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Our Journey

2002 Uterine Fibroid Surgery #1

2003 1st consult with an RE, you know, just in case

2003 Got Married (at 37 (me) & 34 (DH) years old)

2003/2004 Naturally conceived pregnancies BFPs #1, #2, & #3 and miscarriages #1, #2, #3

2005 Uterine Fibroid Surgery #2

2005 IVF #1, BFN #1

2005 IUIs #1 and #2, just because, BFN #2 & #3

2005 FET from IVF #1, BFN #4

2006 Exploratory surgery to remove scar tissue from fibroid sugery #2

2006 IVF #2 (w PGD), BFP #4

2006 Emergency cerclage for IC @ 16w6d (5 months + 1 week of complete bed rest at home ensues)

2007 Our son is born @ 38w by scheduled c-section

2007 IVF #3 for baby #2, BFN #5

2007 IVF #4, BFP #5, miscarriage #4

2008 IVF #5, BFP #6, miscarriage #5

2008 IVF #6, BFP #7, miscarriage #6

2008 DE IVF #7, BFN #6

2009 DEFET #8, cancelled, embryos don't thaw

2010 Decide to adopt domestically

12.17.10 Profile is live with our agency

November 2011 Consult with RE re: donated embryo cycle

Early January 2012 Cleared to proceed with deFET

January 2012 Freeze our profile

1.20.12 deFET begins
2.12.12 eSET of one compacted morula
2.22.12 BFN

3.23.12 deFET #2 begins
4.14.12 transfer 3 embryos (1-8 cell, 1-5 cell, 1-4 cell)
4.22.12 + HPT
4.24.12 Beta #1 = 48.4
4.26.12 Beta #2 = 125.7
4.30.12 Beta #3 = 777.8
5.11.12 1st U/S - Singleton!
7.12.12 It's a Boy!
12.26.12 C-section: Baby G is born, 9#5oz, 20.5"



Delivery vs. Birth Experience

As a follow up to this post, I see a clear delineation between one’s delivery experience, which is specific to a mother, and one’s birth experience, which is specific to a child. What held meaning for me in learning of my own birth, had little to do with my mother’s labor and delivery of me (both of which were noted with some specificity in the non-identifying information I received), was of my newborn information and perceptions by those in the room of my coming into the world. “You were born on XX/XX/66 at 8:49 PM in Los Angeles. Birth weight was 8# 6 1/2 oz, length 20 1/2″, head circumference 14″. You were a full term baby. The doctor described you as well-developed, with good color, cry, and moro. He said that you were a normal newborn.”

Those few words connected me to my entry into the world in a way that nothing else before or since has and the document goes on to describe my first few visits with the social worker, “The worker described you as a lovable and social baby with quite fair coloring. You had been healthy and your coloring had been good.” Imagine that the first time I read this and learned anything about my birth or behavior as a newborn was when I was 25.

So, while I am quite sure my birth mother’s experience of labor and delivery is, to this day, important to her and her story (even if she only tells it to herself), it is and has been, to a degree, incidental to me. Had she been able to parent me herself I am sure she would have regaled me with stories of her pregnancy and delivery and that those stories would have become part of my story too, connecting me to her, mother to daughter. But that was not the case. Therefore, my connection to my birth experience is about me and not about her.

I follow many infertility and parenting blogs where women have chronicled their “birth” experience. However, it always gives me pause when someone refers to it as her birth experience but really means her delivery experience. It is the same nuance I apply to those (yes, Oprah, I mean you) who continually confuse an embryo transfer (to convey or remove from one place, person, etc., to another) with implantation (to put or fix firmly; to plant securely). Oh, that all transfers resulted in implantation.

I think it just may be something that non-adopted people take for granted, the connection to their birth, to being born. It was not a connection that I had until I was long an adult. And, even though my own pregnancy was precarious, I will tread lightly in terms of how I convey that information to my son and when. It is not something that is specific to him or how he might view his place in the world except perhaps the lengths I went to stay pregnant. Part of my job as his mother is to share things with him about his conception and birth that are specific to him and shelter him (until he is old enough not to internalize my perilous pregnancy and make it about him) from the rest. I do believe I will want him to know but only at such point that he’s matured enough to understand it for what it is.

And, it propels me to want to know these details for the daughter that we hope comes to us through adoption. Whether we are in the delivery room or not, it is information that I will want to have for her sake. I didn’t know the origins of my disconnection to giving birth until I uncovered the origins of my own birth. I think as humans, who are born and not hatched, that we deserve to know at least that much.

3 comments to Delivery vs. Birth Experience

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