It has been 10 months since the birth of our twins. Over those months, I have shared about my postpartum journey, about the twins as they get bigger and change, and about some of the things that I have struggled with since they were born, like postpartum anxiety. Not once, in all of those posts, have I been able to sit here and say that I am accepting the birth that I has negatively effected me for so long.
Some of you may be reading this thinking, “Why 10 months? You have healthy babies.” Believe me when I tell you that this has been the most trying and challenging 10 months of my entire life.
My birth plan for the twins was to have a completely natural birth. That didn’t go over so well and the emergency C-section that I underwent in order to have our twins has stuck with me since then. From health anxiety, to be afraid to drive, to having nightmares and flashbacks, I was pretty much stuck in a constant state of fear and panic from the moment I left that hospital.
I went through the first few months in a compete fog. I honestly couldn’t tell you much about what happened during that time. I, being the stubborn person I am, refused to take any medication for my anxiety because I know that there are good and bad sides to that.
But, it was haunting me.
I blamed myself a lot for what happened. I told myself that it was a moment of weakness because I couldn’t stand up to the doctors. It was my “fault” because I should have stopped it. When it got to the point that it was effecting my ability to parent and causing a rift between my husband and I, I knew that it had to be addressed.
I finally went through something with my counselor called EMDR therapy. Now, I have been in school for psychology and professional counseling for close to 7 years now. I am at the very end of my degree and I have researched numerous methods of treatment for PTSD and anxiety, none of which sounded appealing until this one.
They use this form of therapy a lot to treat people with PTSD, something I would not admit I had until talking to my counselor. It is amazing how using something so non-invasive, and without requiring any medication, can really change how you see situations that are the root of your anxiety and trauma.
Until that point, I had never gone through in detail what happened the day the twins were born. I had never relived the details out loud with anyone. To be honest, I never thought that I would. But it was freeing! Even though she may not have gone through the same thing I did, saying it out loud to someone and allowing them to be there in that trauma with you, although it might not feel like it when you’re doing it, gives you a release from the terror and the triggers that are causing you pain.
So I told someone. I relived that day I had compartmentalized and buried.
I am so thankful that God put this situation in my life and has given me so many different outlets of support from it. There is so much grace that I have seen throughout all of it.
Now, I can finally say that “yes”, I had a c-section. No, it was not what I planned for. But, I am now the mom of two more beautiful babies because of it. So I can FINALLY accept that even though I didn’t want it, even though I didn’t plan for it, it happened and I am a stronger person because of it.
*Cheers to all of you c-section mamas out there*