Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Gaskin Maneuver

I received a text from my client at 9:00 this morning, telling me her contractions were 10 minutes apart.  She also said she had a 10:30 appointment with the midwife, and would touch base with me afterwards.  So I went about my morning, assuming I would hear from her around 11:00.

An hour later I got a text from the midwife.  
All it said was "She's 8 cm"

I immediately called my husband, who is not only the most supportive person alive (how can you not be if you're married to a doula?!), but also works very close to home.  I yelled "Meet me at home in 5 minutes!"  I flew out the driveway the second he got home, knowing I could easily miss this birth since it was baby #6 for this awesome mama!

I arrived to find mom in the tub, holding hands with her sweet husband.  The room was so quiet and peaceful.  I could tell she was just about to start pushing.  The urge was there, but it was mild.  

I thought for sure that baby would just slide right out.  But after about 20 minutes, the urge to push was still weak.  Mom struggled to find energy, and asked her husband to pray for her.  I turned on some music to help her focus and gain energy.

I just loved how this couple held hands the entire time I was there.  And how can you not be impressed when a woman can still fit into her wedding ring at 9 months pregnant?!

After alot of pushing in the tub, the midwife suggested we try something different.  Mom climbed into the bed and began pushing in a hands and knees position.  It helped, but it wasn't enough.  What was enough was the Gaskin Maneuver, where mom brings one leg in front.  It still took alot of effort, but this mom was able to do it!

At 11:40 am, March 2nd 2016, 
Thiago was delivered into his mother's arms.

I love seeing moms filled with so much love for their babies.  
Her face says it all in these photos!

This little cutie nursed right away.  
And with 5 older siblings wanting to hold him, mom might only get him when he's hungry!

Leap Day, Baby!

I was woken up Sunday morning at 3:00 with a call from my clients.  I hopped out and bed and headed to their home, where I found mom relaxing in her bean bag, being protected by her dog.  How cute is that?!  But after a couple of hours, her contractions all but disappeared, so I sent everyone back  to bed.  :)

Sunday passed by, and I met my clients at the birth center around 5:30 pm for a non-stress test.  Mom's contractions were still irregular, with a couple hours on, then an hour or so off.  Unfortunately, it's pretty typical for a first time mom to have an early labor like this.

After the non-stress test, it was determined that mom should transfer to the hospital so baby could be monitored more.  Definitely not what a mom planning an out of hospital birth wants to hear.  But moms always do what's best for their children.  Since contractions were still somewhat mild, I went home to get some rest before things became more intense.

I was called back shortly after 2:00 am and found mom relaxing in the tub.  (Sorry, no pics!)  She was so focused and was laboring beautifully.  She was 7 cm, and I thought we might have a baby by breakfast!

I was wrong.

After hours of laboring in the tub, walking the halls, and swaying on the birth ball, mom was still 7 cm at 7:30 am.  Very discouraging news!  The nurse started talking pitocin, which mom really wanted to avoid.  But after a another hour, it was clear to see that pitocin was needed, so mom agreed.  

Mom's parents arrived Sunday morning, and offered some much needed family support.  

After enduring almost an entire day of pitocin-contractions, mom asked for an epidural.  It provided much needed relief and rest.  But by 7:30 pm, labor had not progressed any further, and it was clear to see that this baby was just not going to be born vaginally.  Mom was given some time to emotionally prepare for her cesarean.  She certainly did not want a cesarean, but enough was enough, and it was time to meet this baby!  

Only dads are invited into the operating room, but he was able to poke his head out and show everyone his son.

Check out that amazing conehead.  He sure tried to fit through the pelvis, but he was just too big!

So awesome to have all 4 grandparents there.  
They waited patiently in the hall and were so excited to sneak a peak of their newest grandson!

Asa Joseph
Born Feb. 29th, 2016
8:24 pm
10 1/2 pounds!

FINALLY getting to hold her baby!

I am seriously obsessed with his mouth and cheeks!

It is hard to express how amazing this mom was.  She literally labored for days.  She was so strong and so patient.  It was wonderful to see the hospital staff treat her with respect, and allow her to labor for a long time, and try everything before resorting to a cesarean.  This removes "what-ifs" from the birthing experience, so moms and dads can go home with a sense of peace.