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I planned to deliver at a FSBC that in my opinion is somewhat slanted towards the medical model. At 37 weeks, I tested + for group B strep. We were distressed, but after research, decided to go ahead with the IV antibiotics (which they could administer at the center).

At 40w4d my water broke and labor instantly began (after several days of prelabor contrax that came and went, I could tell this was the real thing). It was about 9:30 pm. Contractions were consistently 3-7 minutes apart, painful but bearable. I called the BC, and they told me to come in at 6 am the next morning (or before if we felt labor was becoming very intense). Contrax began to intensify towards morning, but were still bearable, about 4 on a 1-10 scale. I came in at 6 and got checked and had my first dose of abx; I was 2 cm and 80% effaced. I had had no internals in late PG (because of the strep) so it was not known if I had progressed or not. They sent me home to labor till 10 am.

By 10 am contrax were much stronger and I was moaning and needing constant back pressure. I was pretty sure I was having back labor--all pain was centered in my lower back. I had another dose of abx but was not checked again till 2 pm, at which point (16 hours into labor) I was only at 4 cm. The midwife also confirmed that the baby was posterior at this point. We began giving me cohosh tincture every hour and doing nipple stim to intensify labor. I was allowed into the tub (I was pleading and begging for it) which gave some pain relief, but labor was getting pretty horrendous. Contrax were still about 3-5 minutes apart, lasting about a minute, sometimes double peaking. FWIW, I remained upright, walking, standing for all of my labor except when I was in the tub--the pain was unbearable when lying down.

I received another dose of abx at 6 pm and was checked again. I was still at 4 cm. My husband and I began to get very discouraged. I knew also that "the clock" was ticking due to my broken waters and GBS status. To my great surprise, the midwife suggested Stadol. I declined, not wanting it to reach the baby. We asked for another few hours before talking about a transfer, and she agreed. During the time we tried a lot of hip swiveling and even the "rebozo technique" to attempt to turn the baby. I could tell it was not working, though. I was very distressed by this point and fairly tearful.

At about 10 pm, after being in labor for 24 hours with broken waters and GBS, I was still only at 4.5 cm (8 hours of labor with only .5 cm change). The midwife told us that we needed to go to the hospital to receive Pitocin so I could deliver. She also said that she strongly recommended the epidural, as she felt the pain would simply be too much once I was mostly stuck on my back, monitored and receiving Pit (I knew she was right, as lying on my back was sheer agony). She also felt that I was too exhausted and might not be able to deliver vaginally successfully without some sleep or rest. And she also mentioned that the "pelvic relaxation" from the epi would help me progress. I tearfully acquiesced and we transferred.

I got the epi about an hour later and began getting Pitocin--quite a high dose as I understand it. I did get an hour or two of sleep. At about 4 am, I was 10 cm. I pushed for 1.5 hours without much luck before changing to a hands and knees position that turned the baby anterior. Half an hour later, my daughter was born.

I was terribly disappointed by not having a medfree birth and hated the hospital experience. I have come to terms with it for the most part, but still wonder how this could have happened differently and if the transfer was really necessary. I was prepared to continue laboring without meds for at least another 5-6 hours. I know it's hard to evaluate a birth from afar, but if anyone has any thoughts on how this all played out, I would love to hear them.
 

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wow. You should be very proud that you had a vaginal birth in Florida! ( sorry, not trying to be snarky, as a doula in FLA I am serious!)
Anyway, as a doula in FLA and homebirth assistant, I can tell you that the laws are all over our bodies in this State. If you had been at a homebirth with a midwife that didn't mind bending rules, etc, you would have likely delivered fine at home. But it would have been outside the law. I have been on a few transfers that were JUST exactly like yours.
My suggestions for future births would be to think about the GBS test in the future , whether you want to go that route of testing, and perhaps treating preventatively in the last few weeks of pg.
Also, to consider the OTHER center, or a home birth . I know which center you are referring to ( I believe)...nice ladies for sure, BUT it is hard to relax when you know you are being constantly measured up against "rules"....who can deliver under such pressure?!?! I used to own the one in Ocala ( now closed). and we hated all the rules over the center- and tried to be creative at every turn

I think that you need to be disappointed in a legal system that prevents a woman's body for being on her own time table. Angry that Midwives cannot truly practice holistically in our State for fear of prosecution.
Your body worked fine- just not on the "time table" and graph that has somehow become "the standard".
Read up on non-pharmacological treatments of GBS, optimal fetal positioning, and other midwives.
AND take comfort in the fact that most 2nd time babies are a breeze. ( most)
 

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Thankyou for sharing your story, I myself have wondered and probed my own births for they were not what i hoped for. Personally, I believe a whole lot is affected by emotional space and the level of freedom and support in the process. I believe that if a woman is not feeling perfectly safe and has a hint of panic or pressure this will be a hindrance in progress. perhaps this is what was happening to you. The fear and concern due to the Gbs status and broken waters was part of my story as well. my waters broke on their own, labor was progressing steadily but slowly according to the standards, This definately affected me as did the atmosphere of the hospital. This is just my opinion.
It is a huge amount of factors to consider when looking at ones birth-story. If i were to sum it all its plain old CRAZY. a lot of times we do what we can and still it's not what we want. out of our hands many times it seems.
im sorry you didnt get the birth you wanted. but, remember you did all you could at the time and still it was a lot of work and you really did a great job.

Laura
 

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After reading your story, I think that your FSBC midwives used the medical facilities judiciously. The epidural allowed you to sleep so you could finish the BIG job of delivering your posterior baby.

My DD was born after 27 hours of posterior labor at home...it was horrendous...and terribly painful...then my DS was posterior also with a deflexed head and asynclytism...at home also terribly painful...

Imagine having two homebirths and still being afraid the third time around!
 

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I obsessed over my "failed" births for years. Then I realized I could do nothing about them. My last one was the worst with one disaster after another (all of which could have been avoided IMO) Anyway, I hope to never have to deliver in a hospital again. I am planning a homebirth this time and hope that it works out. I'm grateful for the five healthy children I have even if their births were way less than ideal!
 

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Good job on delivering your baby vaginally! I had a home birth, but I hate to think of what would have happened at the hospital. I was in labor for 3 days, I dialated to 7 right away and then did not dialate any more for 2 days! Next time I would suggest a home birth, you would probably be much more relaxed which makes a huge difference. Regardless of what happened during the birth, you now have a perfect daughter.
 

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It sounds like you did everything right -- everything you could have done. I am planning a FSBC delivery as well, and 99% of their transfers are for events like you've described; not emergent, but starting to move outside of protocols. I think if you'd had an OB you would have ended up with a C-section for "failure to progress".

Do not beat yourself up about this -- you had a successful delivery and a healthy baby.
 

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I agree that your transport happened b/c things were starting to go out of their protocols. I had a homebirth transport that I had to heal from. The staff treated me terribly and it took almost a year to heal.
to you. It sounds like you did a great job with a very hard labor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for your replies. It is helpful to continue to talk this out.

Greaseball, I am not quite sure, either. I guess the abx do not prevent all cases of GBS?

Keysmama, would it actually have been outside the law for me to continue laboring unaugmented past 24 hours with GBS and broken membranes?? That is interesting. I know they actually "gave" me longer than they were "supposed" to (by their rules).

I am considering a home birth for next time, but terribly fear another transport. It was just so disorienting and jarring and awful. The worst part was the way they whisked her aaway (just for weighing/tagging/whatever, but still) right after she was born. I had spent months anticipating that first hour or so of my baby just lying on my chest in the afterglow, and instead they snatched her away and didn't give her back for about 20 minutes, despite 9/9 Apgars.
 

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I too was transported from a FSBC to the hospital for the birth of my daughter. I was only in labor for 4 hours total. Arrived at the BC, was after 2:45hrs and was already 8cm, 10cm 15min later. After 10min of pushing the midwife (with hand held doppler) identified that Beth's heart rate plummeted each time I pushed and didn't come back up all that much afterwards. She monitored it for a few more minutes and then we all made the decision to transfer me.

I went over to the hospital on all fours on the gurney in the ambulance. They wisked me into a LDR and the BC's back up OB on call was waiting for us. Bethany was born 1:15 after I had arrived at the BC (about 15-20min at the hospital). The umbilical cord was tightly wrapped around her neck and was short. The birth was forceps assisted and I had an episiotomy due to that. Unfortunately I also tore a ton and have some pelvic floor issues.

Although I wish I could have had a complication free birth at the FSBC, I am perfectly fine with how everything worked with my labor and delivery. Bethany's umbilical cord would have been around her neck and short no matter where I had delivered her. I am CONVINCED that if I had been under the care of an OB/GYN and starting out in a hospital I would have had a csection. I found out from the nurses the next day that there was an OR all ready and waiting for me but that my midwife told them to hold it and told them to take me the the LDR.

My time in the hospital was not ideal, but not as bad as it could have been. Our midwives encourages all parents to take a tour of the back up hospital "just in case." We took ours and it was VERY helpful. After the tour I know all the "policies" and prepared a separate hospital birth plan in addition to our FSBC one.

I was able to put all our wishes into this birth plan and make them understand the Bethany would go NOWHERE w/o dh or myself. They did wisk her across the room for her vitals after her birth (so quickly that noone mentioned if I had given birth to a boy or a girl!), but they brought her right back to me as soon as they saw she was okay (high APGARS from the gitgo). Then dh held her while they stitched me up.

I wasn't thrilled with most of their policies, but we were able to opt out of them fairly easily. Since they are the back up hospital for the BC, they are used to parents declining the Hep B and eye goop as well as insisting on rooming in. I did have one persistant night nurse that kept waking me up and insisting that I would get more "rest" with Bethany in the nursery...but I politely told her no EVERY TIME.

Would I rather have had Beth at the FSBC?? Of COURSE! But I feel that everything was done for the right reasons and went according the the back up plans that the FSBC have for the situations that we encountered. I really have no regrets or second guessing with our birth experience and am eagerly anticipating going back when we are ready to have #2!

I think knowing that we did everything possible helps a ton in accepting the experience we had. Also knowing that if those same experiences in a traditional setting would have led to an entirely different outcome.

It sounds to me that your midwives exhausted all the "tricks" they could before resorting to the hospital transfer. Do they have privledges at their back up hospital?? I know ours do and I believe it makes a HUGE difference.

Hugs....keep talking about it ...it does really help!

Christine
 

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I just wanted to add that it ok to grieve over the birth you didn't have. I was transported and treated horrible at the hospital. They told me that my baby was going to die
and told my mother, who was already a basket case, that I was in serious danger. But they wouldn't tell her from what. They kept my baby away from me for over 24 hours all the while telling me she was dying. Then the ped came in to let me know how her first check up was and I asked her what was wrong with my baby--why are they telling me she was dying? She looked horrified. She told me that the nurses hate homebirthers and were basically punishing me for trying a homebirth. She then marched to the nurses station and yelled at them for like 20 minutes. Then I let them have it. We were perfectly healthy and they lied to us. It was the worst experience of my life. And I grieved for a year afterward. I know that my transport was nessicary(malposition with 10 hours of pushing) but it was still a birth that I had dreamed about that didn't go as planned. I had to heal from it and it was very hard. It took lots of soul searching and I finally had to accept that this was Maddie's birth and made my peace with it. I had another midwife assisted birth with my second DD and it was a very healing birth.

I hope you can make peace with this birth but do not be afraid to grieve.
to you.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Cyneburh
!!!

Things that helped...
writing about it. This helped a lot!
writing birth "wishes" for the next birth
talking about it even if it was just to myself as I drove in the car
knowing I'm not alone...


Here is a great article:

Making Peace with Your Birth Experience
by Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, PhD
LLL's New Beginnings Magazine, March-April 2002
 
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