This post is for Vanessa, who commented in response to installment #6, saying she is not telling her family about her home VBAC (HBAC) for her third child...Vanessa, I don't blame you. Although I told my side of the family -- before we stopped talking about it -- I was initially selective about whom we told of our plans. My mother-in-law is a Freudian analyst. I did not mention this to her, as you might imagine. (Remind me later to elaborate on her at the end of the installment series.) Also, I was reluctant to mention the decision to colleagues and neighbors and anyone else who asked what hospital I was going to. Eventually, however, as I became more resolute in the plan, I was straightforward even with strangers. "The baby is being born at home," I would say, as if it were an affirmation.
In early fall, I attended a Birth on Labor Day Event in Cambridge and shared the Q&A session with a very nice OB I knew from my research. An OB who might be a midwife in another life. She noticed I was pregnant and after the program we chatted on the sidewalk.
"Where will the baby be born?" she asked.
"Not where my last child was born," I said coyly. (She knew where my last child was born.)
"Come on," she begged. "Where?"
"Oh, at home," I 'fessed.
She then lectured me on a VBAC uterine rupture that she had to section in emergency fashion just weeks before.
"Really?" I asked? "Did the woman have Pitocin?"
"Yes," she said.
"Well why would you give a VBAC Pitocin?" I pressed. Pitocin, of course, can hyperstimulate the uterus, causing it rupture - and much of the VBAC studies include rupture cases caused by Pitocin, thereby skewing the actual safety of a VBAC with no intervention, part of the reason why many hospitals are now not even allowing women to attempt a VBAC.
"I guess we were impatient," she conceded.
She wished me luck before we parted ways.
I remember thinking that I don't need luck. I just need a midwife who is patient. I just need to be in a place where there is no Pitocin.