The wonderful Julie Storm, Zyrus (7), Malaki (5) and Atlas (2)
Julie loved being pregnant and missed the feeling of carrying a baby in her womb once she gave birth to each child. She had a rough time with labor and delivery, however. With her first two children there were a few things that happened that were alarming to her but nothing she couldn't easily recover from. With her third child she knew she wanted to do things differently and chose to deliver with a hospital based midwife instead of an OB. She had cleared all of her wishes and her provider was very supportive of her. She didn't however, consider, that her nursing staff was trained under the obstetricians rather than the midwives and may not understand the way she wanted to do things.
Julie went to the hospital twice in labor, bleeding the second time, and they wouldn't admit her. She considered going elsewhere but was worried there wasn't time. The third time she went in they finally admitted her but it was already time for Atlas to come and they didn't have any rooms set up. The nurses were running around franticly and she was put in a labor room, then quickly moved to the delivery room. The bottom of the bed they put her on was pulled off but they didn't have the stirrups ready so she had nothing to push against. A nurse took her left leg and pulled it tightly to her chest. She told her she couldn't push that way, that her weight was too much on her sacrum and that it hurt. The nurse ignored her and when she put her hands behind herself to push up and reposition the nurse took her hand, put it under hers own and told her "No!". Even though it was against Julie's wishes, the nurse also instructed Julie's boyfriend to do the same. He had never been a delivery room before and didn't know what else to do other than comply.
While Atlas was born without complication, Julie was injured from the position she was forced to give birth in. It took 6 months for her to get the therapy she needed and it has affected her quality of life greatly. She worked with a pelvic floor specialist who realized her tailbone was separated from sacrum and pushing into her pelvic floor muscle on the left side. She was unable to hold her bladder overnight and had to get up 4-5 times to use the bathroom while sleeping. It also damaged all of the muscles on her left side which limited her range of motion. Her therapist has been a huge help in healing though she still struggles daily. Julie has tried to work with the hospital to find out who it was that she worked with and they don't have records of her previous check ins even though they performed vaginal exams and they don't know who her nursing staff are. She has considered legal action but says it's hard to find a lawyer to take birth cases and without proper documentation there isn't anything she can do. Julie's injury has been difficult on her family and because her injuries are invisible she has a hard time getting people to understand what she's going through, she feels often that others think she's being dramatic or faking it. She has chest pain, tension headaches and back pain that all stem from her birth injury.
She's at the point where physically she could conceive again but she doesn't want to out of fears that her injury could compromise her pregnancy or that she could re-injure herself during delivery. Everything has been compounded by her feeling that she was trying to do things differently this time and it was going to go better.
Because she's skinny and her kids are healthy, Julie has been told that she should just be grateful but she would rather have a functional body that is free from pain. She's seeking the support she needs to share her story and her truth and have it accepted.