Positive Birth Stories
Women can overcome the fear surrounding labor and birth by hearing or reading Positive Birth Stories. I have asked a number of my Bradley Method® and Prenatal Yoga students to write their experiences down to share with other couples. Most of these stories on my blog http://prenatalyoga.wordpress.com are stories of natural birth. A couple of them are not, but these mothers were able to turn their baby's birth into an empowering experience and bring their babies into the world in the best, safest, and gentlest way possible.
"Women need to hear positive birth stories. Sadly, women who have positive, transformative, challenging but amazing births usually don't tell their stories. They may think it's not normal, or may not want to make other women feel inferior. Women need to share their birth stories, both positive and difficult, and when they're difficult, we should examine why and what could have changed. These stories have the power to transform how society looks at birth, to dispel the myths and relieve the fear." Debra Pascali-Bonaro
Below is another natural birth story with some valuable opportunities to point out lots of things Michelle did right that helped her achieve the natural birth that she wanted.
I want to thank you so much for the great Prenatal Yoga class that you offer at Babies In Bloom. I took your Wednesday and Saturday classes to help with my varicose veins in my left leg, and consequently, I also found out how much I enjoyed yoga and all of its benefits. I had pressure and pain in my leg due to my pregnancy related varicose veins, until I discovered your prenatal yoga class.
I felt improvement after the first class that I took and the pain went away after the second week of classes. There was one week that I had to miss two consecutive classes and I could feel the pain and pressure in my leg come back due to being on my feet all day at work and missing those classes. It was really amazing how the stretches and breathing practices helped my circulation.
Your prenatal yoga classes definitely helped me with the actual natural birth of my daughter, as well. I used your breathing techniques to ease and get through my contractions, your helpful natural birthing advice gave me knowledge and confidence to reach my final goal of a natural birth. And your pregnancy-catered yoga positions gave me the strength in my legs to squat during the actual birth. We had an amazing birthing experience with the help of you, Dr. Nick Capetanakis and the Scripps Memorial Encinitas staff!
Liza- Prenatal Yoga allows expectant mothers to relax and explore their emotional selves. By getting in touch with our emotional selves in preparation for labor and birth, we can learn how to view pregnancy and birth in a less factual or rational way. It opens the door to the idea or concept of trusting their bodies to not only grow their babies but also to birth their babies. Give my free 25 minute yoga class a try. The physical benefits are a nice bonus too.
Here is a short version of my birth story… I woke up at 2:30am with menstrual-like cramps and the contractions progressed from there. We labored at home as long as possible and we checked into the hospital at 8am.
Liza-Dr. Sarah Buckley says a laboring woman needs three things to progress in labor. She needs to be in a private place, like home, where she feels safe, and she is unobserved, yet supported. As you’ll read in the next sentence, Michelle was able to relax at home and let her body open up so she could birth her baby girl.
Dr. Cap was already there and checked my dilation right away. I was 9cm and he broke my water while checking. The nurses grabbed a squat bar for the table and I had our baby girl exactly eleven minutes after checking into the facility!! I barely had to push, since gravity and the natural contractions guided her out. Dr. Cap was amazing and coached me through that final pushing stage. He helped me to slow down and massaged me with mineral oil so that I would not tear like I did during my first labor. I only had one tiny minor tear that healed within a couple of days. Dr. Cap was patient and let my husband, Jeff, catch our daughter and hand her to me right away.
Liza-What a thrill and honor for a father to be able to “catch” his own child, and be the first person to hold her…He did not have Jeff cut the umbilical cord until my placenta was out and the nurses let me hold and bond with our daughter for a couple of hours until they finally took her vitals in our labor room. It was amazing!
Here is a picture of Anna Mary Raiatea Logandro (I mentioned to you that we were going to give our daughter a Tahitian middle name…we gave her "Raiatea" because of its significance to us. Jeff and I went to Raiatea on our Honeymoon and my friend, Riya ("Raia"), introduced us on a blind date.). Anna was born on April 26th at 8:11am. She weighed 8lbs 2oz and was 18-1/2" long.
Below is the natural birth story of Emily, Tyson, and Cambria Lee Perez. I've added comments, highlighted, to emphasize things they did that were very helpful in achieving the birth they wanted for their daughter. If you want t learn more, click here.
I baked cookies for the staff and cleaned around the house. (This is a wonderful thing to do to help you ignore your labor and to get the staff support you'll need in labor) Throughout the day the cramping slowly became a little more intense and closer together. Nothing painful, just annoying. The Stage One App(This a good reason to practice relaxation in many different positions and scenarios)
laying on my exercise ball,
leaning against Tyson, and standing in the shower. Tyson was SOO good at getting me to change to different positions at this point and keeping my energy up. ( If you want to be as good a birth coach as Tyson, read:The Birth Partner, Third Edition: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, and All Other Labor Companions (Birth Partner: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, &)
(Sometimes in situations like this, having a doula to support the mom in labor can be helpful so mom feels supported and dad can handle decisions, questions, anything that needs to be handled.)
(If you get a nurse who doesn't see things the way you see them, ask for another nurse. It's a simple solution)
Thank you again!
Take online childbirth classes at Your Place, At Your Pace!
Travel a lot? Busy schedule? Spouse deployed? On bed rest in pregnancy? Can't find a childbirth class that fits your schedule? Our online childbirth classes are the perfect alternative to an in-person childbirth class!
IF YOU CAN'T COME TO A CHILDBIRTH CLASS, WE WILL BRING THE CLASS TO YOU!
Online childbirth classes are the solution!
Go to www.birthclassonline.com or www.birthclassathome.com. For only $75.00 you get award winning online childbirth classes, access to a certified childbirth educator, bonus information about pregnancy, labor, and birth. All this will help you create the healthiest and the safest birth possible for both you and your baby.
WHAT DOES EVIDENCE BASED MEAN?
This online childbirth class is evidence-based. That means that the information you learn in the online childbirth class is backed up by medical research and analysis.
So how can you avoid things like an unnecessary cesarean birth? Learn about natural pain relieving techniques in labor? Know all your options and what questions to ask in unexpected situations? Get educated and informed. Being prepared is the best way to keep you and your baby healthy and safe!
Taking this online childbirth class gives you valuable information so that you and your partner can make informed decisions. You can have confidence that the information you learn in your online childbirth class is based on documented facts, and based on proof of the best medical practices, for the safest and the healthiest births possible, for both mothers and babies.
WHAT DO EXPECTANT PARENTS THINK OF THE UNDERSTANDING BIRTH eCLASS?
Most expectant parents have a lot of fear about labor and birth.
Who wouldn't want to feel confident about labor and birth?
Who wouldn't want to feel relaxed and prepared?
99% of parents polled said that the time and effort it took them to complete the class was just right. And they felt confident going into labor and birth.
90% of parents polled said the ease of learning and following along was Outstanding or Very Good
" The videos in our online childbirth class were a reality check and let us know what we can expect during pregnancy, labor, and delivery. The class/exercises gave us a lot to think about and helped us prepare with checklists and things to ask our providers."
"I like being able to go at my own pace over a couple of days time period, and re-watching or going over information again with my husband at a later time. This online childbirth class is so convenient!"
- Learn about your changing body
- Recognize signs of labor
- Watch real-life birth videos
- Discover helpful comfort techniques
- Get an overview of medical procedures
- Understand cesarean birth'Prepare for your baby's arrival
- Know what to expect after giving birth
Successful VBAC's can happen in 85% of women who had a previous Cesarean. I'd like to encourage women and couples to get as much education and re-education as they possibly can about childbirth and VBACs in general. There are some great resources for the support and information you will need for this momentous and joyous day to come. With the right support and effort you can do it. You won't get what you wish for, but you will often get what you work for!
Recommended books and DVD's for VBAC:
Here is Rachel and Nick's story:
Hi Liza, we had our baby! Last Saturday morning, two days before the due date. It was incredible!
I woke up at 2:45 in the morning feeling a very long contraction. When it ended I felt like my water may have broken. I took some notes on taco and began wandering around the house figuring out my contractions. They were all about one minute long and one to three minutes apart, mostly two minutes apart. They were manageable on my own so I let Nick sleep.
I kept watching for the emotional signposts because it was really important to me to stay home until the very end of first stage. After two hours I woke up Nick and asked him to help me. I called Dr. Cap and he just told me to go to the hospital when I felt it was time.
I started to think that I wanted to leave for the hospital before my daughter woke up so we called my parents and asked them to come help us get ready. I still did not feel like I was in transition or even late first stage. The most fabulous thing we discovered was when my back started to hurt, Nick tried the hip squeeze. Miraculously, doing the hip squeeze relieved both my back pain and cut the contraction pain in half. I don't know why, but it was an incredible trick. So he had to squeeze my hips for each contraction and then I'd let him leave for 30 seconds to go pack the car, then he has to come back to squeeze my hips again!
We hopped in the car just before seven. I had four or five contractions on the drive to scripps enc., but still felt pretty in control. I had a few contractions on the lobby floor while we checked into the hospital, but I quickly got a room and the nurse checked me. You are complete! she exclaimed, Don't push! Wow, those were the sweetest words I've ever heard!
Dr. Cap showed up shortly and told me to start pushing. It was a lot of work but not too bad and only lasted 45 minutes. I was on my back, tilted further back than I wanted, but Cap said that was best. As the baby came out, I reached down to take her. They told me to give one more push and she came out and I lifted her onto my chest! I just held her there for a while, and finally a nurse asked if it was a boy or girl. I never even thought to look or ask. Nick took a peek and found it was a girl! Total labor, start to finish: 5 1/2 hours.
Dr. Cap was a fantastic coach. He was so calm and gave me lots of guidance and encouragement. But I couldn't have done it without the encouragement that Nick was also giving me, telling me over and over how much progress I was making. That was the most helpful part, to know that I was actually getting closer each time.
Baby nursed right away! They never washed her and hardly took her from me at all. We did vit K but no eye drops.
So my birth plan was followed to the letter. The only thing that happened was I had to have the Pitocin IV after the placenta, due to excessive bleeding.
Looking back on it I couldn't really identify having gone through transition, I never felt like I couldn't handle it, but now I realize I was pretty irritable near the end as we rushed to get to the hospital, so maybe that was it!
We are at home now doing exclusive skin to skin, in bed all day, and it is beautiful. We named our baby girl Laurel Jane.
Thank you for all the support, education, and wise words as I prepared for that wonderful day.
Tags: baby, back pain, birth, Books for VBAC, Bradley Method, Cesarean section, Childbirth videos, Dr Capetenakis, DVD's for VBAC, labor and birth, Liza Janda, relaxation in labor, unmedicated, VBAC
Posted in Labor and Birth Advice, Natural Birth Stories, Uncategorized, VBAC |
Right now, I’d say my favorite childbirth video is Orgasmic Birth. Although this is a wonderful video and shows the glory and the challenges the pain and the ecstasy women can experience during labor and birth, it’s title is my least favorite of all of them. Whenever I mention this video in my classes, prenatal yoga or Bradley Method classes, people are just so shocked and a bit turned off. Yes, there are some who giggle and think it’s kind of funny but for the most part the title gets a bad reaction. So thank goodness the producers or distributors realized this problem and created another version, almost exactly alike, titled Organic Birth. Well, whatever it’s called, the best testimonials I’ve heard have come from a couple of different people. They both stated that before they saw the film, they were afraid of labor and birth, but after they saw it, they couldn’t wait for labor to start. They both had natural, un-medicated births.
Suzanne Arms has a 35-minute film called Giving Birth: Challenges and Choices. The DVD has an hour of bonus material for the birth advocates, and birth junkies in the crowd. I also show this childbirth video in my Bradley Method classes. What I love the most are the three obstetricians who advocate for natural birth. They have such a reverence for the natural process and each explains their own reasons. I like that one obstetrician states that you really need to prepare, get educated, and do the work necessary to have a safe, healthy birth.
There is also a home birth midwife and a labor and delivery nurse who talk about the psychology of birth. Both are advocating support, emotional, physical, and spiritual for the laboring mother.
There’s also a great video of a natural home birth, which is not very graphic-no crotch shots-and it has my students in happy tears every time.
Birth Day has my favorite birth in it. Naoli Vinaver gives birth in the water at home, surrounded by family and filmed by her dad. She, herself, is a midwife in Mexico. First, the location where they live is so idyllic and peaceful. I love how the whole family goes for a hike to the stream while she is in early labor. Then they all sit down to eat rice and beans. Naoli chows down on her food while in early labor. I love to point out to my students that they may be excited but their body is doing a lot of hard work and they will need that sustenance.
Then she and her husband work together walking around and around until she decides it’s time to go into the big Jacuzzi tub. It’s there that she births her baby girl into the hands of her husband. Then both of their sons take off their clothes and get into the Jacuzzi. It’s one big happy family and a beautiful birth. Whether you plan a homebirth or not, everyone should see how birth can be, and was probably meant to be. It will help take your fear away for sure. This is a childbirth video that will melt your heart.
The Business of Being Born and the More Business of Being Born series are essential for every expectant couple, whether it’s their first or their 6th baby. In the past 3-4 years, I have had so many people sign up for my Bradley Method classes after seeing The Business of Being Born.
This entertaining documentary opens your eyes to the truth about birth in America. After you see the original film, you will want as much education as you can possibly get. It will introduce the idea that you not only have choices in childbirth, but also introduces the idea that pain in labor doesn’t necessarily involve suffering and that the experience from beginning to end can be amazingly beautiful.
These are great choices for childbirth videos for teachers because you can watch one birth at a time and use them according to what you are covering in your classes. For expectant parents, watching these DVD’s will help give you courage and resolve to help bring your baby in to the world in the safest way possible.
See more articles by Liza Janda
1. You’re doing so well.” You can’t praise or encourage a pregnant woman in labor enough.
2. “You’re amazing!” Pour on the praise and keep it coming.
3. “Imagine what is happening inside your body. Visualize your cervix opening with each contraction.” Imagining the changes that are
4. “Think about the baby. Each contraction is like a hug of love from you for your baby.” Each contraction in labor and birth really is a surge of the love hormone known as oxytocin. This is the same hormone we all produce when we fall in love, when we have an orgasm, and breastfeed our babies.
5. “All this hard work is stimulating your baby’s breathing, and circulation, and preparing the baby for life outside your womb.” Studies show that hormones the laboring mother produces that help her deal with the pain of her contractions, cause her baby’s adrenals to produce high levels of catecholamines or stress hormones that help baby adapt to all the changes coming his way.
6. “Trust yourself. That incredible strength is YOU. You’re doing it! “ Turn her fear around and encourage the laboring mother to accept that great power is coming from her.
7. “You’re doing everything right. We’re here for you.” Standing right next to her, supporting her both physically and emotionally will carry her a long way through all that hard work of labor.
8. “We know how hard you’re working. I’m so proud of you.” Showing compassion and empathy can help. Just acknowledging that yes, it is hard work, but “You can do it and you are doing it.”
9. “Breathe in and breathe out. That’s right deep slow breaths!” Deep slow abdominal breathing helps to stimulate the relaxation response in labor.
10. “Let’s hear you make some noise. Keep it low and deep. Take a deep breath in through your nose and just moan all the breath out.” The vibrations the laboring mother makes when she moans affects the pituitary gland which then stimulates the relaxation response every pregnant woman needs to tap into in labor.
11. “Take a deep breath and just LET GO with your exhale… One contraction at a time… Stay focused on this one contraction and see how relaxed you can get.” For everyone helping the laboring woman it’s helpful to stay focused on the moment. Don’t think about the contractions to come and the ones that have passed. The body knows just what to do and the laboring mother’s job is to let go and get out of the way.
Remember that the woman in labor must have complete trust in her body’s ability to bring her baby into the world safely. She must find assurance and confidence from those around her. Just like you will tell her, “You Can Do It!” and so can she with your help and faith in her.
Can you really have a “painless childbirth”? I’ve had 2 students in 17 years tell me they had painless labors. I experienced 45 minutes during the labor of my second child during which I felt no pain, but still had contractions. But most people will tell you they experienced some level of “pain”. There are a couple of programs offering Hypnosis for Labor and Birth that promise a painless childbirth. But are they truly talking about no pain at all? Or are they talking about changing your reaction to pain. Every action causes a reaction and, knowing this, Dr. Robert Bradley was one of the first to help women change their reaction to the intensity of labor and birth. The Bradley Method teaches women to turn inward, to release and let go, using different relaxation techniques. It also teaches mothers and their coaches to understand the emotional map of labor, and the physiology of labor. This knowledge helps take away fear. Take away fear and anxiety, and your experience of pain lessens.
Science is finally beginning to understand that our bodies have an incredible hormonal system, that, if undisturbed, can give us a joyous, rapturous, even an ecstatic birth! During labor and birth, our bodies produce the hormone oxytocin. This is the same hormone humans experience when they fall in love, hug or kiss a loved one, bond, have an orgasm, go through labor and birth and breastfeed. Oxytocin can influence not only our physiology, but also how we are feeling about what is happening to us. Dr. Sarah J. Buckley describes how labor and going through the birth canal is good for both baby and mother. Instead of people dreading their labor, they can look forward to it, enjoy it, knowing that they are doing something good and inherently safe for their baby.
In the early 1900’s James Braid discovered that patients were naturally anxious before surgery and if he was able to use rhythm, and techniques of monotony to induce a sleep like state of relaxation. He could get patients to discuss their fears and help alleviate their fears associated with the surgery before the operation.
The dictionary definition of Hypnosis:
“1. An artificially induced altered state of consciousness, characterized by
heightened suggestibility and receptivity to direction.
2. A sleeplike condition.
3. (Psychology) an artificially induced state of relaxation and concentration in which deeper parts of the mind become more accessible: used clinically to reduce reaction to pain, to encourage free association, etc “The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Learning the techniques necessary to relax during labor is an important element in preparing for the birth of your child. But parents need to know more, much more to ensure the safe arrival of their children into the world. By fully educating themselves, they replace fear with knowledge. In this day and age of numerous interventions and the medical management of labor, anticipating any and all of the possible scenarios and knowing the questions to ask can help ensure safety and comfort. Labor and birth is a normal natural physiological process. When we have a full understanding of all of the hormonal systems, the physiology of what is happening in our bodies, it is much easier to relax, let go, and trust our bodies to do the job of birthing our babies.
While going through this normal process of labor and birth, I can assure you, you will experience pain on some level whether you feel intense emotion, or physical intensity. Some women have even experienced orgasm. You will experience intense emotions as your hormones surge through your body. The oxytocin will cause your uterus to contract, thickening the top of your uterus, opening the cervix, helping to push your baby down and turn your baby into just the right position to leave the womb world. To help you deal with the intensity of contractions, your body will produce endorphins. The more relaxed you are, the more endorphins you will produce. The more you can let go, the faster your baby will be born. The stress hormones that you produce will cause your baby to produce stress hormones, which stimulate circulation, his/her immune system, and help your baby breath outside the womb. “High maternal oxytocin levels during labor and birth also benefit the baby. Research has found that maternal oxytocin crosses the placenta and enters the fetal brain during labor, when it acts to protect brain cells by switching them off,(Tyzio, Cossart et al. 2006) This is beneficial because it reduces the amount of oxygen that the baby’’s brain requires at this time, when contractions can reduce blood and oxygen supply.”3. www.sarahbuckley.com
When you understand that the pain has a positive purpose, then you may accept that it is not the same kind of pain that indicates something is wrong. With this acceptance comes a different perspective on your labor. You may not perceive the contractions of your uterus as painful, so much as an intense feeling. Some childbirth methods call uterine contractions “surges”. They are in actuality a contraction of a large involuntary muscle that come in surges, and waves, building to a peak, then simply going away allowing the mother to rest and regroup. But if you are told you will feel no pain, you will undoubtedly be taken by surprise when active labor kicks in. Even if you do feel pain, it isn't something you can't handle, and it isn't something to be afraid of.
Anticipate that you will have pain with a sacred and safe purpose. Know that it is truly something you can handle without medication, for most women. Labor and birth are inherently safe without intervention. Plan on reacting with deep breathing, rhythmic movement, different positions, low, deep moaning sounds, and a belief that you can actually enjoy this journey. Slow down, and enjoy the sacred experience and journey of bringing your baby into the world.
Thursday June 14, 2012, came and went. However, it was not a typical Thursday. I woke up as usual at 8:30 a.m. to get ready for my cycle class at the gym. At 8:33 a.m. I felt a slight gush of water as I walked around. I didn’t think much of it so I continued to get ready for the gym. Time continued to pass and I didn’t think anything of it since I was not due until June 27th. Even though I was 38 weeks pregnant and considered full term, I told myself it was too early to go into labor or let alone for my water to break. I asked a close friend who had just given birth to her third child a week earlier what she thought it might be. She indicated that it could be my mucous plug. However, I continued to feel gushes of water as time went on. I decided to wake my husband and let him know what was happening. He advised me to call the midwife and not go to the gym (yes I was still trying to get to my cycle class).
Once I spoke with the midwife who indicated that it was not an emergency and it sounded like my water broke she instructed me to make my way to the labor and delivery unit to test the liquid that was gushing out. Since it was not an emergency my husband and I decided to take our time getting to labor and delivery. We cooked breakfast and then I showered to make sure I was nice and relaxed. We grabbed our birth kit and our over night bag and headed to labor and delivery. At that point I was a little nervous because I was not feeling any contractions and I knew that I had 18 hours before I was at risk of getting an infection and I did not want to get induced. During our drive to the hospital, my husband and I had agreed that if everything was ok, we would drive back home to labor as much as we could with our Doula.
Four o’clock finally arrived and we went to check in at the birthing center. We were given one of the big rooms that had a king size four post bed and a tub to labor in. It was 5p.m. when my mother and sisters arrived at the birthing center. At that point my contractions were getting a little stronger, longer, and closer together but they were still manageable and I was still able to have conversations. Around 7p.m. things started to pick up and my contractions were a lot stronger, longer, and closer together, I was in active labor. I tried several positions which included side lying, rocking on the birth ball, walking, and leaning over while holding on to one of the post on the bed (this position really worked for me). As active labor continued things were getting really intense. My contractions were very strong and were right on top of each other. I didn’t have any breaks in between them. At that point I felt like I could no longer do it and my husband reminded me that by saying that I was in transition and I was close to meeting our daughter. Finally I was able to get into to the tub and continue my labor. I had no idea how I was going to get into the tub from the bed because the contractions were killing me. Once I got into the tub it was a huge relief. Laboring in the tub was very relaxing and the contractions felt more manageable. While in the tub I began to feel a huge sensation to push. The midwife was able to confirm that I was dilated enough to push. Once I changed my breathing and was able to establish a good pattern of birthing and curling the pushing sensation became easier to handle. The hospital’s policy did not allow for a water birth so I could only labor in the tub until the baby began to crown (I could remember wanting to curse at the nurse for not letting me deliver in the water). After pushing for sometime the baby began to crown and I somehow managed to get up and walk back to the bed to resume my pushing. I pushed for approximately 45 minutes. On June 15, 2012, at 2:09 a.m. our beautiful Charlotte Aleah Maldonado was born, weighing 6lbs 11oz and 18 inches long.
The joy of watching my husband catch her and then cut the cord was amazing. My daughter was placed on my stomach and crawled her way up to my chest and I embraced her warm little body. The third stage of labor did not go as I planned. Because I had a slight tear and I would not stop bleeding the midwife was forced to give me pitocin or risk hemorrhaging. Delivering the placenta was not a pretty sight at all and I was surprised by its size. After all was said and done both my daughter and I were alive and healthy.
ADVICE FROM GINA:
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Tags: baby, birth videos, birthing, Bradley Method, childbirth, contractions, crown, hospital birth, labor, natural, natural birth, nurse, pregnancy, pushing, relaxation in labor, spontaneous rupture of membranes, water birth
Posted in Labor and Birth Advice, Natural Birth Stories |
Here is the courageous story of one of my couples who were determined to get the best, safest birth for their baby. With education and support, they did it. You can too!
Birth Story of Rose Ellice Woods
Heather: Just hours away from my first Motherʼs Day, and a few days shy of her 9 month anniversary, Iʼd like to finally tell the story of my daughterʼs birth.
" Our baby was “due” August 19th. On the 15th around 1700, I began writing a birth story that in my head was perfect. Everything I wrote down was perfect, the way I envisioned it all going needed to come out. I had been feeling really low and stressing about what would happen. We discovered that the baby was breech at my 38 week check up, which came as quite a shock because up to that point baby was vertex. We tried everything possible to get baby to turn back around, from an ECV (version) the Friday two weeks before her due date, to moxibustion, summersaults and headstands in the pool, headstands off the bed and stairs, rebozo prescribed by our wonderful Doula, the Webster technique at the Chiropractorʼs office, to prenatal massage with the hope of increasing the blood flow to the uterus to give baby more room. Nothing worked! Our Doctor at the Naval Hospital told me that although he was very experienced with breech vaginal deliveries and he was the only staff member there that was, I was not a candidate for such an attempt. It was my first childbirth, and therefore my pelvis was “untested,” so there was an allegedly big risk that I wouldnʼt be able to push the head out. He insisted that a Cesarean was the only way to go, as anything else was “outside the standard of care.”
" After going thru the Bradley Classes with Liza, we felt our dreams of having a natural childbirth dissipating. I sent Liza an email that afternoon explaining our predicament and begging for advice and links to research. She came through for us immediately with a slew of suggestions and encouragement. Getting back to the good doctor, he failed to speak with us after the unsuccessful version attempt, but we did go in the following Monday morning for the growth scan that had been scheduled for 38 weeks because of the gestational diabetes. I called that afternoon to the OB clinic to see when our next appointment was, and was told the 18th! Our Doctor was on leave for two weeks and we were scheduled to see a midwife a day before the due date. I knew this was wrong, obviously the baby being breech had to change the plan, but apparently the word hadnʼt been passed. After some ribbing from my Mom, who was yelling at me all the way from Chicago, I knew Iʼd have to make a scene. It was now or never.
" We had researched a ton since we got the news of our breech surprise and after much thought, prayer, and discussion, had decided on having our natural breech birth. The only question was how. I entertained thoughts of driving up to LA to try and see Dr. Stuart Fischbein, whose many articles and evidenced-based research on breech births gave me the confidence I needed to speak intelligently with any Doctor who would listen… Then I thought how wonderful it would be to go to the Farm and ask Ina May to deliver our baby! Being in the military definitely eliminated some of these more extreme fantasies, and we knew we were stuck with the Naval Hospital, which until this point hadnʼt seemed so bad. I called the OB back Monday afternoon, and demanded to speak with my midwife, Ms. Moran. I explained what had happened, and about why I didnʼt have another appointment that week, and told her I needed a chit to get me off work completely as I was now 38 plus weeks and things were so complicated. She told me to come in the next day and pick up my chit, no problem getting that, which I was grateful for. We went back to her office and sat down and laid out how I felt, which was that I needed to be seen to make sure baby was doing well, and not put on a back burner. She set me up with an appointment for Wednesday morning with a Doctor we didnʼt know but one she said was very good. I was glad we were making a little progress, but still wondering how this could work out.
" As we drove to my Company Office to drop off my chit, I got a phone call from the clinic. It was Ms. Moran, and she did not have good news. She said that she had just spoken with our first Doctor, the one who was supposed to be on leave. He had scheduled us for Cesarean that Friday morning, the 12th! The shit hit the fan. Greg was driving, thank God, and I had to fight not to lose my mind on the phone. She was quick to say that she hadnʼt known anything about this either, and we could talk about it with our new Doctor the next morning. I made it clear there was no way in hell we would be there that Friday for that major operation. I was livid. I would be 39 weeks Friday, but we had decided even in the event we were unable to go for a natural birth, we would at least wait for labor to start spontaneously, that way we knew baby would be ready. I was furious that that smug Doctor could just throw us on a schedule for a major (and life changing) operation without so much as talking about it with us. We went in the next morning.
" I paced the floor and snapped at the Corpsman taking my vitals. My blood pressure was high and Greg kept trying to get me to calm down. I wore my 1/5 Marines T-shirt like a flak jacket, geared up for the fight. I couldnʼt swallow the anger that had built up any longer. Someone was about to get an earful. Then we met Dr. Kelly Elmore. She was young, and the minute she walked in she asked how we were doing. Big mistake. I told her exactly what was on my mind, I let her have it with both barrels, while Greg sat dutifully not trying to soften the blow. I was sick of not being heard, sick of having major decisions decided for me based on a standard of care and what was considered normal. We wanted more than that. After I got everything off my chest, I felt a weight lifted. Dr. Elmore looked me in the eye the whole time and listened to what I had to say, and she responded so gracefully, that we would go to her office after she checked on baby and we would sit down and talk. I knew she meant it. I immediately lightened up, I felt my demeanor change. Something about her was comforting in a non-condescending way. Babyʼs vitals were strong and I was 2 cm dilated, not in labor by any stretch but starting to open slowly. We followed her back to her office and got to have our talk. I explained how we had been researching and desperately wanted a natural child-birthing experience, we felt that was the safest and healthiest way to go. I told her our other Doctor had told us he was the only one there on staff that had any experience and was comfortable delivering the breech births, but we needed someone to give us a chance. We also asked about the results of the growth scan, since we never did hear anything from it. She then informed us that there were in fact two Doctors on staff with breech experience, and she was the second one! She explained her criteria, which matched Dr. Fischbeinʼs almost exactly, and as long as we could agree to that she believed that it was her duty to let us go for it! The growth scan had baby between 5 and 7 pounds, and I had lots of fluid so there were no worries there. She explained that she was a Christian lady, and she put a lot of faith in God to lead her with her work, and she suggested we pray about it and she would too. She was a miracle to us, the answer to our prayers. It was such a rush hearing her tell us this, she put the wind back in our sails.
" There was just one problem. Sheʼd only be around from that day until the next Thursday. Then she was going on leave. So basically we got this awesome news that our dreams might be saved, and then a minute later were told I would have to go into spontaneous labor, and progress with no back tracking or slowing, within a seven day window! It wasnʼt perfect, but it was a hell of a lot better than having a Cesarean two days later. We left there feeling elated, we had hope. We continued all the exercises we had been doing to get baby to flip, but we were ready for her to come the way he/ she wanted.
" We came in Friday morning for a non-stress test, to make sure the placenta was still in good condition and see that baby was not stressed at all, Dr. Elmore wanted to do that twice a week until baby came, but as time was short we scheduled one for that Friday and another for the following Tuesday, both days she could make sure to be there. I really appreciated her willingness to be there for us, instead of letting whoever was on the labor deck that day take over. She made the effort to give us some continuity of care which made a huge difference. Everything went well with the NST, baby and womb looked great and we went home to hit the pool.
" Over the weekend we went to the chiropractor again and did round two for the Webster Technique. We kept up with the moxibustion and walking, I made sure to keep tracking my blood sugar levels closely because of the Gestational Diabetes, and just spent time at home trying to relax. I had been reading Ina Mayʼs Guide to Childbirth, a gift from Doula Rosie, and that helped me a lot as well. I was trying not to focus on when baby would come, but the more I tried the more I focused. I was feeling very anxious. Doubt began to creep into my mind. I felt alone, even though my husband was there with me. Ultimately it was I who had to answer the consequences of our decision.
" That brings us back to Monday, when I felt my worst. I couldnʼt get out of the rut I was in mentally, and I got so sick of my negativity that I finally finished a Bradley assignment we had been given weeks earlier. I wrote out the best birth story I could think up. I went step by step, detailing how I felt and what we did each step of the way. Ultimately I wrote that I went into labor that night, we walked and did our nightly routine, and I had the baby the next morning! After I finished writing, I laid down and tried to take a nap, I felt really tired. It was around 1800, and I noticed that my back was aching, so much that it was becoming impossible to get comfortable and snooze. I remembered I needed to call Rosie and remind her about the NST we had scheduled for 0800 the next day. I got on the phone with her and she asked about the strain in my voice. I told her my lower back was hurting but that it wasnʼt that serious. She seemed to think it might be something, and told me to try and sleep and just go about the evening normally. Eat something and sleep. She insisted that I call her back in a couple hours to let her know how I felt. She felt pretty sure it was more than a backache. I just kept brushing it off and trying to nap, then around 2000 we had dinner. " Greg made rice, beef, and veggies. I ate about half but wasnʼt hungry after that. Then we took our nightly walk. I felt like walking would loosen up my back, it was feeling so tight. I still thought it was just odd pain, nothing big. Normally we just did two or three half mile circles around the whole apt complex, but that night I felt adventurous.
My Gunny was in the habit of telling me to “find a hill” and how good that was for pregnancy, so I figured it was a good time to test a nice big hill just across the street from our usual path. We dubbed it “Riveraʼs Ridge” in honor of my Gunny, and Greg joked that I better not go into labor or Iʼd have to tell him he was right. We walked downhill first, and I was feeling great. After the walk back up the hill, which took about 30 mins total, we crossed the street and I had to stop and lean into Greg because there was such pressure all of a sudden in my lower back. I asked him to press on it and he did, we stayed that way there on the corner for a couple minutes I think. We were just a couple blocks away from home and we made it back without having to stop again, but I finally was starting to think maybe there was something different going on.
" After we finished our walk we set up the outside balcony with our usual assortment of things. We lit the tiki torches, brought out the rocker for me to sit in along with the heating pad for my back, had the candles lit as well, our glasses of white wine, and Beethoven playing inside. It was a really cozy set up, and the temperature outside was perfect thanks to the coast a mile and a half away. We were on day 9 of 10 with the moxi, and I thought we better try to do it. Greg kept trying to get me to use the contraction timer to time my back pain, just to see if there was any kind of pattern. We had learned about back labor in our Bradley class. I grudgingly agreed to play around with the timer, and figured out to my surprise it seemed as though I was having contractions, as the pain kept coming and going. They were coming between 6 and 10 minutes apart, and lasting for 50-70 seconds! By this time it was around 2300 and I thought it best to text Rosie instead of calling, I wanted to let her know about the contractions but not wake her just yet, I knew there would be time before it got serious. Rosie didnʼt text back, and I was glad we hadnʼt waked her.
" At midnight after we brought everything back inside, we laid down to try and get some sleep. I had Gregʼs phone and paid a bit more attention to timing the contractions, although I still had doubts in my mind about if this was really it. For the next hour they came from 6 to 8 minutes apart and lasted 50-80 seconds, and I told Greg to get some sleep. He did just that and around 0100, I put the phone down and closed my eyes, intending to get some sleep myself. Iʼd heard of women sleeping right through labor and thought I might get lucky. I laid there for over an hour trying to force myself to relax and sleep, when I finally gave it up.
" At 0230 I went into the front room and began googling what to pack for the trip to the hospital. We never did pack our bags! I started timing again, and by this time they were 3 to 5 minutes apart, lasting from 40-60 seconds, and I accepted the fact that this was really happening. I got excited and nervous together, and had all this energy. The contractions were manageable, and I worked around them packing up our bags and getting everything weʼd need together. Sometimes Iʼd kneel on the carpet with my butt way up and sway through the wave, but then I figured out that leaning over the kitchen counter with my legs spread wide swaying worked best. I had Tom Petty playing as loud as the computer would play it, which was loud enough to wake Greg up. He saw me swaying and knew exactly what was up. He got excited and wondered how the hell I had packed our bags. He wanted to call Rosie, so around 0300 he gave her a ring. She said sheʼd be over within the hour, and I got in the shower. The great thing about that apt building was unlimited hot water. And it felt great on my back. I brought the computer in and put it on the sink so I could sing along with Tom.
" In our Bradley class we learned to relax and just breathe through the contractions, but I felt like being up and singing along with Tom at the top of my lungs. Rosie arrived right after 0400, and wanted to know what she could do to help. Greg didnʼt really know what to do, I was in the shower with Tom the whole time! Rosie loved it, she sang a little with me too and said I was doing great. Around 0500 I filled up the tub and laid down on my side. It felt much better under the water and I wished I had more room. I was still laughing and having a good time with it all, and Rosie and Greg were so helpful. I told them I wanted to go to the beach and walk along the water, we lived just 5 minutes away. They thought that was a real good idea so at 0630 I hauled myself out of the tub and got dressed.
" The amazing part is that it was the morning of the 16th, and Dr. Elmore was on the labor deck that one day, every other day that week they would have had to call her in…it was perfect timing. I wanted to labor at home as long as possible and I wanted baby to wait until at least 0700 when Dr. Elmoreʼs shift started. At 0700 we got to the beach and it was all ours. We walked right along the water next to the Oceanside Pier and it was such a perfect moment in time. It was overcast as always in the early morning on the coast, and Rosie walked with Greg and I and snapped a few precious pictures. The contractions were coming now 2 to 4 minutes apart and lasting 50-70 seconds. Each time they came I just leaned forward into Gregʼs chest and he pressed on my back. It felt surreal. I felt so blessed to be able to have the ocean right there at our feet, I had to soak them of course but Greg thought the water was too cold so he stayed farther back." After half an hour there we had to decide where weʼd go next. I didnʼt want to go back to the apt, we had everything loaded up and it seemed like a waste. I wasnʼt sure I wanted to go to the hospital either though, so we decided to meet up at Lake Oneil, just two minutes from the Navy Hospital. I wondered aloud if maybe I would skip the “serious signpost” we learned about, because though the pain was intense, I was still joking and smiling and thinking of things not directly related to the task at hand. Then in the car, it was just Greg and I, Rosie was driving separately, they started to come 2 to 3 minutes apart and lasted 50-70 seconds. It was so uncomfortable in that car I finally got serious, there was nothing else I could think of but each one coming. I told Greg to just go to the hospital. He let Rosie know the change of plan and I began moaning with each one. It seemed to take forever getting to the Hospital, but really was only 20 minutes at most. We parked and I wanted to wait outside for Rosie. I had to pee really bad so I went in to pee and came right back out. We were nervous Rosie would have problems at the gate but she told the MP her duties and charmed her way through. I was walking back and forth in front of the hospital and when Rosie got there I still wasnʼt ready to go inside. I got really nervous all of a sudden but I didnʼt want to tell either of them, just wanted to get my head together. I walked off a little ways and wanted to cry. I felt like a baby, but I knew once we went inside that was it. The weight of it all hit me and I did cry, thinking about how Iʼd be a mom when we left. It was a very sobering moment. I was glad it was gray outside. After a couple minutes I told them I was ready. They asked if I wanted a wheel chair, hell no!
" At 0800 we checked in on the labor deck. They sent Greg to the third floor for my record and Rosie and I went into the triage room to get checked out. I was so thankful for Rosie, sheʼs the sweetest woman we could have found to share this experience. As soon as we walked into the triage room I started having a monster contraction. I leaned over the sink and felt warm water going down my leg. It looked like pee and I didnʼt know what to think. Rosie went to get the nurse after she told me my water must have broke. There was brown stuff in the liquid and I got really nervous. The nurse came right in and said we were going to the labor room, no time for triage. I asked her if I could wear my own gown and got changed.
" A midwife came in and started getting my vitals, she told me they need to prep me for the OR. I sat right up and informed her that I wasnʼt going to the OR. She fired back asking if the baby was still breech. Yes, now go get Dr. Elmore and tell her we are here! I was mama bear and this lady better get on with it if she knew what was good for her. About five minutes later she came back in, said that Dr. Elmore was really happy we were there and that I was going to do great! She did a complete 180 and it felt really good to hear her say that. I knew how important it was to have positive vibes going out from reading Ina Mayʼs book, and thatʼs just what we had. Pretty soon there were different nurses and midwives coming in and telling us that they were rooting for us, we were going to do great and stuff like that. Everything was coming together so perfectly I could hardly believe it.
" At 0900 Dr. Elmore came in with a huge smile on her face. We all knew this was divine intervention. She checked me and I was 3 cm dilated. I felt kind of terrible because Iʼd been laboring for quite some time and hadnʼt made much progress. I just buckled down and knew it was going to be rough work from there, and Rosie and Greg were amazing. For the next two hours it got really intense, there was no break in between the contractions, they were on top of each other. Greg and Rosie took turns pushing on my back with all their might and I went from side lying, to walking around a bit to getting in the shower. The shower was super weak but at least the water was hot and it felt really good being in there, while Greg stood just outside so I could lean on him and let the water hit my back. I was hooked up to the EFM every 15 minutes so I was free to move around and try different positions, that helped immensely. The only other attachment I had was a hep lock just in case, but I didnʼt want them hooking up the IV as I was fine drinking on my own. We brought granola bars and snacks with us and by this point I was feeling drained, I ate a fiber one bar just to keep up my strength but it was hard getting it down. At 1100 Dr. Elmore came back and check me again, I was 5 cm open but feeling the urge the push. I was so sure Iʼd be almost fully open so hearing her say 5 was crushing.
" At that point I started to wonder whether I would have enough power to push the baby out when the time came. It was such a marathon. There were sounds coming from somewhere way deep within and it all felt so primal. I was grunting and growling and low moaning, while my power team kept the steady pressure on my back. It was really a team effort. I was fighting the urge to push, itʼs dangerous to push when youʼre not fully open because the cervix can actually tear, which will lead to Cesarean, and because a breech babyʼs head is the last and biggest part to come and if youʼre not all the way open it could get ugly. Rosie taught me how to “keep the feather in the air” and it was one of the hardest things Iʼve ever done. My whole body was bearing down, this incredible force just taking over and I had to fight with every ounce of strength and discipline I had in my body to counteract that force. By 1300 I was at 7 cm, and again, couldnʼt believe it still wasnʼt time to push! This was getting insane. Rosie told me not to think about it, she could tell we were right there. She promised it wouldnʼt be long and I prayed to God she was right. I figured I could only go on so long, but I knew I would see this through or literally die trying. I can be a bit dramatic at times. I wanted to go back to the shower. Babyʼs heartbeat had been great the whole time, and even though I leaked water and meconium the whole time after we left the triage room, the DR wasnʼt worried because it was normal with breeches. Theyʼre little butts get squeezed with every contraction and mine was no different.
" Another great example of what an Angel we found in Rosie, she followed me around making sure to clean up so I wouldnʼt get disgusted. I made it to the shower and all of a sudden I couldnʼt fight it any longer. My body was pushing and grunting and I tried with all my might to stop it but it was like I was on auto pilot. I told Greg and Rosie this baby was coming, to get the Dr. now! My biggest fear was that Iʼd run out of strength halfway through getting baby out and the little head would be trapped. I knew from my reading that it was important to get the head out pretty fast once the cord had passed through, it gets compressed in the birth canal and restricts the oxygen to baby so it all needs to happen relatively quick. Somehow none of that was important now, nothing else existed outside of my own body. I got back to the bed and didnʼt have time to put my gown back on. I was on my knees facing the head of the bed and Rosie sat it all the way upright and had me lean on it with my elbows.
" The anesthesiologist showed up, he was supposed to prep me for an epidural just in case we had to have an emergency Cesarean, I was also supposed to give birth in the OR as a precaution. Greg leaned in and told me that the Anesthesiologist was there and I growled at him what for! Then there was this incredible force that just totally consumed me, and everybody sort of disappeared.
" The noises got more and more raw. The midwife checked me and a minute later she was whispering the sweetest words into my ear… “You are fully dilated, you can push now.” I never heard anything so welcome. Greg was there at my side, encouraging me all the way, and Rosie too. I started pushing and they told me to stop!
Wait for the DR! I thought, you have got to be shitting me! I felt this insane pressure and burning, this weight bearing down. Then she was there, but still they said wait! The babyʼs butt was crowning! She has to get her gloves on! I wanted to scream how fucking long does it take to put gloves on?! Iʼm proud to say I was able to hold that back to a low roar and then finally I got the green light. The midwife or Rosie, itʼs a blur now, told me I could reach down and feel my baby.
" For a second everything slowed down, and I reached down with such trepidation, afraid of what Iʼd find. Then I felt that tiny butt! My mind whirled, all I could say or think was Oh my God, Oh my God. It felt holy in a way, it was surreal. The second passed and I was pushing again, pushing with everything I had left to give. I heard when her legs and arms were out, and then from voices all around me I was told to push! Greg said, “If youʼre ever going to push you have to push now!” The DR, the midwife, Rosie, everyone was telling me to push, get that head out! For a moment there was doubt, there was fear greater than anything Iʼd ever felt, I had nothing left. In that moment I didnʼt have to pray, my heart was an open book bleeding out to God… I closed my eyes and concentrated every effort, every thought on this one thing, and I knew we were being prayed for in that instant, and I let go without even feeling any more… Just willing this baby out of me. And then it was done. The pressure and the burning were gone. There was this huge release, and then nothing.
" I was facing the head of the bed, and I had birthed the baby on my knees so I didnʼt see when it was finally over, I was suddenly staring at the wall. There was no noise then, it was silent, and I was scared again. Why wasnʼt my baby crying? I looked behind me and there was Greg, staring at me in disbelief. I yelled at him to see the baby, he snapped out of his trance quickly. Then Rosie told Greg to announce the sex of the baby to mom! He looked from our tiny baby to me, I still couldnʼt see because there was a 5 man team of DRs and nurses just for the baby blocking my view. He tried to say something but tears just filled his eyes. Then he mouthed, “I was right.” We had a little girl! She was okay, just needed a little help getting started. They handed her to me wrapped in a blanket with a little hat on, she was alert and wide eyed. I was stunned at her beauty, she was so tiny and perfect. I counted ten tiny fingers and toes, they were blue but getting pinker. I couldnʼt believe it was over. I couldnʼt believe we had a daughter.
" What an incredible honor, what a powerful trip it was seeing her into this world. I am forever grateful for the people we were surrounded by, for sweet Rosie, and my awesome husband. For our angel Dr. Elmore and the whole staff that morning. To God for bestowing this precious treasure upon me, Iʼll never understand why sheʼs been given to me. But Iʼll fight every day for the rest of my life to keep her safe, to take care of her, to be there. My precious baby girl was born on August 16th, 2011 at 1521 at the Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton. She was 6 pounds 7 ounces and 18.5ʼʻ long. We named her a week later, Rose Ellice Woods.
Tags: 2cm dilated, Active Birth, acupuncture, baby, Birth Emergency Skills Training, Bradley Method Classes, breech, Breech Birth by Benna Waites, Cesarean for a breech, Chiropractor, Christian, contractionsDr. Elmore, doula, Dr. Stuart Fischbein, electronic fetal monitor, Elizabeth Davis, external version, Gestational Diabetes, Heart and Hands, Janet Balaskas, Los Angeles Obstetrician, moxibustion, Naval hospital, Non-stress test, NST, pregnant, primipara, Rebozo Due date, Rosie Peterson, turn a breech, vertex, Webster technique
Posted in Natural Birth Stories |
Lily's story started on new years day (Sunday) when I lost my mucus plug…I then noticed my first contraction early Tuesday morning around 4:30 am but nothing intense. I took it easy on Tuesday and noticed that the contractions were more intense but still totally manageable on Wednesday when I ran errands most of the day (chiropractor, lunch with a girlfriend, hair appointment, dinner with Brian)…Wednesday night their intensity continued to increase as I frequently woke up throughout the night and moved to an all fours position or got up to walk around to breathe through them…this continued into the morning as I attempted to fold the baby clothes I had washed for hours without accomplishing much – I continued to change positions and breathe through the contractions wondering how intense they would get. At this point (around noon or so on Thursday) I decided to take a bath and listen to one of the meditation CDs from yoga class. This definitely helped me to stay in the right mindset and relax. I was in the tub for about an hour and it definitely took the edge off. Once I got out, things kicked in quickly and I had Brian call the midwife. She wanted to talk to me and I quickly realized that I was no longer able to talk when a contraction hit…My contractions were definitely about 4 mins apart at this point and I was starting to feel the urge to push…She told us to come in and we made our way to TriCity in the 2 o'clock hour…By the time I was checked in, changed and was checked by my midwife, Mimi, it was close to 3:00. She told me that the baby's head was right there and that I could push when I was ready…Once I wrapped my head around the fact that it was go time, Mimi, Brian, and the nurse coached me through pushing and Lily was born at 3:58 pm naturally in a calm environment. The lights in the room were dimmed for me and all of my requests for her birth were totally supported by the midwife and nurse. There were other hospital staff in the periphery standing by during the delivery as Lily was over a month early, but they did not disrupt the serenity of the environment. I was pleasantly surprised by such a positive experience as I had been reluctant to birth in the hospital setting. I had been hoping to have the baby at Best Start Birth Center – but this was not an option once Lily decided to come early (you have to be at least 37 weeks to give birth there and I was 35 and 1/2).
Lily was totally alert and was on my chest immediately after she was born. She weighed 6 pounds, 1 ounce and was 19 inches long…10 weeks later she is doing awesome and getting so big!!!
I don't think I could have had such a such a calm, peaceful birth without your prenatal yoga and Bradley classes! Turning inward, listening to my body and using my breath to manage contractions definitely helped me be able to have the birth I was so hoping for
Carrie's Advice for you:
1 What was the most challenging part of your labor or birth?
I would have to say pushing or knowing how to push – that is when I felt like I really needed coaching and support/encouragement the most…having my midwife, Mimi, to guide me through what to do at that point and Brian next to me for support was key. That was the only point when I questioned whether or not I would be able to do it. I also believe that the techniques Mimi used during delivery was the reason I did not tear.
2. What was the most helpful thing either you did or someone else did for you? Taking a bath and listening to that Anugama CD helped me to relax and create the space to prepare myself mentally for birth. I also believe it was helpful to not have someone checking to see how dilated I was so I never got caught up in the mindset that labor was not progressing – it truly moved at it's own rate.
3. What advice would you give another pregnant mom?
Take the time to relax and create the space for labor to unfold as it will however that looks for you. Also, as much as I love my family, I also knew that I did not want them around during my labor and delivery. When the time came, it was just Brian, Mimi (midwife) and a nurse with me and it was a very peaceful, calm experience (in a hospital)!
4. Would you do anything differently?
I probably would have experimented with a squatting or all fours position to push as I feel like it would have been a more natural position to give birth. By the time I got situated, I found myself in a side-lying position and was not inclined to try another position once I started to push. However this position did work out well in the end, so I'm not sure I would have changed that
Tags: baby, Best Start Birth Center, birth, birth ball, birth center, Bradley Method, doula, hospital, labor and birth, midwife, natural birth, pregnancy, prenatal yoga, relaxation in labor, squatting for birth, unmedicated, www.yogajanda.com
Posted in Labor and Birth Advice, Natural Birth Stories |