A birth story // march 30 2013 – Click HERE to watch this beautiful birth story unfold in photographs.
We planned on having a natural birth with no interventions after having one 13 years ago full of interventions and lack of choices. Boulder Nurse Midwives was my first and pretty much only choice after doing a little research. From the day we got pregnant, I was healthy, happy and full of energy. It was amazing! During the few weeks nearing our due date I was anxious and ready for baby to be born. But every single thing had been great and at 35 years old, I had a clean bill of health. Being who I am, I sort of expected something to go wrong.
Around my 37th week we started to notice my blood pressure rising. Since I normally have very low blood pressure, this was concerning to me. And evidently it was to the midwives, because Merrilynn asked me to come back after the weekend and be checked again. Being ever the worry wart, I began checking my blood pressure at home over the weekend and noticed it was VERY high. Angela had us come in on Sunday evening to do some static readings and blood tests. Everything was fine! We didn’t expect to leave the Birthing Center that night without a baby and were surprised and a little let down to be going home.
The next appointment my blood pressure was on the rise again so we were in for a urine culture. At this time Merrilynn also did a membrane sweep when I asked if I would be a good candidate. It caused some cramping and mild spotting, but no labor! The next morning on Mothers Day my fears were realized, I had mild pre-eclampsia. I have heard this usually means bedrest and I knew that was even worse than being induced in my case. I am just not very good at doing nothing! So I asked if this was an option and sure enough….it was. We were going to be admitted and begin inducing that night!
When we checked into the birthing center, Janice was there and she and Angela had a heck of a time installing the balloon catheter thing in my cervix. It is supposed to help stretch and thin the cervix. I don’t know how long it actually took, but it felt like an hour. I learned on the other hand, my vaginal vault is reaaaaaaaaaaaaally long. After it was in place it caused some minor contractions and I thought for sure we were having a baby again that night. After a few hours it stopped and my fiance and I stayed the night curled up together at the birthing center.
Then next morning we were hooked up to pitocin at 8am. That was sure to get things going. Six hours later I was still not progressing quickly and Janice and I decided it would be good to break my water. Of course, that looooong vaginal vault made it difficult and we called Angela in to assist. I had started crying thinking this all seemed hopeless and I was going to be stuck pregnant FOREVER! Lucky for me I had my mother, sister and fiance by my side to help me get through this period…and the rest of it.
(I took a break from writing here and its been about 8 weeks, its no longer as fresh in my mind but I will try to fill in the details)
After my water was broken, we decided to walk the halls to help labor progress. It turns out I wouldn’t really need all the extra help. The labor pains began immediately. How had I ever thought I wouldn’t know when I was in labor!?! With my family in tow we walked around the labor ward 2-3 times and decided it was time to go back to the room and be checked. I had progressed a great deal and we thought it would be nice to get in the bath. The bathroom was set to a pretty pink glow and we put peppermint oils in the room to set the mood. And then the real pain started.
While sitting in the tub I began to panic and telling my fiance that I wanted an epidural. It quickly turned into begging and pleading. I don’t think he was prepared to see me in this kind of pain and he gave in after about 20 minutes. But we were informed that the anastesiologist was in a C-Section and couldn’t do it then. I decided to get out of the bath because it wasn’t helping and started to labor on the bed while lying on my side. By this time I had progressed to 6cm. It had only been 1.5 hours! We were well on our way.
I knew I was panicked and kept thinking if the pain was this bad at this point I was never going to make it. But I was informed I was too far along to get an epidural and I could do this. With coaching and help yelling Loooow. (which I think was supposed to be moaning) I began working through contractions. Then I thought, I wanted to try the birthing chair. Boy, does that help relieve some of the pressure on your back during back labor. I labored there for about 30 minutes but found it difficult to balance my heavy self on it, even with the help of my fiance.
At about 2.5 hours into labor I knew it was time to push and Angela checked me. Sure enough, I was almost 10. I of course informed them I was pushing whether they liked it or not. I just knew it was time. I began pushing on the chair but it was still uncomfortable and Angela set up the bed at an angle with a bar at the bottom to put my legs on. It was almost like I was squatting while on the bed. The pain seemed to subside once I had started pushing. I had never been so relieved and excited in my life.
I didn’t know how quickly this was going to happen. I had pushed about twice on the birthing chair and once we moved to the bed I began pushing. I believe I pushed about 4-5 times and I could feel her crowning. My fiance was soo excited, as were my mother and sister. And I was even able to ask if the baby had hair. She was born amazingly 2 hours and 58 minutes after my water was broken (and labor really began) with only 8 minutes of pushing. We are very proud to announce the birth of our perfect 8 lb 14 oz daughter Amelia.
And while we wanted a completely natural birth, we still had a very positive birth experience. And we did it, without an epidural. Thank you to all the women at Boulder Nurse Midwives for making the birth of our first daughter and the 9 months before amazing. We are forever grateful and will refer everyone we know.
Take a moment and watch this incredible video birth story shown here at a Ted talk.
My first baby was born at home. This was a beautiful experience and I couldn’t imagine giving birth anywhere but home from then on. When I got pregnant with my second child my husband and I decided that since my in laws were living with us, we would opt to have the birth at Foothills hospital with Boulder Nurse-Midwives. This was a very hard decision for me at first. I was worried and reluctant. I had so many concerns, but I agreed to consider this option since I knew it would be best for my family. I was impressed that everything I had loved about being at home, aside from being at home, the Boulder Nurse-Midwives could accommodate at the hospital. Once the baby came my care was superior to what I had expected. The continued monitoring that accompanied the birth made the transition so relaxing and reassuring. I loved giving birth at home, I am a firm supporter of home births. I understand and value the benefits of this environment for childbirth and the unique care that a home birth midwife can offer. After experiencing both types of care and both being healthy successful births- I suggest any woman that previously had a home birth to consider working with Boulder Nurse-Midwives. I’m not sure that this kind of similarity in care would be possible in any other town or hospital, or with any other group of midwives. This is truly a unique practice. Since this birth I can confidently say the next time I am pregnant I will be under the care of Boulder Nurse-Midwives.
As a doula, I have had the pleasure of attending births with Merrilynn, Angela, Sarit and Kala. 100% of my clients have been delighted with the care given to them by the Boulder Nurse Midwives during their pregnancy, birth and postpartum period. Often I hear this fantastic team of women referred to as birth angels by my families. I continue to be humbled by the Boulder Nurse Midwives’ commitment to their patients, their work is truly a labor of love!
We are so grateful you were a part of Emmeline’s birth. Thank you for creating BNM. What a gift to this community! Jordin
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