The Birth Story of Aaron Avram

Aaron was finally here!

After waiting 40 weeks and 2 days I couldn’t believe that he was actually in my arms. Throughout pregnancy I knew a baby grew inside me but until that little bundle of joy was in my arms it just never seems that real to me.

Getting to this place was a long road filled with struggles, doubts, and fears. Learning was a major goal and my desire was for a peaceful vaginal home birth after my first more traumatic C-section.

I just knew this time would be different.

Well, it was different, but not in the way I expected and probably, if I am being honest with myself, not the ideal situation. I will say this before I give more details, though; every experience in life, whether good or bad, is a learning experiences use by God to strengthen us. I believe that I am being put through the fires of life’s trials so that I can be purified into the preciousness my God desires of me.

My experience with Aaron’s birth was 100x better than the first, but I hoped for a perfectly positive experience and I did not get exactly that.

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Kegal Exercises: Are they really necessary?

Throughout my research about birth I am continuity confronted with the topic of Kegal exercises as preparation for childbirth and postpartum recovery. I rarely, if not ever, put any weight on these exercises and just though it as an unnecessary practice only the super fanatical did.
Well, I have learned my lesson and I hope to help others take the matter more seriously. I am still only about 3 weeks postpartum now and know that the situation will improve with time, but I am experiences a case of uterine/cervical prolapse. This is when the uterus/cervix dips down into your vagina (to varying degrees) and in very sever cases, out of the vagina all together. Most woman that experiences it though only have a slight prolapse. This is usually cause by weak muscles supporting the uterus/cervix. In my case, I am almost certain that it was brought on by my first birth and then exacerbated by the final phase of my second birth (birth story still to come). I am currently still on partial bed rest and having to do Kegal exercises as often as possible which makes caring for my family a bit tougher than I ever anticipated with a vaginal birth.
LADIES!!! DO YOUR KEGALS DURING PREGNANCY!!!
Avoid postpartum issues by doing the leg work during the time when you don’t have a newborn to care for. I was so ready to have my pregnancy over because I was uncomfortable having no idea that the discomfort I would feel postpartum would make being pregnant seem like a walk in the park.
Kegal exercises can also help with avoiding or mitigating:

  • Urinary incontinences
  • Hemorrhoids

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The Goal

I have learned a lot over the last 9 months. At the end of the day as I sit here writing, the biggest lesson I am taking away from this experience is this:

IT IS NOT ALL ABOUT THE BIRTH!!!

That being said, I did have a good birth experience, but even with a perfect one, I forgot about the end.

MY SON!!!

I can’t express enought about this lesson. Whether I had a c-section or a VBAC, time passes and the memory fades. What doesn’t fade is the child you have brought into this world.

I sit here with my newborn son resting at my leg and the memory of the 45 minute dance marathon my older son preformed for us before his bedtime and I can’t help but just smile. Smile for the joy of children. My children. God is so good to provide us with such an example of His love for us. As parents we get so much joy is seeing our children grow and flourish. They get stronger and smarted day by day and the love that you give them manifest itself into pleasure for you to enjoy. I don’t love Josiah less because he was born via c-section nor do I love Aaron more because he was born naturally.

My point is this:

Children are the goal of birth, not birth.

That being said, I still believe in trying to achieve a wonderful birth experience and I am so excited for my future as I prepare to become a childbirth educator. This lesson will just help me to help others remain focused on keeping the main thing the main thing.

Home Birth Supplies

So as I am getting closer to my due date I am making my preparations for my home birth. I have started to accumulate things, starting with the most crucial. I still have a few holes to fill in but here is the list I have accumulated.
1. The Medical Birth Kit – This has all kind of stuff like sterile gloves, pads, chux, etc. This is put together by my Midwife and ordered from a local birth supplies company called “In His Hands“. (BTW, this company is run by a sweet little family and does a wonderful job at getting your birth kit to you in a hurry).
2. Birth Pool (Optional) – I did not have a pool last time and enjoyed the water in my garden tub. My midwife has one for her homebirths so I am taking advantage of it. You will need a hose to hook up to your hot water (from water heater or laundry room) and a liner (for sanitary purposes).
3. High gauge plastic drop cloths for carpeted areas and for under the pool.

4. Plastic sheets and pillow cases – I got the ones with zippers that slip over the whole mattress.

5. Back massages – I have a manual one and an electronic one
6. Fetal Doppler (optional as your midwife will have her own) – I bought this at the beginning of my pregnancy and used it a lot from 10 weeks to about 20 weeks. After that you can feel the baby move so you don’t need it as much. I like to have this available in early labor before the midwife comes so you can always check fetal heart tones yourself. Note: Renting is a waste of money. Buy this one, it works perfect.
7. Extra bed sheets – flat, fitted, and pillow cases. Some for the birth and some for afterwards. Ones you don’t mind getting messed up.
8. Lots of towels (both bath towels and hand towels) – I got some bright pink ones at wal-mart during the back to school time for college students. They are really cheap sets. You could also go to goodwill. Do not use good towels.

9. Scented candles – a scent that is associated with relaxation and good memories.

10. Floor fan in case you get hot
11. Floor heater in case you get cold
12. Heating pad for labor and perineal support
13. Cooling pack for labor and perineal comfort at the birth
14. Big bowl for placenta
15. Bowl or trash can for nausea

16. Camera (of course) – Make sure to have enough space (extra SD cards) and extra batteries

17. Baby supplies (of course) – Cloths, diapers, hats, socks
18. 6 to 8 receiving blankets

19. Chap stick

20. Snack and juice – Nothing too heavy or too acidic. I have some Emergen-C which is helpful during a long labor.

21. Hydrogen Peroxide to remove blood stains
22. Trash bags

Some midwives will want you to sterilize all your sheets and towels but I find this unnecessary as your home is not a sterile environment and as long as your stuff in newly washed, I can’t see the harm.

This is not an exhastive list and somethings may still be needed and others not used at all but it is a good starting point.

Chiropractic Benefits During Pregnancy

So after my first attempt to push out my son I heard a loud pop and my midwife said I had de-fused my tailbone. This ended up being more painful postpartum than my c-section scar. I took months of regular chiropractic care to even be about to sit down without pain.
This time I am being proactive. I just started seeing a new chiropractor to start regular adjustment leading up to my delivery. He has said that my tailbone is a little out of alignment and he will work at getting it into an optimal position for birth during the next few week.
My insurance pays for most of my care but it is still costly to see someone 6 to 10 times over only a few weeks. With at said, it is something I would recommend to every mom to be (regardless of how many kids you have had). The less issues you have after you push out that baby, the better.
Here is a little basic information I got from another website about the benefits of chiropractic care during pregnancy:
Chiropractic care during pregnancy maintains, and can even improve, balance and alignment in your spine and pelvis. This can help your baby assume his/her optimal birthing position and reduce the risk of having a breech baby. Regular chiropractic care can also provide a more comfortable pregnancy and delivery for both mother and baby. It stimulates the nervous system to enable proper functioning of your reproductive organs, thus supporting the needs of your baby throughout pregnancy and during delivery.

The Webster Technique is a specific chiropractic adjustment for pregnant mothers. It reduces interference to the nervous system and helps balance the pelvis, muscles and ligaments. The Webster Technique is successful in relieving intrauterine constraint and allows the fetus to move freely. It can prevent, and even convert, breech birthing positions. The Webster Technique should be started as soon as you find out your baby is in the breech position. Baby’s can flip as late as 39 weeks, but anytime after 35 weeks the chances for success are reduced due to limited mobility in the womb.

My new chiropractor came recommended by my midwife and he and his wife work a lot with pregnant woman. Their website is below:

http://www.drsgoodwinchiro.com/

New Doula – Yay!

I hired a new doula today. Her name is Ruth Phy and she is super sweet and very considerate. She is touchy-feely and seems very well grounded in her faith. She is a mother of two and knows all too well the trauma of birth and c-section. I know she will be a great support for me during the rest of my pregnancy and birth and I am super excited to be adding her to my now complete team.
You can check out her website at http://www.doularuth.com/index.html
to learn more about her. She also teaches potty training which I will be inters in having her come out for once life has settled into a routine after baby Aaron comes. And she makes/sells these really cute slings/wraps.
We talked for hours and she is a really good listener. I think having her as a voice for me will ensure that whatever happens in labor that my wishes will be heard.

Looking for a new doula

So I am almost 34 weeks and I am now on the search for a new doula. While I loved my first choice in Emily, she had to step down for personal reasons. I know that God is good and in control so I truly believe this is happening for a reason. I am going to interview a new doula that seems like she would be a great fit for me (recommended by my previous doula) sometime this week. I am excited about the prospect and look forward to getting this taken care of. I have a home visit with my midwife on May 8th so I hope to have someone lined up by then so they can attend this visit.
With that, I am very excited to have my midwife visit my home. This did not happen last time and I did not even know that it was common. I love showing off where I live (even if it is an apartment) and having people see all the work I put into making my families abode a home. I am also excited for her to see and hear my plans for my birth and where things will be happening.

I was talking to my sister recently about my last visit with my midwife and my birth plan (which I posted a few post back) and she admitted to me that she felt like my first attempt at a home birth was way to familiar to her births at the hospital (she has had 4 hospital births). She said there was too much intervention, too many exams, not very much personal attention, and not what she expected. She too has watched “The Business of Being Born” and other natural home birth videos and felt like it was supposed to be this peaceful, supportive, touchy-feely atmosphere (me too, BTW). We were both greatly disappointed. I pray that this time both of us will see more of what we expect a home birth to look like. I feel like going forward with hiring a new doula is a good way to help this prayer be answered.