Band of Mothers is a bimonthly feature on moms who inspire us. Our goal is to cultivate a community of women, mamas, and children. Every other week, we’ll ask a mom 3 questions. Her perspective and stories are what makes up Band of Mothers. This week we’re talking with Becca Salzman.
What was your ‘holy shit, I’m a mom’ moment?
A couple months before baby was due, we hired a doula and discussed our birth plan many times. We went through different scenarios with her to talk about what I would want with each one and when a c section came up I almost laughed – I told her there was no way I was having a c section – delivering vaginally was the most important thing to me – I had visualized it so many times and it was good for baby and good for bonding etc etc. A c section wasn’t going to happen so we didn’t have to have a plan for it.
Fast forward to Feb 3, two days before due date, when I’m woken up by contractions. We spend the day at home and go in to the hospital late that evening where we find out I’m 4cm dilated. I progress smoothly through the night to 9 cm but early, early morning Feb 4, I have a fever of 102.9 that won’t go down and baby’s heart rate is 200. Nurses tell me a c section is possible but I will still probably be able to deliver vaginally. I continue to be monitored but I’m not any more dilated and our conditions aren’t improving much – by 9am, our doctor is really, really pushing for a c-section – I had been opposed to it up to this point, thinking things could still turn around. But I just started crying, and I looked at Cary and he was crying – I think we were both so scared that something might happen to our little guy. We were both so exhausted and had to make this quick decision and maybe didn’t totally understand what was going on. It was definitely hard and definitely terrifying, but I remember just thinking ‘fuck my plan’ and telling our doctor to do whatever was best for our baby – that was my “holy shit” moment – not caring anymore about my plan or myself and just desperately wanting and needing my child to be alright. At 9:46 am, Bowie was born via c-section, perfectly chunky at 9.89 lbs and healthy and I don’t think we could possibly share a greater bond or be more in love.
What’s the ‘keep it real’ advice you received or wish you had received?
Things may not go as planned (see above). Practice self-love and be able to forgive yourself, if you need to – it took me a long time to understand that I absolutely did what was best and safest for my baby to be born, and until I understood that, I really was grieving and blaming myself for how he was born. I *felt* like I wasn’t good enough and I had possibly ruined my kid even though I *knew* the truth. So, mamas, you are absolutely the best mama for your babe, and no one could be a better mama for that baby than you; you are good enough!
Describe your kid(s) in 3 words:
Bowie is such a lover! He loves being around his fam, especially being sandwiched between his big bro and big sis, listening to them chatter.
Curious – he’s so curious that sometimes he would rather just stay up to check everything out and not nap. Woohoo.
Finally, this baby is magic – he can cheer up his sister and calm his rowdy big brother simply by existing, and he has made this Mama feel love in ways she didn’t know she could.