The successful VBAC of baby Raine

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(Written Permission has been granted to use these photographs and re tell this birth story from my perspective from the Family)

I first met Sarah and Eric in very early pregnancy and Sarah had experienced a LUSCS for her first baby after ‘failing to progress’ in labour. After long discussions and a review of Sarah’s notes it was decided that labour probably never really established and the hospital where she had her baby probably assesed Sarah as being in established labour when she wasn’t quite there yet. Then time restrictions and expected norms were not met and Sarah had a caesarean section of a healthy baby boy.

When I first met Sarah, she stated quite clearly that she felt very strongly that there was no reason why she couldn’t birth a baby naturally. She was super keen for a VBAC and her partner Eric was very supportive of this. I counselled them that there was some serious work ahead of them, and this was physical preparation (which wasn’t going to be a challenge for sarah as she is a fitness instructor) and emotional preparation. What I mean by emotional preparation, is that unless a woman believes 100% that she can have a VBAC, it is far less likely to be successful in any setting!

At times it wasn’t easy for Sarah, and she did have some fears about her ability to have a VBAC which concerned me due to my above belief. Yet Sarah bounced back and those fears often came about when other things were going on in her life.

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Sarah had a few eposides of pre labour, where contractions would start and stop, but at the end of June her contractions become stronger and more powerful

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The bath was a wonderful relief and many hours on many occasions were spent in the bath

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Eric, you were exactly what Sarah needed. You were her rock! You stayed with her all day, all night and all of the next day. You rubbed her back,

offered her words of encouragement and simply loved her and she felt every bit of it. I’m very proud of you and your attention and support helped Sarah to achieve her dream of a natural water birth after caesarean!!

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But this wasn’t easy, this was hard work, this was a marathon, and your midwife even made you go for walks outside in the freezing weather at 3am! And Sarah you never complained, you said if this is what’s needed then I will do it! We even went for another walk later with Helen stuffing small squares of frozen toast into your mouth to encourage you to eat to give you the stamina to keep going!!!

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While Erics love and support continued throughout, your baby was getting closer and closer to arriving

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All the while, your little baby’s heart beat was of normal rhythm, good baseline variability and no decelerations were ever heard. You showed good progress throughout your labour once your contractions had established.

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Your sister Loz was also a rock. She stayed calm throughout the day and night and the next day. You have a very supportive family Sarah! There was a lot of love and admiration in that room!

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Little Raine finally arrived at lunchtime on Sunday! A beautiful gentle waterbirth. You gave her a precious gift Sarah and Eric – a gentle start in life after a fabulous pregnancy xx

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Little sister for River. Thank you all for choosing me to be your midwife. It was an honour and my privilege to be part of your lives, and to be present while you prepared for your birth, then with you when you laboured and birthed your baby girl, xx Juliana

(Thank you also Donna from for taking such beautiful photos and for allowing me to use them in my blog)


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