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Weekly Chat July 30 - Aug 4

post #1 of 78
Thread Starter 

First time starting a new weekly thread...woo! Hope I'm not stepping on anyone's toes, but I had a topic I'd like to bring up.


Let's talk about our birthing plans. We get a sense of what others are planning based on general conversation, but I'm interested to hear more directly what others are doing.


Are you doing a hospital, birth center, or home birth? Midwives vs doctors? Do you have a scheduled C-section? What are your reasons for what you've chosen (or what might have happened to reduce your freedom of choice, like health complications, etc)?


AFM, I am planning a home birth, with CPMs. I just always saw myself birthing at home since one of my sisters has done it three times now very happily, and I know a couple of other women who have done it and been happy with their experiences. I am afraid I would not be able to stand up for what I want if I was in a hospital setting. I have a tendency to cry when I go to the doctor for even minor things - what a basket case I'd be if I had an OB being forceful with me during labor.


But...now that the time is getting closer I am getting nagging doubts and getting a bit scared. I have enjoyed my care with the midwives so far, and I am confident in the abilities of those I've met. But as soon as I read an article or thread about how home birth is unsafe and hear a story of someone who lost a baby who failed to breathe after birth or something like that, I start to freak out. I know that statistically, the odds are on my side to have a normal, uncomplicated birth. But how to handle the fear of something going horribly wrong and what the aftermath would be like? The thought of changing my plan now is just crazy, but it has crossed my mind. I find myself feeling more concerned about baby than myself and my hopes about a natural birth. I guess I'm finally feeling "maternal" and thinking more "what about HER?" than "what about ME?" I know a natural birth is better for BOTH of us, but if she, for example, failed to breathe after coming out, a hospital would be safer than home.


Do you have any fear or doubts regarding your choice? What other feelings might you have about your plans? How does your partner feel about your plans?

post #2 of 78
I am planning a home birth. I also experience fears and doubts about my choice at times. I get scared when I hear a scary story. I will be glad when it's all over and my healthy baby is in my arms. This is by far not my first birth, but this is my first home birth. I am ready to see if I can do this! My husband is great and so supportive! Could be as little as 5 weeks left for me!! Ahhhh
post #3 of 78
I plan to have another homebirth with this one with a CNM. I'd love to use a CPM, but they are illegal here. I interviewed a few that practice anyway around here, but if I had to transfer to a hospital for some reason using an illegal provider it'd be a nightmare.
Edited by revolting - 7/30/13 at 11:24am
post #4 of 78
Ooh, good topic! This has been on my mind. smile.gif

I'm delivering at a local hospital, but my prenatal care has been from a group of 3 local nurse-midwives. One of them will be delivering me, not an OB, unless I need a C-section, and then they will assist. I love all three of them, and I'm eager to see who will actually catch my kid. :P

I'm taking birthing classes at the hospital currently - they're Lamaze, which doesn't interest me even a little bit, but I wanted to take the classes because they're free and I figured I could learn about the hospital and their policies this way. So far, it's really worked out - the teacher is sweet, and I've learned a lot. Plus, it really, really helped my husband feel more involved - I didn't realize that while I was taking in ALL this information, he was feeling kinda left out. Oops. greensad.gif But he likes the classes - our last one is tonight!

The hospital beds are the fancy Stryker ones that go into lots of different positions, which is great. There's a birthing bar attachment, you can push in different positions, etc. My midwives encourage this as well. There's a tub to use to labor in, though you can't deliver in one. And, my hospital is a huge advocate of the Golden Hour, meaning that I will get that skin-to-skin time with my baby for at least an hour in the beginning before they start any of that standard procedure jazz. Excited!

My birth plan at the moment is pretty simple. I'm more interested in being sure that certain procedures are done or not done for the baby, honestly. With me, I want mostly to be left alone to labor in my own way, with intermittent monitoring, avoid meds if possible, and breastfeed immediately. I'll do most anything to avoid a C-section, including vacuum delivery. Most of my other desires are regarding the baby - being sure nobody gives her a bottle, delaying her Hep B shot until she goes to the pediatrician (vaccinating a newborn? Yeah no. My husband and I are Hep B negative, good enough for me), having her in the room with me at all times, all that good stuff.

I guess the point is, I want what I want... but there are plenty of things I'm fine with either way. Does that make sense? Lol. I hope so. It's my first time, who knows how it will go?
post #5 of 78
Thread Starter 

I honestly didn't educate myself on the difference between a CNM and CPM before choosing this practice. I just liked their facility and what they had to say. CPMs are legal in my state, but can't handle any controlled substances - so no Pit, no Oxygen, nada. There are a couple of CNM practices in my area as well, and I wonder if I had thought about it ahead of time, would I have gone with them? But I sort of feel that the lack of recourse to any drugs, etc, is likely to make the CPMs more conservative in their assessments and willingness to transfer. Sometimes you hear of cases where a CNM did some questionable things in a home birth with Pit or other substances, that a CPM simply has no option of doing.


There is a good local hospital that has an integrated birth center with CNMs. I kind of didn't even know that was there. Maybe I was foolish for not looking! But still, CNMs in a hospital setting are generally constrained by hospital policies and can't be as flexible with your labor as they might like to be. This hospital has been noticed for a high C-section rate, and they are actively trying to reduce it, but it's hard to know what you will get!


Rainy, I think doing Bradley classes has really helped my DH feel involved, though he hasn't come out and said it. He definitely feels more educated about birth in general now.

post #6 of 78
I'm planning a homebirth with a midwife. I'm Canadian and here (at least in my province) all of the midwives have hospital privileges, but also attend births at home. I've had all of my 3 with midwives, DS1 in the hospital by choice, DS2 was a planned homebirth (which is good, because I likely wouldn't have made it to the hospital) and DS3 I was planning to have at home, but ended up risked out when I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. Actually, I was transferred to an OB and when I found out that it was actually within the midwives' scope of practice to keep the care of a woman with (non insulin dependent) diabetes, I got angry and got myself transferred back. It was very stressful. I'm not okay with complete strangers being present at my most intimate and sacred moments. If they needed to be there, I would accept it. I would have to...I wouldn't like it, but I would accept it. The area I live in (I've moved since I had DS1) and the hospital where I would have to give birth are terrible and old-fashioned in regards to birthing. The paediatricians kind of run the show and there were many threats of "If you don't do x (like take the GBS swab), they might call the children's aid on you." Aside from the fact that I just feel more comfortable at home, I feel much, much safer at home given the environment of the only hospital I have to choose from. I need to stay out of that hospital unless I NEED to be there! Sorry for the vent. I would be planning a homebirth no matter where I lived. I just really don't want the misfortune of experiencing another birth at that hospital.

Luckily, the people who matter to me have always been supportive of my choices. I only know one other person who's had their baby at home and it was after I'd had DS2. It's not popular in my area, but SIL is a midwife and my immediate family's pretty crunchy.

I can honestly say that DS3's birth was the only one I really had fears and doubts about. It went fine, just not how I would have liked (I was an obedient patient and didn't get the children's aid called on me).

My husband is always super supportive during labour (and at all other times). I know he's looking forward to catching his daughter...he never gave it any thought with the first two, but then I suggested he catch DS3 and it was a very special experience for him. He was noticeably emotional, which almost never happens with him!
Edited by gracisue - 7/30/13 at 10:31am
post #7 of 78

Great topic! I look forward to reading everyones. We are having a hospital birth with a Dr. I really like the group of Dr's though. People in our neighborhood joke that they are the midwives of the hospital because they are still pretty pro natural birth etc. I have several friends who are doulas that all use this group of doctors. So I feel like I am in pretty good hands. Thats about all I know of my birth plan so far! I'm also planning to take the hospital birthing class... simply because its free and it will help me get to know the hospital. There's also a free breastfeeding class through the hospital I'll probably take. Who knows how helpful it will be, but its free so I figure it can't hurt.

post #8 of 78
Great topic! We are planning our second home water birth, with our midwife who has been present for all my births so far, and there will be one other attending midwife acting as support on the day. My boys will be somewhere in the house on the day with my bestfriend being there to support them with anything they need.
Birth is the one time in my life I feel totally in control, my midwives are amazing (also family friends) and they would shift heaven and earth to keep me and my baby safe, so I trust them completely, if we had to transfer to a hospital which is 5mins away I would know it was absolutely necessary. :-)
post #9 of 78
We are having a hospital birth with a midwife group. There are three of them so well see who I end up with. DS was born at this lovely little birth center in NH. I didn't want a home birth for a number of reasons highest on the list being that we live 45 minutes from the closest hospital. Anyway, I wish I could go back to the birth center but there is nothing like that where we live now so I'm working out my anxiety about being in the hospital by being proactive and hiring a doula who I really like. I plan to go all natural again this time but I can't say I am stone set on any particular birth vision. I plan to do whatever works.

On another note, I felt like I needed to share my ridiculous encounter with a complete stranger today. I was at goodwill with my brother and sister quietly shopping the shirts aisle when a goodwill employee caught a glimpse of me. "Girl, you better watch out. You look like you're about to pop!" I made the mistake of saying I still had three months to go and she completely lost her mind. She went and got two coworkers and dragged me out of the aisle to show them how enormous I am. They were obviously uncomfortable. I was laughing, probably out of shock. She just kept on going for a really long time. Then she proceeded to ask if my younger sister (only 7 years younger by the way) was my daughter. I am not joking. So not only am I HUGE I also look like I could have a 26 year old daughter. I'm 33. Oh, and she touched my belly. No shit. It was like every cliched ridiculous pregnancy encounter rolled up into one obscene moment.
post #10 of 78

I'm having my third birth at a free-standing birth center.  It's a lovely place, staffed by amazing midwives, etc.  They know me well enough (esp. by now!) to leave me alone, let me do what I need to and yet offer appropriate suggestions in the midst of labor.  Last time I showed up at 9cm . . . this time I need to come as soon as I'm in labor due to a "won't go away" UTI caused by GBS that's actually colonized in my urine (as opposed to just showing up on a vaginal swab).  So I have to get the abx . . . which is fine, that doesn't bother me . . . just means I can't putt around at home as long as I want!  Not the worst problem in the world, I suppose!  


Can I just add . . . I love being pregnant and want this baby to stay in as long as she needs . . . but WOW, I am SO over pregnancy this time around, HA!  Third trimester has been a bit of a shock for me . . . no sleep at night (as in falling asleep finally around 11, waking up at 2 and not going back to sleep until 6!!!!).  Hearburn that makes me wonder if I should call 911!  And the old "whale" feeling . . . wow, I am seriously counting down the days!  I think I am "clear" to deliver at the birth center at 37 weeks . ..  I'm going to be sprinting around here the second that clock hits, HA!  :)

post #11 of 78

We're doing a homebirth with a licensed midwife who has attended almost 2000 births now, and her daughter who is a certified nurse working towards her midwifery license and is acting as her assistant and probably also birth photographer/videographer. There is no other option for us, I would rather have an unassisted homebirth than go to a hospital. I have been obsessed with natural birth since I was 17 and read about people giving birth in the ocean with dolphins, and I did a doula training a couple years ago - but have yet to attend a birth because I felt like that's something you just can't do until you've had a baby yourself. I plan on completing my doula certification and maybe working towards being a midwife/other birth professional, maybe expanding into specializing in prenatal/postnatal yoga after I have my homebirth, safely, peacefully- in water!! I'm really excitedabout the birth part- it's the pregnancy part that I'm not having very much fun with, although it is getting better! Every day is different though, yesterday I was feeling awful, today I did yoga and walked 3 miles and feel great. The more active I am the better I feel, the trick is getting out of the house first thing in the morning before I can convince myself I'm too tired to!


I feel very prepared for birth/newborn stage, I've read a zillion books and seen so many documentaries and birth videos and read so many birth stories... it's my husband I'm worried about! I'm signing us up for infant CPR, a childbirth prep class at a homebirth-friendly resource center, a dad's class at the family-centered yoga studio, and a breastfeeding class. 

post #12 of 78

Oh my hot damn Ciga!  I would have been in shock as well.  That woman has got some nerve to throw all of that on you, seriously.  Wow.

post #13 of 78

Slammerkin, that's kind of weird to me.  When you say controlled substances I think narcotics which my midwife, who is a CPM as well, doesn't carry anyway.  I would think oxygen would be a basic necessity.  Can you do some type of fear cleansing?  Meditation or affirmations?  When I had my first, I would cut people off at the pass who tried to tell me scary birth stories or how their baby would have died if it was born at home.  Being a paramedic, I had only seen the down side of home birth.  It was my husband who asked me to consider it and initially, I was dead set against it.  Being the queen of research that I am, I started reading a bunch of books (Henci Goer, Ina May etc) and after that decided that there was no way a hospital birth was for me if I was having a healthy, uncomplicated pregnancy.  


AFM:  We are planning our second home birth/water birth.  After 20 hours of labor with my first, i can't imagine doing it anywhere but home.  I didn't deliver in the water last time but labored on and off in there and am really hoping to this time.  We are not sure what we are going to do with our son yet.  He's a huge water bug and will probably want to spend most of the time in the birth pool.  There really isn't any family or friends that can watch him at our house.  MIL and I are on non speaking terms for the last 6 months.  I wouldn't want her here anyway if we were.  She's too invasive with her opinions on birth.  She used to do doula work so she knows it all.


My FIL might be able to take him.  He lives just around the corner.

post #14 of 78
Slammerkin - With my last homebirth, I received pitocin to control a postpartum hemorrhage. I'm really glad that my care provider could handle that at home as opposed to transferring, and it's a big factor why we chose a midwife-attended homebirth over an unassisted. Because CNMs must have a back-up OB and are licensed in an area pretty hostile to home birth, I've found that CNMs tend to be more conservative, but I also find it more useful to ask about how they handle different complications in an interview to asses how conservative they are.
Ciga - I can't believe that woman!
Yogini - What's the benefit of giving birth with dolphins?
post #15 of 78
Thread Starter 

Yeah, Hawaiian, the not-even-oxygen thing is pretty weird, I admit. You wouldn't think that would be a "controlled substance" but I guess Virginia says it is. I don't really have anyone coming up and telling me their horror stories - it's just things I find on the internet. I need to step away from the google! But I do have people getting all concerned over me at the idea of a home birth, and putting in their two cents. I should have just not told certain people. Oh well.


Revolting, that's a definite good use of pitocin in a home birth. I was reading recently about a few cases where CNMs were using intramuscular injections of pitocin for encouraging contractions during labor, which I would not be comfortable with at home. If you're going to use pitocin for labor I feel like it should be in a hospital.


I had an appointment yesterday for general prenatal and glucose screen. I did ask a lot of questions about what a transfer situation might look like and what would cause it. I think it relaxed me a bit. They gave some examples of emergency situations, but of course most transfers are for long labors that are not progressing and the mother is getting exhausted. I am still trying to decide whether I want to go for home or the birth center. I might feel more secure at the birth center because I feel like they have established routines there, know how far away the hospital is, etc. They said an ambulance transfer is 7 minutes to the hospital. I think from my home it might be more like 15 mins. I can always prep for home but decide in the end to go to the birth center anyway. The birth center is beautiful with awesome rooms and apparently since they opened up that facility the vast majority of clients deliver there instead of at home.


Ciga, that is just too funny and ridiculous at the same time!

post #16 of 78
Massive hugs Ciga, some people are clearly so unaware of what they effecting other people! After the shocks worn off I hope you take her comments with a grain of salt. You look amazing!

Well I am currently waiting to hear from my mother this morning as she was rushed to hospital early yesterday evening and is suspected of having Tuberculosis. Which if she does will might frustrating, as I have been telling her for months to go to the dr and be checked. As I was certain her drs diagnosis of laryngitis was inconsistent with her symptoms.TMI It took her vomiting up blood for three days before she decided to go. Grrrr. My boys have coughs and I think they got them from her, I will be insanely annoyed if she has passed it on to us all because she didn't want to pay the drs fee. So fingers crossed for good news.
post #17 of 78
TB? Wow.

My birth plans...its like planning for a hurricaine. Sometimes I think its of no use nature does what it wants!
post #18 of 78
Still waiting to hear back once the hospital drs have done there ward rounds, tb is uncommon here in nz and all hell will break loose if mum has contracted it, especially as she is a support teacher and her whole school will need to be checked. So I'm just really hoping mum hasn't got it as the implications are huge.
It's freezing cold and we are due rain in varying degrees for the next ten days its literally putting a dampener on my motivation to keep packing.
post #19 of 78
Why do they suspect tb?
post #20 of 78
All her symptoms point to it being tb, chest pain, disgusting cough which she has had for months now but was initially diagnosed with laryngitis. And she is now coughing up blood, is exhausted constantly, and has had fevers and chills on and off over the last few weeks. She also works in contact with a large number of children from an incredibly poor socioeconomic area. On top of which she has a poor diet, is a smoker and overweight.
If its not tb I will be very surprised to hear what it actually is, my only other thought is that maybe the laryngitis has morphed into whooping cough which is highly possible.
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