Anna Victoria has opened up about her ‘traumatic’ unplanned cesarean section, saying she initially struggled to bond with her newborn because of the experience.
The fitness star and her husband Luca Ferretti welcomed their daughter, Aurora Vittoria, on August 10 after battling infertility for two years. Victoria, 32, gave birth via C-section after 15 hours of painful contractions and three hours of pushing.
‘It was traumatic,’ she told Today, recalling how she felt numb when her newborn was placed in her arms after the delivery.
Candid: Anna Victoria, 32, has opened up about her initial struggle to bond with her newborn daughter Aurora Vittoria, after undergoing a ‘traumatic’ C-section on August 10
Plan: Victoria (pictured with her husband Luca) wanted an unmedicated vaginal birth, but she had to deliver her baby via C-section after 15 hours of contractions and three hours of pushing
‘I was coming down from all the medication,’ she explained. ‘It took me a week to sort out my emotions. I was definitely very aware that I didn’t feel that super instant, “Oh my gosh, I can’t imagine my life without my baby.”
‘I feel that way now,’ she added, ‘but it took some time.’
Victoria has been candid about her journey to becoming a mother and regularly shares photos of her postpartum stomach with her 1.2 million Instagram followers.
However, this was the first time she has spoken about the troubles she first had bonding with her daughter.
‘A part of me felt like I was a bad person,’ she admitted. ‘But I think it’s important to be honest because I know a lot of women go through the same thing.’
Looking back: Victoria recalled being ‘very aware’ that she ‘didn’t feel that super instant bond’ with her daughter after she gave birth
Internal struggle: Victoria explained it took her a week to sort out her emotions, admitting she felt like she was aa ‘bad person’
The fitness guru gave a detailed account of her birth story in a YouTube video in late August, recalling how she was throwing up and shaking for hours on end while dealing with agonizing contractions.
Victoria said didn’t want an epidural and had planned on having an unmedicated vaginal birth, but she changed her mind after learning she was still only four centimeters dilated after seven hours.
The epidural made her feel so much better, but it wore off so quickly that she had to have three of them while she was in labor.
‘I really did not want a C-section, honestly, because of the recovery. I had heard about how hard the recovery was,’ she explained, but after three hours of pushing, her daughter had barely moved through the birth canal.
Victoria said her daughter’s ‘safety was the number one priority,’ and she worried that if she kept pushing, it could cause fetal distress.
It was those fears that led her to agree to a C-section, which she said ended up being the best decision.
Keeping it real: ‘I think it’s important to be honest because I know a lot of women go through the same thing,’ the new mom said of sharing her story
Reality: The fitness star shared a photo of her postpartum stomach with her 1.2 million followers last month
Dr. Leena Mittal, a perinatal psychiatrist and the division director for women’s mental health at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, told Today that it’s common for new moms to experience a mix of emotions after an unplanned C-section.
She noted that if the feelings are still lingering after a few weeks, they should seek a mental health consultation as it may be a symptom of postpartum depression or anxiety.
Victoria’s daughter is now 16 weeks old and has become a regular on the proud mom’s Instagram page.
‘I love laying with her,’ the new mom gushed. ‘She’s starting have this big personality and smile at us. She keeps me busy!’
Before she became a mom, Victoria was open about how difficult it was for her to get pregnant. She revealed in a YouTube video in February 2019 that she and Luca had been trying for a year to conceive without success.
Bundle of joy: Victoria and Luca struggled with infertility for two years before she got pregnancy via IVF in late 2019
Family: Victoria’s daughter is now 16 weeks old and has become a regular on the proud mom’s Instagram page. She’s starting have this big personality and smile at us,’ the mom gushed
‘If there’s one thing that you learn when you are trying to conceive, is that it is not sexy, it is not hot, it is not what you think it would be,’ she said.
‘It is actually very stressful, robotic, organized, and just not what you think it would be, which definitely has added a lot of stress for me and Luca.’
Victoria underwent in vitro insemination (IVF), a complex series of procedures in which eggs are collected from ovaries and fertilized by sperm in a lab, and documented her egg retrieval process in September 2019.
The embryo was transferred a few months later, and she happily announced her pregnancy in January 2020.
After her daughter’s arrival in August, she shared a photo of herself nursing her newborn in her hospital bed.
‘She’s here,’ the mom wrote. ‘The light of my life. Aurora Vittoria Ferretti was born on 8/10/20 at 8:06pm, weighing 8 lbs 4 oz.’