Being wheeled down the hall of the hospital toward the operating room, I wasn’t thinking about the constellation of factors that had led to that moment. Instead, I spent the minutes marveling at my incessant sobs. They’d started five minutes earlier when my doctor had announced, after 28 hours of medically induced labor, that I needed a C-section. The bawling wouldn’t stop; it was making me hiccup and shiver as I lay otherwise motionless on the moving stretcher. I focused on the sobs because doing so was easier than considering that I was about to undergo major surgery, that I felt I was being robbed of a genuine birth experience, that I might not get to hold my baby for hours after his birth, that maybe I wasn’t supposed to be having a C-section at all.

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