When the pregnant Allison heard that she would have to deliver her baby via a C-section, she was bummed out that she couldn’t ‘witness’ the birth of her child firsthand. After all, all the mother can see during a C-section birth are blue drapes. However, the hospital presented mom Allison and dad Brent with an amazing opportunity.
Instead of the regular blue curtains, the hospital could also use transparent drapes.
The couple was elated to hear that they could witness their son being born at the exact moment itself. They were expecting a boy, Bennett, and they’ve already had a natural birth before. However, the C-section was necessary because of medical reasons.
Twenty weeks in the pregnancy, doctors diagnosed Allison with placenta previa, meaning that the placenta wasn’t located in an ideal location in the womb and would complicate a natural pregnancy. A Cesarean section was needed to ensure the safety of both mother and child.
The couple wanted to have “the most family-friendly Cesarean birth” possible, and they definitely got what they wished for. Their doula accompanied Allison during birth and the hospital proposed to use clear drapes instead of the regular blue drapes so that mom could see her baby being born as well.
“We had a natural birth with our first child and hoped to do it again with Bennett,” Allison recalls. “That changed at our 20 week appointment when I was diagnosed with Placenta Previa. We obviously hoped for something to change, but began to educate ourselves on how to have the most family-friendly Cesarean birth possible. Along with some of our other preferences like immediate skin-to-skin and being accompanied by our awesome doula, we found out our hospital offers clear drapes to watch the baby being born. All it took was a simple request with the nurses as we checked in at the hospital and they made sure we would have one for the birth.”
When it was finally time for the procedure, the doctors started the C-section with the regular blue curtains.
However, when the time was there for Bennett to come out of his mother’s belly, the blue drapes were removed.
“At the moment the doctors were ready to pull Bennett out, they lowered the blue drapes so we could watch our baby boy being born. For the squeamish types (like my husband) the drapes were arranged to hide the operation site and just provide a view of Bennett being lifted out of my belly.”
Allison and Brent were initially bummed out that their second child couldn’t be born naturally, but they couldn’t be any happier with how their C-section procedure went.
“We are so thankful we got to witness this moment. Just like with our first child, seeing our baby for the first time will be cherished forever. Our goal was to not miss out on any part of the beautiful birth experience just because we were scheduled to have a C-Section. And thanks to our amazing doctors, nurses, and doula, we had an amazing and beautiful birth experience.”
Tracy Abney doubled as the couple’s doula and birth photographer and wishes that she was presented with the same opportunity at the time of her child’s birth.
“The very strongest memory I have from my own cesarean birth 13 years ago was being the very last person in the room to see my baby. I felt oddly detached hearing my baby cry but not being able to see her and knowing everyone else in that room knew what color hair she had and what she looked like, except me. When they finally brought her to me, she was wrapped in what seemed like a million blankets, with one even covering her head. A little burrito baby. They let me kiss her, then whisked her away with my husband to the nursery. I remember thinking, while they were stitching me back up, that I couldn’t remember who she looked like. In fact, I couldn’t remember her sweet face at all. I was alone and scared,” Tracy told Love What Matters.
The clear drapes are a great solution for mothers who want witness the C-section birth of their child right away.
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Not all hospitals offer them yet, but it appears to be a rising trend. Some couples even travel for hours to find a hospital that offers the transparent drapes to witness the beauty of their child being born.
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