Questions (a little long)

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claireCJ's picture
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Questions (a little long)

Hey Ladies- My name is Claire. I have been lurking a couple weeks. I am very early in my pregnancy. This is my 3rd pregnancy. I have one DS and we lost our other DS at 20 weeks pregnant last December. I had an epidural with both deliveries. Without going into my long story, I will just say that after both experiences, I just don't want another epidural. I am hoping that I will be able to do it naturally this time around. I am very nervous about it though because I only know a couple people who have actually done it. So I wanted to ge your opinion.

I will just tell you a couple quick things about what I am thinking. I would like to deliever in a hospital. It makes me feel safer in case something happened to the baby. My 1st DS was in the NICU for 5 days b/c he had meconium in utero. My 2nd DS died in utero b/c the cord was wrapped up around the neck, ankle, and wrist. My mom said that both my sister and I had the cord wrapped around our necks when we were born as well. So needless to say I am scared of a cord accident. I love our hospital and I love love love my OB. She is wonderful. I am concerned that it is basically impossible to have a natural hospital birth though. I don't think my hospital has birthing tubs either. Maybe they do, but not in every room... Anyway, I think the hospital might be too stressful and bright and loud to be able to focus and get through the pain. Has anyone ever been able to do it there? Would you do it again there?

We have a birthing center here that is only 30 minutes from my house. I have 2 friends who used it but only one actually went all natural. The other had to be rushed to the hospital for an emergency CS. It looks amazing from the website. It looks very peaceful, calm, etc. The only reason I am up in the air about doing it there is b/c I would have to leave my OB. If there was an emergency, then they take you to the hospital right next to the center. I have yet to hear anything positive about this hospital and that makes me nervous. If you have delivered at a birthing center, did you think it was worth it? What were the positives & negatives for you?

II am up for any and all opinions! Thanks ahead of time and sorry this is really longer than I meant for it to be.

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Congrats on your pregnancy!

I had an almost natural birth in a hospital with my first, my placenta had failed so they induced me but my body was ready to go and I was able to labor and push him out without any epidural. The room I was in didnt' have a tub but I found ways to make it through (without really being as prepared as I should have been) by walking around and jumping in the shower to get relief. At first the nurses rolled their eyes when I said I wanted to try without drugs and once they saw I was doing it they were very supportive, I was lucky. Our hospital also allowed us to dim lights if we wanted and to bring in our own music so it made things a bit more comfy.

With my second I planned to deliver in the same hospital but my goal was to show up as close to pushing as possible. I also did Hypnobabies to help me stay calm and focused, I go internal with my labors and this really helped me. Things progressed quicker than I realized and I wound up having an unplanned/unassisted birth. The hypnobabies helped me to stay calm and let my body do what it needed, it was amazing.

If you are more comfortable with your OB and that hospital I would suggest you just make sure you are well eqiupped and have the proper support to go natural. Hypnobabies is a wonderful tool and really does work, you can also look at having a doula to help support you through any rough patches and to remind the staff of what you really want.

You CAN do a natural birth in a hospital. The reason we don't see more is because most women don't want to avoid the epidural.

Cindy

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I personally have had all of my babies in the hospital...my first two I had a shot of nubain, but all of my others I had med-free births. I had midwives with a couple, but my last two were with OBs and I was still able to have the birth that I wanted--no IV, limited monitoring, etc. My hospital also does not have birthing tubs, but I don't have the desire to get in while in labor (mine last few have gone to fast anyway).
I think the biggest part of getting the "natural" birth that you are wanting is to educate yourself on the process. There are some great books that are in the Resource sticky on this board. Also, surround yourself with people who will help you during the process and that will be your advocates with the hospital staff if needed. I would also recommend staying home as long you can. I have found that I am more relaxed and comfortable laboring at my own home rather than at the hospital.
Good luck with your decision. Just remember that med-free/intervention free births at the hospital CAN and DO happen ALL the time--so it is possible! Smile I am sure you will get lots more information from the rest of the ladies here...they are great!

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I had a birth center birth and I LOVED it...I credit it hugely for my NCB because my labor was really long and being in a totally supportive environment was critical to my being able to last so long. Given your history, I completely understand your nervousness about not being in a hospital, but my BC was like yours (right next to the hospital it was affiliated with) and they really do handle these things every day...and I also liked that, with mine, even if you risked out of the birth center and went to the hospital the midwives would still accompany you and act as your main birth support. So yes you were in a hospital at that point, but with someone who had your back and was committed to helping you achieve as much of your birth plan as possible.

Personally, it sounds to me like the best way to make a decision you can feel good about is to do more research on both options. Go get tours, meet the midwives, get someone to answer all of your questions, and find out what the big differences really are. Your insurance company will have info on the different hospitals' ratings, if you can't get that yourself. (And it's important to know that different hospitals can be good/bad for different things. My hospital isn't great for a lot, but it's great for babies, and that was really all that mattered to me.) If the hospital you're currently at is a good hospital but not NCB-friendly, it's definitely going to make it harder--certainly not impossible, but you'll have to go in a lot more prepared and willing/able to fight your own battles. You have time...go gather all the information you can get! That way, either way, you'll be able to feel comfortable and confident going forward...and THAT is the most important factor of all Smile

claireCJ's picture
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Yay I am already feeling good about this after 2 posts! It's just good to hear that it can happen. I am going to start doing my research. Both of you have given me several things to think about. Thx!

Update: I must have posted at the same time as the 3rd post which was also very helpful. Smile

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I have had a NCB with both babies in a hospital. My hospital has a NCB friendly area though (almost like a birth center) and that is where I was. Consider meeting with a MW - it may surprise you how comfortable you are with a MW even if you didn't know them before.

Also, I'm so sorry to hear about your DS2. I just can't even imagine what that was like. I wish no woman ever had to go through what you did. Hugs!

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My second baby was born in the hospital with out drugs. 2 of my 3 babies have had the cord around their necks, my second even had it around his shoulder and chest and they were born healthy and strong. 1 out of 5 babies is actually born with the cord around their necks but to have it as sever as you had it with your loss is very rare. It can happen in the hospital and once you are in labor you might not care about the lighting, I just used the dimmer over bed light with mine and it was dim enough for me. They never turned on the bright lights either, my OB delivered my baby with just the over the bed light on. My only advice is if you do a hospital birth stay home and labor as long as possible. I was only in the hospital for 2 hours before I had my baby and that was about perfect. Good luck momma! I know you will do what you feel is best for you and your sweet baby!

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*occasional lurker* Just chiming in... We were induced due to pre-e with our first and had a natural hospital birth, all went well. My midwife was there and the nurses deferred to her as long as I kept the silly belt monitor on. I was able to use a birthing ball, have my own music, etc. All in all, I'd say it was a good experience. But I'd much rather have been home...I did have to stay in the hospital for five days after the birth and I hated that...I just wanted to go home and sleep in my bed. Oh well, you can't argue with blood pressure I suppose.

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Welcome and congrats on your pregnancy!

You've gotten a lot of good responses so far, so I'll just add that I also had a completely natural, intervention free birth in a hospital with my first. It IS possible. That said, I went in guns blazing ready to fight- all while in labor, which I think made my birth, as great as it was, a little more stressful than it needed to be. But during the tour I got, I did have the nurse kind of give me a hard time about wanting to go natural and make comments like, "Well, you never know..." etc, etc. While it's true that things can always happen- I was educated and prepared with a good birth team (including a doula), so I was really ready to take on a natural birth.

This time I am choosing a home birth because I hated being in the hospital AFTERWARD, and, as it was, I was definitely not going to spend any more time there before hand than I needed to (for the reasons you mentioned- not being able to relax, having too many people around/bothering you with lights and noise, etc). I was in the hospital for just shy of 4 hours when my DD was born. The less time you're there, certainly the less time they have to try to force anything on you. Smile

Good luck making your decision- do what you're comfortable with- and if your OB and your hospital is more comfortable for you, then go that way- but go in as late as you can, bring a doula, take a NCB class to prepare you (not the class offered by your hospital, something else)... and then for sure, you can do it! Smile

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Congrats!

My best friend won't get a chance to respond I know, so I hope she doesn't mind me posting some for her. Wink She had a natural childbirth in a hospital last December. She was told that the hospital wasn't very NCB friendly at all. Well, she did have her NCB there and didn't have arguments from anybody. Mostly just had gawker nurses who don't ever get to see this. Wink She used hypnobabies and said it made a huge difference. She already had her birth plan on file there (so I definitely encourage you to do one!), so they already knew her wishes and followed it (like not offering pain medicine including an epidural).

Before making a final decision definitely tour the birthing center and both hospitals (even though you've been a patient at one before). Look at them from a NCB perspective and ask questions. I found a Facebook page for my local area where I was able to ask questions about people's experiences about the local hospital and others that are in neighboring cities. Worth a try to see if there's something like that you can find too.

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Thank you all so much for the support/advice! It's very helpful and makes me feel like I can totally do this if I prepare correctly. I'm glad I have lots of time to plan. I am going to talk to my DH and let him know my thoughts. I am sure he will support me in this. Especially since this may be our last baby and we had such negative experience with the drugs before. Thx again!!!

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First of all I want to congratulate you on your pregnancy!! I also want to say I am very sorry for the loss of your second child.

I understand your concerns about wanting to be in a hospital in case something goes wrong so that there are people and tools right there that can assist if necessary. I just want to tell you that a natural child birth in a hospital is very possible. I have had all 3 of my children in the same hospital with a midwife...completely drug free. No epidural, nothing. Everyone is always very supportive when I am there. I have never had anyone try to force anything on me. I was able to have the lights low, not many people were in the room and it was very quiet and relaxed for me. We also have jacuzzis in several of our rooms that we can labor in. And they allow you to bring your own music or whatever. So those are all things you can ask about when you tour the hospital.

I also know you love your OB but I would suggest meeting a few midwifes that deliver at the same hospital you are familiar with just to see what they have to say. Or talk to your OB extensively about your desire to go all natural and get your OB on board. If your OB is supportive, then that is half the battle.

I would tour the hospital and birthing center and ask questions, like others have suggested. Find out about the staff and request to have a nurse that is supportive of an all natural birth. That way if your OB is on board and also your nurse or nurses, you will have more support in direct contact with you and you will feel more at ease.

I just labored each birth however I could get through it before...but this time around I am going to try hypnobirthing and I have heard many great things about it. I am also reading a book called Hypnobirthing The Mongan Method by Dr. Marie Mongan that I would recommend to you. It is a great book so far and I am not done yet. I think that if you can prepare yourself mentally more than anything and practice relaxation techniques it will help you greatly in your labor.

Like others said, I would also put off going to the hospital until you must go. I prefer to labor at home also as it is my own comfort zone and I can do my own thing.

Good luck with your research and your decision! I have never gone to a birth center although I think it would be amazing to try it...but my main reason in staying at the same hospital and not trying out a birth center is because I don't want to lose my midwife....much like you don't want to lose your OB. So my only experience is going to a hospital, so that is why this post was all about that. Smile