My Birth Stories
TMI WARNING............. Some of my stories are very graphic.
The Birth Of My First Son, 1989.
It was a typical hospital birth with an OB/GYN. I actually think it was a little better then typical because I wasn’t as rushed through the birth process as quickly as other moms were. I think when moms choose to birth in a hospital with an OB/CNM we kind of know what we are signing up for. I got the standard Hospital birth. Water started leaking at 3pm. Hospital by 4pm. After a couple of hours of “No Progress”, they broke my water. After a couple more hours came the evil pitocine, which of course lead to an epidural. The whole time being denied food and drink and not being able to get up and pee in the toilet. And to top it off, they finished it up with an episiotomy, (which caused painful sex for at least a year after that birth). At around 7:30am the next morning my beautiful 8lbs, 5oz son was born.
The Birth Of My Second Son, 1994.
Even though my first birth wasn’t “traumatic” I was looking for something more personable with my second. I found a birth center with CNM’s and thought that I had found what I was looking for. The place was beautiful and I really enjoyed most of my prenatal visits. Most of the CNM’s on staff were very personable and I looked forward to giving birth there. I was pregnant at the same time as my friend and we were both going to the same center. We of course had our favorite pick for who we wanted to attend our births. My friend went into labor 12 days before me and I was able to be there. It was wonderful. She was able to get the favorite midwife and the birth was so magical. No interventions. No rushing. Just a beautiful, peaceful birth. I left that birth sooo looking forward to mine.
8pm, twelve days later, my water started to leak. I called the midwife on call and she was at the hospital and said to come in around 1am. I was disappointed that it was not one of the midwives I had hoped to get. I arrived at the center and she immediately broke my water and started me on black and blue cohosh to get things going because she said I was to “Happy”. She apparently didn’t check to see what position the baby was in before doing all of this because he was posterior. After laboring for hours she realized the position of the baby and started to put me in different positions to try and get him to move. I had handled labor fairly well until she started in with the manual stretching of my cervix at every vaginal exam which would cause me excruciating pain. When my midwife was in the room she would just sit on the floor leaned up against the wall but most of the time she wasn’t even in the room with me. I felt so alone and violated. I keep thinking I could be in a hospital because it wasn’t as bad as this and the doctor didn’t come in and inflict pain on me. I became so hysterical from the pain that they had to give me a shot. Finally her shift was up and a new midwife came in but by then the damage to my mind and my womanhood had been done. At 9:13am, after only 20-30 minutes of pushing, I pushed my posterior, 7lbs, 11oz son out. I did seem to physically heal faster then my hospital birth but I swore if there was a next time it would be in a hospital because I was not women enough to do that again. A friend from childbirth class was there for my birth and she was so traumatized by my birth that she was still upset and crying about it when her husband came home later that day. She had her baby two days later and had a wonderful birth with one of the “good” midwives on staff, which reinforced my failure as a woman to naturally birth a baby. If my two friends did and I didn’t then it must have been my fault. I had a new baby and was healing nicely but my heart, soul and my womanhood felt ripped to shreds. The birth of my second son would come to haunt me for years to come.
The Birth Of My Third Son, 2006.
When I decided to I wanted another child I knew that I didn’t want a hospital birth but because of my traumatic experience at a birth center, I didn’t really want one at a center either. I didn’t know what to do. My once joy in being pregnant and giving birth had turned into horror. I located one of the midwives that I had hoped to get for my last birth but she was no longer in the area. I went back to the birth center for a preconception visit and talked with the only midwife there that I liked and she said that she could not guarantee that I would get her for my birth. I started doing research on doulas and the different kinds of midwives. It wasn’t until talking with a doula that I even thought about a home birth. I don’t think I had even heard of home birth until the doula I spoke to mentioned it. As soon as I did the research I KNEW that a home birth was for me. The only thing now was to find that special person who I could trust to be there during one of the most intimate, vulnerable times in my life. I needed a midwife who could help me heal from my last birth. I needed to feel safe. After talking with several midwives I finally found the right one. After three losses I conceived our long awaited third son.
As I sat down to write Dylan's birth story I had to go back to the very beginning of this whole thing. It started Sunday night, January 15. When I went to bed my sinuses got really bad and I had a hard time sleeping because I couldn't breathe through my nose. I felt fine Monday but Monday night I had a hard time again. But by Tuesday afternoon the post nasal drip moved into my throat and I could hardly talk. So Wednesday I went to the doctor. I assumed it was a sinus infection because I have always had allergy and sinus problems and I get sinus infections 2-4 times a year. They said I had laryngitis and maybe a cold too but they couldn't do anything because it was a viral thing. I told them I thought it was sinus and post nasal but they were the experts so I left feeling like crap. They said if I was not better by Sunday to come back. Well, as of that Wednesday night the coughing and gagging started. No sleeping for the rest of the week. The coughing was so bad I would gag and almost throw up all night and I had to wear a pad 24/7 because I would go every time I would cough. By Sunday I was so sleep deprived and emotionally drained I just wanted to die.
Monday the 23rd I went back to the doctor and told them I hadn't slept in a week and if they didn't help me I was going to go to the hospital and ask them to help me and low and behold the doctor tells me I have a sinus infection and puts me on antibiotics. I went and got my prescription filled and came back home and took a benadryl. I slept on and off from about 12:30PM to 4:30 PM. I got up to start dinner and I noticed I was leaking and I thought "Great, now I'm peeing myself even when I'm not coughing" but after a couple of hours I realized It was my water. I still thought it could be a couple of days before I went into labor. By late evening I was starting to have to change my pads a lot because of the leaking.
Everyone went to bed and I tried to sleep but again the coughing and gagging kept me up and by 2:45am I stared to have blood in the leaking. I was still thinking labor could be days away. By 4am my contractions started to change and intensify. I started to think "I just might have this baby in my arms within 24 hours". My husbands alarm went off around 5am and I told him he wasn't going to work and that the contractions were coming about every five minutes. I started making some noise with the contractions and my husband timed a couple and said they were coming every 2-3 minutes and I should call my midwife Michelle but I said it's to early and it would be a long time before the baby came and I didn't want to wake anyone up. But by 5:30 I called the midwife. I didn't want to but the contractions were really starting to get going and I figured I would let her know that I thought the baby would be here sometime today, that way she had notice and could plan her day. Michelle said she would come over but I told her to go back to bed. I really thought we had lots of time and I felt bad for calling her so early. By 6:20 I could hardly talk. I called my midwife to tell her to come now and she said "I'm almost there already". In my head I'm still thinking this was going to take all day and because the contractions were so intense and coming so close together I thought to myself "I can't do this for 6 to 8 hours". My midwife got to the house by 6:30am and I was 5cm and by 8:20am, January 24th, My dads B-day, my beautiful little perfect miracle was born, in the same bed he was conceived. 7lbs 2oz and 20&1/2 inch. I can't stress how important it was to have the midwife I had. She was totally hands off and let my body do what it had to do. No interventions. No rushing. No unnecessary anything! After three losses and a very bad birth experience with my last birth she really had to hold my hand the whole pregnancy and labor. Dylan's birth was such a healing experience for me. Even though it was extremely fast and intense, it is true, you forget the pain once you look into their little eyes. I'm almost ready to do it again. : ) I can't even imagine how much better it would have been if I hadn't been sick. But God is good and things turned out great.
The Birth Of My Four Child, A Daughter, 2008.
So here is where the story begins...............
I was pretty miserable the last few weeks. I was in pain or discomfort most of the time and sleeping was not happening much either. On Monday the 20th my husband informed me that the following week he would have to start working out of town (a two hour drive away from home) and might have to spend some nights too. I already wanted her to come out but now I really felt the pressure to get her out by that weekend. I had been about 2cm for a couple of weeks and had been having really good bh cx for a long time. Then my husband called me Thursday the 23rd and said that he would have to start working out of town on Friday and then I really freaked. As I laid in bed I prayed and begged God that if I was going to go into labor to let it happen before 4am when my husband would be leaving so he would stay home and not have to drive 2 hours back home.
At 2:30am I woke up. I noticed I was having cx about every 5 minutes but they were not lasting very long. I didn't get to excited. At 3am I got up to pee and checked myself. I was happy to feel that I was completely effaced and what I thought to be 3-4 cm and could feel the bag of waters slightly bulging through. At 4am I checked again and it felt like I had dialed a little more because the bag was bulging a little more. I was sure I was at least 4cm so I thought for sure that I would have the baby sometime within 24 hours. I told my husband that he could go to work but because I only had about 2 hours of hard labor last time I was concerned about the two hour drive home. He said he wasn't going to leave and stayed home from work.
Between 6 and 7am I had some really good BM's. I'm not sure what time is was but my bag really started bulging and I felt about 4-5cm. My midwife had a full day at the birth center and I really wanted to stay home and have the baby but I knew that I might end up at the center. We packed the car just in case. As the morning went on and it turned to afternoon my cx never got to a minute but stayed pretty consistent at about 2 -5 minutes apart. I ate, talked and laughed in-between them. When I would check myself it didn't feel like I was moving past the 4-5cm mark. I did notice that with the cx I would feel a lot of pressure in my back and rectum and would feel the need to move through the cx. I have NEVER felt like moving when I had a cx when I was in labor with my boys. When I would watch a birth video and see the moms moving/swaying through a cx I just couldn't relate to that but this time I had to move through them. Around 2 my midwife came. I just knew I was stuck at 4-5cm and when she checked me I was 8. I couldn't believe it. Of course now that she was here the cx started to get worse and at around 3pm my water "popped". I have never experienced that before. My water had always started leaking the day before my boys were born. It felt like a small bomb went off in my belly. After that I got in the tub but through out the entire labor I could not lay down on my back or my side so all I could do was sit in the tub and that seem to slow things down so after eating two chocolate chip cookies and a peanut butter and jelly I got out and then things really picked up. She had been moving the entire time during labor and with my last I had two hours of hard labor and then it felt sooooo good to push him out but this time feeling her move down and pushing her out felt like my hips and rectum were going to explode. It only took a couple of pushes and at 3:59pm on Oct 24th, Sophia Rose was born. The last hour, hour and a half it was bad but that was it. She is my smallest baby at 7lbs, 1oz, 18inches, 12inch head.
I felt so good after I had her. I can't sing the praises of natural child birth enough. I really believe my ability to bounce back so quickly after my last two births were due to having them naturally and letting nature take it's own course and not rushing things unnecessarily. I highly recommend a really good child birth education class like Hypnobirth to prepare for labor.
Donna's Education, Classes and Workshops:
1. Prenatal Loss Workshop On-line Course - Losing a Child in Pregnancy or the1st year
2. Northwest Family Services Online Abstinence & Chastity Education
3. Fertility Friend Fertility/Charting Online Course
4. Standard Days Method Online Training Course
5. CAPPA Childbirth Educator and Doula Workshop
6. Crisis Pregnancy Training
7. OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens for Doulas & Professionals in Placenta Encapsulation