Choose to Give Birth Alone – Witness

“Giving birth or give birth?”  This phrase has taken his popularity in Quebec in the 1980s, is it still relevant? For Rachel who chose to give birth by herself, YES, “birth or give birth” is the foundation of his vision from birth. And since we made ​​it very clear qu’accoucher hospital was accepting SE give birth, she did her research, has informed debunked childbirth and chose to give birth to her son very place where it was designed …

Interview with Rachel,

mother of an only child, born at home without medical assistance (ANA)

Q: People in general have never heard of free birth (another term for ANA), you knew people who had given birth in the family?

Rachel: No! In the beginning of my pregnancy, I read the story of a woman who has made an ANA (unassisted childbirth) and I said, “Ouch, that’s extreme donation bin. Each for himself, but it’s not for me! ”

And then I started reading about the interventions, about the protocols, about women unhappy that their delivery was their “stolen” by doctors, about the rights of pregnant women …

And I’m shocked. My feminist side has completely proceeded, finally. I have all the time been a feminist, but I did not know how to talk about – but there, I found my cause.

Q: And deliver with your lover, home, made you afraid? Did not you afraid your baby dies at birth?

Rachel: No, at all. I knew the risks were greater than myself I die on my way to the hospital (because the vehicle) my baby dies because of a home birth. (1)

But I am ready to accept the death that is part of the possibilities. I did not want a perfect delivery, without any risk, I wanted a clean delivery to us.

“I do not make my choices thinking of my fears, but thinking of my hopes” (2)

Q: How does one prepare for such an event?

Rachel: I wanted the material used for delivery is minimal. What I used during delivery is a hot water bottle and a plastic sheet. After, lots of towels, two bottles to water the perineum, a mixture of herbs and a candle to cut the umbilical cord.

Question mental, physical and spiritual preparation, I got softly. I practiced letting go. I kept a great curiosity for what my body was doing and I was trying not to interfere in one way or another. I surrendered to nature, wild, knowledge millennium and universal women. I trusted in my body to do what it should do, simply.

I practiced the relaxation all, including the mind. I read everything I could: testimonials, technical books, spiritual books, statistics, facts, books to clear my head. I inquired of the risks and I fully accepted them.

Each day, I fed my body good food, patience, understanding, acceptance, support. I was talking about childbirth to my spouse, my expectations, my hopes. I listened to my primal instincts, one that is so quiet. Although I was mentally lucid throughout, I was not thinking about my body, I let him do what he wanted.

Q: And your spouse, it was comfortable to take the role of “midwife” for a night?

Rachel: My husband says he does not deserve “Congratulations” (when some people say to her: “. Congratulations, Dr. Papa”), that only made the household and he does not understand why People make such a big event.

The “letting go” is the most complicated for some people who want to help too or who panic and want “their wives no longer suffer.”

It’s pretty amazing to have men like this in our lives.

Q: Research has shown that a woman who gives birth releases the same hormones during sex. (3)   Do you see a link between sexuality and childbirth?

Rachel: Absolutely. For me, childbirth and even breast feeding is part of sexuality. In all cases, there is an orgasm (hopefully two, but that’s not always the case), pregnancy, childbirth and, hopefully, breastfeeding for at least 2 years. All this is sexual. It secretes oxytocin affection for the partner, in orgasm, in birth and to breastfeed. In fact, I “prepared” childbirth in several sessions with my vibrator. Orgasm is a series of spasms of the uterus and childbirth is the same, the more intense sense. I tried masturbation during my delivery, but unfortunately it did not work for me. There were already so many intense feelings that I could not concentrate! Orgasmic birth may be a next time!

Also, a woman must be put in the same conditions as those having an orgasm: sense of security, not feeling ‘observed’ confident ‘in a bubble’ minimal vocabulary, privacy, etc .. Imagine try to have an orgasm while someone feels you to see how many centimeters the cervix is? Breastfeeding is the same: the woman should feel comfortable, supported, in a good environment … these are all essential things for the success of orgasm, childbirth or breastfeeding.

Q: In ancient societies, it is generally expected that the placenta was born and the baby breathing well before cutting the umbilical cord. (4) This is a trick that you knew? You have applied?

Rachel: I was not much information about the placenta until I read the book ‘placenta book’ Robin Lim. In this book, there is not only the historical aspect, but also spiritual and physiological. The ritual of burning the cord with a candle comes from this book. I had never really thought deeply about what was for me the placenta. But in reality, it can be seen as the genetic twin of the baby carrier intelligent of all nutrients and essential for pregnancy, in every sense. I really wanted to honor this aspect of birth that, nowadays, is almost not mentioned.

So yes, I read these facts only days before the birth of my son and I assured myself that alle baby before weaning the cord into compliance. Other  tricks of this book: If the baby has difficulty, is not strong enough at birth, stimulating the placenta massage and heat could make a last vitality of the placenta to the child – Also, in case of bleeding, testimonials to eat a piece of raw placenta …

Thank you very much for Rachel this rich sharing and congratulations.

<<To see a picture of mama and baby, or to read more from this author, click here>>

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Catching Susanna

So many things, like time, like rest, like fear,
Like apprehension and anxiety, feelings of inadequacy,
They all just seem to disappear
In the perfect moments, those ones
Where God removes the escape hatches,
And doesn’t let us press that eject button,
But stands there with us in the embrace
Of all encompassing presence, face to face.

She let me know it was time, the clock was ticking,
And though there seemed a lifetime between each pulse,
Action was needed now. We had to move quickly,
So we did. We had to be ready,
So we were, and I’ll never know the pain,
Only she could feel that, but I could see it,
And I could hear it, and I just wanted it to end
Though I knew what its end meant.

It meant I would be the first to touch, to greet,
To make contact and welcome what would in a minute be her,
And it meant when she came to us, it would just be us three,
In our room, in our bed, in our home, the same room,
Just mere feet away from exactly where we met her sister.
Please God, let it not be like that was. I’m not equipped. She saved
Her life, but she’s not here. It’s just me and an amazing mother
Doing her part. No, It’ll be fine. There is no choice, no other.

As fast as it was, it crept, compared to the moment she came,
A head, for just an instant, then like the release of a kinked hose,
She blasted into this world, into my hands. I felt her warm frame,
Slippery, slimy, but she coughed, she breathed, no cord, all clear,
I must have had her in my hands less than a second, but she’s alive.
I could feel her life, and I just knew, she breathed and I with her
Then I like a second basemen turning two, quickly passed her on,
I placed her in her mother’s hands, and just like that my job was done.

All three were different, and each had its own fear, its own fight,
And each left its mark on me. God knows I wasn’t ready to be a Dad,
A man of responsibility, with a sense that moments matter, so he gave
Me these, and I stand in thanksgiving to Him and to her, my wife,
For bringing me into the moment, to be a part, a real part, of something
I could have otherwise avoided, playing the spectator on the sidelines.
Instead I got to fight for one, to pray for another, and deliver the last today,
Though days of doubt will come again, I’ve thrice now known presence, grace.

 <<To read more from RevCoachAtkinson, click here>>

Planned Unassisted Home Birth

~ THE PLANNED UNASSISTED HOME BIRTH OF TAHLIYA GRACE AMBER ~

23 APRIL 2012 – We are 42 weeks and 2 days pregnant with our third girl. My name is Amy, I am 28, and this is the most pregnant I have ever been after our 42 week girl, our 41+5 girl and an early miscarriage also.

We settled in for an afternoon of dancing and singing and just generally mucking around relaxing with our toddler girls aged 2 and 3, and let out all the crazy to our favourite CDs turned up loud in the living room.

Had been having Braxton Hicks on and off all day since we got out of bed but given the excess of Braxton Hicks I had felt for the last few weeks, I thought nothing of it except how tired I was from them all.

I was prepared to go do bed once again still pregnant, however much I wanted to meet her I had come to terms with the fact she was coming in her own good time. I was relaxed after the crazy fun day our toddlers had helped us to have and thankful to God for the beautiful girls and wonderful husband He had already blessed me with. I handed every care over to Him as I had done so many afternoons before now, and felt at peace although very, VERY pregnant hehehe.

5PM: Fed kids early dinner and I help hubs get the kids to bed (they were tired early this day which was a blessing it turns out). Sitting on the little one’s bed snuggled with my daughters, reading my girls a story and I find myself VERY agitated. I’m sore and achy, hot, uncomfortable, cross and unable to sit on the bed anymore. I call to my husband Liam “can you come here and do this please love, I just can’t sit here like this anymore!!” He stepped in and took over story time like a gem. Once he had the girls story done and tucked them in I went and kissed them goodnight and moved to the kitchen to start to clean up after the day. Asked hubby to go get some Milo (hot chocolate drink) as I really needed one and we didn’t have any, he said he would go out for some soon.

~Hindsight note; I thought it was just my sore back and hips which had been bugging me from about 30 weeks but looking back I realise the textbook unbearable teeth gritting agitation at sitting still I was feeling then, I had only have ever felt while in early labour hahaha!!

5:30PM: While cleaning up the kitchen and starting dinner for hubby and me I realise the slightly more bitey Braxton Hicks I’ve been noticing since 4pm could be more like actual real contractions, go to the loo and get a very mucousy and slightly blood-tinged show. First time I had ever noticed that with any of my labours which I was thinking to myself was kind of cool. Haha, the things you think while in labourland. I told Liam perhaps he had best stay home rather than go out to get Milo, and how did he feel about having a baby tonight? We both got very excited but tried not to get our hopes up, it had been a long pregnancy already (42 weeks and 2 days is a long time to wait to meet a little person you love so very very much!) and we didn’t want to get too excited if she wasn’t really coming. I thought I should try finish getting dinner ready so we could eat something in case it turned out to be a long night. I made crumbed fish fillets, chips and salad and found myself having to stop an awful lot to breathe and to lean on the benches or stand hands on hips and sway a little. Getting very excited now I told hubby (almost squealing with the happy) “you know I think she’s really coming honey, we’re having this baby TONIGHT!” Liam was excited as was I and being Mr practical pants asked me what I needed, and did I want him to set up the pool. I thought about it and decided best not as we didn’t want to wake the peacefully sleeping toddlers (Miss 2 and Miss 3) in the next room so we decided to go for our third land birth. I went about finishing off getting dinner out and reminding him where everything was that we had prepared for the birth (herbs and tinctures, waterproof mats and sheets, old clean towels, cord scissors and braided cord ties, placenta tub, placenta smoothie ingredients cut and bagged in the freezer etc etc)

6PM: (or thereabouts?) I’ve been nibbling at my dinner at the kitchen bench *hubby nibbling his while playing a computer game* I’ve been stopping to sway through waves, humming a little and cleaning up dinner prep dishes in between. I wanted to go sit on my big pink fitball and rock and roll our way through waves but I still wanted to eat, so Liam came and sat on the end of the chaise lounge next to me while I sat on my ball and tried to chew, not drop my dinner plate, sway through waves and stop now and again to tell Liam how excited I was she was really coming tonight!! I distinctly remember giggling at myself a few times when hubby went off to do some computer game stuff or get me a bottle of water or fetch some birthing supplies and I tried to get a mouthful of dinner only to have to drop the plate in a hurry and concentrate hard on the wave of labour that washed over me… Haha, I realised we might not have long and I really needed to eat for energy so I wolfed down what I could between waves but stopped with half a fish fillet and a bunch of chips left over. I either couldn’t be bothered, or couldn’t manage to eat between waves. I just wanted to close my eyes a lot and not be holding anything in my hands so a fork full of dinner wasn’t really going to work hehehe.

<<To read the rest of this birth story, click here>>

Regans Freebirth Story

I hopped in the bath and Kim started setting things up downstairs for our planned water birth. Unfortunately, shortly after starting to fill the pool, we realised it had a leak. Since all our stuff was downstairs (blankets, pillows, birth baskets, etc), we were going to stay there, but I wanted to be near the tub, so Kim hauled everything back up. Such a trooper! Sinéad was doing really well the whole time. Kim told her when I was vocalising through some contractions that it meant the baby was coming. So every time she would get a big grin on her face and say “Baby coming!”.

I really found that either being in the bath, moving around a lot (I “danced” through some contractions) and making low, strong sounds, really made a difference, helping me integrate the progression. I also said to myself when I had some really intense ones, that it felt so good, and the self talk made a difference too. Towards the end, I squatted through some as well, and that helped open me up and relieve the pressure. Around 5 pm, I came into the bedroom.

Sinéad told Kim she wanted to lay down for a nap, so she was on the single bed we have right next to our queen bed, and Kim covered her up.

I knelt against the end of the bed, and one really strong intense contraction almost overcame me. It didn’t, but it was an amazing one, and I could really feel it opening me up. I am quite positive that I dilated fully at that point, and that Regan moved down some more. Kim said ” Maybe you should get on the bed now.” I did…as that was where all of our pads and stuff were located. I knelt again, like I did when I was birthing Regan. So far, my favourite position to birth in! I concentrated on relaxing, and though I didn’t scream (yay!) I continued vocalising through my contractions, and a few minutes before 6pm (the clock was right beside me), my water broke through a contraction). I had a couple more and then some more water came out. Before this, Kim was getting the crock pot ready and the wash cloths ready to support my perineum. I had asked him if it looked as though the head was coming and he said “Not yet, but you are really opening up”. Even at this point, I figured I had a good couple of hours before the baby would be born.

Well, that shows how much I knew! After the second splash of water came out, Kim was getting a wash cloth and I said “The baby is coming!” I could feel him coming down, and he sure was.

<<To read this birth story in its entirety, click here>>

<<To read more birth stories like this, click here>>

Unassisted Twin Birth Story

Twin newborns“Knowing comes from the place within us that is connected to our source.” From A Still, Small Voice by Echo L. Bodine

A month before the due date of my second pregnancy, I had a dream that there were two little girls with pigtails in their hair joining our family. When I told my husband about my dream, he joked, “there had better be only one baby in there. We only have one more bedroom!”

We were planning a homebirth for this pregnancy. Our son had been born at home without complications. In fact, his birth had gone so quickly, that we had barely enough time to fill the birth tub before he emerged. This time, my husband planned to fill the birth tub right away at the start of contractions.

<<To read the rest of this birth story, click here.>>

A’s 1st Birth Story

I had been considering an unassisted childbirth as an option from the moment I knew I was pregnant. I had known that they were much more peaceful and relaxed due to the privacy and freedom for the mother. I knew this because my mother, (her and my dad have 8 children), had done unassisted with 4 labors herself. The first of hers happened by “accident” (well, she was not intending it, but the Lord was gracious in giving her that experience) and 3 on purpose. I actually did not personally know what those experiences were like though as it was just her and my dad in a room when she labored.

I had contemplated the option of having a midwife since it would be my first birth, but there were none in the area close to me at that time. The closest ones were four hours away and none were willing to travel further than an hour and a half. I had also looked into 2 doctors in the area, one had been willing to be the emergency doctor for another woman who had tried a home-birth (though she did have a midwife), and the other I had heard was accepting of doing things naturally. Though, in the end neither worked, the first was no longer practicing and out of the area for a year, and the other was not willing to be a backup for me if I gave birth at home. So, I decided that regardless I would do an unassisted, since I knew it could be done and was still safe.

My edd (according to the typical 28 day cycle, which I didn’t know at the time shouldn’t have been used for me as I don’t have a “standard” cycle) was January 10th. My husband and I would be welcoming our first baby, a boy, into the outside world around that time! =D Of course we were really excited and naturally nervous. I had done quite a bit of research regarding the birthing process and “thought” I was decently prepared for it.
Unfortunately, though, there was a lot of stress during my pregnancy as my husband and I were just moving into a new place and there had been a lot of family issues on both sides. Needless to say, stress is not a good combination with pregnancy or labor. Still, I believed it to be safer to go alone then have interventional measures taken which I did NOT want.

I had been having Braxton Hicks a frequent amount starting after about 6 months of pregnancy. However, about a week before my son was actually born I thought I was starting the real deal. It was during the night and I began having contractions that were consistent and dealing me a decent amount of pain in my lower abdomen and lower back. (Those contractions were actually more painful than the beginning contractions I had when I went into full labor later). I had them for close to 2 hours and then they subsided until they completely stopped. A few days after I checked my cervix and discovered I had dilated a centimeter, so I guessed that was what had happened when I thought I was going into labor just days prior.

I began growing impatient the week following feeling as though it was taking forever before he was coming! :p (So I marginally understand the frustration of women who go a week or more past their edd). The morning of the 16th I had to get up and get ready to leave. It was Monday and my husband and I had a chiropractor appointment, in a city an hour from where we lived, that day at 11. After the adjustment around noon we went shopping and then headed home. That’s when the beginning contractions started. I hadn’t realized that I was in true labor since they weren’t as strong as the ones I had had a week before. After a few hours and them still continuing I started to believe that it was really happening. So I had my husband call his mother and mine to let them know.

This part of my story is one that I have learned from due to that experience. I had planned on having my mother and mother-in-law there in the house during my labor. For one, because my husband was especially nervous about it just being us two alone with it being our first. Secondly, I felt bad since both mothers had expressed desire in helping me during that time and I did not want to make them feel left out or offend them. Thirdly, even though I had written out my birth plan for them that specified that I wanted to labor most, if not all, on my own, I figured it couldn’t hurt to have some women there who already knew what the experience was like in case I needed help. So, I ignored my gut feeling, because inside I knew that it would stress me out some and I would prefer things more private. The silly thing though is, that during the entire pregnancy I had been searching things up left and right as best as I knew how, yet I had not asked details from either mother about their birth experiences, what it felt like, what they wish they knew, etc. Of course those whole 9 months were quite trying, (I had super bad morning sickness for 5 months) so I guess it just slipped my mind.

When both mothers arrived it was evening, and they encouraged me to sleep. Good advice, but being as excited and nervous as I was I didn’t feel that I could. Only hours later in the night the contractions began hurting quite a lot. I started to feel as though I might cry and moaned quite a bit and rather loudly. My mother hearing me make a lot of noise came in and mentioned that if I was feeling the urge to bear down that I could push and it would maybe help relieve the pain. Unfortunately, I was too ignorant and naive to ask what the urge to bear down should feel like and how to know whether I was experiencing it (my body did sort of feel like it, but it was no where near the same feeling as the fetal ejection reflex) and I began pushing way too early. (My mom had generally had labors less than 12 hours and later realized she had given bad advice). The pain from pushing too early escalated fast and I started to feel as though it was unbearable. Unfortunately, I quickly became scared, which only further complicated the situation and caused the process to slow down.

After half a day, a whole night, and most of the next day of being in labor I was exhausted. I hadn’t slept any and had spent a few hours during the night dancing, walking, and swaying trying to speed up labor. The contractions had been about 4 minutes apart, sometimes less, throughout the night. Through the next day we did not time them much as I was discouraged and we seemed to have lost track of time. (I don’t remember much during that time as I was pretty out of it). I had not eaten anything throughout that time, though it was because I was not hungry and didn’t want to eat anything. So I felt weak and was out of energy. I felt like sobbing, but didn’t have the tears too, I just loudly moaned or cried for help through the contractions as they grew worse. They got bad enough at one point that a couple of times I looked at my husband and through the pain said, “I don’t want to die!” (Bad thing to say to a husband in such a situation, lol). Looking back I realize that I had entered transition by then.

Of course my husband was not prepared to see me in such pain and was quite distressed. He really began to worry and so did my mother-in-law. I remembered at that point that I had read that water might help ease labor pains and so I asked for the bathtub to be filled. (At this point everyone was in the bathroom where I was, and I was in too much pain to care). I got into the bathtub and immediately felt relief. I wanted to stay in there but my husband and mother-in-law had been discussing taking me to a hospital just to make sure that all was alright. (If I had thought about it beforehand I would have had a little birth process & stages manual made up beforehand to give to my mother-in-law since she had only had hospital births, though she wasn’t against my choice, so she would more or less know what to expect and wouldn’t have been so frightened). My mother wasn’t quite sure whether my condition warranted a hospital trip and she thought I might be nearing transition and saw that I was feeling better in the tub. Still, my husband and mother-in-law spoke to me and asked me what I wanted. All I wanted was for my baby to be out! :p I mentioned that I thought maybe we could give it more time just to see, but my mil began bringing up questions about safety for the baby and I, etc. (Not a good thing to bring up to a woman in that stage of labor, haha). So I finally agreed to go and they got me out of the tub, got me a nightgown to put on, a heavy blanket to wrap around me and walked me to the car. I don’t really know how I was able to move that far in the condition I was in. :p My mom remembered to grab my bag containing my birth kit as we headed out the door.

We had 2 options of hospitals to go to, one 20 minutes away and the other 45 minutes away. I chose the latter and we were on our way. My mother-in-law and mother were sitting in the front seat and my husband and I in the back. On the road about 20 minutes out of town I could feel my body pushing my son out slowly on its own. I didn’t have the strength to do anything anymore and just sat in the seat breathing deeply and silently. I felt my son’s head in the birth canal. I looked at my husband and whispered just in time that I needed him to help me into a squat. Right after I got into position my baby boy came out. My husband caught him and my little one gave his first soft cry. =D

My mother-in-law stopped the car, and my mother turned on the light and turned around. We saw that my boy had a nuchal cord so we unwrapped it and he was just fine. He was born at 7:50 p.m. on the 17th of January. When we had unwrapped the cord it had tugged a bit on my placenta, so it quickly came out, but 2 pieces were left inside (they did come out that night & the day after and I was fine). We cut the cord and tied it with a thick piece of string. I covered my sweet baby with the blanket I had around me and began nursing him right away. I mentioned that we could turn around and go back home but my mother-in-law said we were only 5 minutes away and that the doctor and nurses would be waiting for us as she had called them when we left. I had felt a burning and stinging sensation while delivering my son and knew that I had torn, but didn’t know how bad. My mother-in-law and my husband felt it best to go in so that they could check on me and the baby, and get my tear looked at. I didn’t really care to, but didn’t want them to be concerned and also didn’t know how bad I tore.

When we got there I told my husband that I didn’t want our son to be without either him or me. The nurses immediately came out and acted as though it was a huge emergency. They opened my car door and the head nurse grabbed my son from me, I told her I didn’t want her to but she walked off ignoring me leaving the other nurses to get me on a stretcher and wheel me in. My husband seeing the nurse grab the baby went out to tell her not to take him, she said that it was standard procedure, but he told her that she was not to go anywhere with our baby without him. So he went in with her and stayed by our son the whole time. Right after, they took me into the emergency room and cleaned me up. The doctor was on another floor but was on her way. Our mothers were told they would have to stay out in the waiting room.

The nurses began examining my son and started asking me questions. They were surprised that his cord had such a clean cut and was tied well. They asked what we used and I told them a pair of new sharp scissors which I had sterilized as well as the string, they gave me dumbfounded looks and said they were really impressed. They were amazed that he was so warm and rosy already, they asked if I had already breastfed him and I said yes, which also surprised them. They inquired whether I had planned for those things and I told them that I had. I mentioned my birth kit and they all (except the head nurse, who seemed to think I was foolish for trying such a thing) said that I had been much more prepared than they would have expected. One of the nurses mentioned that they were wondering why it was taking longer than expected for us to get there (because we stopped the car after he was born for several minutes) and told us they had the epidural prepared and ready to administer to me for when I arrived. Phew! I was so thankful he was born on the road!

The doctor came in and asked me similar questions, she was not rude about anything and took everything nonchalantly. She then said that I had a tear that would take just a few stitches. (I wish I would have read up more on tears before then and not have gotten them). She gave me a shot to numb and then began to sew, but it was still a bit painful. My son was finished being weighed, measured and dressed and was brought to me. =) He measured 19 inches long and 6 lbs 11 oz. (They didn’t ask about dressing him, but they did ask about giving him a vitamin k shot and the eye goop. We declined both). I asked to see the placenta before they threw it away and the head nurse brought it to me to inspect, she said it looked fine and everything was there. (Shows how much they knew as it wasn’t actually all there).

We were finally ready to leave and the head nurse had to tell me her emergency story of her first birth, where her baby girl had the cord wrapped around her neck in a mess and would have died if she had tried to give birth at home. I just said, “Oh wow, hmm, yeah,” mostly to get her off my back. I wondered what she would have thought if I had mentioned my son’s nuchal cord. :p We finally left the hospital and went home, for some much needed rest and recuperation! After close to 31 hours of labor I was just grateful and happy to look at my perfectly beautiful baby boy in the safety of our own home.

I learned a lot from my son’s birth. One was that I didn’t want to EVER have a hospital birth if I could help it after the hour I spent at one, in this experience. Second was that stress, fear, anxiety, or lack of sleep, food, or energy can greatly impair the birth process. Another was that my body knew and did what it had to to birth my baby regardless of my knowledge or effort, woohoo! Last but definitely not least, that trusting God in any and every situation is a must! (I remembered this one better the 2nd time around). He created our bodies, intricately designed them, to be able to give birth!

I struggled with a lot of guilt after my son’s birth because things didn’t go as planned. I had wanted better for us and thought I had failed him by not standing up for the optimal choices. I had to go through a healing process and I cried a lot, but looking back I’m so thankful that things weren’t any worse than they were and that I had that experience. There may be situations here and there that unfortunately don’t always go as planned, but our Father in heaven gives us the strength for everything we encounter. =D

<<Click here to read A’s 2nd Birth Story>>

A’s 2nd birth story.

When I found out we were expecting our second, I knew that I wanted this labor and birth to be a better experience than the first one had been, even if it was as long or painful. I found out when I was 2 months along. The edd (according to my calculation based on my cycle) was January 4th. I set out to research more than I had during my first pregnancy and this time I knew what to look for. I spent hours upon hours every week looking up new information and drilling things into memory. I decided I wanted a water birth this time and since we had a little money saved up I decided to get a few extra things for my birth kit that I thought would be helpful.

Coming into this labor I felt confident in the God-given ability my body had to birth a second child. Something that my first labor with my son taught me was that even if I didn’t think I could, my body knew it could. I was much more relaxed and at peace this time, and having already experienced it I had time to prep my mind just in case it was just as hard as it was the first time. I trusted that the Lord would give me the strength and give me direction if anything wasn’t as it should be.

I woke up at 4:00 a.m. on a Friday with what I thought were just bad Braxton Hicks. After a minute or so I realized that I had not been able to sleep well that night because of them. I got up and went to the bathroom. When I wiped I noticed that I was loosing my mucus plug and that it was tinged with blood. I figured I should go lay down and see if I could go back to sleep, but wasn’t able to. When my husband got up to get ready for work about an hour and a half later I was still awake. So I explained the situation to him and to be on the safe side we decided he should stay home from work.

I went out into the living room and lay down on the sofa, trying to get more rest. I finally fell asleep and slept from 7-8. For some reason when I had first woken up I had a terrible earache in one of my ears and it made me want to cry. After my nap it was still hurting bad. We tried putting hydrogen peroxide in it with me laying on my side and letting it sit for half a minute, but that didn’t seem to help. So then we put some horehound tea in it, using an old remedy that my husband’s grandmother used to use. Still I found no relief. We tried the method our chiropractor uses to adjust/pop the ears, but nothing was helping much. So I asked my husband and he kindly massaged and did some reflexology on my feet. Finally, something worked!

I called my mom to let her know I was having “Braxton Hicks” and they were like 12 minutes apart. I also told her that I had an earache and had bloody tinged mucus plug when I wiped… I didn’t act like it was a big deal, and didn’t want to say that I had started labor as I didn’t want to get my hopes up or rush anything. However, I figured I’d mention it so that she would be ready in case I went into active labor in the afternoon or evening. When my husband and I timed my contractions, right after talking with her, we realized that they were actually 7-10 minutes apart, but I was still in denial and thought it was probably prodromal labor.

I had shared with my mother and mother-in-law that this time around I was planning on laboring without anyone else in the home but my husband and son. However, I told them that though I might choose to go it alone that I would give them a heads up if I felt like it so that they could be prepared if I decided to call them while in active labor or transition. Since my mom lived further from us than my mother-in-law I decided to give her a call earlier on. (Also, I did not want to give too much of a heads up as people had been texting my mil while I was in labor my first time and had kept asking her how things were going. I didn’t want that pressure or everyone calling to see how I was while I was in labor this time).

I went about my day as normally as possible, cleaning, doing things as usual… every time I had a contraction I would tell my husband so we could keep track. When they were about 4-7 minutes apart they were difficult enough that I had to focus on breathing well through them. I discovered that humming (a tune such as Amazing Grace) really helped me in managing the pain. I snacked on cottage cheese and crackers, as well as other foods throughout the day. I also made sure that I was drinking water or juice. It really helped to keep my energy up.

We cleaned out the room where I wanted the birth to take place, laid down the plastic, set up the birth pool, laid out towels, etc. However, I planned that I wouldn’t fill it and get in until the contractions were consistently 2-3 minutes apart for a good while. (Expecting that I would have a long labor like my first).

At about 5 minutes apart I started to allow myself to believe that I was truly in labor and might be getting close to active labor in around an hour. :p (Going of course off of my past experience). I think because the contractions weren’t near as painful as I remembered in my labor with my son being that I kept thinking they were going to get twice as bad and I had a ways left to go yet. So, to speed things along I put in a workout DVD and did a simple one mile walk. (I had been exercising during my pregnancy and it was not too strenuous or difficult, just simple walking moves). During the workout the contractions shortened to 2-3 minutes apart. I would take the time out during each contraction to breath and move my body into comfortable positions. I figured that when I was through they would slow down again to 5 minutes.

Once finished exercising I told my husband that I was going to take a shower. While I was in there after 10 minutes I felt a pop from the birth canal and a gush of fluid came out. I called my husband and told him to start filling the pool because I was positive my water broke. He began to fill it and I stepped out of the shower, dried off and went to lie down on my side on our bed. But the moment I laid down a very painful contraction came and I felt as though I needed to poop badly. I yelled for my husband to help me up because it hurt too much laying down. He helped me up and I went to sit on the toilet.

I kept thinking that I needed to use the bathroom and the pressure/feeling continued to grow stronger. (I still didn’t realize I was in transition, still in denial). My husband asked if I wanted him to call our mothers yet and have them come. I quickly replied, “Yes!” I told him that they were really hurting now. And at one point I asked him to make it stop. :p So he stood by my side and held my hand. I asked him to call his dad to come pick up our son, as I wasn’t sure if him seeing me in pain would worry him.

I finally moved from the toilet to the birth pool during a break between contractions. I also realized finally that I was in transition, though it was crazy to believe, and I felt the urge to push. So, I did. At this point my husband went to the door as my father-in-law was there to pick up our son. Then my husband went to get some hot water from the stove to put in the pool as the water wasn’t quite warm. He came back just in time. After a few more urges with pushes our baby girl was born!

From the time I woke up to the time I had her was only a bit over 12 hours. And from the time my water broke to when she was born was 30 minutes. Yay!! It had been so much easier and a lot shorter than my first labor had been. Which I hadn’t expected but was a pleasant surprise. My beautiful baby girl was born at 4:25 p.m., weighing 5 lbs 12 oz, and measuring at 18 inches. She was so small, but she was perfect! She ate within 30 minutes of being born and pooped like 5 times in her first day, haha! :p (Probably because I had been snacking so much). My placenta had come out around 20 minutes after she was born and we cut the cord and tied it after.

One thing that was helpful after both labor/births was that beforehand my mother & mother-in-law had helped me prepare several meals to freeze for the postpartum period. After both births I felt lightheaded, a bit dizzy, and nauseous. After my 2nd labor my Mom warmed up some homemade lentil soup and some homemade chicken noodle soup for me to eat after she arrived. This was extremely helpful in helping me feel better and return to normal after having my baby girl. (I didn’t feel like eating after having my son, I just felt weak, but I’m sure taking something would have helped).

Both mothers didn’t make it until after she was born, and when they arrived they were introduced to the sweetheart. My father-in-law was called and brought back our little boy, when the precious guy saw his tiny sister the hugest smile came across his face and he immediately reached out to hold her! It was adorable. I was very thankful for this experience, it was a healing one. It also taught me a valuable lesson that every labor can be vastly different. We just need to put more trust in our Creator than we do in any man, woman, or even ourselves in these experiences. =D

<<Click here to read A’s 1st Birth Story>>