I Am Strong Because I Am FREE!!

by Aubree Asbill on September 14, 2015

I am strong because three months after my husband and I got married, we found out we were pregnant, and at 12 weeks, we lost the baby.

I am strong because after three months of waiting to try again, we found out we were pregnant for the second time, but at six weeks, I miscarried again.

I am strong because that very next month, I got pregnant for the third time. My doctor put me on progesterone supplements to help prevent another miscarriage, and soon we had a healthy, growing baby.

I am strong because on New Year’s Eve, I went in to be induced, and after only a few hours, my doctor told me I needed a c-section. She said my pelvis was too small and that I would never be able to give birth vaginally. Not knowing much about birth at all, and being totally unprepared, I had a c-section, and our beautiful son was born a few hours before midnight.

I am strong because even though I was in excruciating pain from the surgery, I continued to breastfeed my son and refused to give him formula.

I am strong because at 2 weeks old, my son’s pediatrician said that he was too small and told me to start supplementing with formula. Not knowing much, and being a scared first time mom, I listened.

I am strong because even though I supplemented, I kept nursing as much as I could. I started researching everything I could about breastfeeding and how to up my supply. I bought an SNS to help wean him off formula so that he could nurse exclusively again. I was prescribed medication to help increase my supply.

I am strong because when my son was a month old, I developed double mastitis, was put on antibiotics and was in so much pain, but I still continued to nurse.

I am strong because twice a week, I had to take my son to the pediatrician to have weight checks, and every time, I just heard about how small he was, until finally, his pediatrician said that my milk wasn’t good enough, didn’t have enough calories, and that I needed to stop nursing. Without running any tests, she decided that my milk wasn’t suitable for him.

I am strong because I went home that day and refused to stop nursing. I knew my son was fine and that he was growing like he should. I started looking for new pediatricians who would be supportive of my desire to nurse.

I am strong because when my son was 2 months old, I found a new pediatrician and canceled my appointment with the previous pediatrician.

I am strong because the next day, Child Protective Services came to my house and took my 2 month old away from me. I could do nothing but watch them take my baby. They said that we were an immediate danger to our son and that we were neglecting him because he was so small.

I am strong because CPS never told us where they were taking our son. We found out later that night that he was admitted to a hospital, but we weren’t allowed to know which one, or if he was okay.

I am strong because over 24 hours after they took our son, they called and told us to come to the hospital where he was, and that they had kept him overnight to run tests on him. They found nothing wrong, and encouraged me to keep nursing. They said that the previous pediatrician had called and said that we were starving our son, and that he was in danger with us. The hospital said that they would be reporting the pediatrician for lying to CPS and causing us so much distress.

I am strong because the hospital offered to test my milk and they found that I was producing an average of 60 calories per ounce! Way above average! I continued to nurse my son, and used donor milk from a friend to eventually wean him off formula.

I am strong because when my son was 9 months old, I found out I was pregnant again. Another boy!

I am strong because at my first prenatal appointment, my OB told me to not even consider a VBAC because I would never be able to do one, I was “too small.” She encouraged me to schedule my repeat c-section that day.

I am strong because shortly after I found out I was pregnant, my husband got orders to move to South Korea. We decided to move there with him and I would give birth there.

I am strong because even though my milk had almost dried up from being pregnant, I continued to nurse until my son’s 1st birthday!

I am strong because I started researching VBACs. I got my operation report from my previous OB and learned that the c-section was unnecessary, and that I COULD give birth vaginally if I wanted to! I immediately told my new OB that I wanted to try. I hired a birth doula to help me through the process.

I am strong because at 41 weeks, my doctor said that he had to induce me (per hospital policy) or give me a repeat c-section. Because this was the only military hospital in Korea, I didn’t have a lot of options. I chose the induction.

I am strong because even though I was in immense pain from the pitocin, I went eight hours without any pain medication. six hours later, I gave birth via successful VBAC to my second son!

I am strong because in the birth canal, he had swallowed meconium, and I wasn’t able to hold him until he was over 45 minutes old.

I am strong because I still haven’t been the first to hold either of my babies.

I am strong because my second son has never had anything but MY breastmilk! He is now 16 months old and still nurses four times a day, and yes, he is just as small. We just have small babies!

I am strong because I knew my mothering instincts were right and I protected my right to nurse, and my right to have the birth I wanted, even when I was told I’d never give birth that way.

I am strong because I was so inspired by my birth and my experiences, that I decided to become a labor Doula and am planning my next birth (not pregnant yet!) to be at a birthing center.

I am strong because even though I have never shared this story publicly, I am ready to help someone else out through my experiences.

I am strong because it has taken me years to trust people and doctor’s, but I am slowly starting to trust my children with other people, and to have faith in doctor’s again. I am slowly letting go of the past and looking to the future.

I am strong because I am FREE.

blog 5.4

blog 5.2

blog 5.3

blog 5

blog 5.1

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna September 15, 2015 at 2:15 pm

God Bless You!!! You are one amazing and inspiring young woman!!! May good things continue to come your way!! You and your boys are beautiful! Rock on Mama!!!

Reply

Anna September 15, 2015 at 2:26 pm

You go, girl! You are amazing! I am so happy you found the strength to make the decisions that were best for your family. I too am trying to learn how to trust doctors again but at the same time stay informed about other truths out there.

Reply

Jillian September 15, 2015 at 10:39 pm

What an amazing story. So much perseverance. Thank you for being brave and sharing your story.

Reply

Sarah September 17, 2015 at 2:44 am

You are an inspiration and you are indeed unbelievably strong.
I am shocked by the treatment you have received. Not least giving you pitocin for a VBAC which is very risky, I have learned from numerous sources.
I hope you continue to gain endless joy from your boys!

Reply

Candice September 19, 2015 at 7:53 pm

You are strong! And very, very brave. Thank you for sharing! My heart hurts for all you’ve been through. I’m so sorry no one was there to tell you the truth in the beginning. Way to fight for yourself and your babies!!!!

Reply

Allison September 24, 2015 at 6:06 am

I went through 3 pediatricians before I found one who was okay with my first baby nursing and being small. Being reported was my biggest fear and I am so sorry you had to go through that. Congratulations on 2 healthy children and I hope you’re healing from the emotional distress you’ve had to endure.

Reply

Theresa September 25, 2015 at 2:50 pm

Amazing – you have been through so much. You inspire me! Thank you for sharing your story!

Reply

Debbie October 12, 2015 at 8:03 am

Dear VBAC Warrior Goddess!!
You ARE strong indeed and wise and a changed woman.
I wish you a great sense of empowerment in becoming a
Birth doula and remember your strong centredness-
you have moved huge personal mountains.
I am an Aussie Mum who has just found this website/blog.
Reading about your life has been wonderful- I too have
had Caesars but just had an awe inspiring,life changing Vb2ac
(VBAC after 2 Caesars) with the help
Idan obstetrician, a midwife and student midwife in hospital.
I am about to be part of a VBAC education seminar as a guest speaker
and I need to write my story and then talk about it. Your words give me
courage. Continue to help women make informed choices- empower women
With your experience and knowledge. Hope to hear more from you. More power to you!!

Reply

Jamie Heater October 14, 2015 at 4:53 pm

You ARE strong! Your words gave me goosebumps! I’m sorry for how poorly your pediatrician treated you. You’re amazing!

Reply

carlie November 1, 2015 at 10:19 pm

Thank you so much for sharing!! This is my favorite story yet!! I am all about breastfeeding which is NOT easy!! God bless you my friend! You have been soo encouraging!!

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: