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#1 of 5 Old 07-09-2004, 07:56 AM - Thread Starter
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I thought it would be fun to share our previous birth stories. This is the birth of our last daughter back in October

The Birth of Katie Susanna
Jen and Scott Weese Third baby, First Homebirth

Labor finally began the morning of October 29, 2003, 4 days past my due date. This seemed like a very long end to the pregnancy for me since both Colin and Cass were born at 39 weeks. Overall I had a pretty good attitude about it, although I had my moments. Besides, I had just helped support a mom through a 43 week pregnancy, so how could I complain.

I had a handful of contractions that woke me up overnight from the 28th to the 29th, but nothing very exciting. I woke up at 8AM thinking of what I could do to keep busy for the day, and decided to take the kids to a playgroup. I began to notice and occasional contraction and then during breakfast had a couple that made me stand up. Still skeptical, I began to time them and they started to come regularly at 3-4 minutes apart and were lasting nearly a minute. I finished breakfast and decided to get in the shower to see if the contractions would go away or intensify. I also asked Scott to call Patrice and let her know what was happening.

In the shower contractions spaced out but became stronger. The water felt nice and I decided to get out since I wanted to have hot water for the birth tub. I called Patrice back and asked her to come. I also had Scott call my mom and neighbor, Char, who was going to watch the kids and let them know to come over. It was 9:20 at this point. Char came over in about 15 minutes and my mom about 10 minutes after that. I was having to sway and move through contractions, but was not vocalizing yet and was able to go out and say “Hi” as people came in, but would retreat to the bedroom for contractions. Scott was busy making the bed and filling the birth tub. Somewhere close to 10AM I began to want Scott’s help through contractions. It was nice to lean on him and rock. I also had a labor stone to rub. At one point I sat on the toilet through a couple of contractions. I decided to analyze the sensation like Ina May Gaskin talks about in Spiritual Midwifery. I was very quiet and still through those contractions and they were very intense but not really painful. Scott said later he couldn’t tell I was having a contraction.

All this time I was waiting to get enough hot water to get in the birth tub and was getting very impatient. Come to find out that Char and my mom were helping with the dishes and had started the dishwasher. We had pots boiling on the stove and Char was bringing them in as they came to a boil. At about 10:30AM the water was finally warm enough to get into. I was becoming nauseated after contractions and was vocalizing through them. I knew I was going fast. We knew that Laurie had been called to come and it seemed like it was taking her an awfully long time to get there.

Once in the tub I was able to relax completely between contractions and move and moan through them. I went very deep into myself. During on contraction I stared into Scott’s eyes and told him I loved him. A little later my mom came in a cradled my head as I was leaning back on the tub. Her hands felt so cool and good at that point. I was really glad to have her there.

About 11:15AM I had a contraction that felt good to push through at the peak. I had Scott call Patrice and see where she was. She was on our road and would be here soon. She got here at 11:20AM. Contractions were coming every 3 minutes at this point, but it felt like they were much further apart to me I was so relaxed and almost dozing in between. I would push a bit during some contractions, blow through some and move through others. Sometime in here Kirsten (my fellow apprentice) arrived, I was very aware she was here and glad she had made it. A little bit before 12 I began to feel like I needed to poop and I asked to be checked and also told her with all sincerity that if I wasn’t at least 9cms to just tell me I was close. I was a stretchy 8-9 cms and was moving the baby down. Patrice held my cervix open through the contraction and I went to 9+ cms, just a small lip left. I asked her to do it again with the next contraction and I became complete.

Somewhere at this time Laurie called or was called and I heard Patrice say she was on our road and almost here. I said that it would be nice for me to wait for her if she was that close She arrived very quickly. The next contraction my water broke and I could feel it explode out into my hand as I was holding my bottom. I asked that the kids be brought into the room now, as I knew it wouldn’t be long. I became completely lucid for about 30 seconds and told them the baby was about to be born and that Mommy might make some noise. They stood at the edge of the birth tub and shined their flashlights in. I was squatting in the center of the tub. On the next contraction Katie’s head began to move down and out. Patrice said that she was right there and to say if I wanted her hands on my bottom for the birth too (Pre-natally I had wanted to catch the baby myself or with the least amount of help as was needed) Even though I hadn’t thought I would want her hands there I did and asked her to help. When the contraction ended I pushed Katie’s head back up and in because it was very uncomfortable being stretched that far.

The next contraction brought her head fully out. I said “Hi baby, I love you” Patrice asked if I wanted to check for a cord. I began to, but it was intensely painful to try and I asked her to do it. She found a very tight cord and right about that time dark green meconium spewed out into the water. I began to get another contraction, took my hands off my bottom and put them behind me while lifting my bottom towards the surface of the water and pushed hard. The cord was so tight that she needed to be somersaulted out, keeping her head right by my bottom and the rest of her body being born out past it. Right after she was born the rest of the cord inside of me loosened up and allowed her to be brought out of the water. I opened my eyes, saw the cord still looped, unlooped it myself and brought her to my chest. Birth time was 12:11 pm and I was so glad to be done. After a couple of minutes Scott announced it was a girl!

We stayed in the tub for about 20 minutes until the placenta delivered. It was wonderful to just sit and snuggle her in the warm water. Colin and Cass stayed in the room for a few minutes after the birth and then decided that the cartoons in the other room were much more interesting. I got out of the tub and moved into bed. Colin came in and with Scott’s help cut the cord. We could see Katie was a big girl, but we were all surprised when the scale said 10 pounds and 10 ounces!! She was 21 and 1/2 inches long with a 14” head.

Having Katie at home was so different than being in the hospital. Aside from knowing the safety of homebirth and wanting to avoid the risks associated with unneeded intervention the atmosphere and my outlook made it a much better experience. Laboring in the hospital I always had a bad attitude whined and asked for drugs, receiving them in one birth but not the other. This time I stayed very positive, telling baby to come out, that I was opening wide, that things were progressing quickly. I also felt very supported by my family and friends who were present.
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#2 of 5 Old 07-09-2004, 10:30 AM
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Megan was born on the 29th of November 2002 at 8:12a.m., and weighed 6lbs 14oz. She was 20 1/4 inches long.

Birth Story:

My contractions started at 12am on Wednesday November 27th 2002. By 3am they were 15 minutes apart and by 5am they were 6-7 minutes apart. I called the midwife at 5:15am, and she said to call her back if they got closer and stronger, or if my water would break.
I had a previously scheduled appointment at the birthing center at noon, so I waited until then to go. When I got there, I was 1 1/2 cm and 90%. But while there, the contractions slowed down to every 10 minutes. So, we went home, and they started back up again, but the times apart were all different. My dh decided to go to work...I told him he could, but I really didn't want him to. I had contractions all day, some regular for hours at a time, but this time I thought "I'm not calling the midwives again until my water breaks!"
Dh got home, and seeing me in pain (and all of the contractions were strong enough to make noise about) felt really bad he'd gone. I had contractions all night again (2nd night with no sleep), and called midwives again at 5am (Thanksgiving) to say "PLEASE check me...I am going insane, and have been in labor now for 29 hours!"
Back at the center for the 2nd time I was 3 1/2 cm and 100%. Midwife said I could stay there, but since the contractions still weren't regular, it could be a while. We left by 11:30 am, with instructions to go to Thankgiving dinner, eat some turkey, drink a glass of wine, and try to get a nap so that if I was going to have the baby by the end of the day, I'd be better rested.
So, at my parent's house for dinner, the contractions were back to five minutes apart, and I ate my meal between them. I hollered and moaned, and when they were over (some lasting 90 sec), I'd open my eyes, and everyone was watching me.
I went home when contractions slowed to 20 minutes apart, to try to nap, but they started to get closer.
My breaking point was around 7pm when I had a contraction with arms around dh, and started sobbing afterwards. He started crying too because he couldn't do anything to help me by that point, and we just stood there crying for like 5 minutes. We decided to call midwives again, and this time say,
"If there's no progress, then we want to go to the hospital so I can be induced."
Back at the center, I didn't show any progress, and by that time my blood pressure was really high, so they agreed the hospital was the best choice.
By 9:30pm I was in a bed and they were poking me for an IV (it took them 11 tries to get an IV and 3 tries to draw blood). They started the pitocin, and Dr. Neverauskas, the doctor on call, and the sweetest doctor in the whole world, tried to break my water, but it didn't break until he used the fetal moniter on her head. The contractions got worse and closer (Pitocin was working). By 5:30am the next morning I was 7 cm, and I was so tired of making noise (low moans, panting, and a lot of "Oh Gods!"), that I decided in my head that I need to shut up and conserve my energy for pushing. Everyone in the room thought I'd fallen asleep because I just breathed normally and didn't even flinch for the next two hours. I remember my mom saying "Look that one got up to a 10 on the moniter...she must be sleeping!" I said in response because I wanted credit for my silence "I'm not sleeping...I'm just sick of making noise!"
When I say everyone in the room, I mean, my dh, parents, brother, my brother's girlfriend, and then all the medical people. I wanted everyone to stay even though I originally just wanted my dh and mom.
At 7:30am I was at 10cm, so the nurse called the doctor who'd gone home, and let me start pushing while we were waiting for him. My one leg was in a stirrup, other was held by hubby, and my mom was by my head and I used her as a brace (which she could only stand for 20 minutes, and had my dad stepped in because she has back problems, and I was pulling on her with both arms. I pushed three times with each contraction. By the time the doctor was in the room, 40 minutes later, I could see the entire top of her head in the mirror, and the nurse said "Oh gosh, just little grunts!" I had to hold her in until the doctor was ready. He sat down and said "Okay, you can push!" My mom told me later he said "a little push", but I don't remember that. I pushed as hard as I could and she literally flew out. I heard her cry and they put her on my tummy. I couldn't see her very well, but my husband was crying....my whole family was in tears, and it was wonderful! Even though I knew from ultrasounds, I still asked if she was a girl.
I had a 2nd degree tear, and no epidural. The doctor gave me a great compliment when he said "I can't believe you've never had a baby before...you seem to know exactly what you're doing, and your pushing was really affective!"
I knew I'd love her instantly, and already had the whole pregnancy, but I am so in love with her, and love having her depend on me for everything. It feels so good to be a mother! It was a very long 56 hours, but she is definately worth every second!
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#3 of 5 Old 07-09-2004, 11:38 AM
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Korbin Kale
June 30,2003

One May 30 my dh came home from Iraq but due to complications in my pregnacy I wasn't able to go from MO to NC to greet him, about 2 hours after he landed at I started having hard contrax lasting what seemed like forever and then going away only to start again. I couldn't talk and I fell to the floor as the first one hit. Dh was at a hotel with his parents who "surprised" me and him and left MO (15 min from where I was staying ) to be the first to greet him and he was mad I wasn't there too and he hung up on me so mom had to stay home to wait for him to call back b/c we didn't know where they were staying : There was no way I could drive myself the 20 min to the hospital so I called my best friend who ran over and took me to the hospital. We pulled into the ER and they said because I was 31 almost 32 weeks they must be false but they would moniter me. I told them something was going on with my body (the had subsided some by then) but they just thought I was a nervous 20 something first time mom who's husband was gone and had nothing better to do than waste their time they hooked me up and my contrax were showing and they were like guess you weren't just panicking (duh) and then she said well I guess we will check you I was between 3 & 4 and he was dropped down REALLY far the nurse actually said a bad word and pushed a button and the room started hopping after she checked me the contrax came back to where I couldn't talk through them again, my doc came in wearing flannel pants and a t-shirt and I got 3 different shots to stop my labor and it worked!!!! I was sent home for bedrest and had to come in for steroid shots....now fast forward all that laying around is boreing. DH came home for a visit and doc took me off the meds b/c he thought with my contnueing contrax that as soon as I was off I would be in the same day, Dh had 15 days to be with me well I was still having irregular contrax and we walked and everything. Dh had to go back to NC I still couldn't and 2 days later I woke up to a horrible pain. DS had kicked me really hard again and took away my breath and made my leg go numb, he was famous for doing this and then wooosh my water broke I was like NOOOOOO, dh was coming back in 2 days for another leave. Still no contrax I woke my mom up and was like I am going to shower she was like No we have to leave NOW so I fought a bit still not hurting at all but we left we were about half way to the hospital and they were hard and fast I almost couldn't walk into the ER, they wheeled me into L & D and when they saw me they called my DOC he came in and I was a 6 2 hours later and no medicine my beautiful son made his apperance. It was surreal, he was here and dh was not. It was so easy, Doc said it was about time for something easy to happen with the pregnacy, I only pushed for like 15 min. and 13 hours later Daddy knocked on the door to our room and grabbed him up out of my arms and they have been buddies ever since, DH did make the 20 + hour trip in 13 which is a whole other story.

Doula mama to my 3 bugs
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#4 of 5 Old 07-09-2004, 03:18 PM
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Well, it has been a while, so I'll try to type it out as I remember it happening.

November 3, 2001

It had been a long day, even though it was Saturday, as I had attended a conference. I though about going to bed early, but I decided to wait for my husband to come home from work. I went to lay down for bed at about 9:30 at night and felt what seemed like a huge kick. My husband and I both heard an audible "pop." he said, "What was that?" And I replied, "I'm not sure, it felt like the baby kicked really hard." I was only 36 weeks, so I didn't think that my water had broken.

I got up to go to the bathroom, and I peed, and that was normal, but then there seemed to be fluid coming out. When I stood up and walked back tot he bed, it became more obvious, with fluid running down my legs. I told my husband that I was pretty sure my water had broken, and his face turned white. We didn't have a hospital bag packed or anything, so I grabbed a towel and held it between my legs, and we tried to throw some stuff into a bag really fast. I called my best friend Kim, and told her that my water was broken, but it might take a while, so she should probably try to go back to sleep. She said no, she wanted to come to the hospital too.

My parents were in the Maldive Islands, which is in the Indian Ocean, on a dive trip. I didn't know how to contact them. I also tried my sister, who was at a convention and was staying at a hotel in San Jose or San Fransisco. This bummed me out a little, that none of my family would be there. I rememebered, or my husband Justin did, to grab our phone book so we could call work and other important people. I called my aunt, who did her best to get into contact with my parents, and finally was able to, a few hours after the baby was born.

We ended up getting to the hospital around 11:00 or a little later. I wasn't feeling any contractions at this point. My birth plan was pretty much shot as they hooked my up to an IV right away with antibiotics because I was early, and said with an early and small baby, they didn't want me to walk too much because of the possibility of a prolasped cord. They did let me walk a little, but I was tired, and mostly wanted to rest. They hooked me up to the monitors and told me I was having contractions, but I still couldn't feel them. They checked me and I was a fingertip dilated but almost completely effaced.

I started having some feeling like menstrual cramps, but they weren't bad at all, and I told Justin that I thought I was maybe feeling contractions. Then they told me that if I didn't start contracting more pretty soon, they would want to use pitocin. I really didn't want pit, and I guess my body didn't either because about 10 minutes later, I was really conctracting well! They didn't do a lot of internal checks, because my water had already broken.

I was handling contractions well, and the anesthesiologist came in and described the epidural, etc. to me and I said no drugs. But soon the contractions seemed like they had no breaks between them and my body was shaking uncontrollably and it was really hard. My husband and I were not as prepared as we could have been (we didn't even get to go to the last childbirth class because it wasn't for a few more days) and he was not handling me being in pain well. At this point, although I had earlier been unsure whether I even wanted my mom there (she is a midwife) I was sad that she wasn't. I asked them to check me, so they checked me again and said I was 2-3 cm. I thought to myself, "OMG, I have like 12 more hours of this, and I can't do it!"

At that point, I asked for an epidural, and poor dh, so overwhelmed by my pain and the shaking did not even once try to talk me out of it. I wasn't mad at him, but I am a little disappointed in myself for not holding out, and i wish he had tried to encourage me to do without.

At about 3:30 AM I had the walking epidural, but even after the medication was supposed to "take" I still had no relief, and I hadn't walked, or gotten out of bed anyway, so I caved in and got the full epidural. I felt nothing at all below my breasts, which was an awfully strange sensation. I couldn't feel my legs or move them without help.

At about 5:30, they checked me and said I was 7! I was completely shocked, and that is when I got disappointed that I hadn't managed to hold out on the drugs because I appeared to be going pretty fast after all. My husband and friend took turns sleeping, and they told me i should sleep as well, but i was too excited, being 7 cm.

I had a lot of itching as a side effect from the epidural, so I asked my husband when he awoke to get lotion out of my bag so I could rub it on my arms and chest. Then I realized it was scented and I worried about it bothering the baby when she tried to nurse, so I asked a nurse for a washcloth to get the lotion off. She thought I was being silly, but gave me one anyway.

At some point, I would guess around 7 or 7:30 they told me that I was complete and could start pushing. I was really surprised, and thought that pushing would take a long time, so my friend went to get food for herself and my husband. When I started to push, I told them that I need to use the bathroom, and they said that it was the baby. So I explained that my bladder was full, and they catherized me. I didn't feel this at all, but they said that my bladder was very full and would have made pushing difficult.

I pushed for about an hour. My doctor arrived maybe 30 minutes in and told me I was pushing well. She was surprised at how quickly I had progressed. She also thought the baby was posterior, but turned during one of my pushes. I asked for a mirror to help inspire me, and remember her crowning, but not th rest of the pushing. Melanie was born at 8:30 am, with a hand up near her face. I had no tears at all, but a slightly retained placenta that was removed manually. I don't remember them doing this as I was just holding and staring at my baby. She was 5 pounds, 4 oz, and seemed alert. She was very pink and screamed loudly at birth.

She had a little trouble latching on at first, but quickly started gaining and by 2 months had doubled her birth weight. She is still nursing today, at 32 months! I hope to be able to tandem nurse when this new one comes along.
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#5 of 5 Old 07-14-2004, 12:06 PM
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Gareth was born on August 13th 2001 at 12:48pm. He was 8'9.5 oz. 20&5/8" long and his head was 14.25".

On Sunday the 12 dh and I had brunch at our local health food store. When we got home we were so full and tired we both slept on the couch. We woke up at 3:30. I had my first contrax at 4:00. It was very small. It just felt like a little tightening. Every once in a while I would have them. I told dh. I started getting things together. I packed our bag. I never had a nesting fase. I still had to wash all of our baby clothes. I asked my dad to bring over his vacum. He did and he vacumed for me. I told him that I was having contractions. At about 8:30 we went for a walk to a friends house. I wanted to get my Womanly art of Breastfeeding back. Her baby was 5 weeks old. I told them that I was having contractions. We chatted for a while. The contractions were getting stronger but not much. When we got home I went to lie down. I made a few phone calls from bed. At midnight we decided to go to the hospital.
When we got there I had to change, and they wanted to hook my up for an intial 15 min strip. I was only at 2cm. My parents came and I had a massage therapist who specializes in mother baby massage. I was the only mama there so I walked around and sat in the waiting room watching tv with my group. The contractions started getting harder at about 3:00 am. I had back labor so that helped. I was starting to be vocal but was still completely relaxed. Joann(massage therapist) really worked on my back counter pressure. I remember the night going fast. I sat in the whirlpool tub for a while. My mom who is a nurse kept telling me that I needed to be hooked to a moniter. I was so irritated with her. She also was the only one who told me to take pain meds. At about 4:30am my mom had to go to work she is a nursing instructor. She asked the nurse to check me again. I was at 4 or5 cm. At about 7:00am the nurse brought me breakfast. Oatmeal and a peach. I hadn't slept. I was starving. It tasted so good. I'm so glad we took a nap earlier. The contractions were really hard and frequent. I was squeezing dh hand so hard through each one I could see the pain in his eyes. My mom came back at about 8:00 am after she found someone to cover her. She was mad that they hadn't checked me while she was gone. My nurse was defending herself against my mom. She told her the risk of infection goes up every time they put their hands inside of me. My mom got all beligerent. But she didn't check me. I got back in the tub and I stayed there until I started feeling pressure. I had dh help me out. The nurse checked me I was at 9.5. Dr Iles came and I started pushing. I started using the squat bar. I pushed like that for a long time until my feet went to sleep. It was a perfect position for back labor. After my feet I layed back kind of on my side my mom and Joann each held a leg. My dad and dh each had a hand. I squeezed dh hand so hard. My dad took a picture of his purple thumb from the circulation being cut off. I was completely relaxed between contractions. I slept between them. My water broke While I was pushing. It burst all over Dr Iles. I remember apologizing to her. I know I asked for the mirror and my glasses so I could see Gareth crowning. It was completely amazing. His head was out for a while before his body. I know I closed my eyes and relaxed. He just came out. My body pushed him out. I pushed for almost two hours. The whole time my Doc was so extremely supportive and nurturing.

I think I had the best hospital experience. I received zero pressure for interventions except from my mom. I know this time she will not act like that. Mom has realized that ds is a great kid and that I am doing something right. She thought for sure he was going to be a spoiled rotten brat.
My Doc is totally AP. She is still nursing her 2.5 year old. She did hypnobirthing with her labors.
Wow I wrote a novel!!
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