Friday, January 13, 2012
As told by Sara, his mom, 9 months after his birth, “life”, and death.
With my first pregnancy we were seeing a local OB. The waiting room was full and waits were long. I felt more like I was part of a large herd of cattle than someone receiving personal, informed, nurturing care. I had no idea which of 10 doctors would show up at our birth. We decided to take classes to prepare for our hospital birth at a local birth center. We were welcomed with open arms and the feeling was far more personal in nature. We learned about many things there…among them. “Birth is as safe as life gets, birth is normal, and that babies know how to be born and moms know how to give birth.”
Likewise we were taught about the evils of the medical world, but in subtle ways. We learned about the, “cascade of interventions, the way doctors over use/depend upon technology for convenience and profit, and how their interventions were not in our best interest. Weeks before my due date, I panicked, terrified of having our baby at the hospital. We hadn’t planned on the cost of birth center birth. After three days of crying, my husband and I decided on a compromise, we would hire a doula from the birth center to attend our hospital birth. The difference was paying $800 instead of $3800. Things went fine and our first son was born without issue in 2008.
Upon learning we were expecting our second baby; we sought a different model of care. We wanted an environment that knew natural childbirth well and how to support moms during the course of labor. We wanted an environment and a staff that viewed birth as natural and normal first, knowing well that things can quickly change during pregnancy and labor, requiring a referral to an OB or the hospital. We liked the idea of knowing our caregivers well, and the fact that they knew our family well as opposed to being at a large practice like our previous experience. I wanted to know who would be present at the birth and I wanted it to be someone we knew well, a personal connection if that makes any sense.
We chose a freestanding birth center (meaning no oversight by a physician or hospital, although they did have an OB that they often referred to and often spoke of mom’s who transferred care to the hospital.) It was our impression that choosing the birth center was a “happy medium” between hospital and homebirth. Essentially what we had unknowingly chosen was a homebirth in someone else’s “home”. It never occurred to me that this was the case until too late and I never thought to research homebirth before our baby’s birth. We also found out far too late that none of our midwives are insured, something that would be paramount in trying to hold them accountable later.
At about 32 weeks we were told that our baby was in the breech position. We were given a list of things we could do to try to help the baby turn including homeopathic remedies, the pelvic tilt exercise, chiropractic care, and swimming. We did them all. As we continued to go to our appointments, each week we were told something different. One week Magnus was head down and the next he was not. It was an emotional roller coaster to say the least. I kept asking if there was something I should be reading to learn more about breech birth and I was repeatedly told not to worry yet as many babies turn, some even during labor.
At 37 weeks we asked for an ultrasound to see what position the baby was in. We had an appointment that day with our midwife S. and she was fairly certain baby was breech, but we wanted to see for sure since just days ago a different midwife thought he was head down. The ultrasound showed that he was indeed in the frank breech position. The ultrasound tech took some other general measurements, like the amount of amniotic fluid, but was not asked to estimate baby’s size or weight or check for cord or head positions, which we later learned would be critical information to have checked in considering candidacy for vaginal breech delivery.
At 38 weeks we knew we would be asked to make some decisions about our baby’s delivery. We thought our choices would be to schedule a c-section or consult with a well known midwife who had experience with vaginal breech deliveries at home. At that appointment with C., CNM, I was first asked if I had any thoughts about delivery for a baby in breech position. I had done a small amount of internet research on the topic just because I was nervous during all of the flip flopping this baby appeared to be doing.
I knew I did not want to schedule a c-section, that if I did in fact need one, that I preferred to go into spontaneous labor before the procedure took place, believing that would be better for both mom and baby. I also knew I did not want to try doing a version. We were surprised that C. offered us the option of having a vaginal breech delivery. I say surprised b/c leading up to this appointment it was always a given that they did not attend breech deliveries at the birth center, they would typically refer the client out. We had been told that they don’t take on high risk pregnancies and could spot trouble long before it was critical…that they would transfer if they needed more support.
At the time I was relieved at being given the option b/c we had went so far out of our way to seek their care and wanted to stay. At the same time, I expressed my biggest concern in all of this being the baby might be too big for me to deliver or his head getting stuck. I don’t know why that was my thought, but it was there. Her response was that she estimated Magnus’s birth weight to be about 9lbs and since I had delivered Jonah at 8lbs 12oz I would be a good candidate for a vaginal breech delivery. She also said that breech babies usually “fall out” once their bottoms had come out and that she thought the hands and knees position would be an important part of delivery.
I asked her specifically what she would do if indeed he did end up getting stuck and her reply was, “She’d have to get him out.” She told us that breech babies are, “Just a variation of normal and that as long as there wasn’t anything odd or troublesome that delayed labor, then we could have the baby there and not be transferred to the hospital.” That’s it. No discussion of what could go wrong, no indication that it could turn out in such a devastating way as it did. We did not know fully understand the severity of risk we were taking on.
I then asked about research and safety. C. told us about recent research from Canada that suggested that vaginal breech delivery was better for moms and babies, and just as safe as a c-section. Before our appointment, when I had done my bit of research on the topic, there did seem to be a trend in support for a comeback in vaginal breech delivery as well.
I asked about their experience with vaginal breech delivery and they had attended one birth in this fashion. She said that some of the midwives and staff at GBC had attended a conference in Canada about breech delivery and that they felt confident in attending this birth.
I asked if we should ask Pat (the aforementioned midwife who is quite experienced with vaginal breech deliveries at home) to attend this birth at the birth center, just to have someone else there who knew more about this sort of delivery. I was told it wasn’t necessary, but if we wanted to, we could ask her to come. Our impression at this point was that there were no more risks with doing a vaginal breech delivery than there would be with doing a c-section delivery. I asked about what I could be reading to prepare myself for this type of birth and I was told there really wasn’t anything available.
As we drove home, I asked Jarad how he felt about all of this. He said that we had chosen them to be our caregivers for good reason and they had taken excellent care of us up to this point. In essence we should trust their judgment being the professionals. And so, we let that be enough. In hindsight, we should have pushed more about specific risks involved, but didn’t really know what else to ask.
I knew from my little research that there were certain criteria that healthcare professionals use to even consider someone a good candidate for vaginal breech delivery, but I did not read about all of the things that could possibly go wrong. Being 9 + months pregnant, it was not a place I was mentally able to go. I put my trust in them as professionals, trusting that they would refer us if we were in any sort of danger. I have to also say that looking back, if we had any idea we were putting Magnus in danger we would have insisted on being transferred in a heartbeat. It never crossed my mind even for an instant that our decision to have a vaginal breech delivery could or would end like this. I feel like we were allowed, even led to feel quite comfortable in this decision, without any indication or education about the severity of risks we were facing
At 3am on April 8th, 2011 my water broke. It was right on time, considering my due date was April 7th. I awoke from sleep realizing what had happened and called C. My contractions weren’t very strong yet or timely so I tried to go back to sleep. By 6am we were headed to the birth center. Things were becoming more intense quickly. I naively thought we’d be home by lunch time.
We got ourselves settled in at the birth center and tried to relax. Shortly after I was there they assessed baby’s position and thought he was head down. Relief! At about 7:30a I got up to go to the bathroom and came back reporting that there was some brown discharge. She said this was probably meconium and that baby could in fact be breech. We went along as planned and by 9am I was pushing.
I spent most of the time pushing on hands and knees on the bed with little progress. More meconium indicated that he was breech. I pushed and pushed for hours with no progress. By around noon I told Jarad I didn’t think I could do this anymore. C. decided to check me at this point and realized then that my cervix wasn’t completely dilated. I had been pushing against my cervix for at least three hours. She tried to manually help the “lip” recede and I tried a few different positions.
Our last effort was to get into the tub to help me relax. She said if that didn’t work that I’d have to transfer. At this point, I was so exhausted and focused on labor that I couldn’t have thought clearly if I wanted to. I got into the tub and it seemed to do the trick. My cervix opened fully and I could feel each contraction and push working together. Meconium everywhere, baby was on the way.
At around 3p, his bottom came out and legs. I could feel his legs moving around outside my body and said something to that effect out loud. I had been making good progress and could feel each contraction working with me as I pushed. After his legs and abdomen came out, my pushing changed. With the next contraction, I pushed, but I didn’t feel like I was pushing on anything or making any progress. His shoulders, neck and head were not coming, and certainly were not “falling out”.
After about two contractions like this, C. suggested that I change my position from being reclined in the tub to on my knees and upright (Definitely not on hands and knees as had been suggested earlier. I don’t know how much position mattered.), still in the tub and I pushed again, nothing. Then S. started becoming more assertive in insisting that I get out of the tub and into a deep squat. Things had suddenly become urgent. A. had just listened to his heartbeat again on the trunk of his body. They hadn’t in a while, I don’t know how long it had been because the philosophy was not to touch a breech baby as they are coming out b/c they could put their arms up and be in danger. I heard S. say we have to get him out.
C. pulled his arms out while I was still in the tub and they lifted me out and pushed me down into a deep squat. I could feel C. moving his body around trying to get his head to come out. When he came out, his cord was wrapped twice around his neck and he was not breathing. They milked the cord and immediately started resuscitating with chest compressions and a breathing mask/oxygen.
They called an ambulance and kept trying. The ambulance came in a matter of minutes and took him out of the birth center. Jarad was going to go with them, but they wouldn’t let him in the ambulance until baby was somewhat stable. He stood in utter shock outside the ambulance waiting, for at least 20 minutes while they tried to help Magnus. Finally they transported and Jarad rode along. S. rode along too to help in the ambulance while I had to stay and recover at the birth center.
In the meantime, C. gave the EMT’s her chart notes. When they stepped out of the room she told me she was telling them that she didn’t know the baby was breech until it was much later, close to time of delivery. I didn’t understand why she felt she needed to lie about this part of the delivery, but I thought it was strange nonetheless. I found out later through police investigation that she also told them that fluids were clear, no meconium present. She also reported without our knowing that we “declined transfer”. I spent hours at the birth center waiting for news. I had to wait until I could pee before I could go to the hospital to be with Jarad and Magnus. By 7pm I was anxious to go and they did a catheter to get things going. I packed up and they drove me to the hospital.
I found out later from his NICU doctor that took him in that night that they spent 45 minutes trying to bring him back, when normally at the hospital they would have given up at 20 minutes. He said he was essentially dead when he arrived and that he had never seen a baby that severely injured who came back.
We spent two weeks in the NICU grasping at any progress he made and at first he continued to surprise the doctors by even making any progress. After that long two weeks of watching him go on and off the vent, his belly fill with fluid, and organs gradually shutting down, we knew that further medical intervention would only prolong the inevitable. We were in agreement all along that we wanted to give Magnus every opportunity we could to recover, but when it turned for the worse we would not want him to endure interventions that weren’t going to support him in actually healing from this injury.
We decided that putting him back on the vent wasn’t going to help matters and so we knew we had to say goodbye to him. They walked us through the process of unhooking him from all of the machines and took us to this little room to hold him and be with him during his last moments here with us. There is nothing worse that holding your own baby, knowing he’s going to die and watching it happen. I never saw Magnus open his eyes, not until he took his last breath and they opened wide and froze. It’s an image that will never leave me.
This has been such a shock to us that it has taken me months to really start to see this in a different light. At first I was so protective of the birth center, always worried about how they were coping and not wanting anyone to know the details. At first I didn’t even really know what happened.
I asked for a meeting with all of the midwives and I met with them personally a few weeks after he passed away. I wanted to know what happened. Essentially they were surprised at his size at 10lbs, 4oz. and said the cord around his neck was probably pulled tight when his body came out before his neck and head, cutting off his oxygen supply. In my estimation it was a nice way of saying he had basically strangled himself in his own cord. I didn’t know that was even physically possible in choosing this route for delivery.
A., CPM asked me at this meeting if I felt they had given me enough information. I said, “I don’t know, you’re the expert, is there anything else I should have known going into this?” No one said a word. The truth was that we were grossly uninformed and I believe on purpose. They had been waiting to try this kind of birth and found people trusting enough to go along with it. C. told me on two occasions that she had replayed the events over and over in her mind and didn’t know what else she could have done differently. She told me she did her best. As it turns out, her best wasn’t quite good enough for the situation we ended up in.
It occurred to me one day as I was thinking about all of this that even in that meeting when I asked what had happened, they described what happened to Magnus. There was no sense of responsibility or ownership for what had taken place or for the fact that we even ended up in an emergency situation. In their estimation there wasn’t anything that they could have done differently, or at least that’s what they were telling me. I don’t know the ins and outs of birth, I’m not the professional, but I feel so strongly like they missed something. I didn’t know what it was, but nothing about what happened felt right.
After a few weeks had passed, C. came to our house for a postpartum visit which is part of their protocol. We didn’t have any specific questions, we were still so emotionally distraught and Jonah was present so we tried to keep emotions to a minimum.
Something she said that day was another haunting memory. She was talking to us about faith, almost like she was trying to make this right in her own mind and said, “Some babies just aren’t meant to live.” I was speechless and so angry I didn’t have words because I know there was nothing about Magnus that wasn’t meant to live. Again, she told us she did her best like that was some sort of consolation and said she hoped that we would have another baby with them someday.
This is one of the many moments that I can’t erase from my memory. I get flashbacks of certain phrases or images that haunt me and this was one of those moments. I kept waking at night with distorted images of Magnus walking around our house, but it didn’t look at all like him. In the medical records we not only read about the lies they told about us and the birth, we also learned that Magnus died from severe birth hypoxia, and asphyxia. He was entrapped for over 7 minutes, tangled, and full of meconium.
Learning they lied weeks after his death, we started researching furiously about breech birth. We learned just how grossly this labor and delivery were mishandled. If they had looked for size and cord placement in the ultrasound they would have known before labor even started that we were NOT good candidates for vaginal breech delivery. If they had read the Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Canada’s (SOGC) research they referred to before our labor, things would have been managed very differently.
Our baby was 10lbs, 4 oz, far exceeding the 8.8lb maximum the research suggests as safe. His cord was wrapped twice around his neck, both factors likely why he couldn’t turn into the correct position despite trying. I pushed for a total of 6 hours, almost 4 of which was without progress. The SOGC’s research says that a woman should not be pushing for more that 60 minutes without progress with a breech baby before it’s a sign of serious trouble. There were maneuvers that should have been performed in the heat of the moment that weren’t even attempted.
We found out that the research in Canada was written for doctors, NOT out of hospital midwives and explicitly explained that these kinds of deliveries should ONLY be attempted by very well trained professionals in a medical setting where immediate medical help is ready and present.
The study was initiated by Canadian leadership because women were having their breech babies with midwives, outside the hospital and the Canadian world of obstetrics saw the increase in infant mortality. They knew women were putting themselves in danger so they conducted the research and changed their practices around breech birth in the hospitals to create a set of clear guidelines and model of practice to offer women a “trial of labor.”
Our midwives also neglected to explain that Canada has now made it illegal for midwives to call themselves “midwives” or to practice as such with out a university degree. The actions of the SOGC are exemplary in many ways. Too bad our midwives didn’t read it or use it in the way it was intended, to keep women and babies safe. Instead they twisted it to fit their own agenda.
Our attention and effort turned toward accountability. We felt like we had been used as guinea pigs, as part of someone’s experiment meant to advance their own agenda, meant to make a statement politically.
We feel so much like this is fraudulent behavior, that they use the professional façade of a business to lure people into feeling comfortable, pretending to have requisite skills that they do not have. We had no understanding of their extremist views and how they would influence our care in the midst of crisis.
Our midwives made a conscious decision to take a risk with our baby’s life, to adhere to their own philosophy with blatant disregard for our safety, to lie to protect themselves, and then to sell us the regurgitated line, that “some babies aren’t meant to live.” They hoped we would disappear under the rug of silence and sorrow as many families do. I was screaming inside a glass bottle where no one could hear. We will not be silent.
We reported this to the state, asking for investigation of the two nurse midwives, as did the hospital without our knowing. We asked the police and county prosecutor to investigate to see if criminal charges are warranted. We hired our own civil attorney and reported the incident to the North American Registry of Midwives for the CPM involved. (That’s another story of corruption and deception).
I don’t really even know what I’m hoping will come of all of this other than some form of accountability. I was taught as a child when you do something wrong, you don’t hide behind it. You face it, look the other person in the eyes and face the consequences. I feel strongly that families need to find a collective voice in the wake of all of this, a voice that demands that midwifery be practiced safely in America, with clear guidelines and responsible oversight.
Resources for breech birth:
1. SOGC’s research: http://www.sogc.org/guidelines/documents/gui226CPG0906.pdf
2. More Resources (at the bottom of this link):
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I am so very sorry that you were lied to and manipulated, and that your dear son was the victim of these homebirth midwives' egos. You are right, there must be accountability. Peace be with you.ReplyDelete
Sara, I am so sorry for your loss! I wish I could say I was surprised at the horrific behavior of your midwives, but unfortunately, it seems fairly common. Thank you for sharing your story and thank you for working for accountability for homebirth midwives -- it is sorely needed.ReplyDelete
My niece wasn't breech, but she was born blue, cord around her neck three times, and with merconium aspiration. But this was a hospital birth, and before the baby was even out, a highly specialized team of medics was already in the room with a rack of lifesaving gear. As soon as my niece came out, she was grabbed by the team, who feverishly worked to get her breathing. It was scary for my brother and his wife to have their baby immediately taken up and surrounded by a team of brisk strangers. It was a terrifying couple of minutes. But the baby was soon breathing and doing fine. I shudder to think what would have happened had this been a homebirth. My brother and his wife are forever grateful to that nameless, faceless "team."ReplyDelete
Ricki Lake and her ilk make women paranoid about the "strangers" who rush in and do this and that to you and your baby during a difficult hospital birth--as if that creates some kind of nightmare "experience." If my life is in danger, I don't care WHO saves me--insensitive man, mean old grump, impersonal jerk. Who cares! I don't know why childbirth is seen so differently, as if there needs to be some kind of loving, personal connection between the expectant mother and those helping get the baby out of her body. A woman doesn't care about cultivating a personal relationship when she is, for example, having a liver transplant. Does the surgeon need to be cuddly? Does he need to know you and your family personally? No. Nobody expects that or even cares about that. You want someone who has the most experience and and the most up-to-date medical training and equipment.
Having said that, I do understand why a woman wants a caring individual in charge when she's pregnant. You have to see this person a bunch of times for nine months, so you want someone who will listen to you and show compassion leading up to the birth. But why can't this be an OB? What makes people think that a doula or midwife who never so much as walked past a medical school is a good choice?
Magnus's story breaks my heart. I can see how it happened, easily. Many, many of my friends have opted for homebirth and other "natural" approaches to having a baby. They won't have a glass of wine or a cup of coffee or a tuna sandwich when they're pregnant, but they willingly down medicinal drinks made from wild herbs they know nothing about. Then they hire a midwife who instructs them to go to Toys R Us for a baby pool to put in the middle of the living room. Water birth at home! None of them practice home dentistry or any other home-based medical practice.
Anyone who has ever lived or worked on a farm knows that birth, natural as it is, is exceedingly dangerous. Farms animals die and die and die--the babies and the mothers--during birthing. Nowadays even horse breeders have monitors on their expectant mares all night, alarms, vets on call, etc. A responsible breeder doesn't just leave a pregnant horse in a stall and let nature take its course. Yet so many human babies are getting bare minimum care and monitoring thanks to Ricki Lake and other credulous fearmongers.
I feel for Magnus's family. This is one of the saddest stories I've ever heard.
Thank you Anonymous, for making it so clear as to why home birth/free birth/non-credentialled midwifery birth is so dangerous. I am a doctor trained in Neonatology, and we are called to births of so many low-risk,uncomplicated pregnancies, even births, but when the baby comes out, is covered in meconium, fully aspirated. It is we,"the evil medical personals" who are called in to suction the baby's cords immediately and ventilate if necessary, not the attending midwife or doula! And it is we who have to bare terrible news to parents who chose to have no interventions at birth, except after the child is born, with the tragic news that their newborn is now brain-dead from severe birth hypoxia, or severe meconium aspiration syndrome, with multiple organ failure. When women so proudly display their knowledge from the 'research' they have done, does it include these horrifying studies? And it is we who allow parents to ask questions and try our best to answer them with sound medical knowledge and appropriate print-outs from medically acknowledged research, not some public gossip forum. Then why are we always victimised?Delete
I chose to have my first daughter at the birthing centre attached to my hospital, with a level 3 NICU, which is the best level of intensive care for newborns, should something go wrong. I only wanted this care because I knew most of the doctors on the Delivery Ward and didn't want them intervening unnecessarily just because I was a staff member. But my decision was based on sound Pediatric and Obstetric knowledge, so I basically knew more about my labour and it's possible complications than the attending midwives ( who were brilliant because they knew they were dealing with a medically trained person). But what about those poor women who have no knowledge of pregnancy, labour and it's possible complications, who put theirs and their baby's lives in the hands of midwives, most of whom are anti-interventionalists, so much so when the need arises for a medical transfer, they fumble????
I am pregnant with our 2nd, and have opted to go private, only because there is no birthing centre close to where we live. I cried so much while reading this story, because I have been the attending doctor witnessing a mother hold her newborn and kiss them goodbye, after having gone through dangerous birthing methods at home or birthing centres..
Sara, you and Magnus have our prayers, love and blessings. May only the best in life be bestowed upon you hereafter
Sadly, we won’t be bringing our sweet baby boy home tomorrow. Instead, we will be burying him. Our sweet, much loved and much desired little grandson perished last Friday as he was struggling to be born. His cause of death was head entrapment. He never had a chance.Delete
He was a footling breech, but the positioning of the placenta made it impossible for his mom to deliver him via C/S. Extraordinary measures on the part of medical staff could not deliver his head . He died with half of his body protruding from his mothers birth canal, and half still in her pelvis. She, our little Eli who was no longer alive, and his Daddy had to remain in this position for over an hour waiting for his mother’s cervix to release it’s grip on his head so he could finally deliver.
He was never able to take a single breath, never able to open his eyes, never able to grasp our fingers with his little hands. Not even once.
His birth was a hugely traumatic event for the 20+ medical personnel who tried so very hard to save him. These are super experts with every advanced technique, true expertise and experience, and all possible equipment available to them. These are super specialists who are known for their ability to beat poor odds. But they could do nothing to change the outcome of Eli’s birth despite their heroic efforts.
In the end, our little Eli’s strong steady heartbeat fell from strong and vigorous, to thready, to nothing. His poor bruised little head finally delivered on its own, long after his heart had beat it’s last.
His mother and father are devastated and traumatized. His mother suffered physically traumatic procedures to try to help him and suffered internal injuries as a result. She hemorraged after his birth and was at high risk of bleeding out. She underwent emergency surgery to save her life.
Eli’s OB is traumatized and wept openly. His neonatalogist and perinatalogist is are both deeply shaken. Everyone in the room was crying.
This all happened at one of the four best institutions in the USA for handling obstetrical and perinatal emergencies. The best of the best.
Head entrapment does happen. The results are tragic. The interventions are few and brutal. The outcomes are poor. This condition isn’t a joke or a myth. It is all too real.
If your OB tells you that you are at risk for this complication, please don’t blow him or her off. Please don’t “doctor shop” or worse- seek out a midwife who will reassure you that the vaginal birth you desire will turn out well. Please don’t seek to find someone who will agree with your desire to have a vaginal birth. Don’t let well meaning advice from others sway you. It isn’t worth the risk. It isn’t worth a life, or maybe two.
We will never forget the things we saw that day. We will never forget holding our precious little Eli, so still in death, and caressing his poor bruised head. We will never forget the heroism we saw that day, or the heart. We will never forget the agony of every moment and the zeroing of hope with each second of entrapment.
Will this happen to you? Maybe not. But, is it worth the risk to find out?
If you are the mother whose child dies in this horrific way, then the mortality statistics are 100 percent for you. And they are very high for any child who becomes entrapped.
I’ve learned that this kind of event is considered to be one of the the worst nightmares for OBs. Ask questions, get a second opinion from a high risk OB. Listen. Please don’t take chances.
Yes, vaginal birth is beautiful. It is preferred. But, please don’t risk your baby’s life to experience it.
If even one of you makes a choice that avoids the loss we have experienced, then Eli’s death will have served some purpose.
Please love your baby more than you want to experience vaginal birth. Don’t take the chance of walking the hard road we have found ourselves on. Please. It is a road of lost hopes and shattered dreams. Please do not join us on this empty road.
I looove c section!!! My baby s head was too big. I was so stupid to choose home birth.Delete
I dkdn t follow my intuition to get ankther ultrasound the day before he was born. Horrible labour with no results. Midwife called 911 immedeately after meconium was discovered. Arrived in hospital 2 am in terrible pain with extreme conractions. No doctor present. Asked to see doctor and nurses denied to call her. I said there is meconium!! This is,dangerous I beed to see a doctor. Response was that doctor would only arrive at 10 cm ( which midwife already had discovered).. unbearable pain. And nurses continuing to refuse tk call doctor duri g 3 hours!!!!!!!! As soon as doctor was there, one try to push and emerge cy c section . Hello! That's why I took an ambulance to the hospital! My son almost dead because of negligence in hospital and possibly by midwife?! Meconium aspiration. Eeds to be life flighted and be put on ecmo. Survives. Has brain damage.
Considering to sue them all. I m furious about the fact that they had me three hours waiting In The hospital. He is alive. He seems ok.He is my life, my sunshine. But in my belly he was perfectly fine!
What can we do against the greedy midwife and the not caring hospitals?
My heart is broken, even he is alive. My heart is with all the pants having to go through such problems, and then always thinking what did I to wrong?
They wanted to induce me and have him in la mt sinai but we had such a horrible terrifying feeling. It's all hard to make the right decisions about birth. I would never do home birth again. My boy would be dead had he be bien at home. I love him so much. He has transformed my life.
Now sleepless nights. They say his head doesn't grow enough.
I need help. I need to talk with other moms who have to live with the consequences of their decisions. My heart hurts do much. All there little angels and parents suffering so much.
I am so, so sorry.ReplyDelete
i am so so very sorry for your loss :( my midwife also claimed i "declined transfer" when the police showed up after my daughter was born dead... noone should ever have to feel this pain. my heart breaks for youReplyDelete
I am so happy that you are settled in OR. I cannot believe that that woman is still practicing. We love you !
I am so sorry for your loss. The midwives behavior is deplorable. I hope something can happen. If you need any help, let us know!!ReplyDelete
I am so sorry to read this story. Magnus was a beautiful little boy who deserved much better than what those incompetent midwives inflicted on him.ReplyDelete
Everytime I think I can't hear a sadder and more negligent story about a HB/BC loss, I hear one. Its horrible. I'm so sorry you went through this, it is inexcusable that those MWs killed, then lied like they did. I hope they are punished.ReplyDelete
I am so, so, so sorry! Magnus was such a precious soul - such a beautiful little boy. I hope justice is served.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss. I too have taken my child off a ventilator (cord accident) and I am sorry you are a part of that community of parents. Thank you for sharing your story.ReplyDelete
He is beautiful. I can not express how sorry I am for your families loss. Thank you for being strong enough to share.ReplyDelete
Your story is powerfully written, and it will help save other babies the same fate. I'm sure that's small comfort. Your angel baby is beautiful, and he will not be forgotten. I can't express how sorry I am. I can't stop crying after reading this.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss, and am crying as I read this account of your experiences. He is a beautiful, perfect little boy. I can only applaud you in your attempts to call the dangerous, hubristic, egotistic, manipulative and irresponsible 'midwives' who attended you to account. No one should have to suffer thisReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing your story. I can't imagine the agony you and your family have suffered. I'm praying for peace and justice for you.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for the loss of Magnus. I wish I could say I am shocked that the midwives delievered him breech but I have heard of too many stories like this. I wish I could say I am shocked they lied but I have heard too many stories like that as well. You had nothing approaching informed consent and the care is awful. I wish healing for you. Thank you for being so brave so you can save other babies.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss. Magnus is beautiful. I loss my daughter after home birth in 2009 and still have flash backs. My CMP and CNM take no responsibly either.ReplyDelete
I wish like hell that I had the guts to put this story on my FB account. However, my very liberalbirth community friends would just push this baby's story aside. I had a baby born breech (vaginally) at home and baby now suffers from cord prolapse injuries. Thanks Ricki Lake, MD ! Bullshit !ReplyDelete
He was a beautiful boy, Sara. Thank you for sharing Magnus' story with us. May you and your family find peace and closure from seeking justice for Magnus.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry, I am crying and at a loss for words. :( This is senseless, and not fair. Thank you for being this brave. He was so beautiful.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your terrible loss. Praying for you. Thank you for having the courage to share and to seek justice. Telling your story will help prevent this from happening to someone else.ReplyDelete
"Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow." Isaiah 1:17
I'm so sorry. Thank you for sharing Magnus' story. He was a beautiful little guy.ReplyDelete
I am so very sorry for your loss. :( I can't even put into words just how much I feel for you and your family.ReplyDelete
Sara, words are not enough here.... no mother should ever have to experience what you went through. I am so deeply sorry that you lost your beautiful son. I hope those horrible midwives never practice again and face the consequences they so deserve.ReplyDelete
I will echo the words of the many people commenting before me~ Thank you for being courageous enough to share your story. You may have already saved the life of another baby whose mother was contemplating home birth. God bless you.
I had two easy, wonderful hospital births. The doctors and nurses were amazing. But my experiences were so by-the-book that I started to consider homebirth when I have my third baby. I have a friend who had two homebirths that went perfectly. I did research and read all these beautiful things about homebirth. I am SO glad my research didn't stop there. When I found this site and read these stories, I felt like a complete fool for even considering a homebirth. You are so brave for sharing your story, and you ARE saving lives. I can't say thank you enough for stopping me, and countless other moms, from having a homebirth.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry about what your family went through. Thank you for telling your story. I'm so sorry for the loss of your beautiful son Magnus, and I applaud your bravery in sharing his story. I'm sure lives will be saved because of it.ReplyDelete
What is it about these midwives that blind women to the truth when it matters most? It makes me so sad, all these little lives that have been wasted by ignorance.ReplyDelete
That's a harsh comment. The very reason for this much needed site is for people to tell their stories so people will be able to find information on the true horrors of non-hospital births. The general consensus is that childbirth is a routine "safe" experience. For whatever reason the real dangers of childbirth are not commonly discussed. For that, I could not be happier to have found this site.Delete
To Sara and everyone else who has had the strength to post their heartfelt stories on here, thank you. I am sickened at the way you were treated. I know getting the justice you deserve will never fill the void that Magnus leaves behind, but hopefully you will get that justice and in that, you will be responsible for keeping other families from suffering the same fate.
I am Very sorry to hear about your son, Your story has touched me in very many ways. it made me very emotional,sad,angry,hurt,depressed, just thinking about as how you felt.I too am a mother and i know i could never be as strong as you are, about how you trusted these woman and they were just there to make money and practice from you, you deserve justice and to see them pay, i know nothing will ever replace/mean as much to you as your son, and im sorry, I hope the woman can never get another job/ maybe working at McDonalds but never again being responsable for another persons life and may god bless you and you family, I will say thank you for sharing you story so the world will know, It takes a very strong woman to do so. This true story really make you think, I will be praying for you and yours.ReplyDelete
I am so very sorry for your loss. The idea that "some babies are not meant to live" is disgusting and disturbing. Babies DO die at birth, but this does not mean they are not meant to live. While researching after the fact is very understandable, it is much too little much too late. Trusting someone with your (or your child's) life, be they midwife or AMA doctor, is of course expected, but people need to take a bit of their own health and safety into concern before the fact. This is NOT to say anything would've turned out differently if research was done before Magnus's birth. Hopefully, others who read your birth story will indeed take more time to research what is effecting them before it is too late.ReplyDelete
I can truly understand your hurt, anger, resentment, et cetera (I too lost a child at birth) telling the "world" that these women are only in it for the money is a completely emotional response being born from your feelings. Midwifery is not a get rich type of career. It stems from a love of living and help bring life and beauty into this world of ours.
When we lost our daughter, my husband and I thought about law suits and accountability, but ultimately decided against it. The doctors who were involved might have made better choices, but were NOT the reason for the chord being wrapped (also twice) around her neck.
My thoughts are with you, and I hope you and your family will discover a way to cope with your loss. Nothing will ever make it better, but you will eventually be able to cope. A word of caution, if you do go through with all of the civil action, and you do win, it will not relieve the pain within your hearts and souls. As I stated earlier, we decided not to fight it because we felt bad things do happen in life (ironic to use the word "life") and sometimes no one is responsible. The trials would've only made us dwell on our lost daughter. Getting past the hate and replacing it with love greatly helped us, I hope you can do the same.
peace, love, and prayers to you and yours
Thank you for a very empathetic and level response.Delete
Anonymous, I am so very sorry for your loss, but your post actually angered me. Your attitude is remarkable and one to be desired, but the situations do seem vastly different. In Sara's case she was not given the information she should have by the practitioner she chose so she could make an informed decision, then she was flat out LIED to by those she trusted, and then they lied to the police multiple times. In her case I applaude her for having the strength for standing up for what is right during this very difficult time to help ensure this does not happen to anyone else simply because she chose to be silent and heal quietly.Delete
I am so sorry about your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with u and your family. Your story has touched me in so many ways. Thank u for sharing your courageous story.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry you had to go through that. I can say I am a nurse and would never do home births. There r too may risks. Some hospitals offer educated midwives who do practice in a hospital and do amazing work. I again am so sorry for your loss and the deceat of the people you thought you could trust!ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss and your family's loss. As a medical student with a number of friends that advocate for home birth/birth center birth because "delivery is not a medical event, is a "normal" part of life for a women, and is cheaper to do through one of these places"-- I feel compelled to share your story. Many of these places and practices are so aggressive in their tactics to avoid medical intervention --even when it would be warranted.ReplyDelete
The saddest part to me is: your story is not unique. A friends baby likely passed away because of home birth as well.
Please know that your story has touched me and many others. Again, so sorry for your loss and through your pain and sharing of this story -- I hope you find healing.
Ask your friends what is cheaper (besides of course the obvious loss of life) 2 weeks in NICU or a C-Section? Gee, I wonder why insurance companies don't cover birthing centers?!Delete
Sara, I'm crying at my computer as I read your story. We went to high school together and I remember what a strong, caring, and passionate person you are. I'm praying that you will find healing and a sense of peace as you step out and share your story. What a beautiful picture of you holding Magnus. So sorry, Sara.ReplyDelete
We too also lost our son due to the negligence of my homebirth midwife. My story is in my google profile. My midwife illegally gave me Cytotec to induce my labor so it would fit her schedule and since my DH was home that week from a military school. She never once told me it was Cytotec, only led me to believe it was Cervadil without telling me it was or wasn't. It wasn't until 2 months after Bregan passed away that another midwife told me what it was. My heart broke all over again, but it never really lifted the guilt completely. Though over 3 years on, our hearts have healed so much. Time, love and counseling will help heal your broken hearts. I think that will always haunt me is knowing that we could have had a beautiful home birth and I will never be able to have one again for the fear and trauma we went through. (((HUGS)))ReplyDelete
I've very sorry for your loss and so grateful for your post. I just wanted to note that I have never heard of Cytotec and I'm wondering if that is yet another issue that many are not educated about. We're creeping up on one year here and it still feels like all of this just happened. We appreciate your encouragement. Hugs right back to you! Sara
I am so very sorry for your loss...your story is powerful and hopefully will have in impact on this medical issue...my heart breaks for you and your family...just having lost my mother to brain cancer and replaying her face when she passed away...I sympathize. My prayers are with you.ReplyDelete
Those photos are just too much. you are very brave! May G-d Bless you with comfort!ReplyDelete
Sara, I am so sorry for your heartbreak. For your beautiful baby who deserved to be with his wonderful mother. I wish you healing and I'm praying for you in your grief.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for thesehorrific events to happen to you. I read your story four days ago and I can not stop thinking about it and seeing your beautiful Magnus' perfect self. I have a two month old and had to have a c-section due to a narrow pelvic structure, I am thankful that I didn't go through with trying a home birth, we both probably would have passed. Please know that he will always be with you and try not to blame yourselves...we are only human and can only make decisions from the information at hand. I hope that you are growing stronger every day and also know that his passing will NEVER be in vain...such a dear sweet perfect little soul. I am sorry.ReplyDelete
Jarad & Sara,ReplyDelete
We're very sorry for the loss of your beautiful little boy. Can't begin to imagine all of the emotions you have gone through. We are here for you if you need anything. Love,
Mark and Dena
My heart hurts for you.ReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing your story. My heart breaks for your experience. As parents we trust those caring for us to give us good information, and there are no words for how horrible it feels to have that trust broken and our loved ones endangered or hurt as a result. I'm so sorry for your loss.ReplyDelete
What a heartbreaking story and experience. May you find some small solace in knowing that others far and wide are reading the story you have shared. I wish you kindness and peace.ReplyDelete
Sara, I'm so angry that these people would put their own sense of self-righteousness over the life of a child. I hope that they will suffer the consequences of what they have done, and Magnus will have not died in vain. I wish you the best in the grieving process, and let you know that your story will save many other babies.ReplyDelete
I am very sorry for your loss. Thank you so much for having the courage to share with us.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss- he was absolutely beautiful.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for the loss of your beautiful baby boy. I appreciate your courage and honesty in telling the story of your labor and delivery. I believe it will save lives. My heart goes out to you.ReplyDelete
Sara, I was struck by your story and how much it sounded like mine -- I took classes at a birth center planning a hospital birth, I wanted to switch there because I was worried about interventions ... the only difference is that my husband said, "No way." I only today realized that it was the EXACT same birth center you're writing about.ReplyDelete
I am so, so sorry about your loss. Magnus was a beautiful baby and should be here with you.
Terribly sorry for your loss i am crying sitting here clutching my baby , I cannot imagine the trauma, I pray you find some sort of peace but know you can and would be expected to completely move on from this, your son was absolutely beautiful and I support you 100%ReplyDelete
Dearest Sara . . . I can barely see the screen I am crying so hard. We just delivered our son in December - started at the Birth Center and then transferred to Sparrow. At our last appt. pre delivery, the midwife suggested that our son was around 6.5#. He ended up being 9# and posterior (my first baby). I pushed against my cervix for a few hours at the BC before becoming very scared/tired and asking to transfer. As soon as the midwives sensed that things weren't going quite as planned, they backed off . . . just at the time when I needed the most support I felt very alone. The decision to go to the hospital was a difficult one when it should have been quite easy. All I wanted to hear them say was, "It seems like you are getting worn out and very frustrated. Let's talk about your options at this point." Instead, they told me, "It will take an hour to get you admitted to the hospital and another hour before any pain medication kicks in," which made me second guess my desire to transfer. If it would take that long to feel relief, shouldn't I just forget about it and keep laboring in the tub? Ultimately, they told me that it was "up to you" and I insisted that we go. Thankfully, my transfer was not an emergency (although I did have to go by ambulance) - I just felt that my son and I needed a higher/better level of care. I am very fortunate that I ended up receiving it at the hospital and I am desperately sorry that you did not. My family will follow your story with interest, support and love. And if there is anything I can do to help you on this painful journey in the public eye, please contact me.ReplyDelete
Thank you for your honesty and courage in sharing this. You are now the 4th person who has contacted me in three days with stories like this, some who had the same outcome as us and others very similar to yours. If you read this, please look me up on facebook. I don't know how to contact you, but would love to. Best wishes to you and your family.
If you get this Sara, please write me back.. I cannot find you on facebook. I need to talk to someone asap. We've got a little boy thats suffering from cerebral palsy from a similar experience and I need info. If its not too much trouble, contact me please! My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. This is devistating..Delete
I sent you an email today, but in case you didn't get it, you can visit SafermidwiferyMI.org and contact us through email@example.comDelete
Thank you for being so strong and sharing your heartbreaking story with us, you are saving lives and you should be proud of that. I am so sorry for your sweet baby boy and I pray you can find peace!ReplyDelete
This sounds a lot like what happened when I lost my baby girl at birth many years ago, though she wasn't, breech. As a midwife who occasionally attends births at home, there is one golden rule for me - particularly in breech birth. There MUST be progress, even if slow and monitoring baby's wellbeing of course is vital. Although I could never know for sure because I wasn't there, I would have transferred long before. I hope you find peace soon - it took me a long time. However, I go on to birth my last child at home which was a very healing event. This after a traumatic C/S where my son had respiratory distress which was terrifying after his sister's stillbirth.ReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing your story. As a CNM student, I will carry your words with me as a reminder to stay current, be mindful of my intentions, keep safety at the forefront of decisions and to stay honest in my education to and for families. It's horrible that this has happened, and I hope and pray that some worthwhile legislation comes from it that will help both families and midwives.ReplyDelete
I certainly hope Dr Amy, you have been given permission by these families themselves (not pulling them from another source) and their stories as told without any "ad lib" on your behalf to further your anti-homebirth agenda.ReplyDelete
Families like ours seek Dr. Amy because no one in the NCB community wants to acknowledge or babies existed. How dare you?Delete
Sara Snyder, Magnus's mom
If you'd like to see more, visit SafermidwiferyMI.org
As i read this, i couldn't help but feel conﬂicted. As a husband and a father, i will openlyReplyDelete
admit to crying uncontrollably throughout the article. But as a paramedic i was ﬁlled with
anger...seething, red hot anger. I am one of those faceless strangers that Ricki Lake and
Others seem to dislike. I, unlike them, do not get to cherry pick my patients and pawn
them off on others when things don't go as "naturally" as i hoped. I transported more
than one pregnant woman who was in some sort of distress, I’ve done CPR on blue,
limp, lifeless bodies of infants/toddlers/kids. Never would I ever say that a child wasn't
meant to live. I cannot begin to imagine a way to express my sorrow and condolences
for your loss and for the disgusting way you, your husband, and Magnus were treated.
The only thing I can even attempt to offer is that those Paramedics who worked with
Magnus before transporting him to the hospital never thought he wasn't meant for this
world and I can say from my own experiences that they probably still remember him and
his image is one that they will never forget. I cannot fully speak for them because I
cannot read minds, but in similar experiences working pediatric codes... I remember. I
could never forget if I tried. Those children were the most important things in the world
at that moment. I have no doubt those medics felt the same.
The idea that dogma and extremist, unscientiﬁc views contributed to the loss of a
beautiful child's life is sickening. The behavior of the birthing center staff afterwards is
sickening. Someone in the comments said that these people were motivated by a "love
of living and help bring life and beauty into this world of ours"... Absolutely appalling.
The only thing I can think of is that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I
cannot fathom the idea that people who have a "love of living" would deliberately place
a child in a position to be harmed over ego. If that poster wants to know what a love of
living looks like, it looks like a paramedic sitting in front of me telling me about a bad
pediatric call he ran last shift, an untouched beer in front of him, his voice cracking and
me pretending I don’t see his eyes welling up or the stray tear that sneaks out. We may
be nameless, we may be mostly faceless but we care, as do the rest of the medical
professionals that have dedicated their lives to helping others. And to helping others
without ego, putting the safety of those under our care above our pride. This story is one that I believe would anger most medical professionals, because while every death is not preventable…No death should be written off as meant to be, particularly a child’s. We cannot and will not be able to save everyone, and I cannot say that had Magnus been attended by competent staff that his loss was preventable… But I can unequivocally say that no undereducated or uneducated birthing center staff can say without a doubt that his loss was inevitable.
To Sara and your family, I cannot say anything that is more profound than "I am sorry". I
truly am, I wish there was a magic remedy that ﬁxed loss, I wish that the pain would be
gone. I wish there was more wisdom in my words, but I’m just a dad who has to keep
wiping his eyes to see the screen and can’t begin to understand your loss. I can only
hope that your pain will heal.
Adam, my husband and son are EMT Intermediates, I hear their emotions in your post. I know your post is from the heart. We lost a daughter at 25 weeks, I read this 25 years later and cry. May Sara and her family find peace in their hearts.Delete
I am so very sorry for your loss. I also lost a full term baby boy due to a cord accident, the difference being his was really just a freak thing and not the fault of the medical staff. I am so sorry that your son would have been fine if the medical people would have behaved differently. I hope this haunts them and makes them change careers.ReplyDelete
I first want to say how sorry I am for your loss! I am due this June and I can't even imagine the pain you are experiencing. I am currently enrolled in birthing classes through a midwife/nurse organization. We have been informed about the breech/footling breech positions and the risks associated with each. The fact that meconium was present should have warranted a phone call to EMSA immediately! You trusted these professionals with Magnus's life and they failed you. Our Children's hospital has a midwifery option, but has dr.'s on the premises in case such emrgenicies should occur. From my knowledge, I believe most hospitals do not even allow vaginal breech deliveries due to the high risk of mortality to the baby as well as to the mother. I know that justice will not bring Magnus back to you, but shutting these woman down will at least prevent this tragedy from reoccurring. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. RMPReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss. As a nursing student, your story made me so furious that these people who call themselves professionals can do this to a family, and act as if they have done nothing immoral. Karma is a bitch however, and I hope they learn their lesson.ReplyDelete
I'm sorry for your loss.Hopefully Magnus's story will encourage other mothers-to-be to deeply research their local birth-centers and to proactively inform themselves about the methods of delivery recommended. Blind trust is a bad thing and I'm very sorry that you learned that this way.ReplyDelete
This story was just heartbreaking. I am so sorry for your loss.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for you loss and your midwife's disgusting betrayal of your trust. This is heartbreaking.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for you loss. I cannot even imagine your pain. May the love of your family and friends bring you comfort. I also hope you take comfort in the fact that your painful, gut wrenching honesty will help others in your situation in the future, make a different decision and take steps to ensure the safest delivery possible.ReplyDelete
I am so saddened by Magnus' tragic story. As a neonatologist who attends many high-risk deliveries, I am also completely flabbergasted that any midwife would even consider a vaginal breech delivery. In our "US News and World Report Top 10 Hospital," only the most experienced obstetricians even attempt vaginal breech deliveries--and only after CT scans to measure the pelvic outlet and extensive counseling about possible complications (including death). In addition, all vaginal breech deliveries are done in the OR in case an emergency C-section is necessary and a full pediatrics team is present for resuscitation. Believe me, this is not overkill--babies often get "hung up" at the head (it is the largest part of the body to pass through the cervix), and this will inevitably result in compression of the umbilical cord. I've personally had to give chest compressions to several babies delivered in vaginal breech position. And I've learned that if a baby is stuck in a vaginal breech position, every second counts. It's not enough to be "minutes away" from an OB, a hospital, and a NICU. Minutes without oxygen will result in permanent brain damage.ReplyDelete
So thank you so much for your courage in sharing your story. It needs to be told. Who else is going to educate women out there about the potential complications of childbirth? As a mother of two, I am overwhelmed by the amount of propaganda that tells me that I am endangering my children by trusting to science and evidence-based medicine. As a neonatologist, I am devastated by the number of babies I care for whose medical complications could have been avoided if they had only received medically sound perinatal and neonatal care. I hope that your story touches others the way it has touched me--and that it gives a voice to the tragic and avoidable consequences of homebirth that we never hear about.
Oh, Sara. I have finally found, read, and sobbed through your story. What a tramatic and horrendous thing to have gone through. I applaud your efforts to bring awareness to this problem and pray that in doing so you find the peace you deserve after this ordeal. What a beautiful little man you had there and the pictures of you with him just rip my heart out. It is clear the love you feel for sweet Magnus. I really feel like you hit the nail on the head with accountability these days by stating how we were raised...look someone in the eyes and admit when you have done something wrong, don't hide from it. Best wishes to you in this fight and much love to you old friend.ReplyDelete
Thank you Jessica. This means a lot:)Delete
Your words mean a lot to me. I know the paramedics that responded worked diligently to save our son. I know they responded to way too many calls like this at the same birth center. They were devastated by his loss, and we are forever grateful for their care and the work they do. That does for you too. Paramedics are under appreciated, and saving lives. Thank you for the work you do, and for your message.
My heart goes out to you: it's just horrendous what these homebirth idiots put women through.ReplyDelete
So very sorry for your loss. I had wanted to home birth my child, but now I am glad I did not have the oppurtunity, as I was too young to even know where to begin finding a midwife.ReplyDelete
Birth is not something to be taken lightly. I raise birds, and even healthy birds of hearty species can have deadly complications.
I am so heartbroken and so angry on your behalf. What a beautiful, precious little boy.ReplyDelete
Precious baby Magnus...you most certainly were meant to live, to be loved by your family, to have a childhood filled with laughter and joy, to grow old surrounded by those who loved you but you were robbed of that. I'm so sorry for your little boy, mama.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss of Magnus. Your story is powerful and I am thankful you are sharing and speaking your truth. I gave birth to 3 kids at home and I used to work in out of hospital birth assisting CNMs. The midwives I worked with never attended breech births, but there were situations that that I didn't feel comfortable with and I quit. Your story really sticks with me and I believe my perspective is shifting because of it. Thank you again.
I thank you for your courage and honesty in sharing your tragic story with us. As an Ob/Gyn, I am very sorry that you could not feel that you could trust the medical system and trained Ob/Gyn medical professionals. Unfortunately, this attitude of distrust is becoming more common among the women and leading them to seek care elsewhere. Many seek out care with inexperienced lay midwives who they feel can provide them with a more caring environment. It bothers me that so many women view me as the enemy, when in reality we want the same thing: A healthy baby. I hope that in your next pregnancy, you will be able to find the care and support that you need within the medical system.
I'm so sorry this happened to you. I'm a doctor who works at a major hospital and we do try to do vaginal breech deliveries (as well as have midwives on our staff), but only the most experienced doctors do them, and it is done in the operating room, set up to do a CS immediately if needed. I have seen two (one however was a second twin), and I wish that there was not so much enmity between midwives and doctors and that we could have let you have a safe breech birth...and an informed choice.ReplyDelete
I'm so sorry for your loss. It broke my heart to read the lines where you got to see your son's eyes for the first time in death. That was so heartbreaking. I have a few friends who have done natural births and while they got lucky, they are under the impression that their doula was more qualified to make medical decisions than their ObGyn because " the obgyn doesn't know everything". At first I bought into this nonsense but I think the more I read the less I want to do anything without a doctor OR have a doula who could potentially put me and my child at risk because I believed them to be more qualified than my doctor. I want to thank you for posting your story. It has really made a difference to me.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry for your loss. Words cannot describe how I feel right now. I am so sorry!ReplyDelete
Oh sweet Sara... my heart is aching for you and your husband. As a 3 time homebirther, as I read through your story, I felt enraged at your midwives that they did not explain things to you and encourage you to be educated. Right from the get-go it seems they manipulated, deceived, and twisted things to fit their agenda and in the moment when your son's life hung in the balance they looked out only for themselves. I'm so so sorry. My husband and I are praying peace over you as you continue to heal and grieve the loss of your son and for favor as you hold these midwives accountable to what they have done. <3ReplyDelete
Sara, I am so saddened by your loss of Magnus. I too am part of the established medical community. I am a CRNA in the US who specializes in OB anesthesia. I can tell you from the bottom of my heart that the entire team of care givers in hospital based obstetrics wants the very best possible outcome for both mother and baby. Your tragic loss was so completely preventable. Vaginal breech deliveries are extremely rare in the US and not supportable in cases of poor outcomes. I do not know any OB GYN that would consent to deliver a breech baby other than by C/S.ReplyDelete
I appreciate your bravery and generosity in telling your story. I hope that other young women will avoid the danger of home birth. Birth is a natural process but it is also a dangerous process. Old cemeteries are filled with young mothers and infants who both died during childbirth. Many young people today are very unaware of the true risk of non medical birth.
I am enraged when pseudo celebrities such as Rikki Lake portray the medical community as uncaring, impatient, greedy, etc. We try every single day to ensure that our babies are born safe and healthy. I have held a stillborn baby and that is something you never forget and will try your hardest to prevent. Every second counts with a baby in distress. Your "caregivers" were criminals in my opinion.
I'm so sorry for your horrible experience and your loss. Sending you peace.
Reading this made me cry. So sorry for your loss.ReplyDelete
Your story breaks my heart and I am sorry for your loss. I have chosen traditional hospital births for my two children. My second child was not breach but was induced at almost 41 weeks. She was 10 pounds, 9 ounces and had her cord wrapped around her neck. During delivery the doctor had to cut the cord push her back in and re-deliver her. It was the most painful thing I have ever done (the dr's hands were inside me cutting the cord) but I am so grateful she did. I am sorry for what happened to you and your child.ReplyDelete
I worked many years in the ER. While on duty I saw several women over the years transported by private car who delivered babies at a birthing center or at home with a midwife or Nature path that died. They came in to the ER but their babies were already dead. We have a saying that home delivery is for pizza. I do not want to make light of these tragic situations. I am very saddened (and mad) reading the experiences of these Mothers and the loss of their babies. The wonderful show on TV "Call the Midwife" has made home births more appealing. Remember in this show that the home births are done in very poor neighborhoods with few resources. Just as births are done in third world countries. They are doing their best with what they have. There is no excuse to not take advantage of modern medicine that can make all the difference. As a responsible adult I would chose a not so warm and fuzzy experience in a hospital over the home birth experience that goes bad. I can get over the hospital experience that was not what I wanted it to be. I could never get over the death or injury of my child due to a home birth.ReplyDelete
One more comment on the impersonal behavior of medical people. When in a crisis or emergent situation we are 100% focused on what we are doing. What is being done is saving a life or a limb. That is how you want your medical people to be. Focused and doing what needs to be done exactly as they have been trained. I am in awe of the many miracles I saw in ER and Labor and Delivery. When the work is finished these medical people walk away and rarely receive thanks. Patients are not even aware of the things that were done that make such a difference. Things that could not have happened in a home or birthing center.
Thank you for sharing this important story. I pray that you find peace in comfort in your lives.
I'm a brazilian OB/GYN and i'm very sorry for your loss, but I wanted to say you were very brave to tell us about you history, to remember all this in such sincere details. We need people to know about the risks they are facing when they choose homebirths but, more important, we need them to be absolutely sure they understand it, wich, in my point of view, is impossible. As doctors is our duty to do the best for our patients, and to use our knowledge and technology to bring the best to people's life. Its like the person in the comment above said: its possible though hard to get over a labor/birth experience that went not quite the way we wanted but brought us the joy of a healthy baby, but nothing can ease the pain that comes after the death of a baby that we could have saved. All babies are meant to live!ReplyDelete