Shannon took my Hypnobabies Class while planning on a VBAC a few years ago. She enjoyed the classes and hired a free doula in training. Her OB ended up scaring her into a repeat cesarean due to “low fluid”. Her doula in training called to tell me that the OB said, “low fluid, you can go today or tomorrow morning for cesarean.” She chose that day.
If I was her doula I would have said, “WAIT. It isn’t a true emergency if your OB is giving you a choice for tomorrow.”
I would have told her she could choose to go home and drink a ton and then get fluid remeasured the next day. I can’t remember if I called Shannon, but I wish I had if I didn’t. So Shannon had her repeat cesarean that night.
The next day Shannon found out the real reason for her repeat cesarean is that her OB had a trip to Vegas to see a concert that night.
Shannon called me earlier in 2010 to say she was pregnant again and wanted to have a VBA2C (vaginal birth after 2 cesareans). I congratulated her. Then she said she wanted me to be her doula.
I pretty much laid it all out.
“Don’t bother hiring me unless you change care providers and have one who is really on board with your plans, or it will be a waste of your money!”
I really wanted her to have her VBA2C, but thought after her last experience she really needed a new care provider to make it happen. Not to mention the hospital she was planning on birthing at was not VBAC friendly (no outright VBAC ban, but definitely not supportive)
Shannon took it to heart and started looking for a care provider and birth location that would be supportive. We kept in contact over the next few months and she shared her frustration in finding a supportive care provider. I gave other suggestions, she would call and be told no.
I was so excited when ACOG came out in support (sort of) of some VBA2C and sent on that information to her. She kept looking. She finally had her records changed to a new care provider who wasn’t even really supportive. But that made her original care provider call and say that she would help her get her VBA2C if things went smoothly. So she switched back.
I think by now Shannon knew what she wanted and knew that she would really have to fight for it to make it happen. She was really solid in her desire to get it.
Shannon asked if I would be her doula if she stayed with this (her original) care provider. By now I could see she was determined and that she had demonstrated to her care provider she was dedicated. I also had seen how hard she had been working to make things happen.
I finally said, “You bet! I would love to be your doula!”