What I decided to write about today isn’t actually a part of my postpartum commitment but it could highly effect it’s progress so it seemed important to share. It is also a really cool story where we can see God clearly working in our lives!
To start off, there are many different birth scenarios and many times that moms have to change their birth plans midstream in order to do what is best for their baby. Let me make sure I’m clear in saying that although I will be communicating the birth scenario that we are hoping for, the most important thing (BY FAR!) is to do what is necessary to deliver a healthy baby and keep the mom safe!
To give you a little bit of history, when we gave birth to Heidi (our 13-month-old) it was in the hospital and we had a unnecessarily difficult experience. I knew a hospital birth didn’t have to be that way and I am in no way blaming the entire hospital system, but we decided it would be best to try something different with our second and see if it could turn out differently.
Before getting pregnant with Heidi, I had a three month pregnancy that ended in an emergency miscarriage in which I had to be rushed to surgery to stop my body from hemorrhaging. For that reason, we didn’t feel comfortable being too far away from the hospital and were excited to find a midwife-run birth cottage literally five minutes down the road.
The Birth Cottage had very high reviews and I was able to go and tour the place and ask questions before officially signing up. They are set up in what used to be a house and it looked like it would provide a completely different experience from the hospital.
- At the hospital we were bullied and threatened (they told us they would take our insurance away even though that was out of their power) for simply wanting to have a say in our daughter’s care. We were told that at the Birth Cottage they would make suggestions and give input but every step would be in our control
- Doing most of my laboring at the hospital with random doctors and nurses walking in and out of the room made it difficult to feel relaxed or comfortable. The midwives at the Birth Cottage instructed us on how to do most of our laboring in the comfort of our home and then when we did come in to deliver we were guaranteed to be with one of the two midwives we had spent the entire pregnancy getting to know!
- After Heidi’s birth, we were required to spend three more days in the hospital while I was learning to nurse, healing from some birthing wounds, and trying to bond with our new baby. Not only is a hospital setting a tough place to do that but there were again a constant stream of nurses, doctors, and random hospital employees that would walk in without knocking. Compare that to the fact that the majority of the women that deliver at the Birth Cottage go home within 6-8 hours! And then get an at-home visit the next day so that they can recover and bond in the comfort of home.
Needless to say, I was VERY excited about the new path we had chosen!
Better Safe then Sorry
Because I conceived this baby so unexpectedly close to Heidi (they will be only 13 months apart), there is some fuzziness around when the actual due date is. For this reason we decided to do a scan a week before the guessed date just to make sure everything was going OK.
We were caught off guard by what we found out!!
The baby and placenta were healthy…yay! But this healthy baby was predicted to be between 10-11 POUNDS at 39 weeks!!
Now keep in mind that Heidi was 9.5 pounds a week early and I was 10.5 pounds when I was born. We had no gestational diabetes in our family but we certainly had big baby genes!
The biggest issue was that in order to run the Birth Cottage without a doctor present, the midwives have to work under certain guidelines that include not delivering a high-risk pregnancy. No matter what my size is, the fact that I was predicted to have such a big baby made me high risk…so at 39 weeks I had to be transferred to a doctor and plan to be delivered in the hospital.
At first I was quite bummed…but the story continues!
God Moves in Mysterious Ways!
The first praise is that through an miraculous chain of events I ran across a doctor who, instead of working with other doctors, has a full staff of midwives that deliver when he isn’t on call! The perfect combination of a natural midwife perspective and a safe hospital delivery!
But at my first appointment, I was told that the normal response to my situation was a C-section so that the baby doesn’t get bigger and risk getting stuck. In fact, if I had gone to any other office in town it wouldn’t have even been presented as an option but rather a requirement!
The midwife I had an appointment with made it very clear that the choice was mine and although they were there to offer opinions and answer questions, it was the parent’s decision. Already a huge step up from our previous experience!
The toughest part of this was that we would like to have a large family and having a C-section makes that a lot tricker/riskier so it wasn’t a clear cut decision by any means and the midwife completely understood that. She also understood my history and the fact that I and my mother had both delivered large babies without an issue.
So at the end of that visit she said her suggestion would be a C-section but it just so happened (or maybe God orchestrated!) that their monthly high-risk pregnancy meeting was happening 30 minutes after my appointment and she said she would tell them about me and let me know what they said.
A few hours later she called and said that four of the top OB-GYN minds in town had been at that meeting and after contemplating my history, build, and hopes for the future, they all voted that the best and safest route for mom and baby would be to let things just happen naturally! Praise the Lord!
So here we are at 40.5 weeks and waiting for this baby to make its entrance…stay tuned for the results!