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A Natural Disaster

OK. What I’m about to blog about is probably controversial and some won’t agree with my opinion on this.( i want to emphasize OPINION). But here goes:

My patient last night was a 35 years old having her second baby.  BUT:

A: She was a non-compliant gestational diabetic.  She happily admitted to eating what she wanted, not taking her insulin or even checking her blood sugars.  When I asked why, she said “I don’t believe in that.”  I checked her sugar.  It was 693.



B: She was here for an induction because she was past her due date.  41 weeks and 2 days.  When I asked why did she decide to wait so long to be induced, especially since she was a gestational diabetic and they tend to have bigger babies, she replied: “Well, my first baby was 9 pounds and I got her out with no problem.”

I looked at her belly.  That aint’ no 9 pounder in there I thought.

C: She had a birthing plan.  Now.  In labor and delivery,we nurses call birthing plans c section plans. Yes.  I know.  It’s like failing a person before they even start.  The reason we always say that is because you CAN’T plan labor.  Especiallyif you are being induced.  Nature is out the window. When you try to mess with what nature has planned( especially since you are already being induced), you usually hit a brick wall.  The c section wall.

But Ok, whatever.  It’s your labor, “do you” I always say.

If you don’t want pain meds and want to roll around on the birthing ball, or sit in the rocking chair, that’s up to you.  Whatever gets the baby out happy and safely.

But her baby started having deep decelerations in it’s heart rate. 

 Finally, after a particularly long deceleration, the doctor explained that a c section might be best.  It had been 10 hours, and there was no change in her cervix AT ALL.  And the baby’s head was still waaaaaaay high.

The doctor and I had come to the same conclusion: the baby was too big for her.( I empahzise HER because I have seen a 13 pound baby come out of an intact vagina.)

She refused.  For the next 2 hours, I listened helplessly as that baby’s heart rate went down down and down over and aver and over again.  the doctor tried to explain that the baby’s brain was being deprived of oxygen EACH and EVERY time the deceleration happened.  She explained over and over that this could lead to brain damage.

No c section. For the next 3 hours, she refused.

Finally, after a series of back and forths, she consented.

The baby came out blue, not breathing, stained green from meconium and 12 pounds 8 ounces.

This folks, is what happens when you are non compliant and do not listen to your Dr.

ALL of this could have been prevented if she

  1. monitored her diabetes
  2. got induced at the recommended 38 weeks for a gestational diabetic
  3. listened to her Dr when she said we needed to do a C Section the first time.

Yes, I believe in inductions.  For the right medical reasons.  Normally, I believe in Pitocin.  It gets the job done when it is used in the correct manner.  Induction does not always lead to c section even though it did in this case.   So there is no need to resist/deny one just because you want to go “natural.”

Everything has it’s place.

I have no problem with a mom going natural.  When a woman and her family are prepared and know what they are getting into, it is a beautiful thing!  But I also want women out there to acknowledge that just because you had a c section or took an epidural, or had pitocin does not make you a failure as a woman or as a mother!  I see so many women cause unnessesary damage to themselves and their babies all in the name of going natural and delivering vaginally. 

Sometimes It’s just not meant to work out that way! 

Isn’t the most important thing supposed to be a healthy mom and a healthy baby?

I know, there are concerns about breastfeeding after a c section.  I’ve seen the majority of my patients who WANT to breastfeed, go on to do so depsite the c section.  I had one myself and went on to breatfeed for almost 11 months.  WITH NO PROBLEMS.

Bonding: that baby knows you are his momma.

I end this by saying that miraculously, that baby is alive in the NICU intubated to help him breathe.  His welcome into the world was more traumatic than it had to be.  I want women to read this rambling post of mine and realize that when you are a mom, your baby comes first.  It’s not always about you.  And what you want.  Sometimes it becomes about what the baby needs.

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  • Reply
    Mommy Boots
    November 24, 2010 at 5:08 pm

    I didn’t want a c section and luckily, was able to have my daughter vaginally but if my doctor had told me all of the things that the doctor told this patient I would have told that doctor to cut me the eff open. As long as my daughter arrived safely, that is *all* I cared about. It seems to me sometimes that women get so wrapped up in the perfect birthing experience and what they want and thinking that they know what’s best for them and their bodies (and sometimes, they do) that they don’t think about anything else and in doing so, are putting their babies at risk. I’m glad to hear everything turned out OK for this baby because it sounds like it was really close to NOT being OK.

  • Reply
    November 24, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    I should have stopped reading at OK…..shit like THIS makes my blood boil!

  • Reply
    November 24, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    That’s a damn shame and she’s a damn FOOL! Please tell her that for me when you see her. SMH.

  • Reply
    November 24, 2010 at 11:55 pm

    Amen!!!! My sister has a friend that’s never had any medical training at all except what she has learned from Dr Google and I simply can’t talk to her about this subject at all. She and this patient of yours are both idiots. Birthing plan, my ass!! I have a problem with ‘midwives’ as well, but don’t get me started. What a bunch of crap. It’s absolutely stupid to keep going with a birth plan and being stubborn like that when your baby is having deep decels and is obviously in distress, unless, of course, your goal is to have a dead baby. That’s where that woman was headed. Sorry to be harsh, but there’s no excuse for that. She should be prosecuted for assault and battery of her unborn, in my opinion. Dammit. From one labor nurse to another, YOU GO, GIRL!

  • Reply
    November 27, 2010 at 7:44 pm


    I seriously didn’t want a C-Section either. I took the natural-leaning birthing classes and I labored in the delivery room with my HypnoBabies CDs playing. I had a birth plan but decided against bringing it. I found that I didn’t have any issues in the hospital at all. My nurse was very receptive to my desire to avoid an epidural and very willing to help me out with positions and such.

    Baby didn’t want to descend after hours in labor. I was 9cm and +1 station forever. Section followed. I hope to VBAC next time but if things aren’t happening right then I will do what is necessary.

    I wish things had gone a different way but it isn’t anything I sit around crying about. I think the mother’s experience does matter because some women just can’t get over this sort of thing. However, I do wish they could see that they would *never* get over it if something happened to their baby. Those risks might be small, but they are real and they do happen to someone.

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