After a cesarean section with her first child, Danielle couldn’t shake the desire for a vaginal birth experience. When she became pregnant with her second child she sought out a provider who was supportive of her wish to VBAC. She incorporated every “trick” and potion in the book to help her odds of success, especially as she neared the end of her pregnancy. But she never dilated or effaced. Once her due date came she had made no progress and she scheduled her second cesarean.

She slept well the night before and checked into the hospital that morning with very little fear. But as if her body had muscle memory, when it came time to walk into the operating room, she was shaking uncontrollably with fear. At the beginning of the surgery, her OBGYN found Danielle had a large uterine window. This condition would have made a VBAC very dangerous. The first words out of her OBGYN’s mouth when she got inside were, “Your body was looking out for you.” Danielle believes this to be true. She didn’t get the experience she had hoped for, but with her OBGYN’s guidance, she got to have a “Gentle c-section” which included many things she didn’t know were options her first time around. She rejects the term “failed VBAC” and believes her birth experience is better described as a “Successful c-section”.

Danielle Estrada Bio

Danielle is an LA native and recent Austin, Texas transplant. She is the mother to two girls, Olivia and Elle, a wife, and successful tech executive who moonlights as a swimwear designer. Her uniquely inclusive swimwear brand, Olivia + Ocean, is on a mission is to empower and support every Mom who has struggled getting in a swimsuit post-baby. Born out of her own challenges resonating with the swimwear brands on the market after becoming a mother for the first time. She designs specifically for the needs of the postpartum mother who wants something functional that doesn’t sacrifice fashion. Her swimwear collection embraces the mother in search of her new sense of self that often accompanies the transition into motherhood. Connect with her on Instagram @oliviaandocean.

Motif Medical

This episode was sponsored by Motif Medical. Motif designs insurance-eligible products for busy moms. With a focus on innovation and empowerment, Motif’s line of breast pumps and maternity compression garments are sophisticated, yet discreet, and made to support mothers as they navigate new motherhood. Discover why moms are reporting more milk in less time with the Luna breast pump, and see how you can get it covered through insurance at motifmedical.com/birthhour