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“Everyday Blessings” Part V ~ Book Discussion & Tea Party - Page 2

post #21 of 250
Originally posted by LiminalOne
[Still, waiting for awhile seems to be the best option for us right now, though baby lust is very seductive..... Anyone else thinking ahead to next time

Angie [/B]
Just to answer this: DD's just 13 months, but I have to say I also can't *imagine* mothering two!!! I know if it happened I would probably rise to the occasion but nowadays instead of a 2-3 year gap I'm thinking 4-5 years.
post #22 of 250
Gosh - i have so much I want to add, but I can't make the time right now - I must take care of some personal stuff!

Mamabutterfly - what an amazing story! I'm kind of confused thought, can you fix the time-line for me - at what point did dh go into prison and when did he get out?

I loved this chapter - I love that all of these chapters are short - very meditative, whcih is what I think they were intended to be.

The first thing I felt was that I couldn't wait to be pregnant again, so that I could have a more mindful approach to pregnancy.

The first time around, I was so into the *technical* stuff of pregnancy. I had a rude awakening when my first labor was very hard emotionally. I had preparied by being book-smart about pregnancy, but not very emotionally intuned with myself.

The second time around I did birth art and read "birthing from within"...that was amazing - i had a great labor and DD birth was ecstatic.

My pregnancy with her, however, was horrible. Horrible sicknees, terrible PPD - I was feeling suicidal...acupuncture saved me...

Anyway - I would love to have another pregnancy in about 3 years....I'd love to have one more child!
post #23 of 250
Ig - In the course of my pregnancy, he was away from 2 months to 8 months. (He returned in January, she was born in February... had to cram at those last couple of birthing classes, lol!)
post #24 of 250
Thread Starter 
I feel like a kid in a candy store...only I'm at my 1st tea party in over 20 years and the weird thing is it's a virtual tea party!! Oh well. Maybe we'll all meet up in a dream or something...

So much to say. So little time. And so little brain cells in my head these days. But I have to agree with Mamaste about our pregnancies (AT LEAST MINE WAS) being such a medical event and OB thing. I went to the doctor at least a dozen times when I was pg....tummy measuring, peeing in a cup at the visits(I dont remember why), blood pressure checks, weight checks, ultrasounds, listening to babe's heartbeat, being checked for dialation of the uterus...and on and on! Looking back I feel like it was such a waste of my time since my pg was so healthy and normal. :

And YES! YES! YES! I think (daydream and worry too) of the next pg/baby. A few months ago when my libido came for a short visit I thought I had conceived. I was so scared!!!! Before I thought I had conceived I was toying with the idea of another baby. And then when the moment of truth arrived I realized two years apart was NOT enough time for me. But whenever it happens again there are so many things I will do different as well. Like more walks and talking to the baby in my belly. Trying to enjoy it all more and not worry so much about the birth and what life will be like when the pg is done. It will all work out...it always does.

CLINK (prune juice for me today but that ginger beer sounds yummy ladies!!)
post #25 of 250
You guys are making me want to tell birth stories! Wanna?!?!

I'd love to tell mine (an abridged version, I promise) bc I was mindful, but at the wrong times!

But only if others will share, too.

Who's in?
post #26 of 250
Thread Starter 
Originally posted by Breathe
You guys are making me want to tell birth stories! Wanna?!?!

I'd love to tell mine (an abridged version, I promise) bc I was mindful, but at the wrong times!

But only if others will share, too. Who's in?
I'm in!!! You all go first! My birth story is not all that mindful or interesting...except I went into labor on my b-day. Mine was a classic hospital birth...eposiotme (SP??) and OB doc. But I did not have an epidural. Next time I want an escatic birth!!!

It's a good idea to talk birth stories since next week's chapter is on "Births" anyway. This will give us a head start.

post #27 of 250
Originally posted by LiminalOne
Anyone else thinking ahead to next time

Angie, water can be very exciting when you are parched!

Yes, I'm thinking ahead to next time a lot, but parenting two (and being pg while parenting a toddler) also boggles my mind. It's come up a lot more lately actually b/c AF just returned, and Meg just passed my minimum age for TTC #2. We have decided we aren't quite ready yet, though...
post #28 of 250
Originally posted by mamabutterfly
I feel sort of distanced from that time now, and the *obsession* I had with thinking/reading/devouring all info related to pregnancy & birthing has faded.

Nap time's almost over -- back to the dishes and a few minutes of the NPR news, which gets more horrible each day .

love, anne
Anne, I KWYM aobut feeling distanced from the obsession of pg now...and I think about how during the next baby's pg I probably won't even know from week to week which system is developing and exactly the average size and weight of a baby that age, etc...

I'm listening to NPR way too much. At least I'm not watching the news, but still, I think it's not good for me, or for Meg.
post #29 of 250
Originally posted by Curly Locks
I'm in!!! You all go first!
Ouch, ouch, stop twisting my arm! OK, I'll go first... I have mine written up and stored on my computer so I just have to copy and paste...here ya go.

CNM/hospital. Refused all the tests except u/s. Met all six of the midwives on the team, took childbirth class from one of them. I was having dinner with friends the night I went into labor. DH was at work. I was 39w1d. I stood up from the table and though I felt a little leaky down below. Went to the bathroom, wasn't sure. Was pretty hesitant b/c I had been to the hospital the previous week thinking my water had broken and it had not. So I went home and tested the pH of the fluid w/pH paper DH had brought home from the lab he works in. That indicated the possibility of amniotic fluid. When DH got home we started to watch 24, our favorite show, but I couldn't concentrate b/c I started getting contractions. We decided to go to the hospital since they had told us to come right away if my water broke. They confirmed there that I was losing amniotic fluid but the ctxs were far apart and not very painful so they sent me home for 12 hours. Also, the labor nurse pi$$sed me off by saying I was too cheerful to be in labor! Little did I know, she was pretty much right! We went back after only several hrs. b/c the ctxs got closer together and more painful. They admitted me and I was already several cms. Over the next several hours I went like wildfire, got close to 7 cms. very quickly. Tried the jacuzzi, as water during pg had been very relaxing, but found it made me way too hot and only lasted in there about 15 minutes. Midwife said it wouldn't be long so we called family, who all lived out of state. They did not hear from us again for 12 hours and were panicking that something had gone terribly wrong. It hadn't, I had just stalled. I was near transition, going on no sleep, and not progressing so midwife broke my smaller water bag and put me on IV meds so I could get a nap. At the time that felt like a really good decision, although in the future I think I would pass on both. The meds stopped my progress completely but I slept on and off for a couple of hours. Then I got back to walking, walking, walking (naked, with the thermostat around 60 F!) for a few more hours. Got a little pitocin. I was told when it was time to push although I did not feel the urge, despite the meds having worn off. Pushed for 1-1/2 hours, had my baby girl put immediately on my chest all bloody and warm and quiet-alert. I talked a blue streak to her. I kept asking to nurse and kept being told to wait. I asked b/c I wanted help. Next time I won't ask and I won't wait. The first month of breastfeeding was a nightmare. I was discharged after 48 hours, DD was kept an extra day (we roomed in) for jaundice. Something else I won't allow next time. Speaking of next time, it will be a birth center, I think...
post #30 of 250
Thread Starter 

"Birth of a Mother: Part I"

I was consumed by the 9/11 attack that took place when I was six months pregnant, my husband losing his job a week prior to 9/11, and being left to sell our newly built home in a town far from my family. It was not always easy for me to see the happy side of my situation which was the miracle growing inside of me, my baby boy. Although daydreaming about my baby and feeling him move inside of me did bring me so much joy during a stressful time. I looked forward to reading the only book I had about pregnancy, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting.” I was also consumed by my changing shape.

Looking back on my pregnancy and reading the quote below from the chapter on “Birth” from “EB” I see how focused I was on having a great pregnancy that I was not really preparing myself for the reality motherhood, if that is possible.
“We spend most of energy while we are pregnant focusing on the birth of our baby, and it is not until our baby is born that we truly understand that birth is just the beginning.”
I lived in the moment just trying to get through each day. In that sense I guess I was mindful. The rest of the above quote reads:
“But the inner work we do during pregnancy and birthing is good training for mindful parenting.”
Hindsight is 20/20 because I wished I would have done more exploring and preparing for the birth of my son and breastfeeding, other than the classes offered at the hospital that we went to. I really wasn’t familiar with other parenting styles and birth options and their benefits. I guess I was as mainstream and uninformed as one could be! Therefore, when the birth did arrive and I fell flat on my face in terms of expectations I had, I was devastated, depressed, stitched up, and in a lot of pain. I was so in love with my baby though and wanted to do the best for him. Yet, leaving the hospital was a trying experience, me in a wheelchair and baby in his car seat. We cried all the way to the car. Feeling helpless, terrified, overwhelmed, and angry I spent the next few months in a daze of just trying to make it through every day, every nursing session, every milestone of the day and week. I was paralyzed in the moment. Unable to reach out for help, other than from my husband who was working full time and going to school at night at the time. What a scary time in my life.
post #31 of 250
Thread Starter 

The birth of my son

“But the inner work we do during pregnancy and birthing is good training for mindful parenting.” If this is true then maybe I was stuck in the moments above doing this “inner work.” At times I am so filled with regret about the pain I endured during and after the birth of my son and the lack of educating I actually received from my doctor and staff at the birthing classes. I felt so let down by them, my friends, family, and our culture. However, all of these regrets were buried in the layers of my grief of my painful episiotomy/tear and lack of feelings of bonding and mothering hormones I was not getting due to parenting choices and nursing set backs. These layers slowly were peeled away over the months since my son’s birth so I could see the cause of my anger. At the time I thought I was just tired and not thinking clear, which was also true and is still the case at times.

The birth is soon…When the time came my labor progressed very quickly. BH contractions the previous Friday brought me to the hospital to be examined. I didn’t go back to work at this point. I new the birth would be any day. The next Friday night I had BH contr. again. I went to bed exhausted. I woke up on Saturday, my 29th birthday, thinking I need to take it easy today so tonight we can go out to eat to celebrate my birthday. I took a nap that day and woke up feeling very rested. We went to the restaurant for an early dinner at 4pm. I was not feeling so well at this point. I started having light contractions but different than the BHCs. We got home and started timing the contractions at 5:30pm. They were 7 minutes apart and within an hour they were 3 minutes apart. I rushed around getting my stuff ready while hubby watched a basketball game and he was thinking it would be hours before we needed to leave. Ha! My contractions were 3 minutes apart and I screamed in pain in the car all the way to the hospital. We got to the hospital at close to 7 pm. They wheeled me up to a room. I was dilated to 7 cm, was hooked up to a monitor, had an IV in my arm for a drip to take the edge off…who knows what the drug was but it was nice at the time. OB arrived by 8pm, which seemed like an eternity! Took me forever to dilate to 10 cm so I could start pushing. Now I know that the drugs slowed me down. At the time I didn’t have a clue. I can't remember if the OB broke my waters when she arrived at 8pm or before I began pushing??

After pushing for three hours with an audience of nurses, OB, and in-laws in the hall anxiously waiting to see baby, OB said this baby needs to come out or we may need to do a C/S! Baby was out in 15 minutes after that “scare tactic.” It was 12:15 a.m. at night. He was beautiful, healthy, but swallowed some maconium (SP?) so they suctioned him for an hour while I watched. Shortly after the placenta came out. OB spent until 2:15am sewing up my tear/episiotomy as I kept asking are you almost done, I want to hold my baby???! Finally, everyone left and the nursery nurse handed me my son and I tried to nurse. By then we were all tired and baby was quiet. He suckled a little. I asked the nurse to take my baby to the nursery, instead she handed him back to me after showing me how to bathe him (at 2:30 in the morning????). Baby and I snuggled up for a few hours of rest. Hubby left to go call everyone and get some sleep.

Sorry this was sooo long...I'm done telling my stories until we get past the "Birth" chapter. I'm looking forward to reading everyone else's. I was truly inspired to write my story after reading Analisa's. Thanks!!! I'm tired now and ready to relax.

post #32 of 250
Oh, awesome! Thanks for sharing, ladies! Here's mine:

11 days before my due date, and I was ready to "get on with it." A friend owned a restaurant that served black bean tostadas - he swore they brought on contractions, so I went and had one for lunch, followed by a long walk. Contractions started that night! They were slow and gentle at first, and 7 or 8 minutes apart, so I was able to get a little bit of rest. Time line: this is now Friday night (technically Sat am), around 3 or 4 am.

Contractions all day Saturday. We had not gone to any of the hospital birthing classes, but took Bradley classes, so I felt as though I was pretty much in tune with what was going on. Saturday afternoon, I went to a rehearsal. Told everyone I was in labor - about 5-6 minutes apart. By Saturday evening, I didn't want to eat anymore, and the anticipation was starting to get to me. By midnight Saturday/Sunday, the contractions were 3-4 minutes apart and it was getting harder to be restful. Dh asked if I wanted to go the hospital - my answer was no, as we live only one mile away and I wanted to be home as long as I could.

By about 3 am, I couldn't focus anymore, hadn't rested, and dh was near his limit of what he could tolerate from me (he was worried about having to clean up a mess! ), so we went to the hospital. Contractions were about 2 minutes apart.

Here's where it gets awful - ds was not born until about 2 pm Sunday afternoon! Yes, I stalled. Was only dialated about 6 cm when I arrived at the hospital, but did not progress. Loved the jacuzzi, had a friend (who had two Bradley births) acting as a doula and taking turns with dh massaging me, but I was really getting tired. Hadn't eaten much since breakfast Saturay, hadn't slept since Friday night.

Around 11 am, I couldn't do it anymore - I was so exhausted that I asked for something to help with the pain. Was given something (IV) that did not make ANY difference, so was sorry to have done it at all. Ended up having a partial epidural - I was able to feel all contractions and push. I was sobbing - desperately wanted a natural childbirth, but knew I couldn't relax enough anymore to work through the pain of the contractions that had multiple peaks. Fortunately, it was late enough that there were minimal effects on ds. Pushed for almost 2 hours, ds brought to my breast immediately after birth - hooray! Then, of course, I couldn't even IMAGINE sleeping! Friend/doula took some incredible photos of ds being born - they are such a treasure! Dh cut the cord.

We roomed in until ds was diagnosed with jaundice (incompatible blood types). He was transferred to the nursery, so I moved in there, too, much to the initial dismay of the nursing staff. He came home on time, but with a bili-blanket we had to use for a week.

No circ, no hep B, no vitamin K. Unfortunately, no midwife (no insurance coverage for services!!!!!), but a great family doc whose sister is a midwife, so we were pleased. I don't know if the whole thing was what I expected, but I sure hold the memories clearly!

Someone else's turn now - I've gone on long enough. Great idea, El!
post #33 of 250

here is DD's birth story - ds is totally different

There were really only a few things that I really wanted for this birth. _One thing was to have the minimal amount of people. _For the most part I was alone or sh and ds were nearby. _The other thing was I wanted was to have my eyes open more and to not try to escape what I was going through, but to embrace the contractions. _And that last thing was that I didn't want to push until I had the natural urge to do so. _I really wanted to feel the "fetus ejection reflex." _(Remember my "Urge to Push" story!) _Hearing Ticia's story about not wanting to be "rescued" really helped me find the courage to get through this experience.....

On Thursday, Nov 14th, I had my 40th week visit with my midwife. _I was 3-4 centimeters dilated and about 80% effaced. _The baby was very low and my midwife said that she could "stir things up", so I said go for it. _So she stripped my membranes, which really didn't hurt that much. I also asked if I could have a glass of wine to help me relax and my midwife said that would be a good idea. _It would either bring on labor or let me relax enough to get a good night's rest.

I started to feel a little funky that afternoon, so I had a glass of wine and went to bed at 8:30 and slept until 5 am. _I woke up needing to go to the bathroom and when I went I had a bunch of blood streaked mucus and some menstrual like cramps. _I also had that "this is the birth day" smell and some loose poops. _So I decided to stay up and get some things organized.

By about 7 am, ds was ready to get up, so I let dh know that I was probably in labor and that I would need his help with ds that morning. _We all hung out for a bit and I started to have some regular contractions, nothing that I couldn't walk or talk through. _I showered, while dh and ds got breakfast. _I checked in with the midwife to give her the heads up and she told me to call her if the contractions started to get hard to handle. _dh and ds took off to the grocery store and the hardware store. _I went in to ds's bedroom and listened to my hypnobirthing CD.

Anyway, while I was listening to the hypnobirthing CD, I really focused on relaxing during the break and inviting the contraction. _It was pretty amazing, because I would get so relaxed that I would kind of doze off and go to another place. _Then I would feel (or kind of see) this surge slowly building and then I could really invite the contraction _and breathe through it. _I knew that it would only be intense at the peak and they were easy to handle.

At about 11, dh came in to check in on me and I moved out to the living room. _I alternated sitting on the birth ball, going to the bathroom, sitting on the floor in a modified child's pose and laying on the couch. _I found that I was the most relaxed laying on the couch so I hung out there the most. _I started to need some counter-pressure on my lower back during the peak of the contraction, so I would do it myself with my one hand and really relax the rest of my body and groan through the contraction. _dh started timing contractions, just to get an idea. _For the most part the contractions were all over the place, anywhere from 3 minutes apart to 10 minutes apart, lasting on average about 1 minute.

dh and ds got the labor pool set up and then played in the back yard with the swing. _Occasionally, ds would walk up and ask me if I was OK and I felt really great, totally relaxed.

There were a couple of times that I started to think, "well this is dumb, I'm not really going anywhere and I really don't want to do this for another 12 hours." _But I stuck with my relaxation.

Because I was handling my contractions so well and they weren't really consistent, I didn't think I was that far along. _dh ordered some food and they ate lunch. _At about 2, my contractions took more concentration and at 3 I asked dh to page the midwife and fill the tub. __Things were starting to get intense. _Every time I went to the bathroom more mucus was coming out. _I remember thinking, "If my water would just break, we'd have this over with soon enough."

Well, it was 3 _when I asked dh to page the midwife and fill the tub and by 3:10 my contractions were coming one on top of each other. _I remember feeling 3 "pops" that felt like my water was breaking, but nothing came out. _I got up and told dh to also call the assistant midwife and to get her over here ASAP. _I went to the bathroom and I passed a bunch of bloody mucus, pooped a lot and suddenly I realized the baby was coming. _I could feel the water bag bulging out of my vagina.

I shouted to dh to bring the phone, because I could hear him talking to the midwife's assistant. _He and Tyler came into the bathroom and I said, 'The water bag is coming out and I can feel the head." _The midwife's assistant heard what I said and told dh to get me onto the bathroom floor. _Our bathroom isn't big enough to stand in, let alone lay down in, so she told him to get me to the bed. _We still hadn't gotten the bed prepared and I refused to go until dh put a chux pad down. _dh didn't know what I was talking about and I had to search for the descriptive words to explain what a chux pad was·(he called it a tuck's pad, which almost made me giggle.)

Anyway, dh helped me to the bed and I laid on my right side, while dh described to the midwife's assistant that the water bag was out, but no head. _Meanwhile, ds was shouting, "oh no, mess, poop!" _dh was so great, he got some TP and helped clean me up, ran to turn the water off in the tub and unlocked the doors. _Meanwhile, our midwife had called and was less than 10 minutes away. _

I totally relaxed and although it was intense, I wasn't ready to totally push her out yet. _dh was great, sat by me reassuring me that everything was OK. ds was front and center checking it all out.

My midwife showed up and dh ran to get the birth kit, which was by the labor pool in the kitchen. _She gloved up, got as many chux pads underneath me as possible, listened to the babies heart rate and then she told me that I could go ahead and push with my contractions. _dh ran and got the camera and started filming.

Well there really was no way I could resist. _Pushing was just like I had always heard about and although it was intense, it did feel so good to push out this baby. _I remember looking down during one contraction and my belly looked like a pyramid, the contraction was so intense. _ds was right down by the midwife and then he moved over to the other side and watched the birth with his daddy. __I pushed a couple of times and then I decided I was done, so pushed a couple more times and dd was out, with all her water right behind her. _(My water had broken, but her head was so deep in my pelvis that all of the water was trapped behind her!) _She let out a couple of huge screams and cried for a while. ds jumped up on the bed by my head and I pulled my shirt up so the baby could be near my nipple. _ds proceeded to tell the baby to _"nurse" and kept pointing to my nipple and saying "Baby nurse!"

The midwife's assistant arrived right about then and my Mom called, just in time to hear dd really scream and for me to deliver the placenta. _We cut the cord and then we repositioned so that my midwife could start checking us all out. _I had a tiny tear that really didn't need a stitch, but since I am going to up and running after a toddler, she recommended a stitch and I went for it. _My midwife did all of the follow up care for DD and myself, then I got into the shower (dd had pooped on me, so much poop in my life!)

I felt pretty great and so I got dressed and Leslie and Cheryl stripped my bed and got it all cleaned, started some laundry and then took off. _We all just hung out for a while until my Mom showed up and we ordered some dinner·.things have been so great!

Anyway, I have been so high from this birth experience. _It totally exceeded my expectations and I feel amazing and completely empowered by the experience. _

DD was born at 4 pm on November 15th 2002, (her due date) and weighed 7 lbs 12 oz and was 20.5 inches long.

She is a full pound less then her brother at birth and and inch and a half shorter. _Second labors are definitely easier, especially when the kid is not as big as the first....
post #34 of 250
Wow, Iguana that's so cool!

Here's a couple of post-partum details I prefer to forget...we had a nightmare first couple of months b/c Meg wouldn't nurse right. Nipple shields, breast shells, pumping like crazy, bottles of breastmilk, formula supplementation, many tears (mine as much as Meg's), LCs, terrible pain, you name it we had it. I was so overwhelmed and sleep-deprived (we weren't cosleeping at first), and wondering what I had gotten into and sometimes regretting it. Thank God for LLL!

Now of course we are nursing experts and I am so confident it will be better next time. Can't wait to read the birth section!
post #35 of 250
Thread Starter 
Yes, Iguanavere! Very cool birth!! Thanks for sharing, mamas!!!

If you haven't written your child's birth story this will give you a reason to do so. I put it off until this week and I typed it in MS Word to put in ds's baby book. Of course I will edit what I wrote for you all and perk it up since I focused on the negative stuff to save space and time and cuz I'm such a dork. ild

Analisa~My breastfeeding situation with ds was exactly the same!!!!!!! I used a pump from the hospital and it screwed my supply all up and we also used a nipple shield for about two months. It took me months to get to a point where I just had to buckle down and figure out what I was doing wrong...no way can it get any scarier next time...I hope !!! Finally at nine months PP I stopped having anxiety attacks about having to go somewhere and worrying about getting clogs/mastitis/etc. if ds wouldnt nurse b4 we left or while we were out!!! UGGGGGGHHH!

Hugs to you all!!!
post #36 of 250

forgive the length...

A long journey….

Some history on this pregnancy might make the birth itself more interesting. This was my 2nd pregnancy after an eleven year break, and I was already 12 weeks and scheduled in a few days for the first heart beat appointment. My husband and daughter were out of town on an overnight field trip and I was at a restaurant with my parents.

All of a sudden I realized I felt a gush and thought, OH, my water broke, WAIT, I am only 12 weeks!, OH, I started my period, WAIT, I AM MISCARRYING! I remember clearly that thought process. No cramping, just gushes of blood that went on for about 30 minutes. I rushed to the car with my confused parents following but it didn’t take long because I was obviously miscarrying. No warning. We skipped the hospital after calling and explaining what passed. It was a miscarriage. I spent that night cramping and bleeding without my husband, grieving this loss. 12 weeks was enough time for me to have been completely attached to this baby.

The doctor appointment the next day determined the same thing, a miscarriage, and we scheduled an ultrasound to be sure there was nothing left to be removed by D&C in case of infections. Later at the ultra sound I laid on the table thinking about how I hadn’t even gotten to hear the heat beat, and here I was having an ultrasound to be sure I lost the whole pregnancy. It was surreal. I cried while being prepped and didn’t even look at the screen until the technician, aware of the nature of the appointment from my doctors note, said “you aren’t going to believe this…. there is a baby in here!” The technician had to wait about 5 minutes for me to stop screeching and shaking. I know it is dramatic, but after a 24 hour grieving period, it felt like a miracle. Like the baby died and came back to life. I didn’t realize then, that I had miscarried the twin. And even now the gratitude for the surviving baby overrides the feelings of loss over the twin I didn’t realize I had.

Still cramping and bleeding at the time, the risk of losing the remaining one was great. I was immediately put on bed rest and there the long pregnancy began.

Back and forth to the hospital with more bleeds, more cramping, a large separation between the amniotic sac and my uterine wall, which threatened to lift the placenta and compromise the baby’s development. Bed rest alternated from strict (bathroom breaks only), to modified, (sitting up a bit for small periods of time) and then back to strict from mid May to the end of October- 24 weeks, nearly 6 months. In my late 20 weeks, I was put on meds to stop the contractions that were causing my cervix to change. Very challenging, very scary at times, and for my husband the worrier, very stressful. And needless to say, this ruled out my idea for a home pregnancy.

Off of meds on Halloween, I was free finally to start moving around very slowly at first, and with all of the uterine activity, we were prepared that I might go into labor right away, but also prepared that it might just carry itself out another 4 weeks or so to my original due date of 11/29. Having worried about pre-term labor for so long, those last 4 weeks made the pregnancy seem like 2 years rather than 9 months. But when 11/26 rolled around and I felt the usual contractions become more consistent, I finally felt safe enough to be excited at around 9pm that night when my mucous plug began escaping. This told me my contractions were doing something constructive. I gave a heads up to Mom who would be there, as well as my husband and 11 year old daughter before going to bed. We actually slept until around 1am (myself off and on with the contractions) and then headed to the hospital on my midwifes instructions when they became six minutes apart.

My first pregnancy was induced and lasted only 6 hours, and my drive was over 30 minutes away, so my midwife didn’t want to risk a car delivery when she advised to go at 6 minutes apart. It was very important to me to experience going into labor on my own after the inductions experience, and I was so excited to tell them it was time. We all calmly gathered the last minute things and arrived at the hospital.

I wish I could say from here that my timing was perfect and the labor progressed within hours, but no, it drug on for quite some time. My Mom brought a rubber ball that was very nice to sit and roll my hips on, but I arrived at the hospital dilated to almost 4 cm, and immediately the contractions started spacing themselves out a little. We even took a nap for about an hour where my contractions seemed to stop, but then they proceeded as soon as I woke up! Strange. So on and on we went, the contractions went to 5 minutes and my cervix stayed the same.

Midwife showed up with my birthing pool and got us into the large birthing room. Very cool. She felt less distractions were better to get things progressing, so husband and Mom kept the visits short with family and friends beginning to arrive in the day.

By Noon, my midwife broke my water for me (which I now question), and it took some time to get the water past baby’s head all lodged into my pelvis. At this time I was still very focused and calm with my contractions, and found the pool the best relief of all. I would stand up and stimulate my nipples for the next contraction to make it strong, and then sink down to concentrate through the contractions. This went on for hours, and each hour I had to get out and be put on the monitors for 20 minutes since I was still considered “high risk” with the previous hemorrhaging. Getting out was hard and laying on the bed through the contractions even harder. I much preferred the water, but it became apparent that the water was almost too relaxing, so eventually I had to forego the water completely to progress. (which thinking about right now makes me wish even more that I could have done it at home- to not feel the hospital rush that I was progressing too slow).

My contractions were much more intense, like they were bordering transition, but it was now early afternoon and I was still not beyond 5 cm. This caused concern to my midwife that my uterus might be tired and unable to stretch my cervix further. She began suggesting pitocin which I strongly declined. I started analyzing my contractions and my bodies response and realized that I was still unconsciously holding my self tight in my bottom through each pain. She checked me before and after my experiment with relaxing my bottom through the contraction and actually felt a little difference. This was great to avoid pitocin, but a lot more painful for me. I was going to have to work to progress. I kept at it and felt much more pain. More time passed with these new and improved contractions but no more progress.

My midwife had me get on the bed so she could help my cervix through a contraction. Here is where I felt real pain. She was actually helping to stretch my cervix while having me half push through a contraction. It was white pain. My mind felt like it had no place to go with it. We tried it for a while, and while the pain was now waaaay more intense, I was still not progressing. She could stretch it to 7, but it wanted to stay at 5/6.

Again, looking back, I think I should have stayed with it, but in that delirium, I finally agreed to the pit and after serious haggling between contractions, a 3 mg dose of a muscle relaxant. It was like being stuck in transition, but not going anywhere. It was questionable where I would find the energy to push.

Now from here things get hazy, but my husband insists that the muscle relaxant gave me a “bad trip” because I became hopeless about my situation and expressed it several times that I was going to die, I didn’t feel safe, I was going to die, and finally – give me a c-section. The pain was unbearable. It is all I can say.

I didn’t get to birth in the pool, but ended up screaming on my back on the bed. I still cry thinking about that.

Once the pitocin hit, things moved rather quickly, and they gave me a counter shot to the muscle relaxant to help the baby’s reaction. (exactly why I was avoiding any drugs in the FIRST place!). And I learned, that this shot also inhibits your own natural endorphins that help you deal with pain.

So I pushed this 8#5oz boy out with no pain killers, not even my own! I could feel the hair on his head. I could feel his nose. His chin, his shoulder, his other shoulder. I could see only through a dark tunnel of pain, this joyful look on my husbands face as he assisted the baby out, my Mom crying and my daughter watching.

It wasn’t until I heard my midwife tell me “Reach down and get your baby”, that the tunnel cleared, and I actually pulled the remainder of his body out and laid him on my chest. I couldn’t look at anybody in the room. I could only see the squirming little boy prepping for his first breath which turned to a scream and immediately felt sorrier for him then I ever did for myself. He was the only soul that knew what we had just gone through, yet he was so little, how could he understand? I was so sorry he had to be uncomfortable at all. What a transition. Exhausted, split and wounded, I could only feel his pain right then.

So he ends up with the longest umbilical cord my midwife has ever seen. Not all big and sinewy, but sort of thin and frail. It measured a whopping 47 ½ inches (almost a foot longer than the long ones!) and it was wrapped around his neck 4 times. Another record for her. She and my husband explored the placenta to find the cord was coming from the side of the placenta rather than the middle and on the opposite side of the placenta, a fibrous clump that indicated where the twin had been. After months of wondering what the heck was going on in there, I could care less at that point. But my husband was good doing the inspection and reporting it all to me later.

I never let him out of my sight. They wanted to keep him for observation of his labored breathing- but I told them I’d observe, and he slept on my stomach the whole night. As sore and tore up I felt, his perspective was crystal clear to me, and he needed only snuggles and breast.

Amidst sore cracked nipples, full blown mastitis, and eliminating every food on the planet to ease his gas, I remember the worry of losing him, thinking of how difficult it was to get him here, and how we welcomed our little Ulysses Cole. Home from his own long journey.
post #37 of 250
Thread Starter 
That was long, but very touching. Makes me want to rewrite my story for my son's baby book...to add the sweet things I felt when I first met him! Everyone's stories are so inspiring to me! Makes me soooo sad that we are all so far apart. Now I want to meet all the babies after hearing their birth stories.
post #38 of 250


I have chills from reading these! I desperately want to respond, but dh is waiting for me downstairs to watch a movie . . . but Mamaste, our boys have the same middle name!!!!!!! Chills, I tell you!

More from me very soon, I promise. I'm writing my birth story every break I get!
post #39 of 250

I've been granted a reprieve . . .

Dh has given me 10 min to respond to you guys -- I'm so distracted by wanting to reply to you!

My mistake, that was mamakarata's amazing story -- and the one with a little Cole baby! I was mesmerized my your story. Right after I started reading I had to go put ds to bed and I was dying to get to the part where you found out you had a twin, bc I knew the ending already! What a trooper you are, Woman! That is one lucky little guy you've got there -- you gave up so much to shepherd him into this world.

Iguanavere, that was the kind of birth I wanted/planned (my mistake!) to have -- so lovely and peaceful! You inspire me that maybe next time around I can get a little closer to that birthing peace!

Momcat, I'm sorry you didn't get the natural birth you wanted, but I just wanted to acknowledge what a wonderful mother you were right from the start for making all those protective decisions for your ds! And you were present enough to keep your eye on the prize -- that beautiful baby boy!

CL, So sorry you had such a rough time. I was right there with you on the part where you said you were impatient for the doctor to fix you up already! Again, I am amazed by how you took a difficult and scary situation and turned it into the loving relationship you have with your sweet funny bunny! You, too, are an amazingly strong woman! Way to go, Girlfriend!

And MegsMom (using all usernames here tonight!), sounds like you also overcame some real adversity in the beginning. Truly it is a testament to your commitment and LOVE that you stuck with the BF thru all that and here you are today! (And I can't wait to read your next birth story . . . sounds like you have some PLANS for how it's gonna be diff'rent! Get 'em!)

OK, off to date-nite. Thanks for sharing, everyone!

post #40 of 250
Thread Starter 

"Birth" pages 160-164

This week we are officially on the "Birth" chapter.

Although some of us have told our birth stories, please do not feel obligated to do so, if you have not. Anything about birthing is up for discussion here.

Here's the first few sentences of this chapter~"The power and intensity of labor pulls us right into each moment. Each labor is unique. Like life, you never know how things will unfold."

Clink and namaste my mama friends...
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