Ever since my interview on the radio this last week, I've been thinking a lot about guilt. We discussed guilt a little bit as when something like this happens to your family, guilt is probably a common emotion. But I've never felt guilty.
I think when I tell people about what happened to Sadie at birth, they automatically assume it was because we had a homebirth. But, I've thought a lot about that and I really think having a homebirth is what saved Sadie's life. For one, we had awesome midwives with a lot of experience and they did the right things right away. But also, there wasn't a rush through my labor, there was no intervention, and no emergency C-section. Because we had a homebirth I wasn't kept in the hospital for a mandatory 24 or 36 or 48 hours. I slept in my own bed that night and I went to see my baby the next morning before it was even light outside. My midwife even spent the night on my couch to make sure I could go to the bathroom in the morning...and she made me breakfast!!
Sometimes I wish we hadn't had a homebirth just because now my friends are scared to death of having babies at home. I hate having people ask me if things would have gone differently if we'd been in a hospital. No. Actually we had several people in the NICU tell us that the homebirth was not a factor in Sadie's situation. She was sick, and she had been for probably a couple of weeks. No doctor, no ultrasound, no extra intervention during labor could have seen that...and just like my midwives, they wouldn't have even looked for it since everything was healthy and going perfectly.
When I look back on my pregnancy, with 20/20 hindsight vision, I can now see the warning signs that we should have followed up on. But it was my first pregnancy and everything was healthy and going well, so we had no reason to be alarmed. But I don't feel guilty about that, I didn't know any better.
I understand guilt. I understand feeling like something like this is your fault. and I understand thinking: if I had only done XYZ differently. But I did everything right. So I have no reason to feel guilty.