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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm starting to think about the hospitals around here, and maybe I just need to write this out. My situation is a little complicated because I have Stiff Man Syndrome. It causes my muscles to spasm and lock up, and that is mostly in my neck and back. Because of this I have to be followed by an OB or CNM, so I found a very sweet OB that is open to natural births. I don't think any homebirth midwives would take me because of the fact that this would be a VBAC and also because I have a VERY rare medical condition.

My neuro suspects that my muscles will relax after the first trimester when relaxin spikes. If they don't, I'll just have a repeat c-section. If they do relax, I would like at the least a trial of labor. I really would prefer a natural birth - I wanted one with DD and didn't get one. With DD, I was exhausted from very strong Braxton Hicks contractions from around 27 weeks on, a muscle around my ribs tore from the muscle condition/large babe, and DD was sitting sunny side up with an anterior placenta. I had two ultrasounds at different locations that estimated DD's weight at 10-11 lbs. I knew that with this OB I would not get her out vaginally, and it was too late to find a midwife, so I gave in to the section.

Here are my choices...now that I write it out, it seems it would be between 3, 4, and 5.

Hospital No. 1 - I delivered DD there and used to volunteer with their perinatal loss team to provide keepsakes for parents. It'll be close to six years past, though. The hospital is big, but it is old. Labor rooms are individual, but overflow recovery rooms are tiny. I got stuck in a room with a woman that did not speak English and had stinky food brought in RIGHT after our c-sections. She proceeded to clog up the bathroom, and kept me up for two nights in a row, causing me to have a breakdown. That caused social services to come in and assess me for PPD, when really, I was freaking exhausted. Only redeeming fact is the high level NICU, but my medical condition doesn't really require one. My doctor doesn't practice here, so I don't think I'd go here unless I need the special NICU care for some reason in the future.

Hospital No. 2 - This hospital is only about 10 minutes away, with no freeway required. It is a smaller, but really busy hospital. Reviews say that it isn't bad, but they'd prefer to go elsewhere if they could. Only real advantage is that my neurologist is the head neuro there, and it would be easy to coordinate treatment.

Hospital No. 3 - This hospital is pretty new, and rooms are individual. They're fairly family friendly. My neuro doesn't have privileges, but that shouldn't be an issue because he could still call in prescriptions and chat with my OB. It is right across the parking lot from my OB. The hospital is within 20-30 minutes and we don't have to hit the freeway for this one, either. We have a tour scheduled in September since I haven't been to the L&D floor there. My grandma worked there when it first opened, but it has been awhile.

Hospitals No. 4 & 5 - Both of these hospitals are smaller satellites for #1 and #3, in small towns. They're each about 45 minutes away. The advantage to these hospitals is that they have small L&D units, and both offer water births. The big hospitals don't for some reason. The disadvantage is that since they are small, doctors and anesthesiologists have to be called in. My step sister gave birth at one of them 3 times, and I know that the hospital she went to only has 7 rooms. They're never full. My OB doesn't practice at these hospitals, but I'm sure she could set me up with a colleague if I really want to go for a hospital water birth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well heck. I just read that they closed the smaller hospital with 7 beds last month. That makes me wonder if water births will be made available at hospital #3.

Another strange thing is that on hospital group's "What to pack for the hospital" page, they say to bring a tub if the hospital does not have one available. How would that work if the room isn't set up for a tub? Would it be filled from the sink?
 
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