As a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) mom, Hannah Beaver’s story
begins with her first daughter’s birth. Induced at 40 weeks and
5 days of pregnancy, she labored for 37 hours before pushing for an hour
and a half before doctors at a Morganton hospital opted for a cesarean
section (c-section) based on their opinion that the baby was too big for
her pelvis. Hannah was put under general anesthesia and she remembers
nothing about the c-section except waking up in recovery with her husband
Joseph holding their healthy newborn daughter Savannah who weighed 8 lbs.
Recovering from the c-section was challenging for the then 23-year-old
Morganton resident. She needed help from Joseph with many everyday tasks.
What’s more, she recalls a nagging sense of regret that took time
to pinpoint or talk about. But, those feelings became easier to articulate
in 2016 when Hannah got pregnant again. In the final trimester, she spoke
with her established provider about the possibility of avoiding another
“I had a sense of failure about having a c-section,” said Hannah.
“I can describe it as if something had been taken from me. I wondered
if I had been given more time to go into labor on my own without being
induced if I could have avoided a c-section.”
Unfortunately, when Hannah expressed interest in trying to give birth vaginally,
she was told that her insurance would not cover a VBAC and that her only
option was another cesarean. At 32 weeks pregnant, Hannah was torn between
accepting this information and challenging it. As she started looking
into options, she learned about
Catawba Valley Medical Center Maternity Services. This team of certified nurse midwives, located within the
Catawba County Public Health Building, provides comprehensive prenatal care for women at any stage of pregnancy,
including transfer patients like Hannah. Maternity Services accepts Medicaid,
most private insurance plans and offers the option for VBAC. What’s
more, they deliver at Catawba Valley Medical Center.
“At first I was nervous about transferring to a new provider this
late in my pregnancy, but that subsided after my first appointment”
Hannah said. “I had only ever heard great things about the childbirth
program at Catawba and I was instantly impressed with the time they took
to fully inform me about the benefits and risks related to VBAC while
also listening to my preference to at least try to give birth vaginally.”
The decision to change providers resulted in an ideal outcome for Hannah.
Together with her prenatal care providers, a VBAC was determined to be
a safe and appropriate choice for her. On January 15th, she gave birth by VBAC to daughter Julianna, 7 lbs. 14 oz and 20 ¼”
long. Hannah said, “Giving birth at CVMC was a wonderful experience.
I felt truly cared for by my midwife Shelly. She helped me have the birth
experience I had hoped and dreamed for.”
Being educated is an important part of childbirth preparation. Whether
you’re trying to avoid a cesarean, plan a family centered cesarean,
preparing for a VBAC, or just learning about your birth options, be sure
to talk with your provider to better understand all of your options. For
more information or to set up an appointment with
Catawba Valley Medical Center Maternity Services, please call 828.466.7196 Monday through Thursday.