When I Shouldn’t Have Said No

Do you ever just sit and stare at your baby? Looking at his perfect little nose, counting his fingers and toes over and over again making sure he has ten of each. Staring into his eyes, wondering what he sees and if he’s happy. Thinking to yourself; I wonder if he knows just how much I love him.

My little boy is just a few days shy of 5 months old and each day I fall more in live with him. They say that your wedding day is the most wonderful day of your life, and it was, until I had Atticus.

I remember his birth like it was yesterday and I relive the details over and over in my head. I remember being hunched over the side of the tub with Kevin holding my ice water. He didn’t need to say a word, to show his love and support for me. When my contractions were 4 minutes apart of 5 hours I remember thinking “why the heck did my Bradley Class say this was ‘showtime?” When my midwife told me it was time to push, I questioned whether I really needed to or not. All I could think about was that I would know when to push, I would have that urge to push, but I couldn’t. I pushed horribly.

I would be breathing at the wrong time and pushing my breaths out when I should have been breathing in. My midwife suggested I get out of the tub and use the birth stool. Sure enough that did the trick. I remember my Doula, Cecily, asking if I wanted to get back in the tub. I wanted a water birth so badly, but I wanted to have my baby so I said “No.”  I regret that.

I think every mother has some form of sadness, guilt or anxiety over her birth or mothering choices and for me; I should have stuck to my plan. I wanted Atticus to be born in water, and I gave up. I should have stuck it out and moved back to the tub. I see my friends give birth in water and I feel like I gave up on one of the biggest parts of my birth plan, by taking the easy way out and not getting  back in the tub.

When I read the stories of other moms births going horribly awry I do feel grateful that I was able to have the natural birth I wanted.  I know my birth could have gone totally differently and I would have had sadness surrounding that too. Hearing about moms giving birth in water makes me so happy and envious at the same time, but I know that I need to set those feelings aside and realize that it could have been a lot worse. I didn’t have an epi, I didn’t get induced, I didn’t have to have a c-section. On November 30, 2011 I received the most beautiful baby boy born without any medical interventions and for that I should be eternally grateful for.

About the author

Xza Louise Higgins is the founder of MommyCon, creator of The Mommy Dialogues, and punk rock mom to two year old Atticus in the great city of Chicago, IL. She is incredibly passionate about birth options, human rights, and promoting gentle parenting practices.

No Comments

  1. Jessica Murphy -  April 24, 2012 - 12:52 pm

    Ah, birth regrets… Almost all moms seem to have them, even when it seems like such a small thing at the time. That experience was fully yours and Atticus’s. Even if it wasn’t completely how you had planned it, you did a hell of a job and you did what your body needed you to do.

  2. Amanda M S -  April 24, 2012 - 1:21 pm

    I shouldn’t have read this while at work because now I am crying in my cubicle in sympathy. :'( I totally understand how it is to have a birth not go the way you want. Hugs. I know you’ll get the birth you wanted with your next child.

  3. Amanda M S -  April 24, 2012 - 1:21 pm

    and I also agree with Jessica’s comment. You did a great job mama!

  4. Chasity Boatman -  April 24, 2012 - 4:08 pm

    You still had your baby naturally, which was the best thing for him. Even if you didn’t have your natural birth where you wanted to, you still gave natural birth. You should be happy and empowered by what you did. You’re an inspiration to those of us who want a natural birth.

  5. Geneva -  April 24, 2012 - 8:20 pm

    This sounds rude, but I am so happy to read this. Happy and sad. I am greatly comforted by knowing that you have birth regrets, too. I always feel so small to complain about my birth aided with an epidural. But I am warmed to know that I probably would have had regrets no matter what. And we can both have another shot next time.

  6. site -  May 30, 2012 - 9:17 pm

    I tried taking a look at your website in my mobile phone and the design does not seem to be right. Might wanna check it out on WAP as well as it seems most mobile phone layouts are not working with your website.

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