Tolani’s Birth Story

I enjoyed holding my daughter in my arms, meaning although the actual birth experience was not what I had imagined it to be, it was all very worth it. I learned with my pregnancy and birth experience that plans are meant to be broken. I made such an elaborate birth plan and almost 90% of my requests were thrown out of the window. I did not want to birth in a hospital.
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Birth Story: Tamika + Baby Mav

When did you know it was time to go to the hospital?

 I went to my weekly check up with my husband and daughter at 1:30 on March 10th, my doctor advised that I appeared to be 4 centimeters but my cervix was still further back so he just told me to go home and we would play it by ear. After the appointment we all went to Panera for lunch then my husband dropped us off at the house and went back to work (this was about 3ish).  I was in the living room with Elle, my 3 year old, and I started having contractions around 5 o’clock so I called my hubby to tell him to come home. In my mind, I kept waiting to feel the exact pain I felt when Elle was born.  This was going to be my guide on when I knew it was time...or at least when my water broke. Well. . . 7 o’clock rolled around,  I was sitting on my exercise ball and we decide it was time. My water hadn't broken but the contractions were progressing.  When I arrived at the hospital which is 7 minutes from our home I was 6 centimeters dilated. 

What did you enjoy most about your birth experience?

The most enjoyable part about my delivery was having family and friends in the room.  It was truly like a big sleepover. Even though you're only supposed to have 4 visitors we managed to have 5 {my husband JoColby, daughter ElleMari, my in-laws, and friend Alex}. Now they all didn't stay when it was time to push, but it was fun laughing and taking pictures with them until I reached 10 centimeters.

Was there anything that didn't go as planned?

Well my delivery didn't go as planned. When I was pregnant with Elle it was perfection. I woke up from contractions, took a shower, water broke, pushed for 2 minutes, and labored for 3 hours in total. This time I was at 8 centimeters from 4am until 1:30pm on March 11th. The doctors advised that Maveric was stuck and he had to get him out so we unfortunately had to have a caesarian.

{I highjacked this from Tamika's instagram page}


Will you be breastfeeding? How long? If not why did you decide to formula feed?

My breast feeding plan is for a month, unfortunately I have to receive infusions for my Rheumatoid Arthritis so I will need to stop breast feeding.  This decision was hard but I have to do what's best for both me and the baby.

In general, did you feel in control during your labor and delivery? Was there a time when you feel this doesn't feel right?

I felt like I was in control up until I had to have the caesarian. I was really looking forward to having a wonderful experience like I did with Elle. 


If you could do it over and plan differently what would you change? Any regrets?

If I could do it all over I would pray for Mav to COME OUT haha, caesarians are the worst! 

Any advice for new mothers?

My advice for new mothers would be to accept any help from family members, be grateful because you will need it and also don't over do it with the pictures! We got suckered into big this photo package for Elle we were so excited she was a month old and we still have pictures that we haven't given away and she's 3!!!  There is no need to break the bank on expensive packages just stay in the middle and if you need additional go from there. 



Tamika thanks so much for sharing your birth journey! Congrats as well!


Tamika, a fellow momtreneur, is the creator of Pink Culture Momtourage, Inc., a non-profit group for mothers, and the online children's boutique Colby's Closet.

"Pink Culture Momtourage is not a group, but rather a movement that was birthed to Empower, Encourage, Inspire and Uplift all mothers. We are a village of women who possess different cultures, and backgrounds but also share ONE common goal and that is to strengthen our communities by molding and building prosperous and productive children."

"Because of the constant battle I’ve faced with finding affordable, stylish and comfortable clothes and after years of what ifs, I decided to step out on faith and form Colby's Closet which is inspired by my daughter, ElleMari Colby. We feel that children have the right to dress stylish and comfortable without breaking the bank. Oftentimes children either rarely wear an item or outgrow an item before they have a chance to pop the tags which is why Colby's Closet not only offers NEW items, but we also sell gently used pieces that will fit all budgets and allow your mini maverick to consistently be a trendsetter. Because as you know: 'Everyday is a fashion show and the world is your runway'." Visit Colby's Closet here





CC's Birth Story - Part Two-- Long

Several weeks before my due date, I had the opportunity to watch Ricki Lake's The Business of Being Born in its entirety. Before I only got to watch it piecemeal on YouTube. After watching there were several topics/people I wanted to know more about: (a) Ina May Gaskins, (b) Maternity morality rates by state, (c) "choices in Childbirth", and (d) what are the basic needs of a woman in labor? As I mentioned in a previous post my coworker purchased Ina May's book for me and I read it in 3 days. Let me tell you it was the single most helpful resource I've had at my disposal to prepare for labor. I'll do a book review one of these days.


So let's get to the point of this post, BC2's, a.k.a. CC, birth story. To summarize my experience in birthing in a birthing center within a hospital versus a traditional hospital setting I have one world -- E M P O W E R I N G. If you can't tell I've been kind of obsessed with labour and delivery since the birth of Lil D and I have been in search of a practitioner and birthing place that would allow me to be me as I birth my babies. Well I've found it. Let me paint a picture for you. I laboured without continuous monitoring, without being restricted to the bed or room, I was allowed hydrotherapy (read: hot shower), I was allowed to move and twist as I wanted to during each rush of a contraction, and my midwife (and student midwife) were there the entire time to monitor me. My final position of choice was on all fours with my butt facing everyone -- I know TMI, but you get that I was free to do me. 

As far as the sequence of events for CC's birth there are a few holes because D, who was my recorder with Lil D, was Papi Doula. He did a fantastic job by the way!! So here is how things went down according to my memory:


  • 710p contractions began for 1 hour -- 5-7 minutes apart
  • 910p checked into hospital via the ER -- I didn't want to wait for transport so I walked myself to the Labor and Delivery floor. Once I reached the floor a nurse intercepted me and said because I was walking I couldn't be ready to give birth. Ummmph . . . As she saw this wasn't the case.
  • 10p no contractions . . . no pain. This was my time to rest and build my strength. I began to chant my affirmations in my head and zoned out to Ledisi, Jill Scott, and Kindred the Family Soul. 


  • 1155p With no progress and 4 cm dilated Rachel, my midwife, asked me what I wanted to do - go home or have my water broken.  I chose to have her break my water manually. I was not going home. Of course this was painless, but I wanted to get the show back on the road.
  • 1211a Long painful contractions began. Every 3-4 minutes for 60-90 seconds each. Went into shower to labour 
  • 1250a Went back to the bed to lie down. Didn't feel comfortable so I got on all fours. Throughout each surge (I needed a word besides contraction, this seemed fitting) D was there with counter pressure, a wonderful rice sock (Shoutout to my neighbor Tasha for two cups of rice. . . thx!), words of encouragement, and a strong grip. Mind you he came home from work at 8 pm, he hadn't eaten since 11 am that morning and he was ON.
  • 130a  Threw up the three slices of pizza I ate before leaving for the hospital. 

 "Vomiting is a common sign of the transition phase, whether or not a woman has been eating throughout early labor.  Some coaches find this hard to handle.  Think of it as a way of “making more room” for the baby. In fact if something was rhythmically squeezing your insides, you would probably throw up too!  And let’s be honest, with a new baby around, you are bound to see a lot more throw up!  Since vomiting, like holding your breath or making a bowel movement, is a vagal response, it inadvertently helps your cervix dilate and hence, is a great sign to a labor & delivery nurse!  The body does awesome things to help the process along!"


  • 145 to 220a Began to have uncontrollable shakes and trembles before each contraction. I thought I was going through a seizure. Rachel mentioned when D questioned her that everything was fine and my body was doing what instinctively it needed to do to get the baby out. At this point I was thinking to myself, "Onida what the fuck is wrong with you, having a baby is fucking nuts". Sorry for the language, but its what I was thinking. Some how between this time and CC arriving I took off the hospital gown. Don't ask me how because I don't remember doing it, but in pictures D took right after I pushed out CC I was booty butt naked. LOL . . . I warned the nurse assigned to me and the midwives that this would probably happen. Needless to say I won't be sharing any of those pictures.
"The hormonal rush a woman experiences during labor, especially natural labor, is overwhelmingly intense.  These hormones will cause all women to being to shake as they approach full dilation.  This shaking, in fact, continues for at least an hour post partum, even after a cesarean section or medicated labor.  Many partners and family members try to pack a woman with blankets to help her out only to find that she insists on not only ripping off the blankets, but sometimes even her clothes!  In reality, it is unlikely that she is cold and if you continue to ask her if she is, she will just start to get irritated with you.  It’s normal to shake, I promise."

  • 225a Rachel did a vaginal exam during a contraction, the monitor was also placed on me to check the baby's heart rate (not strapped to me, the nurse held it in place). I was 8cm at this point, Rachel said I should be able to push through at this point.
"The process of monitoring the fetal heart rate in the presence of contractions is called a contraction stress test, although the test is done exactly the same way as the non-stress test. When interpreting a contraction stress test, two questions must be asked. Is the fetal heart rate reactive? And, how does the heart rate respond to the contractions? A fetus that was fine before labor started may have trouble once contractions begin to occur regularly."

  • 230a Finally felt the urge to push. I began to say, "Daneli is coming out now!" "Come on Daneli!" I was chanting this loudly to get through each surge. 
  • 238a CC began to crown. Then her head emerged. I though I was done and asked if she was out. D said no just her head. I thought, "Damn I can't win." I took a break (like 1 minute) and then felt the urge to bare down and push again this time out came her shoulders. I took another break and then came her entire body. {Note: During this whole pushing process the midwives didn't touch the baby. They just coached me to push. When I was pushing out LilD the doctor pulled her out with each push. HENCE MY SECOND DEGREE TEAR!}.
  • 241a On my hands and knees I pushed my little munchkin completely out!
  • 7 minutes The cord stopped pulsing after 7 minutes and D was able to cut it. 
Unlike Lil D, CC took some time to latch. Once she did, on my right breast, it was intensely painful. Well everything was painful. I felt the afterbirth come out and Rachel's exam of my pelvic floor. With LilD I didn't feel any of this. I did have a superficial, first degree tear. Once CC began to nurse I began having contractions all over again! Rachel mentioned the after pains for baby number two are much more severe than with your first child. Why didn't I read this any where!! I was not prepared.


 All in all I had an amazing birthing experience. I was able to let my body do as it wished without the interferance of man or machine. As I write this I am 4 days postpartum and besides being exhausted I feel great! 


Waiting for Tio Chino to pick Lil D up.



We have to remind her to be gentle, "suave ", as she constantly wants to touch and kiss CC. 

So now we are a family of four. Woo . . . I'm a Mommy of two. 



Home we go . . .







Birth Story: Erica + Baby Gabby

Upon finding out I was pregnant I was filled with mixed emotions. My husband and I were parents of three, and we were approaching the one year anniversary of our relocation to Atlanta, Georgia. Being pregnant was nothing new to me, however being pregnant in an unfamiliar state left me with anxiety. Having to choose the right obstetrician, deciding on which hospital to deliver, and the biggest stressor of all was fear of going into labor while my husband was out of town. See, we don't have the traditional work schedule, 9 to 5, Monday through Friday lifestyle. We're business owners and the nature of our business can change at the blink of an eye. This change left me taking care of our three children and going to appointments by myself  for most of my pregnancy.  

Gabrielle's due date was January 15, 2013. None of my children's births were a surprise for me because they were induced. I didn't have the "wake up in the middle of the night, my water broke, rush to the hospital" experiences that happens in the movies. Our friends decided to give us a baby shower on January 6. The event was held at our home and was filled with love and excitement! After the long day, I almost crawled to bed ... my body was done!! All night long I complained to my husband about pains I felt in my back, stomach and chest. I thought it was simply gas from eating so much food that day. I had my final appointment the following morning, hoping that my OB would schedule my induction for the following Tuesday. Still having pains, I jokingly said to my mother, "What if I'm in labor and she sends me to the hospital?" Sure enough, during my exam my doctor asked if my bag was packed and instructed us to go straight to Labor and Delivery!! I was in active labor!!!! Excitement rushed through me, along with an overwhelming feeling of anxiety! I've never gone into labor before naturally. My husband was scheduled to be in Baltimore the following day. I felt like she knew this and wanted to meet him before he left. 

I was 5cm dilated when we left the office. Of course an overnight bag was the very last thing on my mind, we just had a shower the day before?! I expected to have more time to prepare. Everything was everywhere!! We were rushing to pack and still trying to get to the hospital because the contractions, which I found out was not gas, were coming quickly and strong! I did not want to have her in the car! Finally, an hour later we arrive in Labor and Delivery. She's coming!! I'm ready!! It's 2 in the afternoon and my contractions were coming every 1 to 2 minutes. I'm almost 7cm dilated. Finally!!! 

My doctor expected I would have a baby within a couple of hours. I received an epidural around 5pm, then everything came to a halt! Contractions completely stopped! There I was, laying in the hospital bed stalled at 7cm for almost 5 hours. I guess Gabby changed her mind, at least that's what we told ourselves to make light of the possibility of having an emergency c-section. I received multiple phone calls and text messages of encouragement. My sister-in-law was especially excited because it was her birthday. After giving up hope around 10 pm I called home to wish my other children goodnight. Our oldest daughter, Yasmine, said that she still believed that Gabby would come before midnight and that I had to believe it too! I said a prayer after hanging up with her. I really didn't want a c-section. Then five minutes or so later, the machines started beeping!! My contractions were back and Gabby was crowning!!! After three pushes, Gabrielle Giselle Grier was born January 7, 2013 at 10:22 pm. Tears just started to fall from my eyes. My beautiful healthy baby was finally here. She was perfect! Those 5 hours of no activity were a thing of the past. She was well worth the wait!!! After she was cleaned and ready for us, I carefully removed her hat and replaced it with one that I had specially made for her. It was leopard print with a huge white flower that has a large rhinestone jewel in the center. She instantly became my little doll baby. I kissed her forehead. My little love baby, perfect in every way. 

Thank you Erica for sharing your birth story and super cute baby shower with us. It's so meaningful to share the experiences in our lives that make us stronger women. God Bless your family!!


Birth Story: Kitty + Lil' Z

When did you know it was time to go to the hospital? What happened exactly?

I was dilated for 3 weeks but had no progression so I scheduled an induction for Friday, March 18th. When I called the morning of I was told there were no beds available and I would have to come at a later time. Three hours later my labor started to progress naturally. I went to the Mall of America and walked for two hours to help smooth the labor. Once I was done walking I went to the hospital and was admitted.

What did you enjoy most about your birth experience?

I enjoyed having my family and friends present. 


Was there anything that didn't go as planned?

  Yes, after 14 hours of labor and being 8 cms dilated my son rotated his position and was breech. I had to have a C-section birth. A natural birth was planned. Prior to being told I needed to have a C-section I had not received any pain medication and was planning to deliver with no drugs. 


Will you be breastfeeding? How long? If not why did you decide to formula feed?

Yes I am currently breastfeeding. I supplement with formula at times now that he is attending daycare. I plan to nurse him until he no longer is interested. 


If you could do it over and plan differently what would you change? Any regrets?

I wouldn't change anything about this birthing experience. The C-section was actually easier than laboring and pushing. I enjoyed the quick in/out and the pain meds were instant. I bounced back immediately and was able to walk the next day with very minimal pain. 


Any advice for new mothers?
I would encourage all new mothers to document their baby with tons of photos and enjoy every moment of having a new baby. It is a great experience and a way to fall in love all over again.


Kitty thank you so very much for sharing your birthing experience!! God bless your family!


Birth Story: Diana + Baby Grant

1. When did you know it was time to go to the hospital? What happened exactly?

I had a scheduled induction at 39 weeks.

2. What did you enjoy most about your birth experience?

I had a great Doctor, and nursing staff. My husband was very supportive, and my baby was born healthy without any mishaps.

3. Was there anything that didn't go as planned?

The baby though head down was face up, so my midwife had to try and help turn him in the womb so that he could be delivered vaginally without bruising to the face.

4. Did you have a natural birth? Why or why not?

 Because the baby was turned face up I had bad back labor, so i was given an epidural to be able to rest and conserve my energy before it was time to push.


5. Will you be breastfeeding? How long? If not why did you decide to formula feed?

 I will be breatsfeeding, for the first 6 months and pumping for the the remained of his first year.


6. If you could do it over and plan differently what would you change? Any regrets?

Everything went well I wouldnt change a thing.


7. Any advice for new mothers?

Try to do visit the hospital ahead of time, and pre register to avoid a long wait with paperwork when you arrive to the hospital in pain. Have a good support system and Doctor you trust.

 Thanks Diana! And congrats on having a safe and conflict-free delivery. God Bless!

Birth Story: Kendra + Baby Kourtney


My childbirth experience was a really fast and exciting one. I was thirty eight weeks when my little one decided it was time to enter the world. Kourtney Nicole was due on March 18th but was born on March 8th, ten days early. What’s funny is that her original due date was March 8th but when the ultrasound was done, they pushed it back ten days to the 18th. I am a registered nurse which meant a lot of walking, lifting and pushing during my 12-hour shifts, all of which contributed to my speedy delivery.


The Details

I was at work the day I went into labor. Yes, I was determined to work all the way through my pregnancy. I already have one child, a seven year old little girl, so when I felt that first contraction I knew instantly it was time. Even though I worked at a very reputable hospital with an excellent labor and delivery unit, I chose to deliver at another hospital because it was closer to home. That plan immediately went through the window as the pain became unbearable. 

My co-workers were so excited that I went into labor while at work. They were very supportive even escorting me to the labor and delivery unit. Upon being admitted to L&D, the nurse assigned to me did the routine exam and discovered that I was 7 cm dilated!! She immediately called for the resident and wheeled me to the delivery room. I remembered her saying, “We need to hurry because this baby is going to be here any minute”. The pain was really bad and the only thing on my mind was, where is anesthesia, I’m going to need an epidural! The resident and attending physician tried to coax me into a natural delivery, I declined, I was determined to get an epidural. Unfortunately, my wish did not come through. As soon as anesthesia arrived, I had a sudden urge to bear down, my water broke, and I was being told to start pushing. I was in a state of shock, everything was happening so fast, the doctor didn’t even have time to “gown up” and the pain became more unbearable. 

The nurses along with the anesthesiologist were holding my legs and coaching me to breathe, four pushes later, I heard the cries of my new baby girl. My fiancée missed the delivery because it was so quick. I was in labor for only 1 hour and 13 minutes. He was able to cut the cord though. I immediately started sobbing, I think I was relieved that she made it out safely and that the pain disappeared.

In retrospect, the birthing experience was a pretty good one. The medical/nursing staff was awesome and met all of my needs.

Baby Kourtney is currently 6 weeks old. I am breast and bottle feeding. Originally my plan was to breastfeed exclusively, however my colostrum didn’t “come in” until 2 days after I gave birth so I had to supplement with formula. When my milk finally came in, it was not enough so I continued supplementing with formula. My milk supply is still not where I would like it to be so needless to say you will find Similac in my cupboards. 

Being a mother is no easy task, especially to a newborn. The biggest advice I would give to new mothers is to take all the help offered from close family and friends who have experience taking care of a baby. Don’t try to be superwoman, forget about pride, say yes to help! It’s important to get a lot of rest and “me” time, the dishes, laundry etc are no longer a priority


Thank you Kendra for sharing. I loved reading your story. God Bless you family. When I'm in town Lil' D and Lil' K can have play dates. :-)

Birth Story: Part Two -->The Induction

Through out this post I will bold all the events that happened "naturally" as my body prepared for forced labour. 
  • Thursday @ 7:26 p.m.
I was officially admitted onto the Labour + Delivery (L&D) floor for observations. My mood was apprehensive and a bit worried about the results of the next days ultrasound. D spent the night on a hard recliner chair.
  • Friday @ 8:45 a.m.
As I was using the bathroom this morning in preparation for my ultrasound my mucus plug passed. I didn't know for sure if it was indeed my plug so I said to the nurse, "Chantal I know this is gross, but is this my mucus plug?" I held it up for her to see on a piece of toilet paper. I know totally TMI, but I needed to be certain. This was my body's first step in preparing for my forced labour.
  •  @ 9:00 a.m.

Was wheel chaired to another floor of the hospital for my seventh ultrasound. At this point in the adventure I am worried and needed the constant reassurance of my husband to tell me that I didn't need to commit to anything I was uncomfortable doing. Results of the scan revealed my AFI was about 5.0 (they would not give us an exact number-- definitely a conspiracy we asked 3 different people and got the same answer, "Oh it was about 5."). Don't you hate when you ask a direct question and get a B.S., indirect answer? In addition to my AFI being about 5, the ultrasound tech and radiologist stated the measure of Baby Cruz's head was small. Okay let me breathe . . . even as I type this I am getting emotional, because this was the true climax of this whole "convience Onida to get induced drama". After hearing that my baby's head was measuring small, I immediately thought well why the hell do you want to take the baby two weeks before I'm due. My mood at the conclusion of the ultrasound was rattled and very afraid of my pregnancy ending in an "unnecesearean" due to a technocratic medical staff.

  •  @ 10:30 a.m. 

Upon arriving back to the L + D floor a doctor came to us and reiterated the results from the scan, placing great emphasis that they needed to induce ASAP because the consequences were so great that something could go wrong with our baby. Talk about pressure these doctors need to be giving PSAs for Global Warming, AIDS, and every other malady in the world to get people to take action. Anyway I asked the doctor a few questions about the process of induction and point blank told her why I was so opposed to the process (i.e., higher risk for a caesarean and me being only 38 weeks). I then asked for time to think it over and she left the room. I turned to D and said "I know they want me to deliver this baby by tomorrow for whatever reason, but if I decide to do this promise me you will continue to be my advocate when I am unable to demand my preferences." He promised and when the doctor returned I told her I made the decision to begin the medicine to induce. 

  •  @ 11:00 a.m.

 I was officially admitted as a L + D patient and we were moved to the room I would labour in. I was able to take a shower and I ordered lunch {Bland veggie soup, fried chicken, collard greens, french fries, banana nut cake, wheat bread, and a ginger ale}. D went out and got me a cheese burger and fries as well. I then sent him home to take a shower and change clothes.

  •  @ Noon

 I was placed back on the fetal monitor, blood pressure cuff, and contraction monitor. My blood was drawn (don't know why). And I am back on "bed rest".


  •  @ 1:54 p.m.

 A doctor came into my room and woke me. She said, "You are the talk of the floor. Everyone was convince you were going to leave." Funny I didn't know that was an option. She told me the process for inserting the Cervidil and went about pushing it into my vagina. {I've been stuck, probed, and poked more in those 24 hours then ever in my friggin' life} She said I would have to wait two hours before getting up to move and if I needed to urinate they would get me a bed pan. {Shaking my head} So step two of the process begun.

  •  @ 7:00 p.m. 

 I ordered dinner (I was not supposed to because my last mean was to be lunch) {Lunch- salad w/ French dressing, baked fish, rice, dinner roll, iced tea, apple}. Again I am being defiant, but I was hungry and I didn't know how long I would be in labour. I got a lovely visit from my midwife. She came to check in on me and see where I was mentally.

  •  @ 10:38 p.m.

 A doctor came in to check my progress (i.e., another vaginal exam). She stated my progress was still the same. This means I was 50% effaced, -2 station, and 2 cm dilated).

  •   Saturday @ 2:47 a.m.

 Checked again by doctor. I am now 3 cm dilated, 80% effaced, -2 station. The Cervidil was taken out because it effectively ripened my cervix. {Just learned that Cervidil is derived from pig semen- OMG!}

  •  @ 3:00 a.m.

Was allowed to take a shower. At this point I began to feel soreness in my lower abdomen. This was my second break from all the monitors. Pitocin was hooked up to my IV (step three). 


  •  @ 8:15 a.m.

Still 3cm dilated! Called Lynn, our Doula, and asked her to come to the hospital because I began to feel "funny" {meaning I was transitioning from early labour to active labour}.

  •  @ 10:53 a.m.

I experienced my first TRUE  labour contraction! Lynn, our doula, has taken over in preparing me to get through the Pitocin-induced contractions. Her wonderful "rice sock" sprinkled with essential oil on my lower back felt great! 

  •  @ 10:55 a.m.

Water Broke with a SUPER strong ass contraction! Lynn's counterpressure on my lower back and her instructions to breathe it out got me through. The phrase I remember through all the pain was, "Onida its done and you never have to go through that one again." :O)

  •  @ 11:00 a.m.

4 cm dilated!

  • @ 11:10 a.m.

Had a bowel movement in the middle of a serious contraction {I did make it to the toilet- I know TMI}. ;o|

  •  @ 11:19 a.m. 

With each contraction I am leaking amniotic fluid.

  •  @ 12:23 p.m.

Told Lynn I felt the need to push! She told me when I feel the urge to blow instead of pushing.


~~My recorder, said he was nervous so the running record stopped at this point.~~


  •  @ 12:53 p.m.

After five pushes (3 of which were on my side- refused to turn over on my back. I told the nurse this and she ignored me) Baby D emerged into the world crying! {tears} D videotaped the baby crowning , but put the camera in his pocket because he was overwhelmed. So you hear audio and him sniffing.

Her Apgar score was 9. Our bundle of joy weighted in at 6 pounds 2 ounces.

 Thanks D for being my support/coach/wonderful husband/recorder!!

Doula Lynn Christensen, I would not have been able to go through this labour pain medicine free without your encouragement and support. You are the absolute best! Thank you for everything- esp. for getting breast feeding off without a hitch! You ROCK!


Birth Story: Part One -->38 Week Doctor's Visit

Hi All! I am a Mommy!! Yes 2 weeks early and induced by Cervidil and Pitocin. Long story, but I intend to share it all in this post {well the events leading up to the induction}. 


As you may know from reading my previous posts I am a huge proponent for natural birth and allowing a pregnant woman to begin labor on her own with little to no medical intervention. Well honey THEY GOT ME!! Last Thursday, 3/10/11, I went to my scheduled 38 week prenatal appointment thinking I would get an ultrasound, check my vitals, and listen to the baby's heart beat then go home. Obviously that was not the way it was intended to be (I won't speculate and say this was part of the master plan but I'm just saying). 


I arrived at the appointment and was taken into the ultrasound room where the doctor explained to me the reason for this 4th (5th if you include my October visit to the ER) ultrasound was because my primary doctor considered the measure of my fundus to be small. She began the ultrasound exam by looking to see if Baby Cruz was developing well, then she began to measure pockets of amniotic fluid. This is when things got out of hand. After her assessment she stated that my "fluid" was low -- my AFI was 4.3 and because the baby was full term this could raise a number of possible issues. She named a couple and told me she would confer with my midwife and primary doctor on her recommendations for the next steps. {At this point mentally I am thinking, "This is some Bullshit . . . they just want to deliver this baby on the weekend and will give me any excuse to do it!"}


After the ultrasound I was placed in a regular examination room to meet with my midwife for the routine checkup, or so I thought. The midwife came in and immediately began her spiel for induction. {INDUCTION! I'm screaming in my head! I didn't come here for that!} As my students' would say she totally "blew mine". It took me a minute to process how I went from having a low risk pregnancy for 38 weeks to high-risk-must-deliver-now overnight. I asked her this question and she stated that it happens that way sometimes. She went on to say that she would administer the drug Cervidil in the office and send me to the hospital to be admitted. YES!! Crazy right! Of course I told her a resounding NO! At this point she realized I was totally not willing to adhere to their "medically sound recommendations" and said I should speak to the Doctor (the one that administered the ultrasound). She went away and I immediately took out my phone and did some research on low amniotic fluids and if this was a reason for induction late in pregnancy. From my research I concluded that it was an inaccurate assessment to consider the measurements from an ultrasound as a reason to induce. 


I'm detraught at this point, so I called D and told him the situation. He immediately told me to calm down and call Lynn (our Doula). I told him I didn't have Lynn's number {further reason to panic} and that they are waiting for me to say yes I will be induced. Sometime between hanging up with D and texting my family the doctor arrived to speak with me. I told her I didn't want the Cervidil and what else could she suggest I do. She asked me if I considered the consequences of my decision and I told her I had and what was she willing to do to appease me. She said she would give me a prescription to the L&D floor at Beth Israel Newark for overnight observation (i.e., fetal monitor and IV fluid) with a follow up ultrasound on Friday morning. {Score: 1 for me, 0 for them}


After the doctor left to write the prescription the midwife came back in. She said she wanted to do a vaginal exam and then I would be allowed to go home and eat before checking into the hospital. This is where my ignorance messed me up. Her "vaginal exam" included her stripping my membranes. I didn't understand that this is done to begin the induction process--I was totally VIOLATED and didn't even know. {Score: 1 for me, 1 for them}


I left the doctor's office at 1:30 p.m., went to West Orange to Panera where I spent $17 on a meal. After eating I went home and decided to lie down for a nap -- never happened. D came home and insisted that I take a bath for 1 hour and drink 48 ounces of water to "increase" my fluids, so that's what I did. After my bath we packed up my bag (just in case), got the birthing ball, Bloggie camera, and my pillow. We arrived on the Labor and Delivery floor at 8:30 p.m.