Planning for your birth is so important. It is important to make wise choices and informed choices. Sometimes, though, even with our diligent planning, birth doesn’t unfold as expected. A mama shares with us how God continues to be our comfort even when plans change.
First Time Mama’s Testimony
First and foremost, all glory to God in all things. In my weakness and in my strength, blessed be the Name of the Lord!
My husband and I were so excited to have our first baby! The Creator was busy forming our little “bun in the oven” and our desire was to nourish this little guy and stay away from as many chemicals and unnecessary interventions as we could. Our aim was to let the Designer work as He had intended for mother and baby. And God had a plan for our journey. We did the best we could and left the rest in God’s hands, the best place to cast all our cares! The Lord blessed us with both a loving doula and midwife who supported us along the journey.
Our midwife was so kind, understanding, supportive, intelligent, and skilled! She came recommended by our loving doula. We had a beautiful birth team. We were so excited for our scheduled visits with our midwife and read everything we could online to find out what our baby was up to that week! I was low risk and had an uncomplicated pregnancy. One mild concern was that I was gaining lots of weight, but it didn’t seem unnatural. Our plan was to birth at home. We were in the final stages of getting ready—we were going to have the placenta encapsulated, we had the birth tub ordered, the birth kit, food list for the mama and birth team, all baby items ready, everything on our checklist … it was just time for our little guy to show up.
Then we had our first hiccup. On my way to work at week 31, I was rear-ended on the highway by two cars! God was merciful to keep us safe. I was admitted to a nearby hospital to ensure that baby was healthy and that the placenta did not detach. We were released and were healthy, and only I came out with a few seat belt bruises.
Our second hiccup. I was active around the house and felt a gush of fluid come down my leg. After having it tested with my midwife—it was amniotic fluid. We didn’t know if the car accident had anything to do with it, because it is highly unlikely that house work would have triggered it. We drove 1 hour to a trusted hospital, and confirmed the unlikely, that my sac sealed back up! I was about 33 weeks along, and we still had a ways to go, so God had answered our prayers to keep our little one inside a bit longer.
The birth tub came a few weeks before my due date. That was a mercy from above. I LOVED soaking, floating in that beauty. We had finally set up our bedroom and had the birth kit organized and all was in place waiting for labor to start.
A hospital birth was plan B, but we were praying for our plan A to go through. We wanted so much the luxuries of birthing at home: no pressure or time schedules to force the birth to go faster, skin-to-skin, water birth, not having to transport, and many other desires for mom and baby that we had in our birth plan.
After my car accident, my midwife noted that my blood pressure was elevated ever so slightly. The concern was that every now and then it would spike again. My resting heart rate was high, but I also had to pump way more blood than I was used to. My acupuncturist asked me to go home and test my pressure after a session and it was VERY high. I thought my machine had to be broken, so my husband and I went to have it checked at a local pharmacy: still high. My midwife came over immediately and discussed options. This was a trying time, but God never left our side. We had to decide if we wanted to wait it out, or seek counsel from a trusted OB. I shed some tears as I ultimately knew Plan A was fading. We had decided to entrust the rest of my care into a new-to-me (but very skilled) doctor. We started the undesired induction due to my hypertension.
At the hospital, I was able to put up some battery operated tea-lights, which made it feel more homey. It was God’s grace they didn’t make me take them down. We played music that we had planned to have. My husband was by my side the whole time. Then the IV came in, and the fetal monitors, and I was surrounded by screens and tubes and laid in a bed that I had not anticipated to birth in. Prayers went up to our Father, that I trusted Him and I knew that every step of the way He was guiding our decisions and the journey. I was surrounded by my birth team, as well. My best friend, midwife and assistant, and doula were all there as planned. My midwife was very special to me, and even though I “transferred care,” she still was near and supported me to the end! Also, I know I was prayed for! My parents, family, friends, and church were all lifting me up in this very special time.
I was induced with the usual synthetic oxytocin. They had me on the maximum level, and I still was not contracting. Then came the breaking of the water, which was very painful for me. But after that I was contracting. I was permitted to labor in the tub, which was the place of most relief for me. My husband guided me through my breaths and encouraged me and embraced me.
I had several exams to assess my dilation, and even after hours of being in labor, I would not dilate past 3cm. I had to face deciding for or against the undesired epidural to help me relax better and let my little guy come lower. I hate needles, let alone having it done in your spine during contractions. The Lord sent me the most compassionate, patient, and gentle anesthesiologist. He was fast, accurate, and very gracious. I had traditional Indian music playing. He said that was the most relaxed he’d ever felt giving an epidural! My sweet best friend compressed my hips during the contractions.
The relief was nice. I was able to rest and hung out with the peanut ball. Hours had passed; I did not dilate beyond 7-8cm. But my temperature soon was rising, and my baby’s heart rate went up in the 200s. With my fever and baby’s heart rate abnormal, they woke me up. My best friend was concerned how much I was sleeping. After the epidural I had to lay down. This may have caused baby to turn “sunny-side up,” even with all the turning and the peanut ball. I was SO very exhausted I could hardly lift up my head; all I wanted to do was sleep. I could not imagine how I would have the energy to push out our sweet little guy. By now, 36 hours had passed from when they started the induction. I looked at my birth team all standing by my bed … I looked into my husband’s eyes. The doctor suggested C-section. And all I could do was agree.
The same kind anesthesiologist who did my epidural allowed me to play my Indian music and have my doula come along with my husband. Soon, I heard the voice of our sweet son. My husband was near him the whole time. Soon I, too, held him after the surgery, in the NICU. His apgar was nearly a 10, but they said I had an infection in my uterus, so they took him to the NICU. He was beautiful. So adorable! All I could think about was how cute he was. God kept him and me safe. In the following weeks came recovery and support that poured from my family and my best friend. I am typically very independent, so all the help was beautiful and humbling! It was a grace of God. It took about 5 days for my milk to come in, and 10 days until I got to the point where I could sit and rise on my own without help.
Our journey was a winding road. From the beginning, we entrusted ourselves to God. I hestitated to write this testimony because I didn’t want a future mom to be scared at having the same story as me. Yet I want to share it because, even though we ended up doing things we had not desired and were forced to use an alternate plan, our sovereign Lord led the way. He kept us safe and gave us comfort. He gave us peace that even though it was not our desire to have the allopathic procedures, it still was all for a reason. I do not have a C-section horror story. I did not feel pressured or forced to make any decision. God’s grace came as we needed it, moment by moment. If I would have anticipated any of this, I may have lived in fear/dread of it, but God did not disclose it to me until the right time. This was evidence of God’s grace! I am thankful to God that I labored for our baby boy after they broke my water. I know that even that has its own health benefits for the baby.
He has been so healthy! We had the placenta encapsulated and I was taking those right away.
I pray that we’d teach our son that life comes with uncertainties, but we are never alone, as we have the greatest company—God Himself! Peace and joy result even in the most grave of trials. God’s grace is always sufficient, even if we have to go through the fire so that it would refine us.
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.