Tuesday, July 23, 2013

"It's a Cute One!"

Since my last two clients both delivered past their due dates, I assumed that my third would as well.  I was so confident, I went ahead and let my kids plan a water party in our backyard today!  But this mom went into labor pre-due date, and I headed out to my 3rd birth in 8 days!  

I received a text at 8 am that real contractions had started, but that they were coping well and not needing support yet.  Things changed quickly.  An hour later they called to say they were heading to the birth center, and I joined them shortly after 10 am.  

I found mom laboring on the birth ball, leaning into her husband during contractions.  I could tell things were definitely intense; but they were a great team, and managing things beautifully.  Dad was so supportive, and never left mom's side.  He sweetly held her face during contractions, and said things like "Thank you for birthing our babies".  I was touched by the love I felt between the two of them.  What a lucky baby to be born to this awesome couple.  

Mom labored in the bed after about an hour on the birth ball.  I could tell she was progressing quickly, so I was surprised at 1:30 when she was checked.  The midwife said she was 6 cm, and stretched to 8 during contractions.  I thought for sure she was complete.  Her bag of waters was still intact, and the midwife said it felt very strong and tough.

So weren't we surprised when it broke in a huge gush just a few minutes later!  Instantly mom felt the urge to push.  And at 1:49, Phoebe was born.

Tipping the scale at a healthy 8 pounds, 14 ounces!

She was quite blue when she was born, and had a lot of fluid to work out of her lungs.  But she was a trooper.  She slowly pinked up, and was nursing about 90 minutes after she was born.  

Dad is just as crazy about this little baby as he is about his wife!
He was even able to catch this little angel.

Big sister was soooo excited to meet her little sister.  Upon first glance, she excitedly exclaimed 
"It's a cute one!"

Grandma was able to come in several minutes before the birth, and share in the magical moment.

This little girl was so alert and ready to meet her family.  

It wasn't the water party I was planning on, but I sure came home covered in amniotic fluid, lol!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Posterior Challenges

I received a text at 6:00 am Sunday morning, saying that my latest client was in early labor.  With a first time mom, I never know what to expect.  Early labor can last for days, or it can go quickly.... but most likely, last for days!  I spoke with the dad on the phone around 7:00 and was informed that mom's back hurt.  Not good.  Immediately I was concerned that her baby was posterior.  An hour later they headed to the hospital.

I met up with them at 9:30, just as they were being officially admitted.  Mom was coping by leaning over the birth ball while dad rubbed her back.  She was 4 cm, coping well; but I could tell that she was already experiencing alot of discomfort.

Posterior babies are a real pain in the rear!  They are facing the wrong way, which puts tons of pressure on mom's low back.  And unlike contractions (which come and go), back labor is constant and exhausting.

We used the ice roller and the jacuzzi.  Both helped, but labor was still difficult.  I worried she would stall out, as is common with posterior presentation.  But at 10:55 she was 6 cm, and was 7 cm a half hour later!  I couldn't believe it!  I thought I just might be home in time to make dinner.

Wrong.  :)

Mom got an epidural around noon, and then she stayed at 7 cm for hours.  This is common with posterior babies, and with epidurals, so it's impossible to know which was the larger culprit.  Thankfully, the epidural worked well and mom was able to rest.  And baby started to rotate all on his own.

The OB came in at 5:45, and the decision was made to break the water.  At 8:15 mom was 9 cm with just a lip left of cervix, and was complete at 10:00 pm.  She was thrilled to make it all the way without pitocin, even with the slow labor.  But she was also anxious and nervous to push.  I hoped that pushing would go quickly since everything else had taken so long  (For her sake, not mine)  Her baby was already +2 station, so I thought for sure this would go well for her.


Ok, it wasn't horrible.  I've definitely seen longer, and she was able to deliver without intervention.  Baby boy was born at 12:18 am weighing in at 7 pounds, 13 oz.

Dad was moved to tears at the moment of birth, and was able to spend lots of quality time with baby while mom was dealing with afterbirth issues.  You know, all the stuff no one talks about....

Afterbirth wasn't exactly a cake walk either.  Mom bled alot, and after laboring all day without pitocin, needed it shortly after she delivered.  But hey, when it comes down to hemmorhaging or getting pitocin: pitcon wins every time.

It wasn't fast.  It wasn't easy.  It wasn't exactly what she planned.  But in the end, she got everything she wanted.  A loving husband, and beautiful, healthy baby boy; everything else is just the icing on the cake.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Boy or Girl?!

9 years as a doula, and this is the 2nd birth I've attended where the parents didn't know the gender of the baby, and it made the big reveal pretty exciting!  

Mom was 6 days past her due date when her water broke as she was walking out of her weekly check up!  (I had a feeling the summer storm might get things going for her!  And she wasn't the only one.  L & D was packed!)  Her membranes ruptured at 11:30, and I arrived at 2:30.  Mom was coping great with her contractions.  She was swaying and rubbing her belly.  Her contractions were already TWO MINUTES APART!  I thought I just might be home in time to make my family dinner.... but I wasn't.  :)

Even though she was cranking out a little more than twice the amount of contractions as a typical woman would in early-active labor, dilation came a little slower than we had expected.  At 5:00 she was 4 cm, and at 7:00 she was 6 cm.  She was making progress though, and that's what matters.  This was baby #3.  Baby #1 was born cesarean, baby #2 was a vaginal delivery that was very long and complicated, so we were planning on baby #3 being a little more agreeable.  :) 

At 7:30 pm mom decided she was "done" and asked for an epidural.  She and dad had worked sooo hard.  He was extremely supportive, loving, encouraging, and affectionate.  

Mom stayed at 6 cm for a couple more hours, and wasn't able to find full relief with the epidural.  Her blood pressure also dropped, causing her to feel dizzy.  She also dealt with nausea and vomiting.  Not exactly the break she was hoping for.  But at 11:10 pm she was dilated to 9 cm and complete at 12:15 am.

She pushed for 3 hours with baby #2, and was really hoping to not have to push that long again.  This time it only took 14 minutes!

Dad was able to announce
"It's a BOY!"
It was so exciting to find out in that moment!

Gotta love the finger hold...

Both parents were thrilled to have another successful vaginal birth with NO pitocin!  

Baby Boy #3
Born July 17th, 12:41 am
7 pounds 12 oz.
20.5 inches long

He was so cute with his eyes open.

He had the CUTEST little chin quiver when he cried, so I couldn't resist capturing a short video of it.