Konichiwa Patients: Best. OB. Ever -Unnecesarean

So, I’m copy and pasting the heck out of this because literally- this is the funniest thing in the whole world. Hands Down. *some adult language that makes it even funnier, but if that’s not your cup of tea I would go ahead and skip this particular post.

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By Jill Arnold

 In the spirit of the best Craigslist roommate ad ever (which you should read first so this makes sense, then track the guy down on Facebook or Twitter)…

Konichiwa patients. Are you looking for the most kick-ass freaking OB that ever lived? If so, look no further. You freaking found them.

You want a VBAC? I CAN HELP YOU WITH THAT! You probably can’t believe that I am going to tell you that VBAC is a safe and appropriate choice for most women with a previous cesarean and even some with two freaking cesareans and you’re going to be, like, “No other OBs told me that. It’s got to be made up.” It’s not! It came straight from ACOG. THEY SEND ME STUFF AND I READ IT! See, I’m already your favorite care provider ever! I pay a fairly absurd malpractice insurance premium so I can help you with your VBAC and no one ever wants to cover for me, so when you go into labor, I’ll see you there!

Natural birth? No problem! I get that it’s a big deal to you. I’m dimming the lights right now. Is your husband pissing you off because he can’t figure out the goddamn iPod speakers? Don’t worry! I have a voice just like Enya and when I fart, it sounds like whale songs. It doesn’t get any more natural than that! Did I tell you I am the best OB ever?

Ice chips? F*ck those! You see this cooler I’m walking around with? I walk really fast so people think I’m rushing off to perform some cutting-edge uterine transplant, but I really just ran down to the cafeteria to get you a selection of juices on ice. You like apple juice, right? Here you go! Your husband likes Starbucks DoubleShot Espressos, right? He can pop one open in between contractions. AWWWWW HELL YEAH!

Did you have a shitty experience with a previous birth? I am really sorry about that. They were total douches. Good thing you found the best OB ever! You get to be in the driver’s seat this time barring any complications or emergencies. We can make decisions TOGETHER! I’m going to listen to you and learn your preferences and you’re going to listen to me give you THE BEST BREAKDOWN EVER of risks and benefits and we can come to an agreement. You read stuff on the Internet? Good for you for being proactive about educating yourself! Bring that shit in and we’ll talk about it! I was in the top of my class at Emory… I TOTALLY KNOW THIS SHIT!

Need or want a c-section? I’m really freaking good at surgery. But I know this isn’t just any surgery… A FREAKING BABY IS BEING BORN! Anesthesiologist won’t stop talking about the Seahawks game? Shut the f*ck up, bro! Who do you think is going to be the first to touch the baby? YOU! If this hospital lets me do skin-to-skin immediately following the cesarean, we’ll make that happen, too, if that’s what you want.

Like reading current magazines? ME, TOO! I have a crap-ton of magazine subscriptions in a variety of topics so you don’t have to read a stupid wrinkled copy of Parents from March 2006. The chairs in my waiting room will make your pregnant ass feel like it’s floating on a freaking cloud. The truth is, you’ll need something to read because you’re going to be waiting a long time since I’m probably at the hospital with a VBAC patient in labor. But you know that when it’s your turn, everyone will be WAITING ON YOUR VBAC-ING ASS. So if you want a next-generation OB who consistently blows your mind with awesomeness, then hit me up. Or not. It’s cool.

original source:  http://theunnecesarean.com/blog/2011/8/27/konichiwa-patients-best-ob-ever.html#sthash.TvSbgyae.dpbs

Posted in cesarean, funny stuff, hospital birth, labor, Motherhood, VBAC | Leave a comment

Amen, Sister!

This is what we should have decorating our hospitals hallways. Love.

“Remember this, for it is as true and true gets: Your body is not a lemon. You are not a machine. The Creator is not a careless mechanic. Human female bodies have the same potential to give birth well as aardvarks, lions, rhinoceri, elephants, moose, and water buffalo. Even if it has not been your habit throughout your life so far, I recommend that you learn to think positively about your body.” ― Ina May Gaskin

Posted in attitude, Birth Affirmations, birth quotes, Due Date, Fear, home birth, hospital birth, labor, Motherhood, Uncategorized, VBAC | Leave a comment

100 Births!

So… I’m not super organized.

We all know that.

And, also, not too wunderbar at math either.

Finally got around to counting up how many births I’m at a few days ago. It had occurred to me that I’ve been saying I’m at around 80 births for awhile now. Shocker of all shockers- I missed the big 100. No champagne celebration at the end of that birth, ohh no. And if you know the first two tid-bits about me- you also know I’m a fan of celebrations. And champagne. So I counted back and figured out that my 100 birth was that of sweet baby Eleanor. So precious. Such an incredible birth and not one I’ll soon forget. Perfect :)

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Keelyn’s Hospital Birth

I suppose the best place to start is when my irregular contractions that I had been feeling since Saturday night became very regular contractions Monday afternoon. I had gone into work that Monday only to be sent home because having contractions every 7-10 minutes was making my co-workers nervous. Needless to say I was officially on maternity leave. By Tuesday morning I was in what I considered full blown labor. My surges were consistent and time-able and some even made me stop and concentrate. Today was going to be the day!

Laboring at home for as long as possible was the plan…and we were off to a great start. Staying busy was key; from doing laundry, to last minute baby preparations, to taking the dogs to the park. I wanted to remain as active as possible for as long as possible. By about 11am my surges were to a point where small tasks around the house were no longer possible. At that point surges were spent rocking with Chris’ (my husband) support and leaning over the couch. Chris was a great support, reading our HypnoBirthing scripts and breathing with me through surges. By 11:30  surges were coming every 4 minutes, lasting about 45 seconds so we thought it was time to take a trip to my OB to see how far I had progressed. My OB’s office as well as the hospital I delivered at is roughly an hour from our house. When we got to the OB I had my very first vaginal check…I was 3cm and 100% effaced. My OB gave us the ok to head to the hospital…I however had other things in mind.

I informed my doctor that I wanted to wait to go to the hospital until my contractions were 3 minutes apart lasting a minute for at least an hour. I told her I would be going to my mother’s house who lives about 15 minutes from the hospital to continue to labor there until the contractions were closer together. She was supportive of my plan as long as Keelyn was tolerating labor well…I had a NST which was passed with flying colors. On to mom’s house!

Chris and I got to my mom’s around 1:30 where I was able to labor there for another 4 hours until Chris was insistent that it was time for the hospital. My contractions were coming every 2 1/2 minutes, they were lasting a minute (sometimes more) and they had been this way for over an hour…Chris practically forced me into the car. I look back now and I was definitely in denial. I really didn’t think I was that far along.

We got to the hospital around 5pm (time starts to become a little hazy here). I was wheeled up to L&D where I was checked again…4cm, given a buff cap and put onto a monitor. Chris gave our birth plan to the nurse (Cynthia) and she was AWESOME. She made a big sign for the door that said HypnoBirthing in Progress Do Not Disturb. After 20 minutes of monitoring I was free to walk around. Cynthia suggested I get into the tub…and she drew up the bath. She also went on the hunt for aromatherapy massage oil (which she found)…came back and showed Chris how to massage my arms and legs during contractions. As great as the bath felt it started to slow my contractions down…so it was time to get out and get walking.

Walking the halls of L&D was the best and the worst thing. Hugely uncomfortable but exactly what my body needed. Contractions were spent leaning against a wall while Chris applied pressure to either side of my hips and we swayed in a figure 8 motion. I quickly entered transition and felt the need to get back to the hospital room because it was getting to hard to focus through the contractions while walking. I was checked again once getting back to the room and was 8cm. I was starting to feel the contractions in my back and what got me through was the pressure Chris applied to my lower back and Cynthia stroking my arms. Another hour passed…maybe? I was checked for the last and final time…10 cm.

I started actively pushing at midnight. I know this because I asked later exactly how long did I push for and was told 54 minutes. I was planning on pushing in any position other than on my back as I was told that pushing on your back is the least effective. Well…pushing on my back felt the most effective for me.  I didn’t want to be coached how to push…I didn’t want counting…but when it came down to it counting gave me focus and made my pushes more effective. 3 counts to 8 for each contraction is what worked for me.

Keelyn was almost born en caul but because she would crown a little and then get sucked back up between contractions I allowed my doctor to break my water. After she broke my water it only took a few good pushes before she was born at 12:54 am. Chris got to help deliver her which was completely amazing…he was the first person to hold her even before the doctor. Keelyn had her cord wrapped around her neck 3 times and never once did she show signs of distress during labor. Her heart rate remained strong the entire time. As Chris held her the doctor quickly unwrapped the cord and then Chris  placed her on my chest. Keelyn was so alert. We locked eyes in an instant and I could feel right away the bond I had with her…and her with me. The most amazing feeling in the world and one that can never be duplicated.

 

She was born on Wednesday October 27th 2010 at 12:54am, 6 pounds 13 ounces and 19 3/4 inches….Perfection.

My personal belief is that when I look into her eyes I can’t help but know she was sent to me by God. She is all the proof I need that there is someone bigger than us…and I thank him every day for letting me be the lucky woman who gets to call this beautiful girl my daughter.

Aubrie

Original site: http://naturalchildbirthstories.com/keelyns-hypnobirthing-hospital-birth/#more-809

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Hospital & Birth Center Birth Videos

Hunted around for some great ones! You’re welcome!

 

 

 

Posted in birth story, birth video, hospital birth, hypnobirth video, photography, Uncategorized, Videos | Leave a comment

Will’s Birth Story

 

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I love that I’m writing this as my as-of-today, 6 year old Big Boy is sitting next to me.

It all started with a little queasiness.

My oldest was a mere 4 months old and I had just been feeling nauseous for a few days. Obviously I hadn’t even begun having a regular cycle at that point so there was no missed period to be a red flag.

I actually remember pushing my baby through the grocery store and talking to my best friend (who had just announced her pregnancy to me the month before) and joking that I maybe should pick up a pregnancy test. Who knows what possessed me to actually throw one in the cart but when I threw up in the parking lot after loading up my groceries- I was thinking perhaps it wasn’t that far fetched of an idea.

Got home, took it, while my baby (did I mention FOUR MONTH OLD) sat in her bouncy chair. There was the faintest of faint second lines. Like, we’re talking you have to hold the test up in a certain light and tilt it just so… So, I packed up Addy and we went to the doctors for a blood test. The nurses laughed at me and when the test came back negative they reassured me the chances were so slim that I could even get pregnant exclusivesly breastfeeding.

As we sat down to dinner that night I was feeling a little relieved and a little sad that I couldn’t do some creative pregnancy announcement. But, after the first bite of taco lodged in my throat and I dashed to the bathroom and began puking- I wondered. Hubby came tearing in after me and jokingly said, “Are you pregnant?” I said, “I don’t know…” So he went and bought a few tests and we both agreed there was a faint line, and by the morning test the line was a little darker.

The next 15 weeks and 2 days were awful.

I threw up 10+ times a day, no medicine worked, hospitalized 3 times and multiple trips to the E.R. for fluids.

When it finally began to fade I felt like someone who had been given a second chance at life.

His due date was December 27th. My first baby was 4 days early, and so I was certain he would be born on Christmas and for some reason in my pregnant brain that was a fate worse than death. So, I talked my OB into stripping my membranes at 38 weeks. (Well, actually, I tried to get him to do it at 37, but he said no.)

 

On December 14th labor began in the afternoon. Just slight contractions that I should have ignored but these were pre-doula days. We headed to the hospital around 5pm passing house after house adorned with Christmas lights.

By the time we got to the hospital the contractions weren’t really that strong and were spacing apart. I was checked and I was 3 cm (a change from that days office visit, but still not a resounding “we’re in labor!” number) and so we did the hall walk. My hubby decided it was his personal mission to get the magic happening so we were literally speed walking the halls, and if I’d have a contraction he’d say, “Just keep going!” Ha! What a sight we probably were. He had the makings of a doula husband even then…

Went in to be examined again we had already decided if nothing had happened we were going to go out to sushi (California rolls for me) so to be honest I was sort of hoping for 2 cm. But, the time had come- 6 cm!

So, they took me to the room and if you’ve read Addysons Birth Story (that was barely a year prior) I had ended up loving my anesthesiologist more than life itself, so immediate epidural was the plan.

The best friend I mentioned earlier had just had her baby 5 weeks before me and had used some kooky, bogus, brainwashing method called Hypnobirthing. She tried to lure me into her web, but I held firm. I remember calling her as we settled into the room and told her I was 6cm and not really feeling anything much and she tried her hardest to convince me I could do it. (And she’s a good convincer.) Shortly thereafter I sent her a picture of me holding my happy button the epidural man had just placed in my greedy hands.

My whole family (like all 20 of them) started to arrive, at this point it was about Midnight. We watched the ever classic Christmas Vacation and the doctor on call asked me what movie it was. (I still remember thinking, “I don’t know if you’re qualified to be at my birth if you don’t know this movie.”)

Not long after this I began to feel pressure and they checked and I was ready to start pushing! My 10 year old neice was front and center. Like standing next to the doctor peering into my vagina. My dad and brothers were on the other side of the curtain but I’m fairly sure at some point they braved the terror and peeked. Pushing was so much easier with this one! Only 15 minutes later and he was slipping into my husbands waiting hands, and my very first thought was that he was too small. (He wasn’t.) But, I remember looking at the doctor and saying, “is he ok?!” I cried. Bawled. Partly because the pregnancy from hell was over, but also because I think somewhere in my soul I knew what this tiny boy and I would go through together.

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He nursed well that first time.

The next day we began having problems with latch. I knew it didn’t feel right and the nurse suspected it was a tounge tie issue. We were released and enjoyed one day at home before going to our 3 day check up at the pediatricians. The doctor took one look at the baby I thought looked slightly tan and said he needed to check billiruben levels. “Whatever” we thought. But, when the doctor called us back on our way home and said to turn around and go straight to the hospital we were a little concerned. Knowing nothing about jaundice all the numbers meant nothing. But, he was saying something about 19 and needing to keep it under 20. I had no idea what to expect and when they took my baby who loved being held and covered his eyes and put him in a cold airy incubator I fell apart. It was torture to listen to him scream and want to be held. And then for him to no longer scream, but lay there getting more and more lethargic. I was pumping and waking him every hour through the night, and the number just kept going up. They kept giving us these thresholds “As long as its under 20″, “We’re still ok, 22 is manageable”, “We just want to keep it under 25 to avoid brain damage”, “25.2″ “Here’s the blood transfusion consent form”

It just kept coming. After 4 days in the hospital they had no hold on the numbers. Hubby was at home with Addyson, and I was completely alone. Alone and terrified.

Finally on the fifth day it had dropped to 20 and by that evening it was at 16. They said the downward progression was great and we could probably go home in the morning. We checked out and I was home on the 23rd of December.

I called my pediatrician on the 26th because he had began being sleepy and unresponsive again, and sure enough. Back up to 21.

We discovered at this point that he and I had incompatible blood types. And the breast milk that should be flushing out the bilirubin was in fact fighting against his system. Out of desperation and counsel I did what many a lactation consultant would disagree with. We put him on formula for 48 hours while under lights and me pumping. And finally, FINALLY that gave his body enough to get a hold on things. His levels stayed at 15 for awhile with in home lights but eventually he worked it all out.

I breastfed for 13 months.

He was a hard, hard baby. Those first weeks of life taught him to wake every hour and that the only solace he would find was in mommy’s arms, eating. There were so many nights of crying and praying, months upon months, upon years of walking around like a zombie. I felt hopeless and lost, but that period of life (that we affectionately (or not) refer to as the Dark Days) made me a stronger person.

My sweet William,

You are my heart. You and I have been through a lot. All those nights of sitting in the rocker, holding you as you ate, praying you would drift off- those somehow have become more precious than gold to me. God has given you a sweet soul. The way you seek Him and your gentleness are such a gift. Not everyone has that. I pray that you have daddy’s strength, insight and integrity. You were also named after Papa. I hope you have his generosity and his grit. May you be surrounded with good friends who build you up and never bring home a girl that cares more about what she looks like than what’s in her heart. You are such a joy to me and a balm to my heart on hard days. I love you, bubba!

Mom

will baby

Posted in Birth Stories, hospital birth, nausea, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Essential Oils

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I’ve been using Essential Oils to help support my clients for awhile now. It’s amazing to me the difference it’s made! Here’s the guide (taken from Modern Essentials) I generally use… I always order my oils (from doTerra) by the 25th of each month. I get them at wholesale price and order for clients and friends at no additional cost (I make nothing.) If you’d like any additional information or if you’d like me to order something for you just shoot me an email- sarahgreenbirthdoula@gmail.com :)

 

Essential Oils Cheat Sheet

General Pregnancy Oils: Geranium, Ylang ylang, Lavender, Grapefruit, Roman Chamomile

Baby (Newborn): Frankincense ( 1 drop on crown), myrrh ( 1 drop on umbilical cord and navel), Balance ( 1 drop on feet and spine)

Breasts: Tenderness: Lavender (soothes), Geranium (soothes), Roman Chamomile (sore nipples), Fennel (tones)

*Use these topically and add 3-5 drops to 1Tbs. Fractionated Coconut Oil and massage on location.

Birth: Lavender (stimulates circulation, calming, antiseptic), Clary Sage, Balance

*Dilute 1-2 drops on hips, bottoms of feet or abdomen.

Avoid Episiotomy: Geranium * add 5-10 drops to 1tsp. Olive oil an massage perineum

Uterus: Clary Sage * apply 1-3 drops around ankles to help tone uterus

Transition: Basil * apply 1-2 drops to temples or abdomen

Early Labor: (Preterm) Lavender * 1-3 drops on stomach or heart to help stop contractions

Energy:

Blend 1: 2 drops Roman Chamomile, 2 drops Geranium, 2 drops Lavender in

FCO (fractionated cocnut oil) and massage into skin.

Blend 2: 2 drops Wild Orange, 2 drops Peppermint in FCO and massage

Hemorrhaging: Helichrysum * 1-3 drops on lower back to help prevent

High Blood Pressure: Ylang Ylang, Eucalyptus, Lavender, Clove, Clary Sage, Lemon

Place in bath twice a week. (Blend, or individually)

Labor (during): Clary Sage- may combine with Fennel * 3 drops to ankle or abdomen

Labor (post): Lavender, Geranium * 1-3 drops to ankles, abdomen or bottoms of feet

Lactation: Clary Sage (start production), fennel or basil (increase production), peppermint (decrease production) *dilute and apply 1-2 drops of breast

**fennel should NOT be used for more than 10 days as it will excessively increase flow throught the urinary tract.

Morning Sickness: Ginger, Peppermint * 1-3 drops on ears, down jaw bone, and on reflex points on the feet.

Placenta: Basil (to help retain) *1-2 drops on lower abdomen and reflex points

Postpartum Depression: Elevation, Lemon, Lavender, Frankincense, Clary Sage, Geranium, Grapefruit, Bergamot, Balance, Myrrh, Orange *Diffuse into air, Inhale from bottle, apply to hands

Information taken from Modern Essentials 4th edition pg.224-225

Essential Oil infomation is intended to be informative and shouldnt be taken as medical advice. If in question, please speak with your care provider. :)

Posted in accupressure, breastfeeding, Essential Oils, hospital bag, hospital birth, labor, natural pain relief, nausea, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Eddie’s Birth Story

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I should preface this birth story by saying that the reason I wanted a natural childbirth was not because I am terribly opposed to medication or interventions. I think they are WAY overused in modern medicine and I wanted to avoid them, but I do think they have a place. No, my main motivation was a deathly fear of the epidural! Something about that huge needle and all the horror stories of completely numb legs, spinal headaches and the negative affects on the baby had me shaking in my boots. I should also mention that my pain tolerance is virtually zero i.e. I spend much of my life trying to be as comfortable as possible (I’ve been known to tear up when getting my eyebrows waxed!). So I spent most of my pregnancy reading books about how I can make a natural childbirth happen when all the odds seemed to stacked against me.

I knew if it was going to happen it would be important to have the right team behind me. So instead of a doctor, we hired midwives and a doula. I wanted to have a hospital birth, but I also wanted to go as natural as I could, and this seemed like the best of both worlds.

Little did I know that one of the hardest things about the entire pregnancy and labor would be the waiting two extra weeks for the baby to come! I waited 13 LONG days after my due date. Just sitting around watching hours upon hours of House Hunters, having loads of uncomfortable sex, eating pineapple, popping primrose oil pills and climbing stairs. It was awful. Every day felt like a week and by 41 and a half weeks when my midwife suggested labor induction, I agreed even though it was not at all part of my original plan. We scheduled it for when I would be 41 weeks and 5 days, 2 days before I would have had to be induced anyway.

I was so disappointed with the decision, I felt guilty and sad that the natural childbirth I had spent months preparing for was not going to happen. I had heard the stories about pitocin contractions and I knew I could only handle so much pain, especially if the labor went on for several days….which I knew many inductions did, so I also felt that even having a pain-med free birth would be difficult.

I called our doula Sarah the night we scheduled the induction and she told me that I needed to stay positive and start reading successful induction stories. So I spent the next couple days praying and trying to accept and prepare for the changed circumstances. I will say that one of the few good things about an induction is the chance to mentally prepare your self for what’s coming.

My husband and I checked into the hospital Monday night at 7pm to start the overnight cervadil. The nurse checked me and I was still only a fingertip dilated, 80% effaced and had a completely posterior cervix…which was the exact same as I had been for a whole month. This did very little to lift my spirits and I got even more frustrated with my body. “Why won’t you just go into labor?!”

Sarah had advised us to try and sleep as much as we could Monday night while the cervadil was in. So I took the sleeping pill the nurse offered and dosed off for a good 4 hours. The pill made me high as a kite, I have no memory of those 4 hours but my husband said I was laughing hysterically and gushing about my undying love for him (a little comic relief in a stressful time!)… I don’t think I would have slept otherwise because I was so nervous, so I think taking the pill was a good idea.

Tuesday morning they took the cervadil out and checked me….I was the EXACT same only my cervix had moved slightly. Ugh! The midwife on call suggested that we try a cervical ripening balloon. I had no idea what it was but she said if it worked it would get me to 4 cm. It was the first time she would be using one, but I was happy with the idea because it meant putting off the pitocin.

Basically, one balloon goes in the cervix and the other is outside (kind of like an “8” with the cervix opening being in the middle). They fill each of the two parts with saline and the top balloon will fall out once you get to 4cm. This mechanically opens the cervix instead of opening it with medicine.

And this crazy thing worked!

Within 3 hours I was up to 4 cms, and the balloon just fell out. Not only did it work, but it got active labor started. By 4 pm, I was dilated to a 6 and seeing real progress. My husband was staying in contact with Sarah the whole time, I didn’t want her to have to come too early and be sitting around so I kept putting it off. But she just showed up (the sign of a great doula!)! And it was PERFECT timing.

The contractions were starting to get really intense and I quickly realized all my research was not helping me. Sarah was a lifesaver! She was also able to show my husband know how to support and help me. We walked the halls and paced in my room. By 8 pm I was at at 9cm and I hadn’t had a drop of pitocin!

We were all so happy, thinking this baby will be here within the hour. The nurses were prepping the baby station and I was really focusing on each contraction, which were coming fast and hard at this point.

An hour later Lauren, the new midwife on call, checked me again. I was still only 9 cms. She said I should get in the tub to relax. So I did. The contractions seemed intense but were spacing further and further apart. An hour and a half later I still hadn’t seen any progress.

This is when things got a bit nasty and when the dreaded pitocin entered the picture. Up to this point the pain had been very manageable; difficult, intense and tiring, but I felt in control and that I had the strength to get through it.

RachelBirth-2The nurse started me on a low dose, but it didn’t make much of a change. She increased it every 15 minutes and by the end I was up to the highest dose possible. This was hell! I was still having my natural contractions, then immediately after I would have a pitocin contraction, which was 10 times worse than the natural one. This went on for 3 hours!

The midwife checked me and I was still only 9.5 cms! I was so done. I was begging for relief and she saw how tired I was. I still didn’t want an epidural, but I was fading fast and was toying with the idea of giving up. She gave me the option of turning off the pitocin to see if I could rest. I think she knew that I wouldn’t want to do that though, because it would mean dragging the whole thing out even longer, but by giving me the option and getting me to make the decision to keep going, it gave me an extra boost of strength. Something I was appreciative of later. So I started pacing the room again and bouncing on the yoga ball.

About 20 minutes later the baby had dropped down quite a bit so Lauren thought she might be able to manually open the cervix and told me to start pushing.

I don’t know if I was just too tired, but I really did not enjoy the pushing phase, I know many women do, but I really didn’t. I found it incredibly difficult and strenuous. At one point I was screaming bloody murder with each pushing contraction and Lauren just calmly looked up at me and sternly said, “you can spend all your energy screaming about it or your can spend your energy pushing this baby out.” It was just what I needed to hear! I started focusing on pushing and eventually my son was born at 5:33 am (36 hours after we’d gotten to the hospital). He was absolutely perfect. He was so alert and started rooting the second they placed him on my chest. I felt so much relief that it was over and that he was healthy. It truly was one of the best feelings I’ve ever had.

It’s really hard to explain how this was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, maybe even the most painful, but it was also the happiest day of my life. Something about the extreme emotions (both good and bad), the support I felt from my husband, family, Lauren and Sarah, the sense of achievement for doing it without pain meds and of course, seeing my son for the first time made this the most euphoric thing I’ve ever experienced. Even as I write that I know it doesn’t make sense, but I swear it’s true!

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Posted in Birth Stories, Clients Stories, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

New Visitors & Baby- Pregnant Chicken

 

 

Fabulously funny post from Pregnant Chicken!

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Do you feel special when you’re pregnant? Well, step aside, Lady, because a baby is here and people love babies.

The dilemma that comes with having this little rock star in your home now is that billions of people will want to come visit it. Some will be helpful some will not.

So here are a few handy tips I’ve picked up along the way so you’re able to show your magnificent little miracle off to the world like Simba in the Lion King.

Don’t let anyone stay with you that you can’t cry in front of or you can’t tell to “shutup”.

There may be a few people that offer to stay with you when the baby comes. This can be a Godsend or a shitshow. Really think about that person and how much you want them to see behind the curtain. You may be too tired to delicately say, “I know she’s not latching properly but I’m just trying to get the hang of it” and instead say, “See off? You need to fuck right to it!”.

Decide carefully about who you want to be around 24/7 when your inner filter isn’t working at full capacity.

Spread out the visitors

People love to see the baby immediately, that, or they feel obliged to see the baby immediately. Either way, try to spread them out as much as you can so you can get settled and enjoy everyone’s company long after the fanfare typically dies down. Try not to book too far in advance either, you seriously may feel great the day after you give birth and feel like a back alley crack whore by week two.

Go to people that you think will over stay their welcome – don’t have them come to you

Sometimes this really isn’t their fault. I was one of these people before I had kids because I had no idea how tiring a newborn can be and would sit there gabbing on about some new bar I’d been to while staring into the vacant doll-like eyes of my best friend holding her newborn. I’m sure she wanted to tell me to shut my cake hole and get the hell out of her house, but just didn’t have the energy.

These are the people you should meet for a coffee or go to their place.

First of all, newborns are very portable because they eat, sleep and poop and that’s about it, so take advantage of this window when you can cart them anywhere and they don’t care. Secondly, it’s all on your terms when to pull the chute and you won’t have to drop the little hints that go unnoticed. By the way, some of these single people, elderly uncles, etc. are fantastic to be around because they are often just as self absorbed as a newborn and it’s sometimes strangely refreshing to talk about something other than babies.

Put them to work

Some people are just itching to help when you have a baby and you know what, let them. These people are like damn border collies and if you don’t give them a task, they get destructive and are liable to chew the leg off a chair or worse, start throwing stuff out. Let them do dishes, tidy up, clean the bathroom, take out the garbage, take your other kids to the park, whatever. Don’t want them seeing your gross underwear? Throw it in your closet and let them deal with the rest of the pile.

Just leave *your* to-do list out and if they ask if they can help, just point them to it and tell them to help themselves if they feel like it. Not everyone is comfortable around babies but really want to help, so give them the satisfaction of doing something for you and just enjoy it and thank them profusely so they don’t start installing a sprinkler system.

Tag team

Remember the first point? That kind of applies to visitors as well. If they aren’t the kind of person you can lose it in front of, then have a buffer person with you to entertain or deflect if you need to pull a batsmoke. Just have these people over when your partner or close relative or friend is around in case you need to excuse yourself for an hour to cry on the bed for no particular reason (I did this…twice).

Partner plays the bad cop

If you think you’re second string to the baby, just imagine how your husband feels. As I mentioned in the New Dad Survival Guide, this is his chance to shine because I can gua-ran-tee you that there will be some tricky situations when visitors come; like the cousin that announces he’s just getting over the flu in passing conversation while holding your 3-day old infant. Or the great Aunt that insists that the baby needs to be brought out in a snow storm to meet her bridge club. Or the nephew that drops by and could “really go for a sandwich”.

Dad (or partner, or side kick), it is your job to step up and say, “Oh, hell no.” You know why? Because everybody thinks a protective father is cute and everybody thinks a protective mother is nuts, so do everybody a favour and unhinge.

This is also a perfect opportunity for an Al Pacino impression.

Make them bring food

As my friend’s Jamaican grandmother used to say, “Don’t come wid you two long han”. Which loosely translated to don’t show up empty handed.

Not only should you stagger these people, but try and get them to bring you food. I featured a brilliant website called Meal Baby where people can pick a date where they bring you a meal. Not only do you get a dinner that you don’t have to cook, but you get to decide what dates are available so you can control the flow of people. Have them pop it over or sit down and share it with them, either way, they get a baby fix and you get some lasagna. I say win-win.

Treat it like an Out-of-Office Reply*

Sometimes people think it’s nice to pop in to see how a new mother is doing if they haven’t had an immediate response to a message they left an hour ago. This actually isn’t too bad for the people you can tell to “shut up” because you can tell them if it isn’t a good time and their feelings won’t get hurt. For the rest of the population it is not cool to arrive unannounced at a new parents front door because there is no telling what kind of Stephen King nightmare is going on that day.

To avoid these awkward moments, I like to treat it like a vacation notification. Change your voicemail and your email to let people know you’re kind of off the grid. It may seem like a no brainer to you but some people feel the need to constantly “check in”. Just have an auto-reply that says, “Thanks for your email (call). We’re just getting the hang of parenthood so forgive us if it takes a little longer than usual to get back to you. Don’t worry, we’re just fine and loving every minute of it.”

I know this may be a little over the top and may feel like the equivillant of adding the dog’s name to Christmas cards (I love that actually) but it’s an easy way of letting them know they’ve been heard.

* Obviously, if you’re alone and live in the woods in wolverine country, disregard this advice and be grateful someone is checking to make sure the cat isn’t eating your corpse.

Pre-Prep

Do you think Aunt Kelly is going to be a problem? Get your responses thought out NOW or start laying the groundwork NOW. If you think she’s going to show up on your doorstep the day you give birth then start telling her the story of a co-workers mother-in-law that showed up the day she gave birth and how awful it was and how you’re so lucky that your family just *gets* that you need a couple of days to settle in. Get an email ready saying, “Aunt Kelly, we can’t wait for you to see the new baby! I’m just getting the hang of it so can I give you a call when I come up for air so you can come over and meet her?” then hit *send* when she fires off the first email.

Go with the flow

Does Aunt Kelly still show up? Does your Mother-in-Law that you’ve never met fly in from the Ukraine and set herself up on your couch? Does your sister drop in everyday to tell you about the disgusting brunch she had or everything about her wicked pilates instructor?

Roll with it and save your energy like a solar street light on a dimming switch. Ask Aunt Kelly to hold the baby while you go have a shower. Say “Diakuju” when your mother-in-law makes dinner then go lie down with the baby. Tell your sister she needs a fucking punch in the throat then apologise and blame it on your hormones while savoring the good vent.

The best thing you can do with visitors, a new baby, and I suppose life in general, is just roll with it.

Even though you are now regarded as the remaining husk that brought this precious, perfect gift into the world – you will be asked how you feel as a courtesy but no one gives much of a shit how you are now so try not to ramble – it’s still your show, honey. So remember, choose your visitors wisely and enjoy the little star that everyone wants to see shine.

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