What to Expect When You're Expecting

While I was pregnant, I read a lot about birth plans and how very important it was to know what you had in mind for your labor and delivery. Every book I opened and every website I visited made me feel that if I didn't have a plan going in, I. Was. A. Failure. It baffled me. All I could come up with was that I had no control over the situation, nature would pretty much determine the course of events for me, and aside from knowing that drugs would most DEFINITELY be a part of it, I didn't have any sort of notions as to how it would or should go.

As it turned out, I was right. Developing HELLP syndrome at 35 weeks and delivering via emergency c-section pretty much took any preferences I may have had regarding childbirth and threw them out the window. It was wholly unexpected and entirely out of my hands...and while not what I envisioned, I couldn't be happier with my experience.

I've heard of women who get truly upset when birth doesn't go the way they wanted - a c-section when a natural birth was desired, an epidural that doesn't take place due to time constraints, etc. I've had people ask me how I feel about Merrill's birth, whether I'm upset that I didn't get to experience labor and a natural delivery....and I don't know how to answer what seems like a fully loaded question. I didn't have a single contraction, never went into labor, and never got to push. These are all things that in theory, I'd like to experience at some point in my life. However, our experience resulted in a perfectly healthy, beautiful baby - so why shouldn't that be the ideal scenario?

I think I spent the entire pregnancy thinking about the end result - but I never really thought about how we'd get there, so for me that wasn't really the point. The point was that no matter how our baby was brought into the world, it was the right way as long as everything turned out okay. And unequivocally, without a shadow of a doubt, it did.

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