Estelle's birth story #3 I wish...

I'm not an OB or midwife, and this isn't to attack or really question what the OB team did as wrong. Birth isn't a moral issue. There's no right and wrong. They did nothing wrong, based on their training and the information they had and their liability. It's about how I might've achieved my ideal birth given the information I had. Wanting a healthy baby and an amazing experience isn't wrong either. 

In my previous post about Estelle's birth story I noted some points where I might've done things differently. 

Point number 1: I wish I would have said no to the ultrasound at my 38 week appointment. I already knew she was head down. I might have been able to leave the office that day and never gone down the path of IUGR.  

Point number 2: I wish we would have gone home and not started the induction until 39 weeks. I wish we could have tried some natural induction methods. I wish we would have asked what my Bishop score was to see if it was favorable for induction. To some people this probably seems crazy, but I wish I would have eaten more dates. I wish we could have gone home and had sex a bunch of times! I wish I could have kept using my Clary Sage oil. 

I wish we would have put off breaking my water and the internal monitor. I didn't have any pain meds while I was laboring. Potentially, I could have lasted longer if they hadn't broken my water because the contractions were much stronger and more painful afterwards. Estelle also might've tolerated the labor longer. 

I don't know that any of this would have helped us achieve a vaginal birth. The risk of waiting could have meant a stillbirth. This is what it comes down to, we have a healthy baby. 

I think the most traumatic part now in the recovery from a cesarean is the risk for future births. I want to deliver out of hospital next time. There will be restrictions given the history. 

I'd love to hear from ya'll about your birth stories. Was it exactly as you wanted? Any seemingly minute detail you would have changed?

Estelle's birth story #2

You should be able to tell your birth story. And you should write it down. Maybe especially if it's traumatic? Maybe always, but I guess I won't know until I have another one to compare to. I don't actually feel that my birth story is traumatic, but it certainly wasn't an amazing, everything I wanted birth. Serena Williams withdrew from the French Open earlier this week. Probably nothing to do with her birth, but it was big news that this is her first major back after having her little one, and that she was devastated by having to have a C-Section. She had blood clots and a PE, which is a waaaayyyy better reason IMO to have a cesarean than mine. Anyways...

Estelle is 7 weeks as I start this. 

We did a lot to prepare for birth in my opinion. Bradley classes (check) Birth plan (check) Review birth plan with birth helpers (check)

Estelle took this checklist and threw it out the window. Or maybe I did. 

We prepared and planned for a natural, non-medicated birth. We had many discussions in our Bradley classes and with each other about whether this was possible in a hospital setting. We'll come back to that. 

At my regularly scheduled 38 week appointment (Tuesday) I had a quick ultrasound to make sure she was head down and ready to come out. (This is my first point of contention with my decision making in my 20/20 hindsight) She was, but my OB was concerned about the amniotic fluid level. She sent me for an actual ultrasound, and the fluid level turned out fine, but then there were concerns about how small she was. They told me she was measuring in the 5th percentile. So basically, I was diagnosed with Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). The medical advice was to induce at 39 weeks, which would have been the following Monday. 

I wanted to give my presentation on Friday. So I was stubborn and put everything off until after. My doctor wanted me to have a non-stress test, and she gave me the option to go to the L&D floor on Saturday to have it done, instead of in the clinic during normal business hours. 

Estelle had decelerations of her heart rate during the NST. More evidence to induce. Like now. Don't leave the hospital. (This is second decision making point) Let's start your IV.

I got into a room, about 2:30pm, they started my IV, pitocin and I kept the electronic fetal monitoring on from the NST. I could move around though and I did. I labored for a while, before any other interventions happened. The EFM was not doing a good job of recording my contractions, and the strength. Anselm was timing them on his phone, and they were getting stronger. Eventually, (maybe around 10pm?) they wanted to break my water and use the internal monitor. We had delayed this basically as long as possible, we kept refusing and wanted to keep trying different positions. Then at some point,  they put water back in, and stopped the pitocin for a while to see if I would contract in my own. I was, and I was having strong contractions, but I eventually learned I had only gotten to 5 or so centimeters. I had been at 3 before starting the induction. I had requested the OB not tell me after the cervical exams, and only tell Anselm of my progress. We kept trying to change positions, and pitocin was eventually restarted, but by 2:30am I was ready meet her, and the OB team was really putting the pressure on for us to consider changing the method of delivery to a cesarean. Estelle's heart kept decelerating and not recovering well after contractions, so we decided it was time. 

The OB team got everything ready, and surgery started. Dr. Powell asked if she was going to have hair, and I said "Definitely!" Then I heard them say something about how much meconium there was. They got her cleaned off, Anselm got to see her first and cut her cord, then they brought her over to me to take some quick pictures and they whisked her away to the NICU. 

She had aspirated her meconium, pretty badly. She ended up spending 10 days in the NICU. 

Estelle is almost 9 weeks now as I'm finishing writing this. 

I'm going to write about my points of contention in my decision making in another post, long with my thoughts on recovering from a cesarean and our experience in the NICU.

Estelle's birth story #1

Started 4/29/18

I don't know where the saying comes from, "if you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans" but I think there's something to it. I'm not totally a type A personality, but the portion of me that is loves planning. 

If you haven't already seen on my other social medias, we welcomed our baby girl, Estelle, 2 weeks ago. She spent 10 days in the NICU but we've had her home with us since this past Wednesday. She's so sweet. 

I'll do a separate post on Estelle's birth story, but I was thinking about this sorta silly saying recently, and it's just helped me process everything that's happened in the whirlwind of the last two weeks. 

God certainly foiled my plans for Estelle's birth. I did however successfully finish my first clinical instructor experience, and my first major presentation at a professional conference. Estelle was born 2 days later :)


Happy New Year!

It's 2018! The year I'm going to have a baby! That's a pretty amazing thought. To all those mommas like me, that 2018 is going to be your year, congratulations. To all those mommas still waiting for prayers to be answered, hang in there, I see you. This heartache is not everlasting. It is real, and I am here to support you and pray for you. 

I am going to shift the content of my posts a little bit for the new year, and my last trimester. Hubby and I will be taking Bradley Method classes, so I'd like to e able to reflect on these. But also, I want to share some of my PT knowledge with ya'll. It's been an interesting science experiment to try to follow all of my own advice, that I give to my patients. As we get closer to delivery, I'd like to share what I'm doing in this regard. 

I definitely have a soap box when it comes to prenatal and postpartum care. I'm very passionate about this, because I see so many women, who I think could have been helped with a little education during pregnancy, or prior to delivery. This blog has given me so much already, so I want to give a little back too. 

24 weeks today. I've been feeling lots of movement, and wow is it incredible. Once I even thought I saw the movement from the outside! We did share the news of boy or girl with our families over the Christmas weekend, so stay tuned for a post on that!

All the blessings for 2018 friends!



Halfway there!!! 20 weeks. Oh how I've prayed for this week and this growing baby. 11 ounces Peanut is now. That's still so tiny!

We had the anatomy scan on Monday morning! It's so cool! 4 heart chambers, 2 kidneys, a stomach, a bladder, this nerdy PT was fascinated. My little one was very active during the whole hour. Everything looks good, great even and we are just so happy. We both welled up. 


This little Peanut is 22 weeks. 

I'm not feeling down about the Christmas season. I'm feeling hopeful. Although I wish my Charlie were here with us for his first Christmas, I'm preparing for the birth of Jesus, and for our little one in the spring. 

We had a very nice visit with my parents and brother in their new home in Laughlin, Nevada. My mom gave me an ornament commemorating Charlie, I also got another one from my sister in law yesterday. They are hanging on our tree now. 

I've been diffusing an oil blend called Christmas Spirit, mixing it with other holiday scents such as Nutmeg and Peppermint. I love how it makes the whole house smell delicious. I've been wrapping presents, listening to Christmas music. I'm not much of a baker, so no cookies over here. 

The last two mornings, I think I finally felt Peanut. It was light and subtle, but it did sort of feel like bubbles popping on the inside. I couldn't feel it with my hand on the outside. This was right away when I woke up, laying in bed. Once I start moving, I haven't been able to feel it again, even when I sit or lay down at the end of the day. 

I started researching the Bradley method of childbirth, based on a recommendation from my sister and brother in law. Anselm and I are going to do the 12 week class. I'm so excited to learn about natural childbirth, because I feel like I've advocated a lot for it with my patients. But now I'll get to go through it myself. I'll have a series of posts about it for sure. 

Anyways that's all the updates for now. Merry Christmas everyone!

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