Consider the Lilies: The Birth of Anna Lily
Consider the lilies how they grow : they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Luke 12:27
Oh, where to begin! As with my other two birth stories, I feel they really "began" at the beginning of the pregnancy. However, I feel that Anna's story may begin much earlier- before she was even conceived.
If you've read Caleb's birth story, then you know his birth was a "failed" homebirth attempt with a transfer to the hospital, but a successful (if not ideal) VBAC. Though I had given birth to him, pushed him into this world with my own strength, I felt that his birth resembled too closely my c-section. I couldn't feel him emerge from my body (epidural), he was "clean" and tightly wrapped by the time I got to hold him, I was drugged and hooked up to all sorts of machines, and had a significant number of stitches (from a nasty second degree tear).
At first I was simply elated to have had a VBAC. However, as I began to recover and the realities of Caleb's birth set in, I began to feel restless. I felt "cheated", somehow, and desperately wanted a do-over. Instead of seeking the Lord's timing for the birth of a new baby, I sought my own timing and conceived a child just four months after giving birth. How wonderful, I thought, to be given another child so soon! This new baby, we called him "baby Mac", was not meant to stay with us though. I lost baby Mac 8 weeks into my pregnancy, just a few days before Mother's Day.
It took my body a long time to recover from losing the baby. It took my heart even longer. The way things were, I didn't think I was able to conceive children anymore. My husband and I decided that our family was probably complete and we quit trying to conceive by our own "works". The Lord had His own plans though, and Miss Anna came into our lives quite unexpectedly.
Shortly before I became pregnant with Anna, my husband and I moved from Florida to Georgia. When I discovered our wonderful surprise baby I began looking into my birth options in the area. Sadly (and shamefully)I found that to have a homebirth with a midwife I'd have to do it "illegally", and none of the midwives I spoke with felt comfortable attending a birth with me. I also found that some of the hospitals had VBAC bans, most of the obstetricians in the area no longer attended VBACs, and those that would theoretically attend a VBAC only delivered at hospitals with VBAC bans. My "choices" (and what kind of choice is it, really, when it's forced upon you?)became to sign up for a repeat cesarean (even though I'd already HAD a VBAC!), enter into care with an OB and show up at the hospital and refuse a cesarean (who wants to fight when they're in labor?), or have an unassisted birth.
I didn't like any of the choices, so my husband and I decided that the children and I would move back to Florida for the duration of the pregnancy and seek out our options there. We ended up deciding on a hospital birth with a Certified Nurse Midwife. I still wasn't comfortable with the idea of giving birth in the hospital. Afterall, if Caleb's birth had begun in the hospital I never would have had a VBAC. Hospitals just don't "do" the kind of labor I had with Caleb. My husband prayed with me throughout my pregnancy, though, that the Lord would protect me through the labor and birth. We even read a book that was recommend to us about painless childbirth, and so we were trusting the Lord for that as well.
click here for part two