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Well, on June 25, my then boyfriend/room-mate (now husband) found out his father had just died, suddenly. It was a horrible day. His father lived nearby and they were very close. The death was unexpected and very tragic.
The days following were a blur, and on June 30 we had careless sex. Neither of us was thinking correctly at all!
I worried right away, as I knew I was ovulating soon, but I just hoped I'd get lucky and not get pregnant! Well, around July 15th, I knew I was due for my period, and I also just KNEW I was pregnant. I ignored this until the 18th. Then in a panic I went to Wal-mart and bought some pregnancy tests. Now, DH at that point was very clear, as was I, that he NEVER wanted kids, never wanted to get married, and as he was 34 years old and had never even had a relationship before me, I believed him! I was very scared. I called my best friend, who lives in Arizona, and I peed on that stick while on the phone with her. As predicted- BOOM, it came up right away.
I was surprisingly excited... after all the "Oh my god, oh no, I'll have to get shots and get touched on my privates" (I am a SEVERE phobic who has to this day never had a female exam or a pap in my life, and I'm 28 and have had a baby now).
Next problem after "Oh my god, I don't want anyone touching me" was "How do I tell him?" and I simply sat down beside him and started to sob. I didn't plan that. Then I blurted it out. He was freaked out, of course. But he was nice.
That changed a few days later. He flipped out on me and didn't speak to me (except some cold remarks) for several days. I couldn't take the anxiety of sitting in this man's house, pregnant and alone and without any insurance, no support, or anything. I refused to be pushed into an abortion. So I started packing to leave and go anywhere I could... dogs and all. He came home earlier than I thought that day and I calmly and politely said, "Hey, you seem to need some time, so I'm going to go stay with a friend. If you never want to see me again, that's okay... no guilt, no strings... call if you ever decide you want to"
Well he was practically shaking... hugging me, asked me to talk, and then asked me to stay. He even told me he loved me, he was just scared. He wanted to do the right thing and be a father.
Long story short, he stepped up big time. He lacked understanding at times during my phobic episodes and pregnancy in general, but we grew so very much! We got married in August of 2008. I was too sick to even stand, so it was a courthouse wedding!
Anyway, my pregnancy was uneventful, physically. But I'll back up. As you know, I'm terrified. I knew right away I would NOT do the hospital thing. I'd rather die than have an epidural or even an IV- and that's a fact. I'd never willingly submit to either, and a C-section would be my ideal of hell on earth. I doubt I'd recover from the trauma, with my fears as they are. So, combine that with my natural outlook on life and you won't be surprised to find that I wanted a home birth. The local homebirth midwife was nice, but I could tell she didn't really grasp the magnitude of my terror, and we didn't click. In desperation, as a last resort before contemplated an unassisted birth, I visited a local birth center's orientation. The minute I talked to the midwife there, I felt at ease. She got it. She didn't laugh or degrade me. She was funny, witty, smart, and caring. This was it- and this woman would the angel would get me through this nightmare.
By then I was 15 weeks and I had not had any prenatal care. I arrived for my first visit armed with info on why a Pap smear is not a good idea in pregnancy and fully prepared to walk out of there if she tried to make me consent to one. I need not have worried- she agreed with me. I declined an exam. I said I trust my body, and I need to trust her, too, but I just can't cope with that right now. I loved her! I loved the beautiful facility, and I loved that I'd birth in the same place I had my visits. Showing a lot of common sense my midwife did not have me go into the exam room with the examination table or anything like that for my first visits. We sat on a comfortable sofa in a living room type area- totally non medical.
The worst hurdle (turns out the worst part of my entire birth and pregnancy, period) was the blood draw. I HAD to have at least basic blood work or NO care provider would take me. I had never had blood drawn before and the mere mention of it sent me into a panic attack. I attempted to go to the lab where clients get blood drawn, but was so made fun of and humiliated by the staff of this lab (not associated with the birth center) due to my extreme fear that I left, sobbing. I had been white faced and SHAKING hard in the waiting room, and I had started to cry and hyperventilate when they took me back to the blood draw room. Clearly, this would not work.
So by now I was 20 weeks and we were desperate, and my midwife gave me Valium and had a special nurse come in to the birth center to draw my blood. I STILL could not handle it, even drugged up. I cried, fought, panicked, and was about to give up. I even thought I should just give up on life all together, I was so discouraged. Finally, as a last resort, I took matters into my own hands- literally. I poked myself with that needle, and I moaned and shouted through the whole thing, but I drew my own blood!
I was Rh negative, but not sensitized, and I had no STDs and everything was perfect (I could have told her all that before... LOL) and I still had not had an internal exam. Turns out, that never would happen. The only time she's ever touched me was when I was actually pushing him out, and that was just to catch the baby and help me not tear (it worked, I didn't tear).
So, for the rest of pregnancy, I peed on pee strips and weighed myself and all was fine. I never had one complication or issue, ever. I didn't show until six months (I'm 5' 9" and pretty slender- about 135 at that height, normally- so this surprised me). I had an ultrasound at 17 weeks (that doesn't scare me) and couldn't see the sex, so I had a 4D at 22 weeks and found out he was a boy!
Right away we decided- we were NOT cutting him. Luckily, DH agreed with my view. Whew!
So, at 40 weeks exactly by ultrasound dating I had my son. The night before, at 7 30 PM we were putting together the swing. I had steady contractions every 7 minutes, but they were such mild cramps that it was laughable. Could THOSE be contractions? Surely not, I thought. So I went to bed at around midnight. I found myself waking up moaning, though not really from outright pain. DH and I slept separately, and had for a month, due to my tossing and turning at night. Later, I realized I'd been in labor all night that night, alone, and didn't even know it!
The next morning I was crying a lot, much to my annoyance. DH decided not to go to work. I felt bad about that. When he told me he was going to lunch, and I burst into tears and said, "Don't leave me!" I knew something was up! I'd NEVER been a witch, NEVER been emotional, never been bossy or irritable, and never been snotty or even snapped at him EVER in pregnancy. Seriously. I was the nicest pregnant woman ever. So, something was up. He knew it, too. We decided to take a walk. We walked all around the neighborhood. I never felt a single pain, nor had I all day! I'd been restless, but no contractions I could feel. I found a Labrador on our walk, and we took her back to her house and chatted with the owner like normal. This was around noon!
I was getting annoyed. I mean come ON, get it over with, right? I asked DH to sit with me and chat and rub my back (first time I asked for that my whole pregnancy, too). So he did, and all the sudden I screamed! My water had just POPPED and broken all over me! HA! I was SHAKING from excitement and jumping up and down saying, "The baby is going to come today! Yay!" and "We should go!" and I was in NO pain! I was so happy, and on my phone I was txting and IMing everyone! This was around 1:00PM!
By 1:30 we'd thrown the rest of our junk in the bag we'd packed. I'd grabbed a towel, and we had called the midwife. I sat on a towel in case I leaked more, and we were headed for the center! I had three contractions on that 25 minute drive. This was the Real Deal for sure, but I could still laugh, joke, and talk through them. I even hide it completely when I called my mom to let her know I was in labor. During one, I joked and said, "OH baby, that's HOT, bring it on! MORE! I like it like that" and so forth. Being a goofball is my way of dealing with life! And to be honest it worked. It was so empowering and AWESOME! We arrived at 2 PM and by the time we greeted everyone and I walked back to the birth room, it was about 2:15 I think.
When we got there, I leaned on the dresser and did my labor dance, swaying around. Midwife said that was so perfect. I cried because I was scared of tearing and needing stitches. All through the rest of labor, I cried because of that. I screamed NO when I felt contractions because I was scared of birth- not because of the pain. The contractions really didn't hurt that badly- tooth aches hurt way more.
After about 20 minutes of my swaying dance, the tub was ready and DH and I jumped in that kick butt hot tub! We hung out there for 45 minutes or so... by now it was 3:30 or so and I said it was coming soon. I could just tell.
At around 3:45 if I had to guess, I said I wanted to get out and go get on the bed! I don't know why, except I wanted to be on all fours I think, and I couldn't do that in the tub. So we did! I told DH to hurry it up and change out of his bathing suit and join me. I grabbed his wrist and twisted it- oops! And PUSHED with all my might. It was not something I could control- it just happened. I remember lying there between contractions just thinking about Pogo games and Golden Retrievers (I'm a dog person, and the night before had stayed up late yacking about show vs field bred Goldens online) and wanting to get home and let my Whippet (dog) out! Then all the sudden I'd PUSH some more. I remember looking at DH and saying, "This hurts" when he crowned. I kept thinking it would get worse, though, and it didn't! I do remember feeling like my butt would fall out, seriously. I shouted that, and she pushed on my poor butt with a washcloth and it felt wonderful. I said so, too!
I was doing it! Suddenly she said just push hard, it's almost done! And so I did. I PUSHED and the head was out! One more push! She turned him/his shoulders, that did hurt worse than any other part but only for literally TWO seconds! And at 4:13 PM my son was BORN! She handed me this beautiful, crying, cone headed little boy! His APGAR was perfect and he did not get suctioned at ALL or anything. She did not take him away from me, and we did not cut the cord until it was ready. I had declined the RH shot since I am not having more babies, and I declined it this day, too.
He stopped crying quickly and cuddled and nursed. I was worried about the placenta, since I worry about everything medical, but it was fine. I proceeded to hand him to Dh, get up, shower, pee, and pig out on pasta, my favorite food! We weighed him and so forth. He was happy, beautiful, and never left that room until I walked out of it myself! We did not do the heel stick that day. We left at 9 PM, fumbled with the car seat for a while, and were home by 10 PM!
I took him to my bed and we co slept and breast fed all night.
I'll never forget my midwife, my husband's AMAZING support, my ability to conquer my biggest fear in life, and the day my world changed forever! I have not had one problem, pain, or depression or anything. I LOVE being a mom, and despite my lack of experience, it comes naturally. I love breast feeding, and I love watching him grow! Life is good. The first thing I said when I saw my baby was "I wish your dad could be here" to my DH, since his dad had died right before I got pregnant. So... I'll end this here, it was very long, but wow, that felt good to share!