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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
StarMama asked me in another thread if I planned to go into labor naturally. I got to thinking about it and decided it's a great question for a thread just to see how much diversity there is in this journey (and I didn't want to hijack your thread, StarMama).

So, what are your birth plans? I want to preface this question by saying that with PAL I don't think there is a right answer - just a right answer for each one of us and our different situations. No judgements, a safe baby and momma are really all that matter in the long run.

I'll start by recapping my loss - I think it helps to understand the loss experience and how it's shaped my birthing decisions. Last August after 40 weeks of an uneventful pregnancy I was induced. Being my second birth I was already 3cm to 4cm dilated by the time I checked in. After 8 hours on pitocin and 4 hours of AROM I experienced incredible pain and some bleeding. My son's heart rate dropped to somewhere between 60 and 80. All hell broke loose in the delivery room and I pushed him out in 8 minutes. We found out later that there were issues with the way his cord inserted into the placenta and at some point near the end of the labor it tore and he lost most of his blood before we could get him out. He died from complications of that blood loss 12 hours later.

I'm due August 4th with our third. Right now I'm planning for another induction at 39 weeks if I do not go on my own before then. My doc has agreed to try cervadil to induce. I will not go with pitocin again. After 8 hours that last time I had only dilated one more cm than when I walked in that morning. My body just didn't respond to it. I also do not want AROM. If the cervadil doesn't work then we'll come home and take it day-by-day.

Sometime after 38 weeks I'm going to try acupuncture. I may try some other gentle, natural methods around that time, too. Not really interested in castor oil.

I'll be 35 weeks tomorrow and I'm already 3cm dilated. My doc thinks I'll go early. I don't know??? My first came on his own at 40w5d. I don't know when I would have gone with my second because of the induction. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that she decides to come early so I don't have to make a decision.

I considered an elective c-section. Early in this pregnancy it was all I could see as the answer. It took counseling to work it through and now that I'm farther along I feel that I can have another natural birth. I don't really want surgery and I've decided that if it is medically necessary then you bet I'll have one but not elective just because of my fears. I have to remind myself that we know what caused my son's death and this baby's placenta and cord are fine - we've checked. If I didn't know what had caused his death I might be much more open to one. If I'd had one before I would probably have one again.

It is such a tough journey and I want to let others know that this decision is a struggle. Anyone else want to share?
 

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Oh Cheshire, how hard to have to make birthing decisions when you lost your son at birth. Fiona had cord insertion issues (she had a whole mess of placental issues
) but we knew she was gone before they induced and I had a birth as peaceful as I really think I could have with the situation.

I still need to actually see the local peri to see how he wants to proceed, I know that the doctor who delivered said that generally with stillborns like this they want to induce a week early. That'd be 36 weeks for me then. I think I would be ok with an induction at 37 weeks, 36 just seems so early... but its really up in the air still, I want to hear from the doctors what they think and make informed decisions.

I do plan on delivering at the antioch kaiser facilities, as I know I will be on constant monitoring and they have the wireless variety you can even get wet. And I intend on doing as I did with my prior two births, working to avoid an epidural, but I also feel that once I hit 6cms if I feel like I need one (with Fiona I was cursing and writhing on the bed, not from the contractions, but it felt like my bladder was being ripped from my body... and now I have a bladder prolapse, so lookie at that!) as the main reason I want to avoid is to avoid not progressing, and with both children I had epis at 6 cms and birthed vaginally...

I'm a bit stressed out about how much I may have to push for some things I want, but I also feel like I'm being really reasonable, I want the baby handed directly to me, and I will have my hands down there in the middle of everything to touch and feel and try to catch (Fiona was too slippery and... floppy to catch
) as well. And I definitely intend on having a doula. I want my 3 friends who were at Fiona's birth (and one was at Orion's as well) there. I want Orion there. I want music this time around (planned and didn't happen for the prior two births). Candles. The quiet early am hours of Fiona's birth was so peaceful, I hope to get that to some degree as well (but I know I will be checked on a lot more than with Fiona... she was already gone, so no baby to monitor, just me).
 

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You're in Antioch, Starmama? I used to live there.


I'm planning a homebirth. Since Duncan passed away due to complications with Down Syndrome nothing really changes as far as my birth plan. Assuming everything goes well with the diagnostic u/s in my 5th month, I'll be preparing for a homebirth. My induction experience took a huge toll on me. So very different from what we had been planning.

My mom, sister and maybe a friend will be there. I feel bad Mark won't be there. He won't get to witness the happy ending.
I want a lot of pictures taken. I think I'm going to hire a birth photographer. Normally Mark or myself would be taking the pictures, but I don't think I'll want to hassle with setting up and all that stuff and timers while I'm in labor.

I want it to be a peaceful and serene experience. Nice and cozy. I'm due right around Winter Solstice and Christmas. It's my favorite time of year. I know I want candles lit and relaxing music. When I was still pregnant with Duncan I fantasized that cookies were baking in the oven. The smell of warm cookies. Yum.

I'm planning on having acupuncture done once I get settled in ATL. The labor acupuncture starts after 39 weeks, I believe. I was planning on having acupuncture done when I was pregnant with Duncan.

I still worry about something going wrong during the homebirth or facing stillbirth again but due to another or unknown cause.
 

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I had a c-section with Gwen after many days of labor that got my cervix NO WHERE.. I was ready for my VBAC with Dresden, then found out that he died. The easy choice was another c-section. I honestly didn't even give it much thought. I knew they wouldn't induce (because of the previous section) and I knew that I didn't want to wait to see my son. This time I'll be having my third c-section. Early, 37 or 38 weeks. If I go 37, I'll need steroid shots and a couple of extra days before birth in the hospital. I'm leaning toward 38 weeks.. at the moment, I feel like I can wait. Maybe by the time I"m 36 weeks, I'll be an insane mess and decide that I'd rather do 37? I'm due the same day as Dresden was due last year.. 39 weeks for this pregnancy is his birthday. My biggest need, is to be nuzzling my newborn ON his first birthday - AT HOME! I don't want to be anywhere near the hospital on his day. I feel good about how things are going.. I'm a little worried about the surgery though. The other two times were in the 'heat of the moment' so I didn't really think about it.. this time I've got lots of time to think about it, and it's SURGERY and no one likes being cut open! I also hate the way I get so shakey on the Operating table.. but mostly what I want, is to hear my baby girls cries!! To feel her moving body in my arms.. I've only got 9 or less weeks to go!! EEEEEEEK!
 

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Hi Cheshire,
I know how hard it is to imagine birthing when your last experience was so agonizing. My first daughter was stillborn at 39w4d. We discovered she had died when my midwife came to check on me at home - I was in transition but she couldn't find a heartbeat. My baby died before labor began but it FELT like I lost her in labor because that's when we learned she'd died (of a fetal-maternal hemorrhage possibly due to a placental abruption).
With my son, the perinatologist recommended biophysical profiles once a week for the last few weeks and induction at 38 weeks. But despite three rounds of cervidil nothing was happening. The baby was doing great on all the monitoring. I refused AROM because my cervix was closed and firm - and I'm so glad I did or I would have ended up sectioned. I asked if they could send me home to wait for a day or two and they told me I'd be putting my baby's life at risk. Then they sent me home because they were too busy (and I was clearly not an emergency)
I had a daily NST until they admitted me again a few days later. My son was born at 38w5d in a fast, intense labor using pitocin. I accepted AROM when labor was well-established and his head engaged. I asked for an epidural but he was born too soon for it to take effect.
A couple of things I'd suggest:
• If you use cervidil, know that vaginal exams after it's inserted are REALLY painful. Consider asking for some pain relief. The nurse commented that she couldn't believe I could stay on the table when my vagina was "like hamburger."
• An alternative to cervidil is a Foley catheter induction - basically a balloon of water placed on top of the cervix to manually stretch it.
• Make sure the hospital has a telemetry system - wireless fetal monitoring - and that it's working so you can move around and labor in the tub.
• Also, here's a useful link about minimizing the risk of induction:
http://www.hencigoer.com/articles/el...duction/#risks

Emotionally, I thought I'd be a basket case and begging for a section by 38 weeks. But I felt really strong - Leo was doing so well on every measure of fetal wellbeing and was so active in utero and my husband with with me every minute. I tried to keep thinking "different baby, different outcome."
Good luck, mama
 

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Nope I live in Concord, close to Antioch
But the new kaiser hospital in Antioch is SO much nicer than Walnut Creek. Also Walnut Creek is where Fiona was born and I'd rather be at a different hospital. Of course Orion was born at Walnut Creek too, but Fiona's birth is much more recent in my memory.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by StarMama View Post
Nope I live in Concord, close to Antioch
But the new kaiser hospital in Antioch is SO much nicer than Walnut Creek. Also Walnut Creek is where Fiona was born and I'd rather be at a different hospital. Of course Orion was born at Walnut Creek too, but Fiona's birth is much more recent in my memory.
I haven't been to Antioch or the Bay Area in 4 years. I know a lot has changed since I last visited. Where's the new hospital in Antioch located? I lived in Martinez as well.

I definitely understand wanting to birth at a different hospital.
 

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Awww, my brother was born in Walnut Creek! We lived in Concord at the foot of Mt. Diablo. Loved that mountain!!

Birth plans - well, I have mine mostly constructed. It's on the other computer ATM, but here's the sum of the optimal plan:

Go into labor naturally
Labor at home with my doula (who is a homebirth midwife) until I have to go to the hospital
No induction; no augmentation (raises the risk of uterine rupture in VBACs)
Consenting to heplock
Not consenting to AROM
Not consenting to ERCS w/o medical indication
Use of shower and/or labor tub
Use of telemetry
Pushing from upright and/or all 4s
Allowing the placentas time to detach on their own (no active management of 3rd stage)
Immediate contact with the twins
Delayed routine newborn interventions for 2 hrs

I'm sure there's more that I"m forgetting...
 

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The one in Antioch is on Deer Valley Road, about as far away from Concord and still being in Antioch as possible!

My hubby just rode his bike up to the top of Mt. Diablo a couple weeks ago
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by StarMama View Post
The one in Antioch is on Deer Valley Road, about as far away from Concord and still being in Antioch as possible!

My hubby just rode his bike up to the top of Mt. Diablo a couple weeks ago

It will be interesting going back. I want to see how much has changed. I graduated from Deer Valley.
 

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Thanks for starting this thread, Cheshire. I am scheduled for a repeat C/S on Monday. I'll be 38 weeks. My first baby died in labor last year at 40w6d. It was a beautiful labor at a birth center. When I first started pushing, Baker had two heart decels, so my MW transferred me across the street to the hospital, where suddenly his heartbeat could not be located. I was rushed to the OR, crashed under general anesthesia, and woke up to find my husband holding our dead son. It's possible that his cord was compressed somehow, but we'll never know for sure. For this baby, I was told that I could VBAC if I wanted to, but I don't think that I could emotionally/psychologically go through labor again, knowing how it turned out the first time. I'm hoping that a planned, controlled C/S will be very different from the terror of being crashed. As long as this baby is healthy and well when he is born, the plan is for DH and baby to stay with me in the OR, and then we all go to recovery together.

As for monitoring, I started twice weekly NSTs at 32 wks and have had several U/s and BPPs recently. Baby looks great and my fluid levels are normal. Five more days to go. It can't come soon enough.
 

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WOW Dalene!! MONDAY!
:
 

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I'm still early in this journey. We lost Gideon to a cord accident during birth. He lived on machines for another day, but he never really lived. We had a beautiful home birth, and I am really glad that, if it had to happen, I at least had that wonderful, peaceful experience with him.

Garrin and I talked a bit about birth options when we were pregnant with Butterball. We are both still wanting an out of hospital birth. He wants something closer to a hospital, feeling that our house is too far away if something happens. I am all about another home birth. I can't imagine it another way, for me. I totally understand the route of planned c-section and don't doubt that it's the right choice for many mommas in our situation. It's just not for me.

I know it's been said before, but I think it bears repeating: I love that we can talk about these things here and support each other without judging or berating each other. It makes me proud to be part of this community.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MommaSomeday View Post
I know it's been said before, but I think it bears repeating: I love that we can talk about these things here and support each other without judging or berating each other. It makes me proud to be part of this community.
I totally agree!


Dalene, you are so close!
: YAY!
You and your precious boys are in my thoughts.
FWIW, I also chose a scheduled c-section for my Rainbow's birth,
and had it my way, as much as possible. It was truly a joyful experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thinking of you, Dalene. Monday can't get here fast enough!!!

I now have a bit of a quandary. I talked to my doc at my last appt on Tuesday about the induction. Before she had said cervadil was a more "humane" option than pitocin. On Tuesday she asked me to look into it some more. She said that it can cause hyperstimulation (she didn't use that word but that's what I understood her to mean) and even though it can be removed it doesn't get the drug out of your system right away.

She said that for moms who have given birth before and who have not responded well to pitocin in the past she recommends AROM (especially because my cervix is ripe - at 35 weeks I'm 3cm dilated).

I don't want AROM - I know it's part of what caused my son's cord to tear during his birth last year. She said she understood but to think about it. So the more I think about it the more I don't want to stress my body out with anything. I don't want to risk stressing this little one out with artificial labor.

So, now I'm thinking I might just let this baby come when she is ready and not induce at 39 weeks. I keep praying that she comes on her own before 39 weeks so I don't have to decide. But, with my track record I'm sure she'll wait until 40 or more.

Anyone have any suggestions or words of advice? I'm still going to try accupuncture. PAL really throws a kink into just waiting.

UGH!!!
 

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Cheshire have you thought of EPO? I took one at both ends to help the cervix ripening, also RRL tea. Might just help things get ready naturally. Oh and out here women in labour who live on a non paved road generally get to the hospital with 5 mins to go. So try a little gentle off roading when you're ready to speed things up. I think it's the bouncing on the cervix that gets things going quick.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MommaSomeday View Post
I know it's been said before, but I think it bears repeating: I love that we can talk about these things here and support each other without judging or berating each other. It makes me proud to be part of this community.
I agree too! And thanks to Cheshire for starting this thread. This topic has been on my mind a lot lately. My first birth was a hospital induction with pitocin and a whole host of interventions I didn't want or need; in the end all I could say was "at least they 'let me' deliver vaginally." My second birth was supposed to be at home, but we discovered a fatal chromosomal defect at 23 weeks and I was induced in a hospital (technically, an abortion: another topic that's been discussed on this board without judgement, thankfully). For this pregnancy, I've been clinging to my high-risk OB since pre-conception, but have been telling her all along that I'm planning a natural delivery and the hospital policy is pretty supportive of natural childbirth. I have a great doula, and we'll try to have a decent hospital birth, but I'm grieving the fact that this baby won't be born at home.

The bottom line is that we're each making informed decisions, trying to balance our fears with our knowledge, and supporting each other in all of these tough decisions. Cheshire, I hope you go into labor soon if you haven't already (you're 36w 2d today, right?)! I don't know enough about cervadil or AROM to provide any insight, but I'm thinking of you all the same.

Jen
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by MommaSomeday View Post
I know it's been said before, but I think it bears repeating: I love that we can talk about these things here and support each other without judging or berating each other. It makes me proud to be part of this community.

Quote:

Originally Posted by MommaSomeday View Post
I know it's been said before, but I think it bears repeating: I love that we can talk about these things here and support each other without judging or berating each other. It makes me proud to be part of this community.
I agree too! And thanks to Cheshire for starting this thread. This topic has been on my mind a lot lately. My first birth was a hospital induction with pitocin and a whole host of interventions I didn't want or need; in the end all I could say was "at least they 'let me' deliver vaginally." My second birth was supposed to be at home, but we discovered a fatal chromosomal defect at 23 weeks and I was induced in a hospital (technically, an abortion: another topic that's been discussed on this board without judgement, thankfully). For this pregnancy, I've been clinging to my high-risk OB since pre-conception, but have been telling her all along that I'm planning a natural delivery and the hospital policy is pretty supportive of natural childbirth. I have a great doula, and we'll try to have a decent hospital birth, but I'm grieving the fact that this baby won't be born at home.

The bottom line is that we're each making informed decisions, trying to balance our fears with our knowledge, and supporting each other in all of these tough decisions. Cheshire, I hope you go into labor soon if you haven't already (you're 36w 2d today, right?)! I don't know enough about cervadil or AROM to provide any insight, but I'm thinking of you all the same.

Jen
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hi Everyone,
Yes, 36w2d. Still waiting. The more I think about induction the more I think I just want to let nature take its course. I've made it this far without going crazy and I think she'll come sometime around 40w.

When it think about my induction choices I keep thinking "do I really want to go messing around with it?" "Do I want to take any extra chances???"

I guess I'm just taking it day-by-day and I still have a few more weeks to make up my mind (doc won't induce until 39w anyway unless we have a medical reason).

Dalene, thinking of you and hope your c-section went beautifully (I haven't seen an update - guys, let me know if I missed one).
 

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Dalene's baby came on the 4th! It's posted on her blog.
 
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