Archive for the ‘Childbirth’ Category

Help create a natural childbirth show on Oprah’s new network!

June 30, 2010

PLEASE VOTE for the “Every Mother, Every Baby” Video on Oprah’s ‘OWN Show’ site!  Together we *can* make a difference!   Oprah has created a contest for people to get their own TV show on her new network and Kerry entered the contest with a video about teaching expectant parents about taking responsibility for their own decisions and care during pregnancy, birth and baby care.

YOU can click the link below and VOTE for it, and leave comments on why we need a show like this right now!  WE NEED VOTES, so please everyone vote and leave comments!  We have a chance to change the birthing world!  Please VOTE for “Every Mother, Every Baby” show!

Link to pass along so others can vote: http://bit.ly/9nT9RG

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March of Dimes birth statistics

June 2, 2010

I came across this information at the March of Dimes website.
Here is the data for Utah.
Data I thought was interesting:

  • The total c-section rate is 21.5% of all births (up 35% since 1996).
  • The vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) rate is 18.7% (which means that 81.3% of women with prior c-sections have another c-section).
  • The c-section rate in Utah County is 18.6%.
  • The VBAC rate in Utah County is 24.4%.
  • The county with the highest VBAC rate is Iron County at 33.7%.

The county data can be accessed by using the top right menu (“Create Maps”).

Understanding Painless Childbirth

May 19, 2010

This blog post from a Hypnobabies mom talks about what painless childbirth means.

BYU Birthing Conference Flyer

March 18, 2010

BYU Birthing Conference Flyer

Looks like a good line-up!

Kim C.’s Hypnobabies Birth Story

December 16, 2009
Ellie Michelle’s Birth Day
Monday, Nov. 30th at 10:30 p.m.
After almost a week of practice pressure waves that were keeping me up at night, things started getting a little more intense. My pressure waves were 4-5 minutes apart and lasted close to a minute long. I got through them on my own for a couple hours, using the relaxation techniques (“Peace,” “Relax,” my special place and deep breathing) I learned in my Hypnobabies classes until I felt like I needed a little extra help. I woke Clay (my husband) up around midnight and he applied pressure to my back and talked me through the pressure waves, using relax cues and reminding me to feel only pressure and use my natural anasthesia. I took a bath and listened to my Hypnobabies recordings (Birthing Day Affirmations and Visualize Your Birth) to stay positive and pain-free.
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3 a.m.
We decided it was time to call my doula, Melissa Chappell. She helped me through each pressure wave by applying pressure to just the right spot on my back, sometimes on my hips, and by helping me try lots of different positions to ease the intensity of each pressure wave. She brought her essential oils (lavender, orange and lemon) and put them in my candle warmer to permeate the air with their calming/energizing smells. I was already very tired at this point from not sleeping much the past week, so I tried to take a little nap … I wasn’t really able to take a real nap, but I did doze off for the few minutes in between pressure waves. When the sun came up, I put on my upbeat music mix. Melissa recommended making a few different playlists for my labor day, so I made 4: upbeat, calm, Christmas and church. Studies have shown that women who listen to music during their birthing time report feeling less pain, so I highly recommend making playlists! Melissa made Clay and I some omelets and fruit salad for breakfast, (I also highly recommend doulas, obviously!) then we went on a walk. It was such a beautiful day outside so it was perfect. Perfect, but pretty hilarious for the standers-by to see a bundled up, exhausted pregnant lady randomly collapse into her husband’s arms every few minutes while another lady pressed on her back. We sure got some funny looks, but I didn’t really care at this point! The walk actually made my pressure waves a little easier for some reason. After a smoothie (thanks, Melissa), more pressure waves in different positions like on my birthing ball, (by far most effective for me) side-lying, etc. I felt that the pressure waves were getting more and more intense. At 6 p.m., after 19 and 1/2 hours of pressure waves at home, we all thought it was time to go to the hospital.
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I got checked in an American Fork Hospital triage room. I was completely effaced and dilated at a 3+, but they wouldn’t admit me until I was a solid 4. We decided to walk the halls of the hospital for two hours and get checked again. Still a 3+. The midwife gave us 3 options: go home, hang out in the triage room until I could be admitted, or take a shot of morphene so I could get some sleep. But the problem with the morphene, she said, was that it may or may not work for me. It could work for 20 minutes, or up to 6 hours. Everyone left to give us privacy to think our options over. I’m not going to lie — it was really a moment of despair for Clay and I. We did not want to go home. Not because we were too anxious for Ellie to come — we knew she was already on her way. The desperation was that I was completely exhausted physically and emotionally. I really didn’t know if I could continue. The tears came. My sweet husband, who told me later how worried he was about me despite the reassuring smile on his face, asked me what I wanted to do. Then, he said one of the most heartfelt, pleading prayers I have ever heard.
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Then I told him I wanted that morphene.
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And it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Of all possible answers to the prayers in my life, I never thought a shot of MORPHENE in the bum would be one of them — but it sure was. My doula was really happy I decided to take it because she knew how exhausted I was and wasn’t sure if I could have the birth I wanted without getting at least a little bit of a break. The morphene started working immediately. Maybe since I never take medicine, it is incredibly effective when I do! We decided to go to my mom’s house in Draper because her beds are so comfortable. When we got there, Clay basically carried me to the bed and I zonked out for four hours. It was a-maze-ing. When it wore off, I woke up at 2:30 a.m. and the pressure waves picked right up where they left off. I called for Clay and he sent in Melanie, a doula-in-training/angel from heaven who came to help while Melissa went home and rested. Melanie was incredible. So sweet and motherly. She helped me through the pressure waves for a couple of hours and Melissa came back. I stayed at home until 8:30 a.m.
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When I started feeling slight urges to push during pressure waves, we thought it would be a good idea to head to the hospital again, crossing our fingers that I was far enough along this time.
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When we got to the triage room, I heard some serious screaming and moaning. I tried to convince myself it was just a fussy kid that just sounded like a woman in labor. Then the nurse said, “Oh, that lady is doing an unmedicated birth – thus the screams!” It was kind of funny. I hoped I wouldn’t be screaming like that! When the nurse checked me, I was dilated 8 centimeters – I was SO happy. I was admitted to a room, got into the tub, and things moved really quickly. I was at a 9.5 then a 10 in under 2 hours. I was surprised at how little I cared about privacy at this point. The only thing I cared about was remaining calm during my pressure waves and getting my baby out! I was also pleasantly surprised that even though I was fully dilated, the pressure waves didn’t seem much (if at all) more intense than the ones I had been feeling for the past several hours. I’ll credit Hypnobabies for that one! The pushing urges started getting stronger, so I went to the bed and got into a side-lying position, had Clay turn on my “church music” playlist and I started seriously pushing. I was excited to be at the pushing stage because I knew I was so close to the end and would meet our baby girl so soon. It was nice to get kind of a break from contractions and do something “more productive.” I compare the pushing to when you are violently ill with the stomach flu and your whole body tenses up as you can’t help but throw up. I didn’t feel any nausea or anything … but the urge to push was really strong and draining. The midwife didn’t do any coaching — she just let me push when I felt like I wanted to – I felt like I was in control of my birthing experience, which I loved. The staff kept commenting on how amazed they were that I was about to have a baby because I was so calm and relaxed during pressure waves. I always hoped (and more importantly – visualized) that would be the response I’d get.
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The midwife asked me if I wanted her to break my water. I asked what the risks/benefits were and she said there wasn’t much risk at this point and it would just speed things up. But I remembered seeing the hook they use to break water in my Hypnobabies class – it looks like an extra long knitting needle. Having my water broken did not sound very comfortable, and I already had enough discomfort, so as much as I wanted my baby out, I didn’t want to have my water broken. Before I had a chance to answer my midwife, another pushing urge came and my water broke like a balloon. Nice timing, huh? Everyone said they heard it! I just felt it.
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The church music wasn’t doing it for me, so I had Clay put on my upbeat mix. I was just pushing along when everyone excitedly said they could see Ellie’s head. My mom said, “She has dark curly hair just like you had!” That little sneak peek gave me some extra motivation to push. I got her head out, and then the rest of her body slipped out like a jellyfish – all to the tune of Weezer’s “Island in the Sun.” I was later told that I pushed for 40 minutes, but it really only felt like 10 or 15. In fact, my entire labor – although it was 36 hours, did not feel that long. Thanks again, Hypnobabies!
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My midwife handed Ellie to me right away and I said “I did it!” I felt SO relieved. And ecstatic — both that Ellie was here and that I actually made it through the undmedicated childbirth I had wanted so badly. I did tear a little and bleed a lot, so there were stitches and shots to be reckoned with, but they didn’t phase me much because I felt like I could do anything at that point. I was completely awake and energized the entire day. My Hypnobabies course did wonders for me. It helped me turn my fears and doubts into confidence and preparation long before my birthing time began. It taught me how to effectively relax and only feel pressure through all of my pressure waves. It helped my husband be an incredible, calm support to me throughout the entire birthing process. It helped me visualize and create the kind of birth I wanted to badly. Unmedicated childbirth is not as crazy or as impossible as people sometimes make it sound. Women are much stronger than they give themselves credit for — definitely when it comes to giving birth. Anyone who wants to have an unmedicated chilbirth and prepares for it can do it and even have a good experience — no doubt about it.

UCAN Birth meeting 3/25/09

March 27, 2009

We had our birth stories night this past Wednesday with a group of over a dozen new and experienced moms. Several inspirational stories were shared. One mother recounted the midwife-attended home birth of her 2-week-old son. Another mother shared the story of her second child’s midwife-attended birth center birth and her third child’s unassisted (on purpose) home birth. Additional mothers shared the birth stories of children born at home with midwives. The last story was of a great hospital birth experience.

We also spent time answering questions of pregnant moms wanting to know what they could do to help their upcoming births be positive, joyful, and healthy.

Join us at our next meeting on Wednesday, May 27th at 7:30 p.m. We will be discussing options for birth location and care provider (doctors, midwives, etc.). Find out more information and RSVP to get directions by contacting me at the info in this link.

UCAN Birth Meeting on Wednesday, December 3rd at 7 p.m.

December 1, 2008

We’ll meet from 7 – 9 p.m. We will be discussing options for birth location and care provider (doctors, midwives, etc.). Bring a food item to share. Women who desire to give or receive support and information regarding unmedicated, natural childbirth options are invited to attend UCAN Birth support group meetings. Please make arrangements for older children. Nursing babies are always welcome.

More info is here:

http://www.birthnaturally.org/ucanbirth.htm

Please RSVP through the above link.

Well it’s about time!

October 9, 2008

I know I’ve been away for awhile. I’ve been enjoying my new baby! 🙂 An article put out by Consumer Reports favors low-tech birth, which I think is fantastic and long overdue. Here it is:

Back to Basics for Safer Childbirth

Be sure to check out their Maternity Care Quiz as well!

Another great Hypnobabies birth! (video)

April 1, 2008

This is Michael’s home birth with her son, Willem. Notice how she laughs! Warning: There is nudity (which you might expect in a birth video, but I’m just warning you in case you weren’t expecting that).

Update on Midwifery Legislation

March 13, 2008

Utah’s legislative session ended on March 5th at midnight. At a House Health and Human Services Committee meeting I attended the previous week, the seventh substitute version of SB 93 was introduced as a compromise bill between the Licensed Direct-Entry Midwives and the Utah Medical Association. It’s very frustrating that we (birthing women) would have to compromise at all, given that the current law is working and preserves our freedoms. The powerful medical lobby that is the Utah Medical Association forced us to do so.

So, what did we lose?

The two biggest losses are vaginal breech and twins. This would only be an issue if a woman is using a Licensed Direct-Entry Midwife. The bill mandates transfer, with no possibility of signing a waiver, if it’s determined that a woman is carrying a baby in a breech presentation or twins unless birth is “imminent”. In fact, it goes so far as to say that the midwife must terminate care and call 9-1-1, regardless of whether or not a woman wants this to happen. That’s what bothers me the most–women are being treated as if they are too stupid to make their own health care decisions.

Legally, since this bill does not affect unlicensed midwives, a woman could choose to transfer care to an unlicensed home birth midwife rather than a hospital care provider. I’m upset that a woman would be forced to make a choice between two potentially unsatisfactory care providers. I know that I have reasons for choosing a licensed midwife and I would feel very put out if I found myself in a situation where my only options to continue with my preferred option of home birth would be to choose a care provider that I’m not wholly comfortable with or an unassisted birth (no care provider).

Did we gain anything?

The midwives went on the record during the committee meeting to say that they will not bring forth any legislation regarding this issue until 2011, which is when the original midwifery bill was going to come up again in order to review the statistics for Licensed Direct-Entry Midwives.

The Utah Medical Association didn’t explicitly say they would not bring new legislation. They side-stepped the issue, even though a committee member asked twice about it. The Utah Medical Association representative said “It is not our intention” to run another bill, which is a nice political euphemism for “it’s possible that we might”. @@ I don’t think they’d have much political traction if they did try to run another bill next session.

We kept VBACs, with restrictions. VBAC mamas now have to have an ultrasound to determine placental placement. VBAC mamas can only have as many as two previous c-sections if they want to use a licensed midwife. Again, unlicensed midwives are not affected by this bill so they could still take VBAC mamas who have had more than two c-sections, if appropriate in a particular woman’s situation.

There was a bit of a stir over whether or not this bill passed legally. There were discrepancies between the clock the senate was using and the official time. The official time stamp for seventh substitute SB 93 is marked as 14 seconds past midnight, which means it technically is too late and should be dead. It has gone to enrolling (which is where passed bills go), so it looks like the powers that be ruled to let it stand.

Thank you to all of you who worked to preserve birth freedoms in Utah! We’re not done, yet, and will need to participate in the new rules process to let everyone know that we care about retaining our rights to give birth the way we prefer.