Dr. Erica Basso – My entire life I have been a HUGE control freak. As I’ve aged, I’ve realized that the reason I hate flying on planes, riding roller coasters, etc. is because I am at the mercy of someone else’s direction and control. When my husband and I found out that I was pregnant, we were ecstatic about the upcoming addition to our family. And of course, I went into total planning mode.
My husband and I are what you would consider “crunchy” people–we are very holistic in our approach to everything in our lives. The thought of giving birth in a hospital riddled me with panic–I just couldn’t imagine being hooked up to monitors, IVs coming out of my arm, stuck in a bed, on my back, trying to push a baby out. Naturally, we decided to plan a home birth and I made up my mind–I was going to have this baby without the use of any pain medication and in the comfort of my own home. This was going to be the perfect plan because I could control every aspect of my labor and delivery–or so I thought.
9 months flew by and the BIG day finally arrived. I was already six days past my due date and starting to feel frustrated. Then, it happened. It was 2:30 AM on a Sunday morning and I woke up thinking, “I’m pretty sure I am having contractions- it’s game time!” At about 4 PM I called my midwife who came to my house and checked me. I was about 7 cm dilated and my contractions were getting closer together and more intense. This went on until about midnight and at that point, contractions were two-three minutes apart. I was fully dilated to 10 cm and thought that the end was finally in sight, but the journey had only begun. After 6 more hours of intense contractions, minutes apart, I was not progressing and my little guy was lodged under my pubic bone. After a lot of crying, we finally decided that it was time to transport to the hospital.
Saying that I was scared is a complete understatement! When we arrived at Atlanta Medical Center at 7 AM Monday morning I was completely exhausted, and had been in hard labor for almost 14 hours already. I was miserable and knew that if this baby didn’t come now, we were going to need some sort of medical intervention. I was given medication to sleep via an epidural and was able to sleep for about two hours–only to be awakened by the gushing of my water breaking. I immediately felt the urge to push. I told the nurses that I wanted to experience the entire process and I didn’t want the epidural on anymore, so they took everything out of me so that I could have full feeling during the entire process. Once I regained feeling about 30 minutes later, the pushing began. I pushed for what seemed like years. After little progression, my body was crumbling from the exhaustion – so we opted for a forceps-assisted delivery. And let me tell you, I felt EVERYTHING!!!
Our beautiful baby boy was born (we were told he was a girl on ultrasound, so imagine our shock. That is a different story for a different day!) and was as healthy as could be. Amidst all of the excitement and exhaustion, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t completely disappointed, defeated and upset about the way this entire process had turned out. His birth was not what I envisioned in the least, but looking back over the last year of his life, I’ve learned one valuable lesson–it is ok to relinquish control and frequently. I’ve also learned that it is important to focus on what I can control–loving my son unconditionally, always!
Dr. Erica Basso is a pediatric, prenatal and family chiropractor at Precision Chiropractic in Roswell, GA and focuses on an area of chiropractic called Tonal Correction. She is married to her college sweetheart, Kyle, and together they have a son named Jordan. In her free time she enjoys hiking, playing Frisbee with her dogs, and spending quality time with her family. Precision Chiropractic keeps a blog too if you want to learn more.