Audra's (boilermaker) Lodge!

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Melychang's picture
Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 796
Audra's (boilermaker) Lodge!

I am looking forward to sharing your journey with you!

Congratulations on your lodge Audra!

Singfourever's picture
Joined: 08/26/06
Posts: 306

Welcome to your lodge Audra!

Joined: 10/22/06
Posts: 1033

Can't wait to follow your HB journey, Audra! Congrats on your lodge!

Joined: 10/08/02
Posts: 54

YAY!!! Was just thinking this morning that I need to start this!
:woohoo: sweetie!

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Congrats!

Joined: 07/29/03
Posts: 147

Welcome to your lodge, Audra!

SaucyVidel's picture
Joined: 07/20/06
Posts: 634

Yay! Congrats for joining us on the lodges, it's gonna be quite a ride!

Joined: 11/15/05
Posts: 467

Congratulations Audra!

chobeejc's picture
Joined: 02/25/04
Posts: 121

I love to stalk you Audra Wink

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Welcome to the lodge, hon! I'm thrilled to tag along on your last few weeks...
xo Robin

Chimmy's picture
Joined: 08/03/01
Posts: 2776

Yay, congrats & welcome to your lodge!!

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

Awwww--- thanks, friends! You are all so sweet!

I'll need to go look at other lodges and figure out what I'm supposed to put in here--lol. Perhaps a quick intro?

Hi! I'm Audra. I've been 'round these parts for a really long time-- since TTC our first in 2002.....my how time flies! I've been married to my sweet dh, Trey for just shy of 6 years. He is absolutely amazing. Our "story" is pretty basic-- we went to to high school together, graduated, started dating and as they say the rest is history.... We have two beautiful girls already (yes, I'm biased...) Trey is a SAHD and I work full time. I'm a fundraiser for a university and enjoy it-- and it allows us the freedom to have Trey at home full time (which wasn't an option on our previous salaries as teachers *sigh*)

I have been so very blessed with fairly easy pregnancies. Aside from puking for 20+ weeks I've always felt pretty darn good, and with this bean I didn't even puke that much! I've had fairly uneventful labors/deliveries-- both were in a hospital. I'll go back and see if I can cut and paste my birth stories of our girls from the other boards....

This go 'round we are planning a homebirth with a midwife. I'm so at peace with this decision and having just made the choice in the last few weeks I feel like a giant weight has been lifted from me. I know this is right for us. My MW has such a calmness and gentleness about her, and I so enjoy her presence and peace.

At present I'm in Washington DC (one major drawback of my job is the travel...ugh!) But this is my last trip for a long while..yay! I get home on the day I hit 37 weeks...and will have my home visit and such. I'm not worried 'bout being on the road...and my other babes have been "late" and I'm certain this baby will be, too. But I'm just ready to be in my own house and my own bed and enjoying my family before baby arrives.

I look forward to sharing a lodge with ya'll! But get comfy...'cause it will be a few more weeks Smile

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Wanted to welcome you to your lodge, I look forward to reading your other birth stories and this one of course:) Hope your travel finds you home safe and soon.

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Congratulations on your lodge! I look forward to hearing everything you have to say!

Joined: 11/15/05
Posts: 467

Sounds lovely Audra. I look forward to hearing about your homebirth preparation.

mommys's picture
Joined: 05/08/06
Posts: 6264

Congrats on making it past the 36W mark!
How wonderful that your DH can be at home full time. I can understand why that would be more appealing than your previous situation as teachers.

indymom's picture
Joined: 12/07/05
Posts: 261

How great that you've got a little boy coming your way, after two beautiful girls. Welcome to your lodge, I'm so excited to follow your journey!!

Joined: 01/06/06
Posts: 31

welcome to your lodge! I'm looking forward to sharing your journey! :bighug:

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

Thanks for the warm welcome ladies--you are so sweet and I feel so special!

Can I vent for a moment? I'm on travel for work...essentially I travel to visit with alumni/donors of our college. Yesterday my schedule worked out so that I had some free time during the day and spent some time doing office work from my hotel room. Obviously, I'm not usually home to watch daytime tv (as I'm working) and even if I was, we don't have cable....but anyways, yesterday I spent the afternoon watching TLC. OMG-- A Baby Story about made me crazy. I think I saw three episodes total and was just floored and it made me so happy that we are doing this at home this go around. People having c's left nad right, people laboring in bed...they all looked so miserable.

So here are the things I'm so excited about:
* my family will never have to "meet" our new baby from behind a glass window.
* Nobody is going to count to me while I push.
* Silly, but my baby won't have a computer attached to them so that they don't get stolen....some of those devices were so cumbersome.

There are 1000 other things I'm excited about but those pop to my mind today.

Joined: 11/15/05
Posts: 467

Fantastic reasons to be excited about a homebirth! I must admit I've never watched A Baby Story as we don't have cable either, but from what I've heard it's all about interventions. You get to avoid all of those things with a homebirth!

Joined: 05/05/04
Posts: 435

You don't like baby lojack? Lol I even did a scrapbook page about it from when Sam was born Biggrin

Welcome! I'm excited for you!!

How's your husband looking forward to having 3 at home? Dan's worried about two Smile

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

Okay-- some birth stories....though right now I can't find Callie's full birth story. Still digging.

It is long Smile but first labors are like that....

The Birth of Taya Elise
Total Labor 16 ½ hours

August 6, 2003
I had a pretty restless night of sleep on Wednesday evening....as my nights had become full of BH contractions and trips to the restroom. Before bed on the 5th I took a dose of Red Raspberry Leaves in capsule form. I also had a bit more of a backache than usual, but nothing terrible. I woke up feeling okay, but got sick from my Cheerios and had to have breakfast twice. I went to work as usual, though my mind was less focused than it had been. I really didn’t have much to do so I took a half-day and went home to spend the afternoon with my mom. We both were pretty tired and it was a bit rainy outside so we just spent the afternoon watching soaps and relaxing. I didn’t have much of an appetite all day but ate lightly. In the evening we went for our usual 2 mile walk–but this time it hurt! My inner thighs were full of pain and the underside of my belly felt like it was stretching out. It took my breath away a couple of times, but I was able to finish our stroll. We got home about 8:00pm and I ate bowl of Cheerios as I hadn’t had dinner but nothing really sounded good, and took another dose of the RRL. We watched Big Brother and I had a glass of milk and some Oreos and then headed off for a shower and bed. I was asleep by 10:30pm. At 11pm “something” woke me up and I was wet. Not terribly wet but more wet than usual. I got up and went to the bathroom to see what was going on. I changed my underwear and went back to bed. As soon as I laid down my new underwear was also wet. I got up again and went to the bathroom (again) and this time brought a new pair of undies in with me. This time I decided to put on a pad and go back to bed to wake up Trey. He was way startled to be awakened and I tried to explain to him that I thought maybe my water broke. He seemed confused and was like, we’ll smell it and see if it is (because I thought that maybe I was peeing my pants!) We were laughing though b/c my underwear smelled like Downey and bleach...and sniffing my underwear didn’t clarify anything. I wasn’t having contractions at this point, so we decided to just hang out, watch some tv and try to sleep through the night. About 15 minutes later my contractions started. They were strong, but not painful, and were about 5 minutes apart. We were surprised with the frequency of them and with each contraction I’d get a gush of water. Soon I also started to have major diarrhea. Trey and I just hung out upstairs for a couple of hours, as my mom and dad (who were staying with us from CO) were sleeping downstairs. At about a quarter of two we woke my mom up as my contractions were less than four minutes apart. I decided to take a shower and get the last of my things packed for the hospital. I spent time sitting on my birth ball as my lower back had really started to hurt. I also started throwing up. I was pooping and puking all at the same time in between contractions. Because my contractions were so close together we decided to go to the hospital about 2:30am.

We got checked in at L&D and hooked up to the EFM (though I didn’t want to be...they wanted a 20 minute strip of the baby.) It was shift change at 3am, so a new nurse came in and got us all set up. Her name was Julie and she was super nice and friendly. I asked for a birth ball and we were able to walk the halls to keep things moving. Unfortunately I couldn’t go far in the halls because without warning I would throw up and/or have diarrhea. So I got confined to my room by my digestive system Smile I labored on the birth ball for a long time and had bad back labor/pain, so I was having Trey press really hard on my lower back for counter pressure. I also had them bring in a heating pad for my back–though it didn’t help as much as the counter pressure from Trey. I was pretty grossed out with the amount of fluid that I was losing with each contraction, as it just went everywhere. Trey, my mom, dad, and mother in law were all in the room with me. I liked having them there, but didn’t want to hear anyone talk–my MIL was telling some story in the middle of one of my contractions and I just wanted it to be very quiet–so I shh’d her.... I just wanted it to be dark and quiet. I was doing a lot of visualization with each contraction and having people talk was very distracting–so they all sat there in silence for the next 12 hours... At around 5am I was very uncomfortable. The pain in my back really surprised me and was not what I expected from labor. I got checked and was only at 3cm but 100% effaced. I was starting to doubt my ability to go naturally as at this point I was very tired and worried that I had a long road ahead of me. I decided to go and sit in the shower–they had a little stool in the shower with a shower head massager. I remembered Brooke saying in her birth story how she started to doubt herself at 4cm, but trusted the Bradley sign-posts...so as I sat in the shower with the hot water I decided to wait another hour before “giving in” with some pain medication. I put the shower head on my belly and lower back and rested my head on the shower wall– it was very relaxing and did wonders for my back labor. Most of the pain in my back went away and I was able to continue to labor. About an hour and a half later they asked me to get out of the shower to be checked with the EFM and my vitals. It was maybe 7am or so. I had started to develop a temperature but the baby was doing really well on the monitor. The nurse checked me and I had made it to 7cm in just the time that I was in the shower. I was so excited thinking that I was headed into transition and certain that I could now make it naturally.... The nurse and doctor wanted to start me on an IV for fluids because of my rising temperature–after the puking and the diarrhea and sitting in a steamy shower until I was pruned I was dehydrated. I let them start an IV of just fluids and got back in the shower. I continued to labor in the shower and on the ball for a long time, until I started to get an uncontrollable urge to push. It was the most intense feeling and was very hard to prevent my body from pushing. I got back in bed and they checked me and I was only at 8cm. This pretty much continued for about 2 hours and was most certainly the hardest part of my labor. It didn’t hurt so much as it was hard to keep myself from pushing. After looking at my latest “strip” on the EFM the nurse and doctor decided that my contractions weren’t lasting long enough. Even though they were coming every 3 minutes they weren’t long enough in duration and they wanted to start me on a low dose of pitocin to get me to 10cm. I really did not want to do that, as I knew what it would do to my contractions and was trying to avoid interventions, but after another half hour I gave in and was started on a pit drip. My contractions quickly got very strong and very painful, and I was offered an epidural or other pain meds. At this point I was exhausted to say the least and could barely keep my eyes open in between contractions. I really did not want the epidural, but after an hour on the pit and still no progress I was about to give in with the hopes that it would relax my body enough to progress to 10cm. I asked to try something else before the epidural and was given a shot of Phentanol (spelling?) I was told it would last about 45 minutes and then we could re-evaluate whether I wanted an epidural (which both dh and I knew I did not want!) The shot took some of the edge off and I was able to labor through– my mom was a big help in coaching my breathing to keep me from pushing–still the most uncontrollable urge ever. Trey was crying watching me and supported whatever decision I made about pain relief. A while later, around 12:45pm the nurse came in to tell me that the anesthesiologist was ready if I was. I asked to be checked before giving in and I was complete! I was so happy that I cried! I was just so ready to give in to the urge to push!

So the pushing began around 1pm. I pushed in bed, on my side, in a squat with a bar and on the toilet. The toilet was the BEST feeling ever! I totally recommend that for pushing as it was by far the most comfortable position for me. Though they made me get off of it after my feet and legs turned purple from the lack of blood flow. I pushed and pushed and pushed, but it didn’t hurt at all. I was just really tired and sweaty and thirsty. Trey brought me lots of wet wash cloths, I drank my sprite and then really wanted to brush my teeth (who knows?) So Trey brought me a glass of water and a spit basin and I brushed up. I got the baby’s head to where I could see it, which was so exciting and satisfying. We could see Taya’s dark hair, that was so long the doctor could hold her hair and joked that he could pull her out by it. The doctor also knew that I really did not want an episiotomy
and was doing lots of perineal massage to help open things up. Two hours later I was still pushing and getting even more exhausted. At a little after three he asked if I would consider using the vacuum to pull her out. I was so tired and ready to be done I agreed– knowing full well that I’d end up with a cut. They brought in the equipment, snipped me (after some numbing medicine), and a couple of contractions later Taya was born. It was amazing to watch and I couldn’t believe that they were finally handing me my baby! It was 3:19pm on August 7th. Her Apgars were 8 and 9.

We were able to visit with Taya, let her breastfeed and take lots of pictures before she headed to the nursery for the full assessment/first bath. I did tear in addition to my midline episiotomy, in the shape of a “Y” and the tear is inside, not out...so it took a while to stitch up. Overall I feel great. I didn’t need any of the pain meds the doctor prescribed for afterwards–just some Advil for the swelling. No hemorrhoids, but my face was pretty swollen from pushing. I felt so good on Monday that we went for a mile long walk and I felt just fine. I really can’t complain and was ready to do it all over again when they handed me Taya. I really think going the NCB route has improved my recovery time. Even though things didn’t go entirely as planned (the shot of pain meds, pitocin and vacuum) I’m overall happy with the way that things turned out. What an incredible experience!

Here are some pictures....some graphic of the birth.

Right after birth...

And one day old-- all cleaned up!

And my baby today-- at 3 1/2.

Melychang's picture
Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 796

I just love your birth story! What an amazing story, thanks for sharing it. The pictures were so beautiful, especially the one with your belly and husband.

tanismom's picture
Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 717

Hey hon, welcome to lodge world! Just checkin in on all the new lodges I'm missing! Hope the rest of your trip is smooth and your return home is as pleasant as it should be!

We don't have cable either, so I haven't watched that show in a very long time, but surprisingly, there have been a couple of homebirths on there and a few lower intervention births as well. Unfortunately, it is a cross section of society, and therefore reflects what most women are doing with their births...

Feel good, and enjoy the rest of your trip!

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Thanks for that great birth story:) I don't think I'll ever get to the point where they don't make me excited! I can' wait to be in labor again, I know that sounds crazy but I really loved it (the second time anyway). Hope all goes well as your nearing the end.

Joined: 11/15/05
Posts: 467

Beautiful story Audra Smile Thanks so much for sharing. Your daughter is such a little cutie!

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

That was a wonderful birth story, thanks for sharing! And your "baby" Taya is so cute!

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

Callie's birth story.

I'll do this one more in pics-- b/c for the life of me I cannot find the text I've written about her birth.

I had an uneventful pg. My due date came and went. On June 25 I woke up feeling kind of icky-- I was nauseas and tired and not all that energetic. It didn't help that it was 95 degrees outside. My parents took Taya for the entire day, so Trey and I had a chance to just hang out as a couple. It was great.

Late in the day I started to have some pretty regular contrax....and they continued thru the evening. Around 11p when I went to bed they were consistent, but not painful so I went to bed. I woke up a few hours with lots of mucous and definite contrax pretty close together. I labored at home in my tub all night long-- it was fantastic.

Funny story-- at one point I had the birth ball IN the tub and was sitting on it. Trey was hanging out in our bedroom just watching tv and it was about 3a. My younger dd was in the bedroom next to the bathroom and both of my parents were sleeping....so we were trying to be really quiet as to not wake anyone. All of the sudden I FLEW off of the ball and splashed into the tub with a crash....Trey came racing in worried I was hurt or collapsed or something...but it was just hilarious.

Anyway-- I labored at home until about 6a when things were getting pretty intense. I didn't want to leave my tub as my hosp didn't even have tubs to labor in....but away we went. I got there at about 5cm and a bulging bag.

At the hospital on the birth ball

I refused everything at the hosp-- the EFM strip, the IV, you name it. They pretty much left me alone and let me do my thing, which was nice. I had a great nurse.

A few hours later I was complete...that is my mom and I just hanging out. I had this period where I was dilated but had no urge to push...so we just hung out for a while.

A half hour later our little bear was born. Callie Jeanne.


She was 8 lbs even-- and her face was pretty bruised from coming out so quickly....

She nursed like a champ from the get go. I didn't need any stitches-- yay. And felt great....so much easier than the first time around. Though I did have a crummy on-call doc, we didn't let him ruin the experience.

Callie was a really easy baby...and we were elated to bring her home.

And here is our Callie today at 20 mos.

indymom's picture
Joined: 12/07/05
Posts: 261

They're beautiful! I loved reading your birth stories, thanks for sharing them.

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

I love those photos! Particularly the half in and half out ones. Just gorgeous.

Do you have any particular wishes or desires for this upcoming birth?

Are Taya and Callie looking forward to having a little one around?

Joined: 10/22/06
Posts: 1033

Your birth stories are so beautiful! I loved the pics when you posted them on our BB awhile back, but they were even better with the stories. And I love you and your mom "hanging out" until you go the urge to push. Smile I can't wait to hear your HB story when your little man arrives.

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Another great story!! I loved it, and I can't wait till you add a third to this thread:)

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Your birth stories are so beautiful, as are your darlings. Thank you for sharing!

Melychang's picture
Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 796

Thanks for another great birth story! I love the pics, they give me some good ideas on what I may want. Will your girls be at the birth?

tanismom's picture
Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 717

Your babies are beautiful! Here's to another one!

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

Hi friends.

Well all is going well here in my very pregnant world.

Yesterday I had my home visit with my MW and the other birth assistant (also a RM)-- I now feel like I'm more ready to have a baby.

We also had a low-key weekend-- but I did some things that needed to be done-- like buy diapers and wipes (we CD, but I like sposies those first few weeks or so....) And we washed all of the bassinette covers and carseat covers and swing covers and such. Yesterday my hubby washed all of the 0-3 mos stuff and put it in drawers and hanging up (as much as I appreciated him doing it, I was a bit bummed as I actually enjoy that process of getting ready for baby...kwim?) We also assembled the parts of our birth kit-- much of it we ordered from a company my MW works with, and the rest (sheets, towels, olive oil, etc) we just needed to gather up and put in one place.

We also shared the birth process with our 3.5 yo. She is so smart and eager to meet her brother, that it was time to share with her the details of birth. It was adorable. She was a bit surprised and thought it a bit odd that baby would come out of "there"-- but just accepted it and moved on. My MW has some great books with pics for kids to prepare them, and she was so curious. I can't wait for her to meet her brother. We talked about where else a baby could come out of, and she agreed that given the options (nose, ears, bottom, etc) that mommy's vagina was a good choice. I love how kids just take things so matter of factly (tho now I have this fear that she is going to tell her friends at preschool and some nutjob parent is going to be upset that we told her the truth....) Oh well. She has also informed me that she has a baby in her belly and will be feeding it from her nipples just like mommy....too sweet.

My MW also asked me to stop working before labor. Just b/c she thinks it is "good" for moms....so she signed paperwork for my leave for work. I also suspect that she'll give me more than 6 wks PP-- which is exciting to me as the only way we can take more than that is with a "medical" reason...I love the difference btwn MW's and OB's. So my official last day of work is Monday 3/19-- she wanted me to be done earlier, but I have too much to do at the office (sad, eh?) But that should give me a full week to hang out with my girlies and my dh and just enjoy our family of four before babe arrives.

I'm still feeling great-- no complaints. I've ramped up my RRL and alfalfa intake. The weather here this week is incredible-- 60+ degrees-- so I'm enjoying some long walks with the kids and playing at the park.

I think with my "downtime" that I'm going to paint and re-do a bathroom...why not? I think I'll enjoy the project here at the end of my pg.....and it is always fun to decorate!

Joined: 10/22/06
Posts: 1033

How great that your MW visit went so well and that she is giving you extra time to spend with your family. I am so impressed by your attitude and determination to enjoy the last part of the pregnancy. I hope more of that feeling kicks in for me next week when I am off work...this week it is just too stressful trying to get everything done...and I am totally jealous of your great weather! Enjoy!

Joined: 02/25/07
Posts: 290

I love the story about your daughter and her reaction to the realities of birth. Enjoy your last few weeks!

Chimmy's picture
Joined: 08/03/01
Posts: 2776

Baby story makes me insane too, I end up yelling at the TV so I just don't bother anymore lol

What a GREAT birth story & those pictures are soo precious, I LOVE how you got a picture of both of them coming out, man that is neat Smile

It sure sounds like you guys are almost ready!! I think it's wonderful that you told your daughter upfront, I wish more ppl would do that Smile If some nut job gets upset the issue is with them & I'd leave it with them lol

I think spending a wk with your family, before your little guy comes is such a great idea!

tanismom's picture
Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 717

Sounds like a great MW and home visit! I told my 2 1/2 year old son about the birth also and we showed him some videos - it's so funny that you say that about what they might say at school b/c that was my thought too. But I would rather have my kid know what really happens than leave him ignorant and resentful of this new life in his family! I am very adamant about answering my son's questions truthfully. So, good for you! It will build trust between the two of you also that you will value much more later when your girls hit those teenage years!

Netanel also had a baby in his belly for a while, but I think he recently figured out that only mommies carry babies and that only mommies nurse, b/c the other day he told me that he can't nurse his baby doll and that I should instead! Kids are just incredibly precious and so "on" when you let them explore their world and give them real answers!

chobeejc's picture
Joined: 02/25/04
Posts: 121

HAHA Taya~what a cutie! You sound great mama Smile

Joined: 11/15/05
Posts: 467

Fantastic story Audra. Your daughters are so beautiful, I look forward to seeing your little guy. And doing a decorating project! Good for you Smile Have fun with it!

Melychang's picture
Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 796

It will be great that you get some time off before the baby comes. It will be wonderful for your family. You will have to show some pics from your decorating project!

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

So here is what we've been up to this weekend. We did our big maternity photo shoot with the girls and my belly. Let me preface this by saying it is HARD to get a 3.5 yo and a 20 mos old to sit still.....

Two weeks to go!

Do you like the color or the BW? I'm just playing with them....

And here are some of the girls being themselves. We have so few pics of them together!


This is SO their relationship!

And me alone with each girl.

I'm still feeling really good. We are having amazing weather (65 degrees and sunny!) So we've been taking long walks, out flying kites, having picnics outside. I'm getting ready to mop while the girls are napping....and then I think I'll vacuum out the car.

I'm so looking forward to working half days this week b/c it is supposed to be near 70. I think we'll head to the zoo, maybe shampoo my carpets and get to that painting. I'm just enjoying being at HOME. I'm such a homebody!

Melychang's picture
Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 796

I love the pictures! They are gorgeous. I personally like the black and white pictures. I love the last one where you and your daughter are comparing bellies!

Enjoy the weather and the house prep!

indymom's picture
Joined: 12/07/05
Posts: 261

I really love the classic look of B&W, especially in pregnancy photos. Those are great!

Joined: 02/25/07
Posts: 290

I love those pictures! Look at that freckled belly! Thank you for sharing them. Your girls are beautiful.

Joined: 11/15/05
Posts: 467

Beautiful pictures! When I started looking, I loved the B&W, and then I saw the color and I loved those too! The color of your hair and your girls' hair is so beautiful. Contrasts so nicely with the crisp white.

tanismom's picture
Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 717

You guys look great! what adorable girls! feel good and enjoy the weather.

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

Those are such beautiful pictures! You and your daughters are so gorgeous!

Silverwind's picture
Joined: 05/06/05
Posts: 351

I love the pics! You and your girls are beautiful Smile

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