aoinoue: (Parenting - Geekling)
This birth went very differently than Chester’s, in almost all positive ways. For those that don’t know, I switched doctors at 22 weeks to a practice that, in addition to many OBs had two midwives on staff. If you were determined to be low risk, you had the option of delivering at the Alternative Birth Center at the local hospital. The ABC does not use IVs during labor, they allow you to eat and drink at will, and they do not practice external fetal monitoring (they user periodic Doppler readings to check fetal heart rate). They also have birth tubs available in each room (although you’re not allowed to give birth or push in them) and queen-sized beds. The ABC does also have the benefit of being in the hospital, so if anything were to go wrong, they had access to all of the necessary equipment and personnel just down the hall.

This was my goal – a natural birth in a setting that would provide for it with staff that was used to dealing with natural births – and after many months of obstacles (gestational diabetes, baby being a bit larger for her gestational age (likely due to the discrepancy between doctor and mom’s due dates), and my alleged clotting disorders), I was able to have the birth I wanted at the ABC.

Further Details... )

We’ve been home for nearly a week now, and Chester is adjusting (I think anyway) to having a little sister. We’ve been lucky thus far though, there has always been at least one adult around to pay attention to him while the other pays attention to Shelby. I will be very sad when Anthogna returns to work next week. I also miss sleeping, but that’s part of having a newborn – at least now we know there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

All in all, I absolutely loved delivering at the ABC. It was exactly the kind of birth experience I wanted and I am very grateful that I was able to deliver there.

Shelby News

Oct. 9th, 2009 07:18 am
aoinoue: (Kurt Halsey - Yellow Bird)
So, just so everyone knows - I was hospitalized on Wednesday from pre-term labor contractions. They gave me some drugs and hydrated the hell out of me and so they went away and I was discharged last night.

Shelby is awesome (from our ultrasound she's going to have tons of hair too!), and growing well. She's about 5.5 lbs yet, and looks like she's not ready to come out yet (she's actually breech), my body was just getting a little over excited with the Braxton Hicks Contractions. My cervix wasn't even dilated or thinning at all.

So I'm at home now, and will be off today and Monday (as previously scheduled) and the doctors at the hospital just asked me to follow up at my regular doctor's appointment on Monday. Here's hoping they don't put me on bedrest, but we'll see.
aoinoue: (Default)
...that you don't hear very often, and unless you know to ask, your OB might not tell you.

1) You *will* feel some pain. There is no getting around this. You will potentially be in early labor for up to 24 hours prior to even setting foot in the hospital.

2) Inductions and/or labor augmentation are more painful than natural labor, and are harder on the baby.

3) Epidurals can slow labor and cause a drop in maternal blood pressure, leading to fetal heart tone decelerations and fetal distress. If the doctor/nurse cannot correct your blood pressure with a large influx of IV fluids, you will end up with an emergency c-section.

4) Epidurals will fail in 20% of laboring mothers. Plan for this possibility and research other pain management strategies.

5) The standard "on your back" position for pushing is the *worst* position for you to be in. You're essentially pushing the baby uphill, and it makes your pelvis smaller, thus a) making you more likely to tear and b) makes the pushing take longer. It's only standard because it's easier for the doctor to catch the baby in that position.

6) If you have not had an epidural, push when *you* feel the urge to do so. Purple-faced nurse/OB-directed pushing does not make the baby come out any faster, it just makes you more tired.

7) Episiotomies are not standard practice anymore. Neither are enemas or shaving. If your OB practices any of these with any regularity, find a new doctor if possible.

8) The required eye drops are ridiculous. They are treating your baby for a chlamydia or gonorrhea infection it may or may not have picked up in the birth canal. THEY PROBABLY TESTED YOU FOR THIS DURING ONE OF YOUR FIRST PRENATAL APPOINTMENTS. And, it makes the baby unable to see you for the first 48 hours. Assuming you were negative on the initial test and you haven't been cheating on your partner, I recommend declining this procedure.

9) Ultrasounds in late pregnancy can be up to to 2 lbs off. Do not get talked into a c-section for a "big baby". C-sections are a *major* abdominal surgery and have all the risks associated with a major abdominal surgery. No way to know if the baby is too big until you try.

10) The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology have just released that their recommendation is that women should be allowed to have clear liquids to drink during labor. Personally, I do not understand why they did not realize that ice chips (which is still standard practice) melts to water in your stomach, but wouldn't let you have a glass of water. Either way, you should be allowed to drink something during labor if you want it. Link here.

Anybody else with more tips to add?

Edit: How could I forget my favorite fact? Epidurals are not shots. They are catheters in your back that are put in by a hollow needle. Yes, you will have to stay perfectly still during one or more contractions while the anesthesiologist places it. And yes, it will add nearly $4000 t o your hospital bill.
aoinoue: (Bleach - Anger Management)
So I recently switched OB-GYN providers to a practice that will be a little closer to where we (hopefully) will be living prior to Ni-Sprog being born. The practice also offers delivery at an Alternative Birthing Center, which is fabulous and I'm hoping to deliver there.

They only have one male OB, which coincidentally is the only one I've worked with so far, and he seems pretty nice and is working hard for me to be able to deliver at the ABC even given my alleged clotting disorders. However, yesterday, he was doing the fetal heart tones and after taking the reading himself for a few minutes he showed me the readout of the monitor and said "That's your baby, sweetheart" and looked vaguely disappointed when all I did was smile a little.

No shit, Sherlock. I'm quite aware that's my baby. I'm sorry my enthusiasm level for hearing her heartbeat was underwhelming for you, but this is not my first kid. She was just kicking me in the ribs not two minutes ago. I know she's fine.

And don't call me sweetheart. You are not my father.

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Aoi

February 2011

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