Monday, December 5, 2011

Just in Time.. God's

We had a couple of great births last weekendJ. The first one came on Sunday. This first time mom
was due on the 6th of November. So by Thanksgiving I was getting a little nervous and she was at her
wits end with perfecting the art of patience. So on Saturday I ask Kathy (my little hands couldn’t reach
her post cervix very well) to strip her membranes and fortunately by that evening she was having
some contractions. On Sunday morning things began to pick up after her water broke. She came to
the Birth Inn mid morning with labor in high gear. The first thing she said after walking in, she pointed
to the Jacuzzi.”I want to get in there!” I smiled and Cynthia soon started the tub. As of this day our
new momma was 20 days past her due date. I was very relieved to see that her amniotic fluid was
clear, this re-assured us that she was not likely that far over her due date as there would likely have
been meconium if she was. Baby sounded great and she was 5 cm. We put her in the tub where she
relaxed super well and stayed for a few hours. She soon began light pushing, she then got out of the
tub and moved to the bed . Within a short time we had a very pretty baby girl. This first time mom did
a wonderful job. Sometimes the calendar says “overdue” but the baby says I’m here on time! It’s an art
in this day and age and it requires a lot of patience and faith in the Lord to wait past your due date but
usually that is the best thing for baby. I admire this momma for going above and beyond in her endeavor
to wait it outJ.

On Sunday night I got a call at 10:30pm that Mrs F was having some regular contractions. (She too
had been waiting longer than she expected she had delivered her first 2 weeks early. This one was
now at her due date. ) She was debating whether to come to BI or not as they weren’t very strong
yet. We talked about it and she decided to give it a little while to let the contractions get harder. At
11:45 dad called to say that she was ready to come to the BI, contx had increased in intensity. This was
her 2nd baby and sometimes those little ones shoot out, especially since she hadn’t had a very long
labor even with her first. They got to the BI about an hour later. She was focused and very calm. We
listened to baby who sounded good and mom was 5-6 cm dilated with a bulging bag. I had decided not
to call my assistant until necessary because I knew she was very tired as we had been up all night the
previous night with one of Kathy’s moms. Then at 1am moms water broke so I called Cynthia to come.
Mom reported a slight urge to push within a few minutes ..I finished getting things set up knowing
that Cynthia may not make it or at least she would have very little time if she did. Mom was on hands
and knees in the living area..I suggested she move over to the bed, which dad helped her to do. 2
contractions later we had a beautiful baby boy with an intact perineum. Cynthia came about 10 min
later and we all rejoiced over a quick labor. Baby arrived barely over an hour after they got to the BI so
glad they came when they did, this little one may have arrived in the car on a cold night.

Thank you Lord for 2 precious babies who came easily and right on time!
BY Deidre

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Mrs. L

 A testimony of God’s  mercy on a recent birth….J is the daughter of a dear friend and spiritual mentor to me when I was young. I have been blessed to attend her in the births of her 3 children. Their last baby a girl had a chromosomal disorder and wasn’t able to stay here on earth but a few short days. Number 4 was also a girl and was going to be received with much gratefulness and a bit of apprehension. Ultrasound showed that the baby was without problems and this family decided to birth with us at the Birth inn. Close to her due date J began some contractions…late in the day (9pm) I went over to see her. While I was there she didn’t have any contractions and noted that things didn’t seem consistent. I went ahead and listened to baby. Great heart tones! She wanted to be checked so we did and found her cervix to be posterior and 1 cm. So we thought it was a warm up and assumed baby would be coming but just not sure when.  She was tired and thought she would get to bed for some sleep. I went home and did the same.
At 2:49am on October 20th, my phone rang..Dad indicates that mom had just woken him and wanted to go to the Birth Inn.  I hear mom groaning in the background……hmm I think that sounds intense. I tell him I will be headed that way and I’d see them there soon…At which point he tells me they are all still in PJ’s and it will be at least 15 min before they are able to get out of the door. I hurry out of bed and quickly get dressed. Three minutes later 2:52 am I am nearly dressed and my phone rings again. (NEVER a good sign)  Dad is yelling at me to get over there as baby has just delivered on the kitchen floorJ I hear baby crying in the background tell him to grab towels and keep her warm. I put on my slippers a mouthful of mouthwash in my mouth and run out the door spitting it on the ground as I get into my car. Fortunately they live in my neighborhoodJ. I arrive to a very pale faced grandma and dad, but a smiling mom and a crying baby!  Grandma tells the story about how she caught baby. Dad says how he tried to tell her NOT to push when she said she needed to (that never works). Mom tells me how she was stirred awake with contractions over the last 2 hours but how she slept between them until the last 8 or so contractions, when they got close and she could no longer sleep. At which point she woke up dad and I think began to realize that she was in transition. Grandma admits to praying she would be able to attend the birth.
 Just goes to show us that one can be 1 cm dilated one minute and a short few hours later have a baby in arms.   Needless to say all was well...mess wasn’t too bad and they have such a story to tell. Thank you Lord for a GREAT birth, and a precious life. No human help needed Your hand is never too short! Deidre DeGrado 

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mrs Rink A Dink

As of This morning (Friday) we have four lovely moms past their due dates; two moms due within the next five days, and two moms within the safe zone both of which are trying to deliver early. Other than that, not much is going on. ;o)
I Will start this out with momma A, Mrs. Rink a Dink; Gravid 6, para 5. First baby a C-Section due to failure to progress and more importantly BC (Before Christ). Second pregnancy 13 years later, and AC  (after Christ) and a successful VBAC. Nineteen months later another boy was born into this family, her first home birth.  Mom was so thrilled with her first un-medicated totally natural birth. Then 19 months later another boy born at home, 19 months later another  baby boy born at home, a then with a 30  month break mom calls with her 6th pregnancy, "I need your services again". This call came while her first born son and daughter in law were expecting their first baby. You might remember them, Mrs. Dancer.
 Mom and Dad are hoping for a little girl to add some femininity to their family but really they’re okay with whatever the Lord gives them.  Mrs. Dink has had two nights of laboring with little progress. UGGH! This morning dad called saying mom is getting tired and wants to get something going. When I arrived at the Birth Inn, mom seemed in pretty good spirits, but definitely wanting this over. After prayer and discussion of options we decided to do a "no-no" in my book and break her water. Its important to give parents the information and let them make the decision. 
This was already a strange birth that we had going on here.
Usually when a baby is in the posterior position (which this baby was at times), contractions decrease and sometimes even stop; however, with this grand-multip, contractions picked up while the baby was in a posterior position and when mom is lying down. But, when the baby turned anterior, (a more favorable position) the contractions stopped... WEIRD! Complete opposite of what you normally might have going on.
As it turns out, this mom labored for several more hours without any progress. Needless to say she was exhausted after several attempts to turn the baby and hours passing.  The decision was made to transfer mom in for an epidural. She was nervous about going to the hospital and having unnecessary interventions. However, she wanted relief, I assured her that  Dr. J was available to meet us at the hospital  and that alleviated her fears. The staff at the hospital was very nice and ready and willing to help. They made every effort to speedily get the epidural going which gave mom the relief she needed. Within one hour, and after Dr. Jensen manually dilated her the mom delivered another boy. Oh Well maybe next time... We Praise God for giving us a wonderful doctor to work with and help us out  when we need to transfer.
In the meantime, we are getting calls from other moms with contractions, Bloody show and feelings of desperation to get their babies delivered.
This is a huge spiritual battle for me. I want to help moms, you know, be there for them, minister to them. We've gone through the pregnancy together getting to know one another and looking forward to the time of the birth. We pray for our moms on a regular basis, we invest time and energy and lots of emotions anticipating the grand  event, and now, it seems that things are piling up and only by the grace of God will I have the time to focus on one family at a time. We are all trusting in the Lord for his perfect timing for each family. Stay tuned for Mrs. Singing mom.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Marathon Mom

Prenatal visits are a time of excitement and anticipation for mothers.  Excitement to hear the heartbeat, and to check another month off the calendar countdown!  With this anticipation comes getting on the scales and watching the dial edge into numbers that nobody wants to see!  Then there is the barrage of questions. “How’s your diet? Are you drinking plenty of water? Are you exercising? “  Really?? Are you serious?? Exercise with this giant belly??  I can’t even get my tennis shoes tied!!

Often we remind moms that labor and delivery is like a marathon.  Imagine the outcome of attempting to run a marathon after spending 9 months sitting on the sofa, eating anything you wanted, and gaining  40 lbs.  No one in their right mind would attempt that! Yet, time and time again, mothers show up the day of delivery expecting the baby to painlessly slip out after a few hours of contractions and then complain that they are tired, even exhausted, worn out, hungry and weak.  Even to the point of feeling like they won’t have the energy to push out the baby.

This particular mom, let’s call her Marathon Mom, was excited for her second birth.  She had heard that usually the second birth is the “best” birth.  The “door” had already been opened and surely this wouldn’t be another 24 hour labor!

Marathon Mom is a very strong mom.  She is fit and has very good muscle tone. She maintained a healthy diet and exercised daily. She is very determined and purposeful.  She had specific instructions for us and a timeline that she expected.  It seemed reasonable that the baby should be here by 4 pm.  She wanted to push twice, and when the baby was born, she wanted me to hold up the baby and announce, “It’s a GIRL!”

Marathon Mom walked all morning.  By 1:30 contractions were picking up, but is was 3:00 before she was ready to call for help.  When we arrived at 3:30, mom complained of back pain.  We tried changing her position several times trying to encourage the baby to turn into an anterior position.  4:00 came and went and mom was dilated to 7cm still complaining of back pain.

The clock ticked on; minute after minute turned into hour after hour.  Finally around 9pm it was time to push…..and push, and push and push.  It was well past the 4pm time that Marathon Mom had picked to deliver.  In fact, it was just an hour before midnight when she pushed out the 9lb 8oz baby that was looking straight up at the ceiling.  One more push and the baby was out.  I held it up and announced……”It’s a BOY!”

In pregnancy a mom can hope, plan and prepare for the birth.  But sometimes our best laid plans don’t turn out like we hope.  That is when preparation comes into play.  Prepare for delivery like an athlete prepares for an event.  This is how Marathon Mom prepared, and when the time came and her strength was challenged, she was able to go the distance and come out smiling on the other side….holding her precious prize.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Mrs Thiseasy

Mothers choose the care of a midwife for many different reasons.  Some because that is what their mom did, some out of fear of hospitals, and some for financial reasons.  For others it’s a journey.  A desire to have a birth different than the one(s) before.  Our mom, Mrs. Thiseasy, came to us pregnant with her second child.  Her first baby was born in the hospital and she had an epidural. The second pregnancy came a little sooner than planned, so in addition to the anticipation of having a home birth, Mrs Thiseasy was a little nervous about having two babies so close together. 

We pray for all of out moms, but with some, we know of more specific things to pray about.  With Mrs Thiseasy we prayed that God would bless her with an easy birth and that she wouldn’t have fear. (As you know, fear equals more pain and a longer labor)  It was late June when Mrs Thiseasy started having contractions.  She timed them and waited for them to intensify, but time after time they fizzled out.  July 2nd was different.  This time, the contractions continued even when she rested.  Finally she decided it was time to make the hour+ drive to where she was going to deliver.  By the time she arrived the contractions were further and further apart, but still coming.  She decided to rest and by early morning it was clear….false alarm.

She was discouraged. “How will I know when it’s the real thing?” she wondered.  July 11th she called sounding as chipper as ever.  Was this another case of wishful thinking?  She paused, “Hang on, I need to sit down.” she said.   Eyebrows raised, I told her to come on in.  But to first stop by the office for a check.  She arrived an hour and a half later.  She was smiling as usual. I checked her.  “You are at least a 7,” I said, “Lets get ready to have a baby!”  She and her husband headed over to the Birth Inn……I didn’t tell her, but  really, she was more like an 8!!  I just didn’t want her to panic.

Once settled, she asked to sit in the whirlpool.  We gladly obliged.  Once the tub was full she got in and immediately felt the relaxing distraction of pulsating jets.  After several minutes she tried to move to a hands and knees position, but the pressure was starting to build.  She closed her eyes during the contraction and gently swayed side to side.  When the contractions was over she smiled big and said, “This really doesn’t hurt that bad!”  We laughed, God had answered our prayers!

After a few minutes on hands and knees she moved back to a sitting position.  We folded a towel for her to sit on and did a check…complete.  We told her she could push if she wanted.  And she did…a little.  Between contractions she smiled and questioned why she ever had an epidural in the hospital with her first birth.

She gently pushed through each contraction and at 6:39 she gracefully delivered an 8lb 4oz baby boy!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Another Birth Adventure MRS. Gushy

We are sitting at the Birth Inn this beautiful mild summer morning with a delightful couple. Mama A's water broke yesterday morning at 5:00 am and very few contractions followed. This sweet Mennonite couple had their previous children in the hospital naturally but they were all long and difficult births. Her history is to labor for a long time and then once she gets past 4 cms., labor picks up and the baby comes.  I have assisted with the deliveries of her sister.
 Go figure, she had high hopes that staying out of the hospital would help her relax and the baby would deliver quicker or easier. Not the case, is seems like many times the first home birth triggers some fear that the moms have to overcome, then things pick up and start to happen. Birth is a challenge. It causes us to come face to face with our individual fears, whether our fear is having a healthy baby or fear of the pain it brings us to our knees and causes us to trust in the Creator. We can embrace that fear and turn to God and receive His blessing of help or run to some other source  like an epidural or the highest level of intensive care for newborns but in the end you really have to trust in God for the outcome of your birth.  God is faithful to walk with you through the birth and you will draw near to Him because you need Him.
 I've always believed that attending women in childbirth is a holy time, a privilege to be present when the Lord brings another life into the world. I do not and have never thought home birth was for everyone and the best option for low risk moms, instead it is for those that are low risk and feel God has lead them to take that option. Sometimes we do something because we think it will be easier on us but in reality God may be saying you will grow closer to me during this process. Either way if your heart is right meaning you seek Him first you CAN trust Him for the outcome. My preachiness is coming out again I think I better move on and tell you what is happening with the birth.
We discussed options since her water was broke and no contractions. The parents decided to go to the Birth Inn and try to sleep,  if labor doesn't start during the night then we will try some natural alternatives to stimulate contractions in the morning.
Next morning: Mom said she had some mild contractions during the night but around 3:00 am things really kicked in. She labored until 5:00 then called me to come over and help. Thanks for the sleep much appreciated. When we arrived mom was very intense with her contractions, I decided to check her, she was only 3 cms. UGH... We encouraged her and gave her "the talk' You know what I mean moms. The one that goes like this. Work your labor. What I mean is, think about what is happening with your cervix. If you are trying to get into positions to ease the pain and make it feel better then expect things to take longer and if you are in a postion that makes the contractions 'easier' then it probably isn't changing the cervix and you are prolonging the labor. I explained that to Mrs Gushy and within 30 minutes I noticed she was getting flushed in the face and was really working the contractions. She went to the restroom and we heard groaning sounds. HMMM maybe we should check. Sure enough mom was 8-9 cms. Yay,  30 minutes later we had a handsome baby boy.
After the birth, mom said it really helped her to understand that she needed to have painful contractions to finish the job. It totally changed her attitude. She began to embraced God's design of birth . Her mindset changed and so did her labor. She said afterwards that it really helped her. PTL
 8lbs. and 6 ozs. Praise the Lord for another safe delivery. In the meantime mama B calls and says she is in labor. Cynthia and I head off to grab some lunch and Ginger heads to her sons ball game. Right after we finish eating mom B calls and says things are picking up and she is ready to come in. Stay tuned for her birth story.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our Government is in Crisis

About 3 weeks ago I received a summons to Jury Duty. I really wanted to get out of it and I have to admit I tried. I want to do my duty as an American Citizen but I kind of thought I had already. When I looked at the date to serve I realized that I had served last April. Just two weeks and one year ago. They say the system is Random in choosing jurors but I find that hard to believe.
Ok, so I go to do my duty as an American Citizen hoping and praying I would be sent home or get to serve quickly and be done with the whole ordeal. I was chosen  to be on a Rape case which really was kind of scary. I didn't want to hear the gross details of this evil. I tried to make some comments that I thought would disqualify me during the selection process but that was to no avail.
How many times have you heard of the government spending unnecessary money and creating more of a deficit due to red tape or unnecessary stupid spending. Well I hear it all the time but I don't think I have seen it in action like I did today.
I went  to the court house  today even though I really didn't want to. I was concerned that one of my precious moms might go into labor and I would not be able to be at their birth. I prayed last night and again today hoping that God would not let them go into labor, but I did make arrangements for the moms just in case.
 Keep in mind that another  midwife is be persecuted in western Kansas just for fulfilling her calling in life by helping moms have their babies where ever and with whomever they choose . Persecuted by the Kansas Board of Nursing.
Anyway back to fulfilling my  Duty. We, the 12 jurors put our lives on hold, go to the court house because by LAW we are supposed to hear a case then decide if this person is guilty or not.
We listen attentively, the victim is from another country and can hardly speak English, on welfare, and is a Crack Cocaine drug addict   and can't remember what to say or what happened, her story changes several times during a two hour examination. She staggers into the court room, It is absolutely impossible to understand or follow her testimony. Needless to say we are all speechless. I personally have never been around anyone who was on Crack and I don't think any of the other jurors had either. IT was very sad.
We go to lunch and return to the court house only to find out that the case is over and the Judge will be in to explain. I thought maybe the Prosecution realized that the "victim" (HA) was unable to continue and the case was dropped. No that wasn't it.

As it turns out, the guy that supposedly committed the act was being deported this afternoon. The Federal Government had finally realized that this guy was from Somalia and was here Illegally. He was homeless when he was arrested and has been in the Eldorado prison for the past year awaiting trial.  Our tax money at work.
The Judge ( Buchanan) was livid. As were the rest of us.
So to add to our national debt we paid for this man to live in prison a year instead of being on the streets, and (possibly) raping women, we paid to hire him an attorney, and today we are paying thousands of dollars to ship him out of this country and who knows where. Somalia will not take him back they say we can't prove he was from there. So we are going to take him to France and dumb him there. CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS!!!  By the way he admitted to selling the women Crack Cocaine so he is a drug dealer also.
But the thing that really gets me the most is Nola Foulstons office taking this to trial in the first place when this women obviously was unable to give any testimony and was lying about what had happened. All 12 jurors and the judge were shocked that this was even brought to trail.  I'm not saying that we shouldn't help rape victims or that even if you are on drugs rape isn't  still a crime. But there was no way that this women was telling the truth. She was getting drugs from this illegal and had sex with him to get her fix. I know I am leaving out some important details but the truth is, she was obviously on Drugs  in the court room and the Attorney knew she was. It was disgusting.
Why didn't someone realize this man was not even a citizen of the US.
Why are we enabling  this woman and her boyfriend to live off the system, not work, continue to have enough money to buy drugs and alcohol?
That is where our tax Dollars are going?
I am so frustrated.
What is the answer to this?

CHRIST Alone and following his ways. What does God say about this? What can we do as citizens of the US, do about this?
I got up this morning to fulfill my duty and I feel like I never want to step foot into a court room again. The system is truly Broken.

Tell me what you think?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

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Saturday, April 9, 2011

VBA2C Wooo hooo!

If you read the last post you already know something about VBAC and the risks involved so I won't repost those statistics. The birth that I want to share this time was even more gratifying than the last. It involves a mom who had 2 c-sections. She really wanted a vbac after her 1st c-section, but it didn't happened and she was really grieved over it. So this time she did more research, prayed even more and became more resolved. They hired me a few months before the birth. We talked, planned and prayed. This time she had a doctor that I knew we could count on if the goings got tough. I knew he wouldn't bail for convenience or fear. Dad was fully on board and encouraged her in her exercise regime. She called to let me know Wed morning that she was crampy, having bloody show and contracting occasionally. She went about her day normally but taking time to rest. Wed evening things had gotten more regular (10min apart).At 10 pm I checked her cervix and found her to be 3-4 cm dilated and baby's heart tones were great. I suggested she continue to take it easy if she could and be active if she couldn't. At 1:30am on Thursday morning dad called to say that contx had gotten very close and much harder. We planned to meet at the Birth Inn at 2. (I thought the change of scenery would be good) When she arrived she was 5 cm and working very hard with her contx, but doubting her ability to cope. We encouraged her regularly, listened to baby, and changed positions a lot! She found the shower to be helpful. By 5am she was 6 cm and very disappointed to have only progressed 1 cm in 3 hours. I assured her that any progress was good. She felt discouraged but persevered. Her husband was amazing and refused to get discouraged and kept her focused. At 8 am things were still the same with contx 2 min apart and hard. She began having some pressure in certain positions, the baby was coming down. While she wasn't making progress in dilation things were changing and progress was being made We decided to go to the hospital (this was a planned hosp birth) for a scene change. We got checked in by 9am. Still 6 cm:(  Mind you she has now been 6 cm since sometime before 5am:(  She found the tub to be most helpful! Of course she had to be monitored regularly so this gave us position change and the movement was good. This mom was constantly questioning herself but amazed me in her resolve, which seemed to grow ever more strong with each passing hour. The nurse checked her at 11am and found her to be 8cm! PTL!!! PROGRESS at last! She was encouraged, finally. At noon Dr J came in, she was still 8 cm. She got back in the tub, which really did help her to relax. We discussed options, I knew she was running out of steam. Of course the epidural was on the fore front of our minds. As much as I wanted her to have relif and give it to her I just felt  that we still needed to keep it natural. Especially since she had gotten blocked in the birth before and had failed to progress afterwords. I also got some encouragement from grandma that helped me know that I too need to help this mom stay the course. (Grandma reminded me that this mom was terribly disappointed after the last section.) At 12:30 K began to do lunges with one foot on the side of the tub, alternating legs and coming down into squates, with a lot of dads help.. He was working up a sweat as well..This  really worked to increase the intensity of the contx and bring baby down into the pelvis. At 12:40 pressure was increasing a lot. She beared down about 4-5 times. At 12:55 she moved from the bathroom to the room. At this point the baby was crowning, she crowned her for 4 more contx and baby burst forth:) A beautiful girl weighing 8lb 4oz and 19in long! Dad was as satisfied as ever beaming with pride and emotion! Mom exclaimed, "I did it, I can't believe I really did it!" Honestly....I thought, "I can't believe you did it!" This was the hardest birth I had been to in awhile but  the gratification was so worth it....I'll forever have etched in my mind the words that burst forth from her mouth when it was all over....."I DID IT" K I am soooooooooooooo proud of you!

Women were made to birth, if we just believe in them and trust the Lord!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Middle east

This couple called me last year and we initially met for lunch. They (mostly she) asked questions I told them about what I do. She is expecting her 2nd, her first was a C-Section for breech presentation, 11 years earlier. Dad had 2 children born via c-section from a previous marriage. They had been to the doctor and of course he had scared dad to death telling them it could be life threatening for mom and babe to have a VBAC (Vaginal birth after cesarean). Which is true, but, what he left out was how rare an actual uterine rupture is in a vaginal birth after cesarean that is not induced or augmented.The statistics are: Uterine rupture is the major concern in terms of VBAC and while it can be catastrophic, it is rare (National Institutes of Health, 2010).Permitting labor to begin naturally after one prior low transverse (“bikini cut”) cesarean carries a 0.4% risk of rupture. This rate can increase with pitocin induction or augmentation.  (Which I don't do out of a hospital.) Several of this mom's friends had delivered with me and she was very interested in natural birth. A compromise was met between mom and dad..She would see the OB and me and keep praying about the location of the delivery. I thought this was a good compromise. It gave dad some time to process and being an avid reader he could take time to research:) I continued to see mom throughout the pregnancy she worked hard on diet, exercise and taking her thoughts captive. They came to childbirth classes mine and Bradley. God gave them the verse Josh 1:9." be strong and courageous". A little more than half way through the pregnancy dad began talking to mom about serving in a ministerial capacity in the middle east. To which his wise wife answered she would be happy to surrender her husband to such an endeavor if the risk of death were equal to or less than a VBAC:)  Needless to say I think he got the point. Most importantly he was doing his research and praying fervently.  While I was never really sure what dad was thinking, as he was very hard to read, you know quiet methodical type, I could tell that he was allowing God to lead step by step.I kept thinking of  dad in the context of Isaiah 30:15 "in quietness and trust is your strength."
On March 31st B woke up in the middle of night and her water broke. We met at the Birth Inn at 9am in active labor. She was dilated to 6cm.  She was doing great with the labor, dad near by supporting her thru each contraction. Both grandmothers, and her sister-in-law were their to encourage her and cheer her on as well. She spent time laboring on the toilet and used the tub. She began having an urge to push in the tub but wasn't all that comfortable so she moved to the bed on her side. She pushed very effectively...the heart tones began dipping down a bit so we moved her to a squat and she delivered close to 1pm. It was a perfect VBAC:). A few days after the birth the reserved dad's heart side was revealed and I got to see an expressive grateful man. He told me he could hardly imagine having another baby in the hospital.
  I wonder if he will be going to the middle east soon?
Thank you Lord for being the repairer of the breech.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Mrs. Dancer

Sunday March 27th.
This precious 5' 3 " primip (first time)21 year old mom came to me at the beginning of her pregnancy asking if we could attend her birth. I was thrilled. First of all, they are the sweetest young couple and I just loved them from the start. They're Newly married, both love the Lord and have the innocence of youth, in reality they were just a tad clueless about labor and birth. But very eager to learn and wanted to do the right things during pregnancy to prepare. Secondly, I had the privilege of delivering this dad's siblings. I've gotten to know this sweet family over the years and consider it an honor to be a part of the first grandchild in their family.

Mom is a dancer and continued dancing until 6 weeks before her birth. She faithfully walked and ate healthy all of her pregnancy. On her last prenatal visit the baby was quite high and not even close to engaging. I thought to myself, "Oh Boy, this may be a challenge, as we are close to the due date and baby has not engaged". Typically with a primip you want the baby to engage 2 weeks before the onset of labor. I thought, "Is she going to go two weeks late and have a really big baby"? Oh Kathy, ye of little faith.
This morning I went to church and Mrs. Dancer was heavy on my heart. I prayed for her several times and said, "Lord if it be your will could she please let go into labor soon"? Mrs. Dancer's mom had a c-section with her babies so that added a little more concern.
I came home from church and was resting when the phone rang. It was Mrs Dancer and she been laboring most of the night. Dad went off to work this morning and mom continued to have contractions. Yes that's right! Mom labored most of the day by herself. Can you believe it? She wanted to come over and get checked before she called dad to come home. I was so happy when I checked her. Actually I was dumbfounded. Mom was 7 cms. Praise the Lord. I asked her if she thought she could drive or if I should drive her and she said no I only have a block to drive, I can do it. What a trooper! This birth really amazed me. When mom arrived at the Birth Inn she was still doing very well as she was working with her contractions and continuing to move around. After she was here about an hour Girl Thursday got a call from her doula birth mom and had to leave and go help her. Girl Tuesday and I held the Birth Inn down with Mrs. Dancer, while Girl Thursday went to be with her other mom.

By 6:20pm, Mrs. Dancer was complete and on the toilet and making pushing sounds. She pushed for 19 minutes and out came a healthy baby boy with his cord wrapped, rather snugly, around his neck. Mom gave another push and the baby somersaulted through the loop. No problem! Mom tore just a nick and all was well.
Moral of the story; Dance moms, dance, and Kathy don't judge a book by it's cover.

This was the perfect finale to our March Madness!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Life as we know it

It was a busy day for prenatal visits. I'm not sure why, but everything seemed a little rushed and maybe a bit hectic. That's why when I got a text from a first time mom saying she felt a little "crampy" I handed the phone to Girl Thursday and asked her to call and get details. She asked if the crampiness came in waves and if it felt the same as the braxton hicks contractions. Mommy replied that up until this point she had felt nothing.....never a braxton hicks! Girl Thursday advised her to start looking at the clock and see if there was a pattern to the cramps and to call back after an hour of observing. By the way, this young first time mom was still at work cleaning houses!
It was 45 minutes later when this mommy called back and asked if it would be ok to come over be checked because she thought she was feeling contractions. When she walked down the stairs some 20 minutes later, she was flushed but still smiling. I took her back to the room and asked Girl Thursday to check her. As Girl Thursday was checking with her right hand, she was showing me with her left hand the dilation measurement. We looked at each other in disbelief when we realized that she was a good 6cm!
She insisted on driving herself to the Birth Inn (her bag had been packed and in the car for a few weeks) So I called Girl Tuesday and off to the BI we all went!
It didn't take long for our mommy's mother to show up, then finally daddy made it. Daddy was a little overwhelmed and unsure of what to do, but mommy most definitely was prepared and ready for the birth.
She wanted in the jacuzzi. It took her several positions in the tub before she found the one that she liked. Rather than being in the tub longways, she sat facing us with her feet poised on the side for good leverage. It didn't take long before she was ready to push. Daddy was a bit squeamish and still unsure of his role in helping. After a few pushes, baby was out. The cord was clamped and I invited daddy to come cut the cord. After some skin to skin bonding with mommy,I draped a warm towel over daddy's arms and placed the baby in the towel. I told daddy to sit in the chair and spend a few moments just looking at his child.
As we attended to mom, I glanced in the direction of the chair. There was daddy, looking into the face of his newborn son with so much emotion spilling from his eyes. It was a moment. The very moment that the father son bond is made. The moment that a union becomes a family. The moment when he realizes that life as he knows it is forever changed. The moment that a parent realizes the awesomeness of Christ's love for us and our responsibility as a parent to train this child in the way of the Lord.

Mommy and baby are doing great, and this mom is another testament to the importance of being fit and active during the days of sure pays off in the end!
Baby Boy wt. 8lbs. 8oz. Born at 02:15 pm Total labor 3hours and 15 min. Awesome for a primip

The Motor Boat Mom

It has been a busy few days at the Birth Inn, and today proves no different! But then, what would one expect with 8 mommies due in March!!
It was nearly 6:30 am and the phone rang. Sure enough, it was a mommy calling. Contractions started at 4:30, and by 6:30 it was time to make plans to get to the Birth Inn. This baby is already showing signs of obedience, today is the actual DUE DATE! We have often discussed that maybe it would be best if we eliminated due dates and instead gave 'due weeks', or 'due windows'

Mom arrived at the Birth Inn around 7:30am and was already dilated to 7. We started drawing the water in the tub because Mommy was sure she wanted an 'aqua-dural' Mommy labored well in the warm water. We left her and dad alone for a bit. From the living room we could hear mom making the sound of a motor boat. "brrrrrr, brrrrrrr, brrrrrrr." My assistants and I looked at each other with questioning looks. We know that every mom finds her own way to relax, but I have to say that the raspberry motorboat sound isn't the normal relaxation sound!
Very soon the motorboat turned to groans and we knew that baby was on the way. This mom had a very long labor with her first baby...over 24 hours actually. Second babies usually come much faster and it is so fun to watch the surprise of the parents when things move so much more quickly with baby 2.
Mom felt so much more comfortable in the jacuzzi tub and things progressed quickly. She decided that a hydrabirth would be wonderful so we prepared as such. It took only a few pushes and the head was out. A quick sweep around the neck revealed no nuchal cord. Baby restituted slightly, light downward pressure on the head....nothing. We asked the mom to quickly get out of the tub and get on her hands and knees on the floor, slight pressure and......nothing. We asked mom to sit on the step of the tub in a semi squat. more downward pressure.....finally, the shoulders emerged. It wasn't shoulder dystocia, but it was a case of snug shoulders!!

Baby boy, 9lbs even and Mommy doing quite well. Later, while relaxing in the Birth Inn living room, Mommy was telling me that she had read a book that proved to be quite helpful. The book talked about the relationship between the jaw muscles and the perineum. she read that if the jaw remains loose, the perineum is able to relax. The suggestion was made to blow air across the lips making a motorboat sound. Looks like it worked!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Tale of Two (I mean THREE) Mommies cont.

I left you Friday night at at 10:30. Mommy B was resting and my assistants and I were looking forward to a few (hopefully several) hours of sleep. I went home, let the dogs out of their confinement and settled into bed around midnight. Sleep, sweet sleep!
NOT!! It was 1:35am when my phone rang. "Well, let's get baby B here!" I thought. I answered the phone expecting to hear the calm voice of Daddy B, but instead I heard the panicked voice of Daddy C!
Oh My! I could hear the distressed sounds of Mommy C in the background. I instructed them to go to the Birth Inn, called girls Tuesday and Thursday, put on my scrubs and headed out the door.

Let me give you a little background on Mommy C. Mommy C is a young newly wed and this is her first baby. She has been so careful to follow any and all instruction that I have given her. She has changed her eating habits, started exercising and has made water her best friend. Three weeks ago Mommy C came to the Birth Inn having long and frequent contractions. Because she was GBS positive, she decided to start taking antibiotics. After laboring for more than 12 hours, and dilating to 6cm, her contractions stopped. She spent the night at the birth Inn but by morning there was no sign of contractions. I sent her home expecting to see her in a day or two.

Now here it is, three weeks later, 4 days past her due date, and Mommy C is ready to give birth! I checked her as soon as she arrived and she was an easy 8-9 cm. Suddenly her water broke and out gushed green liquid. Baby C had passed meconium and now it was urgent to get her out! We set up the birthing chair and moved mom into position. Although she had been faced with the impending labor for 3 weeks, the pain was still shocking to her. She was a trooper and pushed with vigor. Baby was born at 3:04am.....just 45 minutes after arriving at the Birth Inn!! WOW!!

Baby girl. 8lbs 6 oz. 21" long Babies are a gift from God!

Meanwhile as Mommy C is birthing, Mommy B has started having contractions...the kind she can't talk through.
After Mommy A and Mommy C have delivered and gone home, the big inviting jacuzzi tub is open for Mommy B. See how God works?? In his perfect time! Lights are dimmed,music soft, Mommy B allowing the gentle jets to massage her tired body. Eventually she gets out of the tub, but now she is feeling the ominous pain in her back....has this baby turned posterior?? Mommy B must move to the dreaded bed, on her left side, right knee hiked to her chest. C'mon, many of you know that position!!
Hopefully Mommy B will rest. She is tired and has had little sleep. Sleep does not come and as the minutes and hours tick by, Mommy B becomes more exhausted. She experienced a large gush of fluid while in the bed, but the pain remained in her back.
Girl Tuesday and Girl Thursday spent a few hours with mom helping her try different positions. The best positions seemed to be dad sitting and mom leaning over him gently rocking and swaying. The baby was moving down. Around 10:00am blood started to drip as she contracted. Not like a hemorrhage, but still enough for me to take notice. We decided to give Mommy B's very tired legs a rest and set up the birthing chair for her. I helped the cervix with each contraction and was surprised to feel a bulging bag. Remember, she thought her water broke the morning before, and she had a large gush of fluid earlier today. A pocket must have formed in the membrane because when it broke, the fluid was green. Yep, second meconium birth of the day!
The blood increased and clots were being expelled. Mom was losing the drive to continue. We put the breast pump on her hoping to increase the intensity of the contractions, but although that worked, she was just too tired.

We discussed options. Was baby too big to come down? Was baby in a poor position? Was the bleeding becoming a problem? How long was the meconium present? The meonium was not a great surprise since she was 2 weeks past her due date but , having clear water earlier it did bring some ?'s as to what was going on. Did mom have the strength to get baby out on her own?

Finally dad made the decision........Transport her to the hospital.

We explained that it would take at least an hour before she would get an epidural, and there was a chance that this decision would result in a c-section. Mom agreed, she was out of energy.
We loaded up and went in. Once in the hospital she was taken to the maternity floor. They put in an IV, wrapped the fetal monitor around her, put a finger oxygen monitor on her and started with the barrage of questions. Once the epidural was administered, mom finally was able to relax. Her body began doing what it was designed to do....push baby out.
The attending doctor was amazing. He patiently waited as baby B started to appear. Finally he spoke the words everyone wanted to her. "Deep breath and blow out, now deep breath and hold. Push."
The team was ready; complete with NICU nurses just incase. A few minutes later Baby B was born. He was face down, restituted to the left, then did an unexpected twist to the right, his little hand under his chin and the umbilical cord wrapped around his arm. Dr rushed him to the the NICU nurses to be suctioned (remember the meconium?) He was checked over then wrapped up and brought over to meet his mommy. Sigh of relief..... everybody is fine. Mommy didn't even need a stitch!

Baby B.....8lbs 15oz Boy Dark hair and looks just like his daddy!

While many in America were enjoying March Madness, we had 30 hours of our own March Madness! After much needed sleep, we are more than ready for our next mommy to call!

Our scripture for these 30 hours......Isaiah 66:9 Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the Lord

Two days in the life of Kathy
written by Girl Thursday

Friday, March 18, 2011

Tale of two Births

Let me tell you about my two mommies. Mommy A is "natural birth" through and through!! But even more than her desire to be ala naturale, her husband is rock-solid natural!! You see, HIS mother is a retired midwife. Mommy A is done being pregnant. She is tired. And, I might add, she is 11 days past her due date. Like a child in the back seat on a trip, she keeps wondering, "Are we there yet?" Mommy A has been in the office 3 times this week wanting to be checked. With every contraction she is wondering, "is this the one? Am I really in labor? Will I be holding my sweet baby tonight?"

Mommy A requested her membranes to be stripped on Tuesday. Wednesday she was SURE things had changed and she came in to be checked......well, let's just say things had changed, a little. Thursday night at 11, she called. "THIS IS IT!" she reported that contractions were 4 minutes apart, lasting more than a minute, and she was feeling shaky. YAY!!! (may I add that currently there are 4 moms past their due date!!) I called my assistants and we rushed to the Birth Inn. We set up the room, prepared our minds and waited for Mommy A to arrive.

Looking out the window we saw the headlights pulling into the driveway. Mommy stepped out of the car and waddled into the house, looked at us and......smiled. Uh Oh.......this does not look good. Following the routine of the last two days, she wanted to be checked. Well, sure enough, she had changed......a little. Baby still high, cervix dilated to 4, and still kinda thick. hmmmmmm. She happily contracted for for a couple of hours then slowly but surely, we all found our way to a pillow. Fast forward now to 7:30 am. Mommy A is up, she is rested, and she is REALLY wanting the baby OUT!!!

Now let me tell you about Mommy B. Mommy B has wanted another child for years. Her son is 24, and her daughter is 9. Son weighed 9lbs 15oz, and her daughter was 8 lbs 2 oz. At 13 days late, this baby boy might just be big! Both babies were born in the hospital, so this is the first time for a home birth. Mommy B is patient. She has eaten right, exercised and honestly feels better and healthier than she has in a while.
I saw Mommy B on Thursday. After some discussion we decided that a dose of castor oil would be a good step for this mom. She was instructed to ingest 2 oz at 3 or 4 am on Friday. (are you with me? we are at the Birth Inn with Mommy A who REALLY wants baby out, but is stalled. And Mommy B is taking castor oil!)

8:00 am Mommy B called. The castor oil had no effect. None, nada, zero. Ok, this is good-ish, I think. At least we won't have two Mommies at the Birth Inn at once!
Mommy A is going to walk. This is a good time to run home, eat some breakfast and let the dogs out. 10:45 Mommy B calls.......her water broke AND the castor oil FINALLY decided to work. Looks like I need to wrap up breakfast and head back to the Birth Inn.

I checked Mommy A again, helped the cervix along and Mommy and Daddy A left to grab some breakfast......just as Mommy B arrived at the Birth Inn. Checked Mommy B, she is dilated 4cm and cervix is very thin. Mommy B put on her jacket, took Daddy B's arm and off they went for a walk. Ahhh, so quiet in the Birth Inn. *sigh*

Baby A likes it when Mommy a is lying down. Now I know this seems contrary to what you might think, but it seems like baby A has a tendency to rotate in a less favorable position when Mommy A stands or sits. Baby B likes it when Mommy B walks or sits! Picture with me for a minute......Mommy A is in the living room on the couch, pillow propped under her belly providing just the right support for baby A. Mommy B is sitting on the birth ball laboring....with a labored smile on her face! Daddy B decided to go on a food run, good timing since contractions are really warming up for both Mommies!!

Every trip to the Birth Inn is a new experience. The thing that is evident this time is the fact that nobody is missing a meal! the kitchen has been very active!! I love the fact that these mommies are going to be nourished and energized for the delivery!

3:30pm Smiles are turning to grimaces, talking is suddenly silent. Mommy A and Mommy B are both looking intent..............Did I mention there is only one jacuzzi tub?? It's like a horse race, neck in neck, one pulling in front of the other, then the other pulling ahead. Decision time, who will get the tub? Both mommies are so kind, insisting the other can have the tub!! As it is right now, I don't think it is good for Mommy B to be in the tub, big babies aren't the easiest to deliver underwater! Mommy A has decided she doesn't want to take any chances with slowing down her contractions, remember, she wants this baby OUT!!!! So, nobody is going to use the tub.

Let me take this time to introduce you to my two assistants. They fondly refer to themselves as Girl Tuesday, and Girl Thursday. Girl Tuesday, Cynthia Barger is the mother of 8 children, 3 of them were delivered at home. She is a certified Doula and loves the adrenaline rush when delivery is near!.
Girl Thursday is Ginger Young she is the mother of 5 and 3 steps, and grandmother of 2. Ginger is also a certified Doula and is in training to be a midwife. You might wonder about the names they have given themselves. Cynthia assists me in prenatals on Tuesday, and Ginger on Thursday!

4:00 Cynthia and I take off for a little walk. Ginger stays behind. Mommy and Daddy B leave for a walk and Mommy A starts feeling pressure......Woo Hoo!!!

4:25 Mommy A is moving to the birth room! I wonder how the walk is going to Mommy B??

4:51 BABY A IS HERE!!!!!!! Strapping baby boy.....stay tuned for the weight.

Mean while, Mommy B has decided to rest. Guess what? Contractions have slowed. Baby does not like it when mommy is lying down.

Baby A is nursing and getting to know mom and dad. Baby B, well, let's just say that he is in no hurry to meet us!

Baby A weighs 8lbs 10 oz and is 20 3/4" He has strawberry blonde hair and of course, is cute as a bug!!

So birth is seldom what we imagine, rarely what we expect, but always a gift from God! When we are faithful to do our part in preparation and trust Him with the delivery, the baby...our gift from delivered at JUST the right time.

Baby B has decided to take a break. I think he wants just one more night's sleep in his warm safe bed. So the bed is turned down, the lights are dimmed and Mommy and Daddy B are going to go to bed and rest. My assistants and I are going home......for a bit.

NOTE TO DEIDRE: I'm thinking it is time to add on a second birthing suite off the dining room. And a restroom for the midwives (with our own private jacuzzi tub) ;)