Monday, December 7, 2015

To Be cut or to tear...

Its no secret that I am a huge advocate for natural birth, you just have to read my birth stories to know how determined I was to have my VBAC's and a few posts to know how I would love to let all the woman in world know of the power they possess within them when it comes to birthing and mothering.

I was once victim of the "failure to progress" woman who ended up going under the knife with no real opportunity to even prove that I had even some ability to birth my son. It was both freeing and disturbing once I found out that I did not have to be cut open in fear that something dangerous might happen to my son and if I continued to labor with him. Disturbing, because I was scared into accepting the caesarean with fear tactics, but freeing because I then found out that there was another way and another opportunity to prove my strength and ability as one of many woman who had come before me. I showed my strength not once, but three times. Pushing past my fears, threats and even negativity, I delivered my babies beautifully.

There was however, from way before I had Liam, one thing I was afraid to experience through birth. One thing I was lucky to avoid with my first two VBAC's.


I know many woman that have torn through birth and a few who have had episiotomies too, all of whom seemed to have come through it unscathed. They moved on from it, had more babies naturally and just did life. To them, tearing was just part of the process, a process that empowered them and gave them precious new lives to care for. For me, it had a different effect.

I have always been afraid that I might tear, even more afraid of experiencing a C Section, in fact. My VJ is sacred to me. She is part of who I am and makes me a woman, more than having curvy hips and breasts. I will guard her before any of my limbs. She has allowed me to be my husbands everything and the opportunity to experience the gift of birthing my amazing children. Being who I am would mean nothing without her, no matter how I looked at it. So the thought of anything happening to her gave me nightmares.

Then one fateful night, after birthing naturally without a hitch two times before, I stood in my driveway, pushed for dear life and birthed a 4.1kg, tall and lovely little boy. This a birth for the story books, which left me with not the worst, but a pretty bad 3rd degree tear to my precious little VJ.

She was changed, I was changed, and together we will forever be different.

Finding out how badly I had torn was actually a far more devastating revelation than knowing I did not have to have a C Section years ago. My C section involved my stomach, a place that I had hardly had the same relationship with and that did not define my womanhood. My VJ, in my mind, no matter how well repaired, would never be the same again and in that, made me see my womanhood in a very different light. I was now suddenly more aware of her with everything that I did and everything I had felt. She bared the memory of delivery, the scar of surgery but also always brings to life the fear that I had always carried.

Adding insult to injury, I had to endure two weeks of life with my broken lady parts. Because I had Aiden at home and chose to stay home, it took three days to figure out I had torn after the scariest bathroom visit of my life. Instead of all my matter exiting from its designated area, some made its way into my VJ. My Doctor was in Dubai at the time and since he was the only one I would allow to do anything to my most protected parts, I waited for him to do the surgery two weeks later. This meant bathing 3-6 times a day, swooshing as many times as I could and being so aware of my lower body that I had constant dreams about it.

To be realistic, tearing probably is not as bad as I make it out to seem here, but our individual fears are just that, individual. And having had experienced mine, I am glad I came through it on the other end.
Although I don't know my VJ the same way again, and there are moments when I am reminded of Aiden's birth when going to the bathroom for instance, I have a new respect for her and her resilience. I have learnt to take heed of her abilities and the role she plays in my life and the life of my marriage. She and I have experienced great trauma, but like me, she came out winning.

But because of this new found respect for my dear VJ, if the dear Lord were to ever bless me with another little member to my squad, I would most likely opt for a C section. The C section took a long time to heal both physically and emotionally from, but I don't think I will every recover from the tear. So yes, a C section,  not because of fear, or because of convenience, but because I think both mrs VJ and I have had all the trauma we can handle for one life time.

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