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anyone going for (or had) a NCB?


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  #1  
March 15th, 2011, 12:51 PM
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I know that many of us have complications that make it likely we'll be induced or need a c-section for the baby's arrival, you will probably think I'm crazy for all of this and I won't blame you at all... but for those of us who aren't in that position, is anyone else going for a natural childbirth?

I have always wanted a natural childbirth. When I first started TTC, I even researched unassisted childbirth! Of course after the experience of my ectopic (almost dying of internal bleeding, saved by emergency surgery and transfusions), I'm a little more cognizant of the care I would require in a bad-case scenario!!! Needless to say I will be in a hospital with an OB. But I still really want to avoid any interventions that aren't medically necessary. If I am lucky enough to remain low-risk, I am planning to avoid going into the hospital until I'm in serious active labor, and then to decline epidural or labor augmentation unless it's absolutely required.

I am quite set in this plan. However, I also struggle with feeling like I'm "asking too much" and I shouldn't allow myself to hope for more than survival of myself and the baby. Sort of like how, in the beginning, I was afraid to hope for a viable pregnancy and all I would allow myself to hope for was an intra-uterine pregnancy rather than a repeat ectopic. These feelings keep me sort of "honest" by reminding me that the REAL goal is a healthy baby, and a NCB would be a wonderful gift but is not the most important thing. But at the same time, I think: I don't just want a NCB for myself, I want it for my baby, I want her to be alert and ready to root for my breast when she comes out. I want the best possible conditions for immediate bonding and breastfeeding. What's wrong with wishing for the best for my baby? Anyway, you see how I go back and forth arguing with myself!!!

I also wonder if some buried trauma from the ectopic might come out and interfere with me staying relaxed and trusting my body during labor. I have tried really hard to work through my feelings and truly trust my body more, but I don't know if it's enough. I'm hoping that my Guided Imagery and Affirmations tracks, which have helped me so much during the pregnancy, will help me a lot if I need it during labor as well (there are special tracks just for labor!)

Can anyone relate to any of this? Has anyone had a NCB in the past? Was it before or after your losses? Did your losses affect your later birth plan or experience?
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  #2  
March 15th, 2011, 02:00 PM
AliciaF's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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My first was completely natural. Though not by choice!

My water broke at 37w 5d and my contractions started immediately at 3 minutes apart. We headed to the hospital and I was admitted. At 3 cm they checked and said I could have the epidural at 4 cm so they ordered it but in the 30 minutes it took for the anesthesiologist to arrive I dilated from 3-9 so they wouldn't give it to me! I then had to NOT push for 30 minutes waiting for the doctor and once he arrived I pushed through 4 contractions any my son was born. No epi, no induction.

With my 2nd, my water broke at 37w 4d but my contractions never started. A few hours later I was starting to run a fever so they started pitocin and I got an epidural. Pretty relaxing labor actually I pushed for 10 minutes with him.

My 3rd was the baby we lost at 20 weeks. By the time we got to the hospital I was abrupted, my water had broken and I was 8 cm dilated. He was born about 15 minutes after we arrived and then I retained the placenta. They had to manually extract the placenta which was the most horrific pain I have ever endured and I lost 4 pints of blood. I was lucky to survive.

My 4th was a total induction at 36 weeks. They started cervadil and then 12 hours later started the pitocin. I dilated quickly and went from starting the pit to deliver in 4 1/2 hours. I did have an epi that time however they got it to me too late so I basically rolled over from receiving the epidural and started to push.

This time I plan to be induced again but don't plan to get an epidural. It was the worst part of my last labor.

Oh, no episiotomies with any though I did have slight tears with my 3 live births.
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  #3  
March 15th, 2011, 02:24 PM
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I wanted a NCB with my first. I went into labor at 36 weeks. I went to the hospital with no meds in mind. I had to have an antiobiotic but that was IT . I got there about 7am I think. I probably have it all written down at home. Well sadly DD and I were both in trouble. So after hours of labor and no progression past three decision time was coming. There was talk of a C-section because the reality was DD was risking distress and I didn't want that. They wanted to start pitocen. I was already struggling with so much pain that I asked for just a little something to take the edge off. I knew the pitocen would make it worse. That didn't help. With the fear of an emergency C section looming if i didn't start progressing I opted for an epi so that if the worst happened I was numb already. The positive outcome for me was that it helped to bring both our heartrates down and I started progressing. For me the pain keeps me clenched tight and I don't make progress on my own. This is me. It also saved my DD to be honest. I also had an episiotomy with her. She had to come on that push or we would lose her. It was the most scary delivery ever. She had the cord wrapped twice. Thankfully I did well pushing. She was born early and had other troubles so she was rushed off to the NICU. She was brought back to nurse due to low blood sugar, when it still wasn't high enough they gave her a bottle. We never did really nurse again, but she doesn't have brain damage so I don't regret my decision one bit .
With my son I chose to be induced at 39 weeks. 2 hours of pitocen and one push we were done . I had an epi as the pitocen was started, I learned my lesson.

I tell you my DD's story so that you know, stuff happens. I had a midwife and they knew I wanted to go unmedicated. The hospital never pressured me to get meds (love California hippies). But things changed and I had to flex with them. My daughters life was worth it. I love her very much. I am sure if we had not gone in that early in labor things could have gone differently. Have a plan, but be flexiable. I hope you get the natural birth you want.
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  #4  
March 15th, 2011, 03:04 PM
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I had a natural childbirth with my second daughter at our local free standing birth center. I delivered her only 1 hr after getting there (started pushing after only being there for 30 minutes). They joked with me at the time that I should consider a home birth the next time since I'm likely to go even faster (total labor and pushing with my first was 6.5 hrs, and 3 hrs with my second). Well, I am going for a home birth this time! I'll be using the same midwives that delivered my daughter. This assuming that I don't risk out with gestational diabetes or something, but I hope I can deliver at home! At my first appointment in two weeks we will discuss the birth plan, including emergency precautions and plan. There will be two midwives present for the birth, and they have IV fluids, pitocin, antibiotics, O2, etc. if needed. I live 4 miles from the hospital and just a few blocks from the nearest fire station, so if there is an emergency I wouldn't have to go far. I've had uncomplicated pregnancies and deliveries with my two daughters, so (knock on wood) I'm relatively low risk. We are doing extra ultrasounds this time just because of my age, though.
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  #5  
March 15th, 2011, 03:20 PM
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I have no experience with NCB, and don't want any. LOL But my advice would be to continue doing what you're doing. You obviously want to do the best for the baby and yourself. You've already learned a few things that may help, as will reading more books or literature about it. Hopefully, you'll get the birth of your dreams and won't have to compromise. BUT, if you do have to do things differently, it'll be because you HAVE to, because the baby (or yourself) needs assistance. And that's ok too. Good luck!!
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  #6  
March 15th, 2011, 04:26 PM
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I've technically never had a NCB because I'm one of those with complicating factors and I've needed to be induced with each of my three children. I have had three labors without pain meds, however, and have been quite happy with my birth experiences. I don't think you have to worry that you are "asking or hoping for too much" because it isn't one of those things that you can just "hope" for....you have to plan for it, prepare for it, and work for it. And if you are willing to do those things, good for you. Your baby will actually have less chance of complications (I know, the risk factors for meds, etc are small----I'm not knocking anyone who chooses them). My mindset is always that I WANT a NCB and am willing to work for it....but I will be educated enough to know when interventions are necessary for the health of my baby and I won't hesitate if that is the case. I'm not one of those people that is so against things like epidurals that I would be devastated if I were in a situation like Jess described above. If I was looking at a section, I'd certainly try the epi first. I fully believe that it is great to have a clear picture of how you want it to go and then to prepare for the experience you want while keeping the health of your baby your main priority.

As far as your fears about your ectopic, etc....have you looked into having a doula? Mine was a tremendous help with going as natural as possible in a hospital setting. If possible, find one who has worked a lot in the hospital you plan to deliver in...preferrably someone who knows hospital staff and someone they respect. Maybe even ask your OB if they have been impressed with someone they've worked with??
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  #7  
March 15th, 2011, 05:20 PM
onedaysoon's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I wanted a NCB with DD (minus the antibiotics I had to have), but after my water breaking and no progress, I had to be induced, first with cervadil, then with pitocin. After the pitocin really started to take effect, about 28 hours after my water broke, I opted for the epi and I don't regret it. 4 hours after the epi and after 1.5 hours of pushing, I had DD. If I hadn't opted for the epi I may have ended up with emergency C-section as DDs heart rate was racing and my contractions weren't working with me (they were too short and not strong enough). Thankfully my birthing hospital is pro natural and opt for anything before C-section also.

I hope that this one goes a little bit different and I get to give NCB a real go!
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  #8  
March 15th, 2011, 05:23 PM
ohnicole's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shen7 View Post
However, I also struggle with feeling like I'm "asking too much" and I shouldn't allow myself to hope for more than survival of myself and the baby.
I'm also hoping for a natural childbirth (though I'm not SUPER set on it.... extreme situations may change my mind ). My main issue is I really don't want to be induced because I don't want the extra risk of C-section.

I have a clotting disorder and will see a high risk OB once I graduate from the RE, and I am terrified of them telling me that I will have to induce before 40 weeks. I want my baby to be able to arrive when he/she is ready, and I want my baby to have a mom who is awake, alert, and able to care for him/her as much as possible- not recovering from major surgery.

But you voiced my thoughts exactly. Sometimes I feel guilty for wanting to control my labor, when the chance to labor at all is such a gift.
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  #9  
March 15th, 2011, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohnicole View Post

I have a clotting disorder and will see a high risk OB once I graduate from the RE, and I am terrified of them telling me that I will have to induce before 40 weeks. I want my baby to be able to arrive when he/she is ready, and I want my baby to have a mom who is awake, alert, and able to care for him/her as much as possible- not recovering from major surgery.

.
Actually, this is the main reason I'm induced early. I have 2 clotting disorders (APS and MTHFR) and am on Lovenox from conception on. I have a history of early delivery (never even been 38 weeks pregnant), fast deliveries (longest is 5 1/2 hours) and I live an hour from the hospital. By the time I realize I'm actually in labor, it's too late for me to make it to my hospital and I'm way too nervous to chance coming off of my Lovenox for several weeks. So, for all those factors, we choose to induce early. With my last baby I had an amnio at 36 weeks to verify lung maturity and then we induced the next day. We plan to do the same thing this time around.
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  #10  
March 15th, 2011, 07:12 PM
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I wouldn't feel guilty about any choice you make for you and your baby. Birthing is much like any other option you have. Bottle or breast, cloth or disposable, co sleeper or not. Its all about choices and you make the one that works for you. Please don't feel like you are asking to much. Good luck! Sorry my first post was so long .
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  #11  
March 16th, 2011, 08:45 AM
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Thanks so much for all the responses ladies!!!!! Our BTDT moms have been through a lot of different experiences, thanks so much for sharing your (short version) birth stories. You are ALL inspirational and everyone's story helps me understand the possibilities of what can happen in childbirth.

Kelly, you are AMAZING, until I read your stories I did not even know it was possible to get pitocin and not require an epi!!!! And your advice to find a doula is fantastic, and I wish I could, but unfortunately they do not exist in my neck of the woods. I'm lucky enough to have a pro-breastfeeding hospital in Mississippi. I'm trying to train DH to help, his job will be to continually tell me what a great job I'm doing, or shut up and leave me alone, or rub my back, or do whatever I tell him to. He's very patient and calm, and I think he'll be good for me.

And thanks for the advice everyone... I am definitely trying to stay flexible and be in a state to accept it if something unavoidable happened that precluded a NCB, while still preparing as best I can for a successful NCB. I have also read about various complications and how serious they are. I think this information is important to know, because although I would be disappointed in myself for consenting to induction just for borderline-low amniotic fluid at 38 weeks, I would not hesitate to have an immediate c-section if they saw the beginnings of a placental abruption, for example.

I will just keep listening to my guided imagery and maybe do some "Birthing From Within" exercises... ease off the "research" on complications as I approach the due date... read a lot of NCB stories and Ina May Gaskin (I looooove Spiritual Midwifery). And try to be as zen as I can about the whole thing. Thanks again ladies!!!
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  #12  
March 16th, 2011, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohnicole View Post
I'm also hoping for a natural childbirth (though I'm not SUPER set on it.... extreme situations may change my mind ). My main issue is I really don't want to be induced because I don't want the extra risk of C-section.

I have a clotting disorder and will see a high risk OB once I graduate from the RE, and I am terrified of them telling me that I will have to induce before 40 weeks. I want my baby to be able to arrive when he/she is ready, and I want my baby to have a mom who is awake, alert, and able to care for him/her as much as possible- not recovering from major surgery.

But you voiced my thoughts exactly. Sometimes I feel guilty for wanting to control my labor, when the chance to labor at all is such a gift.
Nicole, I hope you do get to let the baby pick their birthday and have a spontaneous vaginal delivery, but if you don't, it will be for a VERY good reason... I do think there are some rather serious risks with blood clotting disorders, depending on what type you have. Thanks for understanding where I'm coming from though!!! Why do we feel guilty for wanting things?! Of course we are grateful for what we have... it doesn't mean we can't dream big......
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  #13  
March 16th, 2011, 05:29 PM
ohnicole's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Originally Posted by shen7 View Post
Nicole, I hope you do get to let the baby pick their birthday and have a spontaneous vaginal delivery, but if you don't, it will be for a VERY good reason... I do think there are some rather serious risks with blood clotting disorders, depending on what type you have. Thanks for understanding where I'm coming from though!!! Why do we feel guilty for wanting things?! Of course we are grateful for what we have... it doesn't mean we can't dream big......
Oh, I know there are real risks, for sure. There are risks with natural birth and there are risks with C-section. I could write a novel on all my thoughts and worries... I guess my bottom line is I want my doctor to talk with me and actually consider my concerns, not tell me "This is how I do it." Which I'm sure is what we all want
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  #14  
March 16th, 2011, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by shen7 View Post
Kelly, you are AMAZING, until I read your stories I did not even know it was possible to get pitocin and not require an epi!!!!
I had pitocin with my son Dylan and did not have an epidural. I had NCB with all of my boys and my oldest Coreys labor was 36 hours long. In fact, back when I had the boys very few women had epidurals. During my pregnancy the doctors would ask if I was interested in it but always discouraged its use. Now a days I hear that 90 percent of women have epidurals!

My opinion: Make a plan ahead of time of your ideal labor. Then go into your labor with a totally open mind and expect that things will not go as planned. And really in the end what matters is you have your baby to hold and love forever!

Oh, I did have demoral as a pain medicine during my oldest sons birth but it just made me throw up the whole time. It was horrible!
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  #15  
March 16th, 2011, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by shen7 View Post
I know that many of us have complications that make it likely we'll be induced or need a c-section for the baby's arrival, you will probably think I'm crazy for all of this and I won't blame you at all... but for those of us who aren't in that position, is anyone else going for a natural childbirth?

I have always wanted a natural childbirth. When I first started TTC, I even researched unassisted childbirth! Of course after the experience of my ectopic (almost dying of internal bleeding, saved by emergency surgery and transfusions), I'm a little more cognizant of the care I would require in a bad-case scenario!!! Needless to say I will be in a hospital with an OB. But I still really want to avoid any interventions that aren't medically necessary. If I am lucky enough to remain low-risk, I am planning to avoid going into the hospital until I'm in serious active labor, and then to decline epidural or labor augmentation unless it's absolutely required.

I am quite set in this plan. However, I also struggle with feeling like I'm "asking too much" and I shouldn't allow myself to hope for more than survival of myself and the baby. Sort of like how, in the beginning, I was afraid to hope for a viable pregnancy and all I would allow myself to hope for was an intra-uterine pregnancy rather than a repeat ectopic. These feelings keep me sort of "honest" by reminding me that the REAL goal is a healthy baby, and a NCB would be a wonderful gift but is not the most important thing. But at the same time, I think: I don't just want a NCB for myself, I want it for my baby, I want her to be alert and ready to root for my breast when she comes out. I want the best possible conditions for immediate bonding and breastfeeding. What's wrong with wishing for the best for my baby? Anyway, you see how I go back and forth arguing with myself!!!

I also wonder if some buried trauma from the ectopic might come out and interfere with me staying relaxed and trusting my body during labor. I have tried really hard to work through my feelings and truly trust my body more, but I don't know if it's enough. I'm hoping that my Guided Imagery and Affirmations tracks, which have helped me so much during the pregnancy, will help me a lot if I need it during labor as well (there are special tracks just for labor!)

Can anyone relate to any of this? Has anyone had a NCB in the past? Was it before or after your losses? Did your losses affect your later birth plan or experience?
Ok first of all - that IS NOT ASKING FOR TOO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I just want to hug you and jump up and down and scream - asking to have a natural child birth - to have our bodies and our babies respected that way - is our RIGHT!!!!!!! it is not a request, a hope, a demand - it is nothing short of our basic human right. The most sacred and vital part of our womanhood. Survival - that's the MINIMUM. You are not asking or hoping for anything extra - ordinary.
Second - I was born 2 months premature - NATURALLY - because the doctors didn't want me compromised by the drugs. Really - a NCB - IS doing the safest best thing for your baby. It is NOT some risky extra request. (PS. I don't think it's bad to have other options - I'm not knocking medicine - I think western medicine is wonderful - and all the interventions are fantastic when necessary )
So - my experience -- I had a all natural home birth with midwives. It was AMAZING!!!!! And I absolutely recommend it. In Canada - they come prepared with stuff to deal with mom or baby emergencies - they can deal with hemorrhage - they can deal with breathing problems etc. My baby did end up having a problem breathing and they took perfect care of her and we got her to a hospital. -- her problems had NOTHING to do with her birth place or any complications - they were just 'one of those things' It would have happened wherever I was - and I'm glad she didn't have any drug complicating things - and I'm glad I didn't do anything like induce early to put her at risk. Honestly - if you don't have any special problems you are safer at home with a midwife (yes I have research I can post to back me up on this lol)

As far as dealing with past losses. I did feel like I had to let go of that. In really early labour (on the Monday - she was born on Friday) I had a really big cry in the shower. I also refused to labour on the toilet. - that reminded me of miscarriage. I've read that having dealt with the pain of miscarriage actually makes labour pains a bit more manageable. From personal experience - I'd say it felt SO different. I knew I had a baby coming - it was happy and exciting and beautiful.

I hope that helps a bit. Yes - I'm a bit um - passionate about all this. I would be more than happy to chat with you about it all. You will have a fantastic birth! (((hugs)))
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  #16  
March 18th, 2011, 10:50 AM
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First, can I say that you are incredibly good at voicing your feelings and giving sensible advice or "real world" knowledge to all the ladies on here. I really enjoy hearing what you have to say on a topic

That said...I am struggling with the same thoughts this pregnancy. I had a natural childbirth, in a hospital, with a midwife with Liam. I loved every second of it. I never went in "absolutely NCB" or anything like that. I just said I would know what my body needed and go with that. I got to the hospital 8cm dilated (not especially by choice, I did not know I was in real labor), was there for two hours, pushed for 30 minutes and he was here. I was moving around the whole time and never really felt I 'needed' an epi. We had very little monitoring/checking and no meds at all (no IV or antibiotics needed). The only, only thing I would change about it was pushing position. I even considered looking into a birthing center or homebirth for number two.

NOW, I feel differently. I am not sure I really actually trust my body anymore and I also have a clotting disorder that may preclude any hopes of a natural childbirth this time. I still really want one though. I want to look back at my birth of this child and feel as much magic as I did with Liam. I want to nurse right away. I want my baby to be as alert as possible. I WANT all the pain/sensations that come with NCB. And the rush I felt after he was born. I feel in my heart it is best for babies. BUT, what if it is not best for MY baby? I am going to have a long road of questions ahead of me. I don't know my OB's plan for the future of my pregnancy or delivery and I need to talk to him before making any real plans. Thankfully, he is in a midwife practice, so he might be open to a more natural labor than if he was a MFM doc or something.

I think the ladies are right...this is NOT too much to ask. And even though your body might not have had the best "track-record" in the past, it doesn't mean it won't ROCK at this and you will be able to have an amazing NCB. Keep reading and preparing as much as you can. But I do think having an open mind and being aware is going to be your best option in the hospital. You will be aware of your choices and what they can mean. And you can pick what you feel is best. Because, at the end of the day, you have to be content that you made the best choices for you and your little girl.
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  #17  
March 18th, 2011, 12:54 PM
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Wow, so we DO have some NCB mamas here on PAL!! Thanks for your stories and support, Missy and Ami and Ashlee... and thanks for your sweet lil' note Ashlee, it made me blush I'm glad that you understand what I'm going through and have similar feelings. I hope that the fact you had an uncomplicated natural birth with Liam bodes well for this baby too!
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  #18  
March 18th, 2011, 01:14 PM
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Both of my living children were natural births. No drugs and the only intervention was breaking my water at 9cm both times. The birth experience (at least to me) is important. I believe it truly impacts both you and baby. And while everything may not go exactly as planned, you can certainly prepare yourself as much as possible for a NCB.
I was somewhat afraid that after my experience with my son Eli (who was stillborn) I might have some fear about childbirth. I did hypnobabies with my next son and listened to daily pregnancy affirmation and then toward the end I listened to birthing affirmations and I really believe that helped. I also did fear release hypnosis exercises.
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  #19  
March 19th, 2011, 08:05 PM
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I'm wanting a NCB with a midwife as well. I just need to convince my husband that's a safe option if there aren't any complications. It was helpful reading all the responses to this great thread!
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