March 3, 2009

Meeting the midwife

Several people are curious about my appointment with the midwife the other day. I've held off mentioning it because I'm undecided about what to do.

Basically, she was very positive about a homebirth. She did some research on vaginal birth after multiple cesareans and she didn't see any reason why I would be any different than a woman with only one previous c-section. The are two possible options. I can go for a homebirth, she can come here and I'm only 10 minutes away from an ER in the case of any problems. She herself has never encountered any major emergencies in her 75 births. She carries pitocin (in case of hemorrage), oxygen and also is skilled in resusitation. The only time she has transported someone to the hospital is for what they call 'failure to progress' where they genuinely need some extra help from pitocin or whatever.

The other option is for her to be employed as my doula, or a labor coach. She could come to my house when I'm in labor and check my progress, then when I'm getting pretty far along in labor, we can go to the hospital and she would still stay with me through the birth. I'm uncertain about that one, because I need to double check with the doctor about me coming to the hospital in labor. Plus, most doctors don't want c-section moms to go overdue.

There are so many scare tactics out there regarding this subject. But, when you weigh the risk of a catastrophic uterine rupture with getting hurt in a car accident, you are 30 times more likely to be in an accident. Yet, we still drive. In my mind, the uterus is a muscle, and muscle tissue heals up. It's being gradually stretched over a period of 9 months, and then it begins flexing and contracting. The incision site is so low in the uterus, to me it poses little threat of separating. If my bicep muscle was operated on, would they tell me the it could rupture if I started lifting weights a few months later?? Doubt it.

So, the ball is in my court. My husband has left it up to me to decide pretty much. The main obstacle with homebirth is the cost right now. The nice thing about an OB is they take insurance and you can pay a little at a time. I'm still just amazed that I found a willing midwife.

Anyways, so that's how it went. I will admit to feeling slightly fearful about a non-medicated birth. I've never felt any labor and wonder how I will handle it. I have a high pain tolerance for certain things like cuts, scrapes, and aches. If it's on a limb I can take it better, but if it's in the core of my body, that's harder to deal with. Guess I need to do some more reading about that...

7 comments:

Tracie said...

Hey Jessica. You don't know me, but I've been reading your blog for a while now. After reading your post about the midwife and the comment you made about an unmedicated birth, I just felt the need to comment on this. I have 3 kids - had epidural with the first 2. Fully intended on having epidural with the last one, but didn't have time. Girl, it hurt! I can't even begin to explain what it felt like. I have a very high tolerance for pain and I believe I handled it well. . . no tears, screaming, etc. But I wanted to!! My husband was in the delivery room with me and I knew I had to stay calm in order to keep him calm. Oh the things we do as women :) In the end, I wish I had skipped the epidural the first two times, too. I can't really explain it. It was almost like the pain made me appreciate the birth porcess so much more. Odd, I know. Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that. Good luck with the decisionmaking! I'll be praying for you. My name's Tracie by the way.

Dani said...

Hi, I'm preggers too (31 weeks) and I've been reading this book, Hypnobirthing by Marie Mongan. It comes with a CD (for relaxation and connecting with baby)and I like it very much so far. She's very adamant about pain being something we're trained to believe has to happen in childbirth. I still don't know if I'm going natural or not, but I will be using this CD up until labor and maybe even during! Here's the amazon link:

http://www.amazon.com/HypnoBirthing-natural-approach-comfortable-birthing/dp/0757302661

Best of luck to you, brave mama!

Danielle

Anonymous said...

I vote for all-natural birth. I've had 3 deliveries...at 39 (CNM @ hospital - 9#7oz - I'm 117# and small), 38 (Family practice dr. with OB specialty), and 38.5 weeks (OB-GYN). I had no drugs except for pitocin after delivery (to speed up the placenta's delivery - didn't even know they were giving this to me).
Yes, it hurt. God made our bodies, and He made them to deliver babies. I recommend a book by Sheila Kitzinger - Complete Book of Pregnancy & Childbirth. I do not agree with everything she says (abortion/God), but I do agree that birth is a natural event and we need to stop treating it like a medical event. Another tip if you do go natural...get some music that helps you relax or as the Quakers would put it, "center down". I had a CD of good songs and WORKED to have these 3 children. Working sounds are fine. Uncontrolled screaming is not necessary. That said, I know everyone has different pain tolerances and with your history of c-s, I would not blame you AT ALL if you chose to have another c-s. I went with natural birth because I believe God made my body with the ability to birth babies AND because I was wary of what effects medications would have on my baby and me. You can read our comments here, but you ultimately need to feel comfortable with your choice and know that I, for one, will not judge you for what you decide. Don't feel pressured to do what we did. Pray about it and know that God will be there with you either way.
BTW - I used a midwife for the 1st, but was afraid to homebirth. Good thing, because baby was HUGE and I am SMALL! After 3 hours of hard pushing, according to hospital rules, the OB had to be called in. She came in ready to do a c-s (it looked like shoulder distocia), but the midwife told her that she thought I was still progressing and the OB decided to let me keep trying. (I was thinking, "I've been here all day working at this and you're going to do a c-s?!") Long story short, the OB got REALLY agressive stretching me and baby finally decided to come out, to my great relief. All the nurses would come into my room later and say, "Oh you're the one that was pushing for 3 hours." I was a celebrity! :-)
~Crystal

jesnicole said...

HI, JESSICA. FOR WHAT IT'S WORTH, SOMETHING ELSE THAT'S AMAZINGLY GOOD FOR UTI'S IS GOOD OL' APPLE CIDER VINEGAR. HOPE YOU GET OVER THAT SOON, I'M SURE IT'S NO FUN. JUST THOUGHT I'D TRY TO HELP!

AND I ALSO HOPE YOU COME TO A DECISION THAT IS GOOD FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY REGARDING THE BIRTH, REGARDLESS OF WHAT ANYBODY TELLS YOU!! :) REMEMBER, YOU'LL BE A GOOD MOM NO MATTER HOW THIS BABY IS WELCOMED HERE, AND I'M PRETTY SURE GOD'S NOT GOING TO LOVE YOU LESS IF YOU HAVE ANOTHER C-SECTION. SAME IF YOU DO THE OTHER, TOO. I HOPE YOU'RE ABLE TO ENJOY BEING PREGNANT AND NOT STRESS TOO MUCH, AS ALL MOMMAS KNOW, THAT'S EASY TO DO!

Hunter80223 said...

Can't you have a midwife in the hospital? I am all for a natural birth, but since you had som much trouble with the other three and have never had a natural birth, maybe you should try it natural in the hospital with your midwife. I think safety should be put above all else. This is your life and the life of your child here. I have always thought they give out those c-sections out like candy these days, but I also see that the risks are far greater now that the damage has been done in the past... You know?

Anneatheart said...

Hunter,

In this area, as far as I can tell, midwives aren't welcome at the hospitals. Hardly anyone I know even acknowledges them. If I employed her as my doula only, she would accompany me to the hospital, but the doctor would deliver the baby.

One of the main reasons I haven't been able to find a midwife who will take me, is because they wouldn't have a physician to back them up if I needed to go to the hospital. There aren't any doctors that I know of that would willingly allow me to vbac.

So, that's my predicament.

His Tender Mercies said...

This is exciting/neat that this opportunity has opened up to you....do you think it's the Lord leading?

My first 3 children were born vaginally but not at all naturally. After my 3rd child was born God brought quite a few women into my life that had homebirthed, as well as a homebirth midwife...none of which I was looking for. The birth of my 3rd child was pretty traumatic, and the thought of having another was scary to me. I never in a million years thought I would want to have a homebirth but when I started hearing the homebirth stories of these ordinary women, I thought to myself "If they could do it why couldn't I"
So after much prayer I decided to homebirth with my 4th child. Yes there was pain involved but it wasn't as painful to me as some of the medicated births I had. I would say I'm someone that can't handle pain at all but I did it through the Lord's help. It was wonderful! My 5th child's birth was also a homebirth but a suprise breech as well. There was pain with that but never anything that I thought I couldn't handle. God is so gracious and I believe He will help you through that pain. He will give you the grace you need when you need it . Have you every looked into ICAN (International Cesarean Awareness Network)? This would be a could place to look into the statistics of safe VBACS as well as a place for support. I know my area offers monthly meetings open to the public.