Hooray! Our little bundle of lovin’ arrived Tuesday night!
I was getting nervous about possibly risking out of the birth center — 42 weeks is the deadline — so at my weekly appointment Tuesday morning, I had my membranes stripped. It’s not a highly pleasant procedure and it left me quite crampy, much to my midwife’s pleasure.
Sure enough, within an hour or so, cramps turned into irregular contractions which fairly quickly turned into regular contractions. From the time I left the appointment to the time he was born was 13.5 hours. Can’t complain about that
He joined us at 9:38 Tuesday night, weighing in at 9 pounds, 10 ounces, measuring 21.5 inches long. He has a ridiculous amount of head control and will already turn himself onto his side from his back. It has truly been fabulous having him here with us.
In the theme of this blog, I am hoping that the type of care I received and the type of birth I was able to have continue to become more widely used, accepted, sought after, respected.
As a woman of “advanced maternal age” (35 at conception, 36 at birth), I was treated by doctors as a problem waiting to happen. I didn’t get much information about things that were useful but I heard an awful lot about Down’s Syndrome. (Yes, having that information is good, but surely that’s not all I needed to know about being pregnant?) My appointments were short and many interventions were suggested/recommended. One OB wanted me to have an ultrasound every week starting at 34 weeks — based solely on my age. I was in good shape, my blood pressure was low, my glucose levels were fine, I had no symptoms of anything at all being wrong — why intervene?
I chose to use a birth center for a lot of reasons, and as time went on, I had more reasons why I was glad to be there. My appointments were relaxed — there was time to really discuss anything and eveything I had concerns or questions about, whether they were things happening in my body, things that I wasn’t sure if I should/shouldn’t do, fears I had about the birthing process (or how I would react once The Kid was actually here). I could ask about interventions that were available, why, and when they would be used. We talked in depth about what situations would be cause for transfer to a hospital, what that transfer would look like, and what the typical procedures at the hospital were so I would know some of what to expect if we had to go there. I never asked a question that was dismissed, and I never felt rushed.
The support that I had during the labor and birth was amazing. The resources I had available were great, and I used just about everything they had, I think (shower, tub, birth ball, birth stool, squat bar, bed). I would be the world’s biggest fibber if I were to say that it didn’t hurt like mad (though I didn’t experience the “ring of fire” and the actual birth wasn’t terribly uncomfortable), but it is an amazing process and I am glad I was in a place and with people where I could do it and have what I needed to do it. (If you want more details about the labor and birth, I’m happy to share, but that’s as much detail as I’ll go into publicly here…)
If you’re interested in where I was and what they’re all about, I patronized The Babymoon Inn and am more than happy to give them a little shout-out here, now that it’s all said and done. Highly highly highly recommend.