The marvelous Molly Krpata, Sebastian Emerson (3) and Lyra Sophie Grace (1).
Molly struggled to get pregnant with Sebastian. She'd been off birth control for 3 years and spent another year charting and keeping track of her basal body temperature every morning to get pregnant. "It was emotionally draining but through that struggle I ended up becoming a part of a great online support group full of amazing women. There are about 15 of us and we are still in almost daily contact".
Sebastian's birth was very traumatic for Molly. She had an epidural and spent almost an entire day in bed. Molly developed a fever and Sebastian was in a posterior position. She pushed for 4 hours and they tried to turn him manually. Molly had been told she was doing great until they sprung the idea of a cesarean on her. "I honestly felt very much out of the loop the whole time and felt like his birth happened to me, instead of something I was involved in at all. It was definitely disappointing and upsetting". Due to her fever both Molly and her baby had to have IV antibiotics and were separated as a result. They had trouble getting started breastfeeding and a nurse set them back in the hospital when she tried to override the lactation consultant's plan and rudely push her husband aside while he was trying to help. Molly kicked her out of the room. Sebastian had colic and being new parents was extremely difficult for Molly. In the months following Sebastian's birth they got the hang of breast feeding, but she was suffering from serious postpartum depression and anxiety, seeing a therapist helped. Molly's husband also struggled with depression in the early months.
Things eventually got better and they finally decided to try for a second child. Molly got pregnant right away which was very shocking. This pregnancy was a little more difficult with lots of pain and discomfort. Molly had to see a chiropractor for sciatica pain and had lots of contractions and false labor scares. At one point around 35 weeks pregnant she ended up in the hospital overnight with what the staff thought might be early labor but turned out to be kidney stones. Molly felt lucky to be more informed this time around and found a great doctor who supported their desire to try for a VBAC. They also had a fabulous doula who was very supportive. "Lyra's birth was a very healing experience for me. Even though it was hard and long". Lyra was also posterior so Molly had 22 hours of back labor. She waiting until 8 cm dilated to get an epidural and was still able to move around a lot. Her waters were broken and an internal monitor needed to be placeddue to concerns with Lyra's heart rate. They decided to deliver with vacuum assistance and after three attempts, Lyra came out without a peep and nursed almost immediately. She was able to lay on Molly's chest for hours. "She calmed me and healed me instantly".
Molly finds the balance in motherhood to be difficult. "I can never seem to find balance between taking care of them and taking care of me. My body is very different now. I am the heaviest I have ever been (while not pregnant anyway). That is still hard for me, but I'm working on it. I find all the day to day stuff exhausting. But with all that comes this amazing pride of knowing I created these beautiful, smart, amazing human beings! I love watching them discover new things. I especially love watching the bond they are forming with each other that has nothing to do with me. Parenthood is a trip. That's for sure. I'm just going to hang on tight for the ride. I'm so proud of what my body has done, growing and giving birth to these two beautiful children, but I still don't always feel beautiful in my own skin. I want my children to grow up feeling confident and body positive, so here I am. Taking a wild step to show them we are all beautiful."