I am so thrilled to be joining the conversation on mybestbirth and honored to share my story on Ricki & Abby's website. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments about my birth story. I'd love to hear from you. Warmest, CIndy
We were living in LA at the time of my first pregnancy. Most of our friends and family lived in the Midwest or on the east coast. I did tell one of my girlfriends when I first started thinking about it. She went on and on about what a crazy idea it was. It was then that we decided to keep it to ourselves. When people asked, we just told them the name of our backup doctor and the hospital where I would end up if I needed to transfer. That seemed to be enough info to satisfy most people. I didn’t want the fears of other people projected onto us. In retrospect, this was the right choice for us—but we weren’t planning on having anyone with us on the big day. You could always tell them once you are in labor! No one will argue with you then! Good luck! Cindy
How long was it until you felt the "urge to push"? I'm due September 16th with my second and will be having the baby in a birth center with a midwife. The first was in the hospital with an OB. Fortunately I was able to have her naturally but I never ever felt the urge to push and pushed for 3 hours!! My daughter had to go to the NICU for an elevated white blood cell count (which apparently can be due to trauma and stress during labor). The pushing was not directed by me and I feel as though my daughter's trauma could have been avoided if I was able to be more in touch with my body and push when I was ready. I can't wait for the experience with my second in the birth center because I think I will really feel free!!
I agree. I think that as modern women we think we can just muscle our way through everything in life--even birth. I think I would have saved myself from a lot of frustration with ineffectual pushing if I had waited until I really felt that there was only one thing to do which was PUSH. With the birth of my daughter, I finally felt that when my midwife finally got me to stand up. My daughter--who was posterior presentation--twisted around and then the urge to push was so strong, there was no stopping me!
hey Sharon and Cindy,
As a midwife in home birth practice for over 20 years now i have seen a number of women take hours after full dialation to be consumed by the urge to push. Often there is a complete cessation of contractions, a natural pause that never gets seen in a setting where pitocin is administered. This seems to be, like Cindy mentioned, an opportunity for baby to find it's best way down and out or perhaps the mother's body just needs a rest before continuing on. If mother and baby are both doing well there is no need to do anything except wait patiently. The longest I've seen it take is about 8 hrs....an older first time mother labored to full dialation and then slept through the night before pushing her healthy baby into the world. Variations in natural birth can be amazing when we take the time to watch carefully and allow things to unfold.
all the best,
Thank you so much for sharing your story. I have had two hospital births and I'm now 34 weeks pregnant with my third child. I'm planning a home waterbirth with a midwife for this baby. (I recently found out this baby's name is also the name you choose for your daughter. Great taste. ;-)) Your story about pushing really hit home for me. If I had waited to feel the urge to push when my second was born instead of pushing on command, my husband would have been there with me instead of parking the car! I'm hoping this birth makes up for the last two.
My question is, did you have a waterbirth? If not, did you consider one?
I did not have a water birth. After watching the videos, frankly I felt a water birth looked a bit messy and I knew there was no way on Earth that my husband would join me in there. I was able to labor in our Jacuzzi until my water broke, which helped a lot!
Best of Luck to you!
I understand, the important part for me is to labor in the water for pain relief. I just don't think I'll want to get out! I'm not sure if my husband will get in with me or not. Even if he's willing I may just want my space. Was your husband worried about a homebirth or what his family would think? My husband knows it's up to me and he'll support me, but he's worried.
I just wanted to say "Thank You" for sharing your story! I truly admire you, as I'm sure many other women do too!
You're right about the birthing process being like a marathon! I knew that when I was ready to have children that I would prepare to have them naturally. I shared my feelings about it with one of my friends too and all I got from them was "Yeah, right! Good luck!" So after that I just kept my plans to myself. I had my first child a year ago and he was born in the hospital. I wasn't too confident in myself about having a home birth. I did however refuse every single thing they had to offer me in the hospital! I told them I wanted a natural unmedicated birth and they were happy to let me take my time. I had my Doula there with me as well as my husband and they gave me the confidence I needed to keep on track. My son was born naturally (after 12 hours) and it was the greatest moment in my life! It made me VERY proud and I am still in awe of the whole birth today! I wish more women would experience the process of birth naturally instead of going with the mainstream and putting too much trust into health institutions and doctors.
Thank you for sharing your story. It is so important for public figures like you to talk about your birth experiences so that natural birth and homebirth in particular become more normalized in our society. Please continue to share your two birth stories because it is inspiring and empowering many women.
Hi Cindy! Thank you for your openness in sharing your birth story. How do you respond when friends/family/acquaintences ask why you opted for home birth? Do your friends who've had hospital births get defensive at all? It seems that sometimes home or just all-natural birth is viewed as "being a hero" or even selfish to those who haven't experienced it. It isn't like that at all - my passion is that more women understand that they can have the same experience if they know how to pursue it. I understand health concerns for the mother and baby but I believe the majority of women can and should birth this way if only given the chance.
Stories like yours and others will help, no doubt. Keep up the good work!
Thanks so much for sharing. I too had the experience of telling my good friend that I was considering a home birth and she yelled at me and told me I was being really selfish. I was shocked at her response and soon realized that my husband and I would have to keep the whole process to ourselves. It's amazing that I live in LA and all my friends are very liberal yet are so set on their ways of a hospital and aren't open to learning more. My question to you is my OB is at Cedars as well and I would love them to be my back up but it's about a 25 min drive from my home... Did you look at other hospitals closer (if there were any)? Also how did you go about looking into midwives since you couldn't talk to your friends about your situation?
Thanks so much,