and she looked like her daddy! They took her again and with the little bit of energy I had left, I cried and repeatedly said “I want my baby, where’s my baby?” Finally, she was laid on my chest nestled in a blanket, and Jason and I marveled at our beauty. She stared right at me and we fell in love all over again. I couldn’t believe she recognized my voice!

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