Birth of a Baby - Death of a Vision

By Lori Crank

Gen 50:20 (NAS)"And as for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive." This is the verse God brought to my mind when we were in the process of seeking the Lord about the possibility of more children more than sixteen years after that first cesarean section. During this time of seeking the Lord I had to reopen the wound that I had successfully buried in the back of my mind. I had thought that we were finished with that very unresolved area of my life, even though I had prayed for more children continually during that time.

As a child I was always taught to look at doctors as being infallible, so when I sought a doctor for our first baby, I assumed that all he told me was true. His attitude at office visits was that I shouldn't worry my pretty head, that he would take care of it all. My mother was already dead and I really didn’t have another source of information. Our friends had no children yet, so they had no experience with which to advise me. We had only one book, given to us by the doctor.

During this time I had two other friends that were having babies and one of them was going to the same doctor. We were all due about the same time and in much the same state of ignorance. One woman had the opportunity to go to a doctor in a progressive hospital in Dallas that had just started using Lamaze and allowing the fathers in the delivery room. How I envied her!

The pregnancy was uneventful but we were unsure of exactly when the baby was due. So the doctor guessed sometime between April 10th and the 28th. As early as the 22nd of March, he was suggesting that the baby was plenty big enough to be here. When the first week of May rolled around and still no baby, he began to suggest that the baby might need to be induced. I did know enough to think that was not a good solution! So I began to pray and ask God to intervene and bring this baby of its own accord.

On Sunday night the 4th of May, my bag of waters broke. Needless to say, we were concerned. David called the hospital to ask their opinion of the situation, since I was having no contractions. They advised us to come to the hospital immediately, which we did. This was the start of a nightmare that would not be ended until the 29th of September 1992, some seventeen years later.

After arriving at the hospital, I was confined to a bed and given no food or drink nor allowed to get up, even to go to the bathroom. This continued for about ten hours with only sporadic labor. Then labor was induced with the drug pitocin. After nine hours of induced labor, I had dilated five centimeters and was totally effaced. But when my body took a short breather in labor, the doctor became concerned. I was labeled a "failure to progress" case. After an X-ray of my pelvis and a quick consultation with the only other delivering doctor in town, we were told I needed a cesarean section as I would never be able to deliver this baby on my own. Besides it was getting later on in the evening. Not knowing any better we didn't question. Besides I was in no position to argue, I just wanted the baby out now!

Over the next six to eight weeks the ramifications of this delivery became very clear to us. There was no large family in store for us or so we thought. My vision of a large family from early childhood had now vanished because of one doctor's convenience and pocketbook. My friend that went to the same doctor also had a cesarean section. We later learned that he had a very high cesarean rate.

God was very gracious to give us four children over three years and nine months. He gave me the feeling that I had a large family for which I was thankful. After our fourth child we were told that the uterus was paper thin and would likely rupture or be impossible to sew back up after another cesarean. So the best we were told to expect from a future pregnancy was a hysterectomy. We were told that a normal delivery was impossible - the uterus would rupture. My mother died from health problems partially attributed to her hysterectomy five years before. I wanted to live to see those four children grow up. I cried all the way in to the surgery room to have my tubes tied. We waited until our youngest was 18 months old hoping to find another way to have more children.

How did I react to the injustice done to me? I spent many years asking for forgiveness for bitterness toward the first doctor that did the cesarean section. I also really needed to prove to myself that I could have a normal delivery. God was about to give me that opportunity but He had to wait until it was His perfect time. God has given me many opportunities to help others avoid the problems we encountered and so has used my experience for His glory. We have seen the preservation of other generations. To God be the glory!


Volume 1 Issue 1: May / June 2000, Unless The Lord ... Magazine