soontobe3: Quinn's Bradley Birth
Wednesday, November 07, 2007 4:08 PM
"My goal was a completely med-free birth, and I got lucky and everything went exactly as I wanted. I was able to walk through the labor until I decided I couldn't. I didn't have an IV going, avoided all pain meds, and my husband was the perfect partner (our Bradley instructor would have been proud)."
I woke up at 1:30 a.m. with a horrible cramp that quickly subsided. So, I sat in bed and about 7 minutes later it happened again. The cramping was really uncomfortable, but I thought maybe I would have a few and then they would stop. But, after about 4, I was so uncomfortable in bed, I got up an started walking around our living room in circles. I started timing contractions at 2:20 a.m., I had 2 or 3 that were 7 minutes apart and then they dropped to 5 minutes apart for 2 or 3 contractions and then I was down to 2.5 minutes apart. (In less then 2 hours, I went from contractions 7 minutes apart to 2.5 minutes apart!) I started to freak out, I had planned to stay at home as long as possible, but I had thought early first stage labor would take hours...not less than an hour.
To the Hospital
Finally at 3 a.m., I went in and woke up my husband (I had also begun to have bloody show). I wanted to talk to him about what to do. The contractions were so close together I didn't know how long I would have. I called my midwife and we agreed that I should at least go in and get checked at the hospital. We arrived at the hospital at 4 a.m. While I was getting changed, my husband let the nurses know that I was planning for a med-free birth. When I came out they questioned me about what I wanted and seemed totally okay with the fact that I was refusing everything. They put me on monitors for the baby and contractions, but the contractions stalled and it took about 10 minutes to have one. Luckily, they started up and quickly went from 7 mins apart to 4 mins apart. I got checked but was only 2 cms, so I thought I was headed home. They called my midwife and because my contractions had been so close and strong they decided to have me walk for an hour.
Toughing it Out
So, I walked the halls in L&D for an hour. I got put back on monitors and checked - I had dilated to 4 cms and was fully effaced, so I got admitted. I got into a room at 7 a.m. and got the IV put in. The nurses kept 'forgetting' to take the IV back out (I agreed to a saline-lock) and my husband stepped in to remind them that we didn't need it and that I had been keeping hydrated by drinking water and eating ice chips. Once the IV was out and the baby had been monitored enough, I went back to walking the halls with the agreement that I would get back on monitors at 8 a.m. Well, by 7:30 I couldn't walk through the contractions. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was in transition -- I had all the emotional sign posts. My husband caught what was going on and told me how great I was doing. When I said I couldn't do it anymore he reassured me that I was doing great and it would be over soon.
Time to Push
At 8 a.m. I sent my husband to get the nurse so I could get checked because the contractions were really close together and strong. I got checked and was a little over 8 cms, so the nurse went to call my midwife. Well, 2 or 3 contractions later, I was ready to push. We called the nurse and everyone came rushing in to get setup. While they were there my body started pushing on its own, and that really got them going. However, they wouldn't let me push until my midwife showed up. I had no idea how to cope with this, and wish I had had some idea how to get through a pushing contraction without pushing. I must have had 5 or 6 contractions, which were really close together, probably less than two minutes, before my midwife showed up. She had just enough time to get on a gown and I got sat up and started pushing away. I don't think I even pushed for 5 minutes before I delivered our baby boy at 8:38 a.m.
He was 6 lbs. 7 oz. and 19 inches long. I had a first degree tear because my son's hand came out with his head and the cord was wrapped around his neck twice, so they had to pull out the hand to get the cord moved.
My Bradley Experience
My midwife also did a great job of making sure the hospital supported my decision of no drugs. She made sure they understood I was allowed to be up and about while I was laboring. She also wouldn't let them hook up the iv to start giving me pitocin to get the placenta out. I couldn't be happier with her. :)
For Bradley moms, I attribute my great experience to the diet and exercise advocated by the method. Also, I think the classes did a great job of preparing my husband for what he was going to have to do and I couldn't be happier with how we were able to work together to bring our little boy into the world.
Good luck to everyone else planning a med-free birth! It is an incredible experience!
Read more about Nestie soontobe3!
Have a great story of your own? Email it to firstname.lastname@example.org!