I had a deep and meaningful chat with the obstetrician I saw on Tuesday. "Look," I said, "am I being naive to even wish for a VBAC, given the blood pressure issues and everything?"
His answer differed to the last obstetrician I spoke to about this matter: "No," he said, "you're not."
This pleased me a lot. We talked about risk factors, particularly the spectre of uterine rupture (at which point I got a bit upset - that's terrifying stuff).
In a nutshell, he said that (blood pressure conditions permitting) if I had the confidence to try for a natural birth then he had the confidence that there was the appropriate medical support at the hospital. Which is confidence boosting in itself.
He enquired: "How much do you want this?"
That's a good question. Here's what I know: I know I am a bit scared of what could go wrong with a VBAC; I know I am a bit scared of what could go wrong with a caesarean.
Truthfully? I am more scared of having another caesarean. (For both the post-surgical risks and the devastating recovery.) But, saying that, I am also accepting of the fact it's a very real possibility. This baby comes first. I would never do anything to risk its (and my) health by stubbornly insisting on labouring when it was dangerous.
I also know I am very curious to understand what birth is. I would like to experience it, to give my body an opportunity to do what it is designed to do. And if - if - I can achieve this I think I would feel immensely proud of myself. Is this naive? Possibly.
In the meantime, I am reading (devouring) JuJu Sundin's Birth Skills book like there's no tomorrow. It is a truly confidence building book and it's removed so much of the fear I initially had about the birth process.
It's really made me want to give a go. Here's hoping I can.