A Tale of Two Births

A Tale of Two Births

January 19, 20223 min read

As we know, every child is different but so is the mother’s experience in birthing and raising each of her children in the first year. Many mothers will comment on how starkly different one birth is from the other. My story is no different.

The births of my two daughters were so different and unique on their own. Each had their challenges and their gifts. What I expect would be the result of those births, though, is not what I actually experienced.

I want to share my experience here to give new or expecting mothers an idea of how different things can turn out even when your efforts and input are the same or nearly the same. 


Baby 1 vs Baby 2

When I look at this data, it’s clear how different things were the second time around for a variety of reasons. We also have take into account the impact of a global pandemic. 

I still regret not being able to have a vaginal birth with my first born, even though I did everything I knew of to help turn her. Read more on my blog about having a breech baby. Studies shows that babies born via cesarean can have a harder time with breast-feeding. While it was challenging at first, we were able to go to 20 months and reaped so many benefits, including bonding. 

And I still regret not being able to breastfeed my 2nd baby and missing out on all the benefits, including bonding. Pumping is draining, takes the joy out of the process, and has fewer benefits than direct breastfeeding. I worked with the best lactation consultant in the area, spending hundreds of dollars, doing exercises with my daughter, having an ENT release her tongue tie, working with a chiropractor and nothing changed. And, yet, with her I had a raw yet beautiful home water birth with my family next to me. 

One would expect the opposite outcomes given how they were birthed, right?  

As they say, when you know more, you know more, right? In terms of health outcomes, there were many things I wish I had done differently with my older daughter. My decisions would change due, in part, from experience and, in part, from knowledge attained. Due to my infant massage business, I learned so much in between the pregnancies about prenatal and postpartum care, learning from experts in the field.

My younger daughter has not presented with food allergies thus far and I hope my older daughter never blames me for her health challenges. I don’t know exactly what could be the cause but I know there are things I would and am doing differently this time. To illustrate this point, we’ve heard food allergies can be caused by cesareans since baby is not exposed to good bacteria in the vaginal canal, or by dosing and combining of vaccines before immune response has a chance to build, triggering an autoimmune response, or by the AAP recommendation of delaying common food allergens until one year of age, or by overuse of antibiotics. I know it’s hard to pinpoint causation but I can’t help but look at some of the actions we unknowingly took that might have contributed to her developing a food allergy, which may be with her for life. 

So, if you are pregnant or a new mother, please arm yourself with knowledge, follow your intuition, and don’t settle when making the critical decisions for your children. I’m so glad I pushed back when I did. And, please, ignore the “I never did x or took x and I turned out fine or my children turned out fine” sentiment we often hear from other mothers. It’s not helpful. You’ve got this, mama.

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Khyati Desai-Seltzer

Khyati teaches baby massage because I am passionate about the transformational power of massaging your baby. She believes all babies, regardless of race, socioeconomic background, or sex, deserve the gift of massage. And Khyati envision a world where mothers and babies feel loved, connected, healthy, and strong through the power of loving touch.

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