Three weeks ago, one of my closest friends and Elin's fairy god mother gave birth to a bouncing baby boy. I literally am bursting with pride and joy for her and her perfect new family. She and her fiance are the most natural parents I can imagine and Reggie is so gob-smackingly-handsome he makes my ovaries flutter. Holding and cooing over a new born again has been incredible and I can honestly say that I LOVE him dearly. I am so grateful to share in this journey of motherhood with such an old friend.
I can't stress enough how happy I am for these guys, and how proud I am too.
See, all 8 pound and 11 ounces of little Reggie were born at home in an (I can only imagine) incredible home birth. Honestly, its the birth plan I had typed and saved on our computer, the plan I had wished for so dearly. I am so glad that Verity and Josh got such an empowering birth, but I'l be honest, its dredged up some hidden feelings towards my own 'birth'. I have up until now fully OWNED my planned C section and embraced that day wholly, but I'd be lying if I said hearing about her wonderful and empowering delivery doesn't make me a little heart sad. So this post really, is just to remind myself how friggin' amazing Elin's birth day really was!
During my pregnancy I romanticized childbirth a lot. I still do a little. But I really wanted that all natural birth experience. The sort that leaves you on a high for weeks, full of euphoria because LOOK WHAT MY BODY CAN DO. I obsessed over my idea of a perfect birth. It wasn't to be for us though. Obviously very few birth plans actually go to plan, but mine was pretty much scuppered from the off. I won't go into all the reasons that we scheduled an 'elective' C section because that's sort of irrelevant at this stage. I know that it was the safest option for my baby and I don't regret putting her needs over and above my own wants. That's what motherhood is about really. Besides, we get pregnant to have a baby, not to give birth. Once the decision was made and we were all booked in, I knew that I had to really embrace the decision. I still have people tell me now how wonderful natural birth is and pity me as I haven't experienced it. Well, I'm here to tell you that
MY C SECTION WAS WONDERFUL TOO.
In the end- I loved it!
It was the day my beautiful girl came into the world.
The day that we became a family, became parents.
The day that changed everything, impermeably, and forever.
How the hell can I be sad about that?
For anyone who may be in a similar position facing an 'elective' C section I'm sending good mumma vibes your way. Its a grieving process of sorts, but know that no matter what, it is still your birthing experience. It is still the day that you gave birth. You can make it as wonderful as you can think of and make it a truly personal and positive experience. Here were some of our requests:
We made a sound track for the surgery. All our favorites, plus babies, and she got to be born to something meaningful for us. (Admittedly in our case this was one direction, but still!)
No one was to announce the sex. We didn't find out what we were having for 9 long months of pregnancy and I really didn't want some strange unknown doctor blurting out what we had. It was always gonna be James. And it was him who told me (even though we totally couldn't figure out her bits and both were pretty cautious about making the grand announcement to a room of experienced surgeons, doctors and midwives- but that's another story)
Elin was separated from me for mere seconds. This obviously might be different if baby is in distress but for us she was gone for no time at all, always in my sight and James by her side. She then got bought to me and was not taken away again for anything.
I got skin to skin during the surgery. Once she was out I held her on my bare chest while they finished off the procedure. I was able to feed her within an hour of her birth.
We filmed her first moments on our go pro!
I had plucked my eyebrows prior to the section so didn't look to horrific for first photos. Totally shallow I know, but when life gives you lemons and all that!
They kept the cord long so that James could still cut it. I'm so pleased he still got to do that ultimate daddy trick.
I was up and walking laps of the maternity ward within six hours! It helped my recovery so much. I knew if I couldn't rock a natural birth I would rock recovering from a section. I can be a little bit proud to have done that.
This all helped me claim back control over my birth and make it ours. I honestly don't regret my section in the slightest and would encourage any mum facing one to go into it positively and embrace the cards that you are dealt. One day I would love to get the chance of labouring and giving birth vaginally, and I hope that I do. But if I don't? That's not the end of the world either. Babies have a plan that we just don't now about and I'm happy that Elin's plan gave me that day. I will always cherish that day with all my heart.
However our precious babies are delivered- we are all super women in our own right!
But we can all agree that delivering a nearly 9 pound baby at home for your first born is still bloody amazing and I think I'l always be a bit in awe of my friend.