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Forum: Natural Childbirth

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  • 1 Post By therevslady
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  #1  
December 14th, 2012, 10:18 AM
snlemon's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 6,657
This is my third baby. Third *possible* attempt at an NCB. To be honest, I'm pretty sure it's not possible for me to have one...and based on my last experiance in birth (my epidural wore off) I don't think I want one anyway....

But I kind of do. I've never gotten the epidural because of the pain (I mean, yeah it's super painful, but I can keep going), it's because I'm deep into active labor with no progression. As soon as I get the epi, BAM, I progress. I'm talking like hour 12 of active labor, contractions on top of each other, can't move, can't talk, want to bear down, waves of naseua, etc and I'm only 3cms.

I really want to at least experiance an NCB. I want to experiance the recovery of one. I just feel like I should be able to achieve that especially since I can tough out the pain...

I've tried everything. Hypnobirthing, Bradley, etc. I've read every classic birth book ever. I've watched all the movies. I have a deep desire to experiance this. I have an incredible support system-- a midwife in a very NCB friendly hospital (I have complete freedom in labor, intermitten monitoring, no iv, etc). I feel like everything external is there for me to do this, but something inside me is broken...and broken in a non-obvious way. I can't look back on any of my births and feel like the system failed me, or my care providers, or even my mental state...just something between my head and my cervix is wired wrong.

I do have a very strong pelvic floor (never leak urine before or after and this is my third baby). And I have a hard time relaxing my bottom under *any* sort of discomfort, even slightly. So I've been working on that this time, even though it makes me feel weird and out of control to relax that part of me. lol. But I don't know how much that will help in the throes of labor. Hypnobirthing didn't go so well in labor, lol.

I don't know what to do. Has anyone had any experiance with this? Anyone have a suggestion? I'm looking for anything. And to be clear, I have no issues with getting pain relief...my desire to have an NCB is kind of like the desire to run a marathon...just something I want to experiance and feel like I should be able to...and of course, ideally, it's healthier for baby and mama.
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  #2  
December 14th, 2012, 10:47 AM
therevslady's Avatar Built for Birth
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Location: Atlanta, Ga
Posts: 6,194
The first thing that comes to mind is optimal fetal positioning. It sounds like your labor distributes signs of fetal/pelvic misalignment. When you have an epidural, they usually rotate you from side to side which can help align the baby. Have you checked out Spinning Babies Home I'd also look into getting seen by a webster certified chiropractor.

Also, do you have any mental blocks? Are you a type A personality? Do you have fears or anxieties that might be affecting your dilation? Can you "let go" and just allow whatever birth you get, in spite of your plans?

Have you tried a tub before trying an epidural? Water birth sounds like it might be a great option for you.

And for the record, there is a mini transition that many moms experience (that I have seen with my clients) that happens around 3-4 cm as you go from early labor and your hormones kick you into active labor. Just like the transition that happens at 7-8cm this can take a different amount of time for everyone.

I'd also like to encourage you that having an epidural wear off is not the same as going natural. Whenever you receive pain medications in labor, it interferes with your natural endorphins and natural pain blockers that you might receive going natural the whole time. The only thing I can relate this to is getting tattoos (I have many). When I get tattoos, it kind of stings a little at first, but after a while, it just gets numb and I don't feel it as much. But we take a break and come back to it, it hurts like the dickens (even more than when we started before). Here is a great article about how your hormones help you in labor:
Ecstatic Birth - Mothering Community

And then I'll be "that guy" to say, sometimes epidurals aren't a bad thing. They are there to help. If an epidural will save you from a surgical birth, then that is wonderful! If it saves you from a 5 day long transitiony labor, then I don't see that as a bad thing either. What's bad, is the over-use, the routine use, the blanketed use of this tool. I always say that it's great to prepare for all outcomes: natural birth, epidural birth, or c-section, know how to use ALL birth tools to YOUR and YOUR BABY's benefit. And feel confident in those choices. It doesn't mean that you are broken.

Every birth is different as well. Every labor and birth reflects the needs of each individual baby, mother, and unique circumstances. It's not just you, it's like a dance between you and your baby. It's a submission to a process that begins when the stars align perfectly at the perfect time. Sometimes if we try to control it too much, we are interfering with that process. I often teach my clients to meditate on the word surrender. It can change your experience in pregnancy and birth drastically. This is a new baby and a unique experience. This labor will be as different as this baby is from your others. Do your best to accept is as something totally new.
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Previously known as ~~Que~~

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Last edited by therevslady; December 14th, 2012 at 10:53 AM.
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  #3  
December 14th, 2012, 02:56 PM
daneeleigh's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: San Diego, CA
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I got stuck at 5/6 cm for hours and had to do spinning babies to get unstuck because of his fetal positioning.

Have you had a doula present during your labors? I think if you really want to try for a natural birth to have that experience then having one would only help you in being successful. My doula deserves a medal for my labor and my husband says we are NOT having a birth without her lol.

I am majorly Type A too and I feel that was a drawback to me progressing quickly. I did have problems with just letting go and going with the contractions. I hope to be better about that next time. Well see.

The mental block for you though may be the fact that you're okay with the epi. I was so set against it that I did everything to avoid it being around me to avoid the possibility. I think if you're okay with it then at least you won't feel guilty if you get it again.
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  #4  
December 14th, 2012, 05:36 PM
snlemon's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~~Que~~ View Post
The first thing that comes to mind is optimal fetal
positioning. It sounds like your labor distributes signs of fetal/pelvic
misalignment. When you have an epidural, they usually rotate you from side to
side which can help align the baby. Have you checked out Spinning Babies Home I'd also look into getting seen by a
webster certified chiropractor.
I know for sure my second baby was initially malpositoned. He was breech until I had the webster technique done at 33 weeks. I did spinning babies from then on to keep him at least head down, but he presented fist first, which the midwife was able to correct in the middle of labor. But I had several (6ish) hours after his position was corrected and no progress was made, despite increasing intensity.

Quote:
Also, do you have any mental blocks? Are you a type A personality? Do you have
fears or anxieties that might be affecting your dilation? Can you "let go" and
just allow whatever birth you get, in spite of your plans?
I do have all these. I'm type A. Controlling, especially with my body. I have a history of physical abuse and self-injury. After my last birth, and a round of PPD I started seeing a therapist..but I'm not sure how that will affect a birth.

Essentially my plan for this next one is to just chill out about it...I haven't made any firm plans in my head...but I will probably always attempt a straight NCB since that' the healthiest option. Otherwise, my plans invove wine, a soaking tub and denial.

Quote:
Have you tried a tub before trying an epidural? Water birth sounds like it might
be a great option for you.
No, I haven't. I did use a shower during my last labor, and that was helpful until I started feeling sick. Looking back I should have just went with it, but feeling sick with each contraction made me scared. I was still at a 3 at this point. lol.

Quote:
And for the record, there is a mini transition that many moms experience (that I
have seen with my clients) that happens around 3-4 cm as you go from early labor
and your hormones kick you into active labor. Just like the transition that
happens at 7-8cm this can take a different amount of time for everyone.
I did not know this! I'll defnitely remember this for next time...I labored at this point for over six hours though, sooooo...haha.

Quote:

I'd also like to encourage you that having an epidural wear off is not the
same as going natural. Whenever you receive pain medications in labor, it
interferes with your natural endorphins and natural pain blockers that you might
receive going natural the whole time. The only thing I can relate this to is
getting tattoos (I have many). When I get tattoos, it kind of stings a little at
first, but after a while, it just gets numb and I don't feel it as much. But we
take a break and come back to it, it hurts like the dickens (even more than when
we started before). Here is a great article about how your hormones help you in
labor:


Ecstatic Birth - Mothering Community
This is so fantasticto hear! I had such a hard time bonding the second time because of that pain. Plus I never got a rush of feel-good hormones like I did with my first...all it was, was pain. I know the epidural prb inhibited the feel-good hormones...but I didn'tknow it could inhibit my body's own pain fighting.

Quote:
And then I'll be "that guy" to say, sometimes epidurals aren't a bad thing. They
are there to help. If an epidural will save you from a surgical birth, then that
is wonderful! If it saves you from a 5 day long transitiony labor, then I don't
see that as a bad thing either. What's bad, is the over-use, the routine use,
the blanketed use of this tool. I always say that it's great to prepare for all
outcomes: natural birth, epidural birth, or c-section, know how to use ALL birth
tools to YOUR and YOUR BABY's benefit. And feel confident in those choices. It
doesn't mean that you are broken.
I really, heartily agree with you. And with each labor-- it's not like I've regretted the epidural, but the fact that I couldn't get over this...wall? in birth. Absolutely I feel, both times, that I'd hit a point were my only option for a vaginal delivery was to get the epidural, and that benefit clearly outweighs the risks of the epidural and the loss of any "experiance" I may have wanted.


Quote:
Every birth is different as well. Every labor and birth reflects the needs of
each individual baby, mother, and unique circumstances. It's not just you, it's
like a dance between you and your baby. It's a submission to a process that
begins when the stars align perfectly at the perfect time. Sometimes if we try
to control it too much, we are interfering with that process. I often teach my
clients to meditate on the word surrender. It can change your experience in
pregnancy and birth drastically. This is a new baby and a unique experience.
This labor will be as different as this baby is from your others. Do your best
to accept is as something totally new.
I'm clinging to dear life for this truth- that each baby/birth is difrent. Mostly becuse I' m still strugglng with PPD/PND. I do have a really hard time surendering to pain...to birth. I want to control it and stay ahead. When I felt "ahead" of the pain in my 2nd birth, I was progressing...SLOWLY, lol. The second I got "behind" the pain, my body stopped cooperating. Because I was afraid, vulnerable, and out of control. I wish I knew how to fix those feelings.

Thank you for such a thoughtful and helpful response!
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  #5  
December 14th, 2012, 06:31 PM
snlemon's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 6,657
Quote:
Originally Posted by daneeleigh View Post
I got stuck at 5/6 cm for hours and had to do spinning babies to get unstuck because of his fetal positioning.

Have you had a doula present during your labors? I think if you really want to try for a natural birth to have that experience then having one would only help you in being successful. My doula deserves a medal for my labor and my husband says we are NOT having a birth without her lol.

I am majorly Type A too and I feel that was a drawback to me progressing quickly. I did have problems with just letting go and going with the contractions. I hope to be better about that next time. Well see.

The mental block for you though may be the fact that you're okay with the epi. I was so set against it that I did everything to avoid it being around me to avoid the possibility. I think if you're okay with it then at least you won't feel guilty if you get it again.
With each baby I've tried to get a doula, but somehow I have the WORST luck with them. No one will call me back and the one who did missed one meeting, was late for a second and was a doula/dog walker who had never had a baby and had a horrible vibe. My BFF tells me I need a doula, but she is one so I think she's kind of biased. I've always had a woman labor support that's been very helpful...my first was my mom. My second was a nurse who never left ,y side. She was Bradley and hypnobirthing certified and literally worked through each contraction with me for hours. I love her! Haha but it wasn't some magic key to birth.

I don't feel guilty, never have. I know I've gotten an epi because it was a medical necessity....either get an epi or cut the baby out. But it doesn't erase the question of...what is wrong here? Why can so many other women do this and I can't?
The pain is bad, but I can soldier through it...but when nothing is happening except more pain, clearly something seems messed up (to me).
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  #6  
December 14th, 2012, 07:53 PM
therevslady's Avatar Built for Birth
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Atlanta, Ga
Posts: 6,194
Just wanted to respond to your comment about "staying ahead." A couple of the things that I do to help clients with this "need" is helping them to get focused. Sometimes that's through visualization, sometimes it's by getting them to find a visual focal point in the room. My favorite method is to help clients visualize floating on a wave deep in the ocean. When you float, you must relax your body. I use hynobabies techniques to help talk the mom through relaxation of every muscle from head to toe. I help her visualize the wave, with a beginning, middle, and end. I remind her that she is floating and the wave is working and she is not. This allows her to surrender, relax, and open up. Doing this in many places including the toilet, the shower, the tub, is a wonderful tool to help in situations like yours.

I'm so glad that you've come to talk this out with us. We're here for any questions, brainstorming, or if you just need to vent. BIG HUGS!
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Previously known as ~~Que~~

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  #7  
December 14th, 2012, 08:32 PM
snlemon's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 6,657
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~~Que~~ View Post
Just wanted to respond to your comment about "staying ahead." A couple of the things that I do to help clients with this "need" is helping them to get focused. Sometimes that's through visualization, sometimes it's by getting them to find a visual focal point in the room. My favorite method is to help clients visualize floating on a wave deep in the ocean. When you float, you must relax your body. I use hynobabies techniques to help talk the mom through relaxation of every muscle from head to toe. I help her visualize the wave, with a beginning, middle, and end. I remind her that she is floating and the wave is working and she is not. This allows her to surrender, relax, and open up. Doing this in many places including the toilet, the shower, the tub, is a wonderful tool to help in situations like yours.

I'm so glad that you've come to talk this out with us. We're here for any questions, brainstorming, or if you just need to vent. BIG HUGS!
I actually had a lot of success with something like this...it was a little thing about contractions as waves coming into a sea cave, filling and then going back out. The visualization was perfect for what a contraction is and in labor I felt so so good, despite the pain, when I was using this. I was focused and calm and in control. And then we had this crisis thing with tons of amniotic fluid and thinking his fist was a prolapsed cord and intense pain while the midwife and the nurse had me tilted back and manipulating me and the baby to get whatever it was out of the way. Thank goodness it was his hand. But after that moment I was completely wrecked. I was crying for a long time after even though I felt fine once the panic had passed. And the pain just got way ahead of me in that moment. That was the moment I stopped progressing.

I'd like to use that visualization again, but I'm afraid of coming up on another one of those moments in birth...where I can't recollect myself after an intense moment I wasn't expecting.

But maybe that moment had more significance in Laborite than I initially thought.

P.s I really REALLY appreciate being able just to hash is out a little. It's hard to talk about a lot of times because people hear it as a problem with the epidural itself, and that's just not it....lol. And to have the collective experience of other women is so helpful....

Last edited by snlemon; December 15th, 2012 at 07:24 AM.
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  #8  
December 14th, 2012, 10:24 PM
Kelllilee's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I know several women who have had similar experiences. Think about every other mammal on the planet. When a mama cat or deer, or whatever goes into labor and they feel even the slightest bit unsure of their surroundings, labor stops. It can't continue forward until the mother is absolutely sure she is safe.

I think some women experience birth the same way. I have known women for whom the fear, pain, anxiety, or even excitement surrounding birth has prevented them from progressing (and most of them did get an epidural and were then able to dilate). Perhaps doing some visualization (before birth) picturing what it is you fear or worry about with labor, and changing it into a safe, positive experience.

I also know women who labor for very long periods of time (up to 10+ hours) with little to no progression and then suddenly progress. It really sounds like you have tried a LOT of different things. I almost wonder if there's some underlying anxiety or belief that nothing is going to work and so it doesn't. The mind is a really powerful thing!
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  #9  
December 15th, 2012, 07:22 AM
snlemon's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelllilee View Post
I know several women who have had similar experiences. Think about every other mammal on the planet. When a mama cat or deer, or whatever goes into labor and they feel even the slightest bit unsure of their surroundings, labor stops. It can't continue forward until the mother is absolutely sure she is safe.

I think some women experience birth the same way. I have known women for whom the fear, pain, anxiety, or even excitement surrounding birth has prevented them from progressing (and most of them did get an epidural and were then able to dilate). Perhaps doing some visualization (before birth) picturing what it is you fear or worry about with labor, and changing it into a safe, positive experience.

I also know women who labor for very long periods of time (up to 10+ hours) with little to no progression and then suddenly progress. It really sounds like you have tried a LOT of different things. I almost wonder if there's some underlying anxiety or belief that nothing is going to work and so it doesn't. The mind is a really powerful thing!
While I definitely feel more like it won't work now, I didn't for the previous births. I was sure I'd be able to handle it and get through the pain. Again, kind of like long distance running. But now I do have more discouragement because even in the best of situations I wasn't able to do it.

I did have a lot of that start and stop early on...I'm sure some of it was part of early labor and totally normal, but I noticed that if I was left alone and calm, in a safe place and my kid was taken care of (away from me) I could get into a good, regular contraction pattern...the second that space was disrupted my contractions would stop and not come back. It kept frustrating me at the end because I felt I was so close to going into labor if only people would leave me alone! haha.
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