the JOY of birth!
I have decided to do a birth stories series on the blog. A few weeks ago I ran across a Facebook page which minimized and dismissed mothers who had given birth via C-section. I was appalled and very upset at the number of likes this page had gotten. The comments in my opinion, were downright disgusting. Birth is birth. The objective of most mothers is to bring their child into the world the best way possible. Often times what you think and what you get are very different. For that reason I wanted to tell stories of birth.
Today is my son’s birthday so I will kick it off with his story.
I found out I was pregnant after having an extreme need for a Whopper. I don’t eat fast food, nor do I eat beef, and I felt like if this Whopper did not get in my belly sooner than later I was going to melt. It was then that I figured I should go get a pregnancy test. I had just turned 30 and once we back tracked to date of conception I realized, my son was my birthday present:)
My pregnancy wasn’t planned per se but it was very welcomed! I was excited beyond belief! I was the first of my crew to have a baby. I had two friends that had babies already but they both got pregnant right out of college so Here I come 8 years later lol. I knew nothing. All I knew is me and my ignorance were about to have a baby! yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!
My first trimester was pretty harsh, I was sick all the time and I had major headaches. I was the owner of a clothing boutique and I had not yet told my employees that I was pregnant. After several naps in the dressing rooms, in my office, and on the clothing racks, one of my employees pulled me to the side and made me tell him what was going on. Thank God I did. My team was so helpful and didn’t let anyone bother me if I was sleeping lol. Even tho I was sick as a dog, I was still blissfully happy.
I already ate relatively healthy and with this baby growing I wanted to make sure I was eating healthier. I was living in LA, so that wasn’t a problem. I developed a serious need for enchiladas, that was my vice. As long as I had enchiladas I was cool with my mostly vegetarian diet, and daily juices. I walked to and from work daily, and I got the maximum hours of sleep possible.
While I was on my health kick I discovered waterbirthing. I decided that is what I wanted to do! I sold the kid’s dad on it and we put that plan into action. We found a midwife that would attend the water birth for free because she wanted to up her resume. Our doctor wanted to also be hands on in the water birth because he had never done one and he wanted to offer that as an option to his patients. The hospital we were delivering at had a water birthing suite so we were in there like swimwear! One of my friends introduced me to his girlfriend who had just had a waterbirth with their daughter. We will get to her birthing story at some point in time this year. I promise you it was like a scene from Lion King. The baby was born as the drummers drummed, and singers sang, and the sun shot a beam of light directly into her womb gently pulled her daughter out. I mean is was the best story ever, after she told me this I was convinced I could do this! A vaginal waterbirth was now on the books.
The kid’s dad and myself took the prenatal education classes, I read what to expect when you’re expecting, I ordered every pregnancy magazine I could find. I was ready!! HIm, not so much lol
Fast forward 4 months later and it’s showtime. My sister came in town on Sunday and she was determined to get the baby out. She castor oiled me up and made me walk four miles. After that I was in labor that night. Once that first contraction hit all that waterbirth kumbaya went out the window. I was very clear that I needed drugs. The kid’s dad was just along for the ride. He was pretty freaked out and just wanted it to be over with lol. When we got to the hospital I was 3 centimeters and dehydrated. I was put on an IV and the next morning the nurse said that I had stopped contracting so I was more than welcome to go home, labor naturally, and come back. Umm, excuse me? I’m already in here, we are having a baby!!!! The nurse gave me my pitocin and the party started. By the time my doctor made it to the hospital hours later he asked me what happened????? I told him as soon as I felt that contraction I was done. No water would take away that pain. My midwife was just as disappointed. Did I care? Nope! Not at all! I was given the epidural around 4 centimeters I believe and for some reason I could still feel everything. They gave me another one. That last dose was the kicker. Not only could I not feel the actual pain (I still felt the pressure) I couldn’t feel enough to push. The doctor was yelling PUSH at me and I really thought I was pushing. Clearly, I wasn’t. I remember crying because I thought I was pushing. I was beginning to get scared. There was more yelling and then I heard “We have to go in there and get him” I don’t really remember much after that except my son coming out. There was more pushing encouragement so I think between myself and some mild suction we got him out of his comfort canal. I was ecstatic! We were all happy to welcome our healthy, fully functional baby boy into the world. I was very groggy from the epidural so I was pretty out of it. I remember trying to nurse him and that’s it. I was so numb for the rest of the night and day I could not walk to the bathroom without assistance. With all of that I was still happy. Nothing could dull the happiness of new life.
In hindsight if I could have done it differently, I would have done more research and really prepared for my birth. However, you wouldn’t know that you need to prepare until you have been through it. My labor was 16 hours and I learned that was because pain killers slow your labor. I used all of this knowledge and experience to prepare for baby number two. I would have like to have been more present mentally during my son’s birth. At the end of the day I would have done anything that resulted in getting a healthy baby. No matter how you have your baby it takes the will of ancestors past and present to get you through it. The female body is an amazing vessel