AUTHOR: Marty, a.k.a. canape TITLE: I eat my granola with a silver spoon DATE: 9/13/2007 01:18:00 PM ----- BODY:
The book that I read that has made me so excited about natural childbirth is Ina May's Guide to Childbirth. Her positive outlook and success stories have me bubbling with anticipation for labor and delivery. I want to know what it's like. Feel it all, the good and the not so comfy. I am looking forward to giving birth instead of fearing it.

That is a powerful feeling.

The birth center idea went hand in hand with Ina May's ideas and methods I thought. So I was just about ready to leave my current doctor and hospital to go with a midwife at the birth center. Until the tour today.

People don't realize how much of a difference putting a positive spin on things can make. The woman leading the talk and tour must have used the word "don't" 127 times. She told us everything they don't do and very little of what they actually do. A large portion of the talk covered what happened if you ended up having to go to the hospital and the different scenarios therein. Most of which included you and your partner getting into your car and driving to the hospital, followed by your midwife in her car. Guy was not at all thrilled about that plan.

I was a little discouraged at the break. I also needed to pee of course. So I went into the restroom. That is where it hit me.

I'm standing in a tiny dimly lit restroom. The toilet is way low to the ground. After I'm done, I have to flush it twice because the first time it didn't work, but simply ran awhile. There is a can of Lysol on the back of the toilet (Satan's spit in an aerosol can).

It hit me that I wasn't comfortable there. It didn't seem as clean as it needed to be. It seemed a little run down. And the director had "don't" syndrome that was suffocating the rest of the room when she spoke.

I wanted to hear what they did do. Why they did it that way. I wanted to hear their successes and not how unfortunately their c-section rate rose to 10% in 2006 because there were 5 breech babies that year. It was almost as if she resented those babies for making their numbers look bad.

The waiting area for family didn't look very comfortable. That was one of my considerations. Daddy might be here for the birth, and he doesn't do well in hospitals any more. They make him nervous. He gets lost. It's just not a great place for him to have to be. This atmosphere though, I don't think would be any better for him.

I feel like I'm the one being negative now, and I don't mean to do that. I'm sure it is a great place to give birth, and I still love the idea of having a midwife and the theories behind natural childbirth. This location though, is not for us. And to be honest, I'm terribly disappointed that it isn't. Because in theory, it is so what I wanted.

I have to admit though, I like my clean bright and slightly posh doctor's office. I didn't know I did until today, but I do. I like being walked back and weighed in. I like the idea of someone taking care of me. I didn't feel like that was going to be the case at this birth center.

So onto plan B. As we were leaving, Guy says to me,

"You know that I'm on your team, right? That whatever kind of birth you want to have, I'll make sure that it happens."

He took my hand and squeezed it.

So you'll sneak in some food when I get hungry, fight off unnecessary IV's, and tell them to stick their hospital gowns where the sun doesn't shine, because these girls need support, and I plan to be in a sports bra or a cami and not much else?

"You got it. It doesn't matter where we end up. It's going to be you and me, and I'm going to take care of you."

That's it then. We'll stay with my current doctor and just cross my fingers that after all she has been through with me, she gets to be the baby catcher that day. We have our personal childbirth instructor meeting with us in November. We will write a birth plan together. He's promised to read the Ina May book so that he can see what I'm so giddy about.

And together, we'll make sure Bird hatches in the best way we possibly can.

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----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous ImpostorMom DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 3:08:00 PM EDT I think you have to be comfortable in whatever setting you choose. But, also be prepared that there will probably be a point during labor that you change your mind, not really but you will think you've changed your mind.

I have a friend that did a home birth and during the middle she up and decided she wanted to go to the hospital. As her doula, midwife and husband were trying to figure out what to say when they got there (homebirths are illegal in GA if you can believe that) she snapped out if it. This story was told to me while I was still pregnant.

Now I am somewhat crunchy granola girl but I'm not a homebirthing kinda girl, I needed the security that having medical attention close by can bring, which turns out was good since I ended up needing a C-section. However, during labor there was a point where I thought "I am just gonna get up and go home, that's it I've changed my mind."

Just like my friend who wanted to go to the hospital thought that a change of scenery might make things better so did I. A birth plan is a great idea and I had one too but just know you should be flexible as well, because you just never know how these things are going to go until you are smack dab in the middle of them. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Katrina DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 4:57:00 PM EDT i, too, wanted a natural birth...the birthing center we went to was fantastic...but after much thought, i realized i wanted a hospital setting.
i had planned exactly what you did...i wanted my own clothes, food, no ivs....and none of that happened.
not because they forced anything on me, but i had changed my mind. and i'm glad i did because i enjoyed my birth experience...
you will too, no matter how it turns out because you'll have bird.

i will say, they did tell me not to drink anything and i kept drinking anyways...i felt like such a rebel. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous FENICLE DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 5:37:00 PM EDT I think it sounds like you're making a good plan...what works best for the 3 of you!

I love how you phrased the "don't syndrome" - classic! I'll have to remember that. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous dawn224 DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 6:33:00 PM EDT I went to the crunchiest hospital in town and had a had a midwife team, all because I didn't trust OBs (for several reasons). In the end, the crunch hospital and the midwives were just as medical and disappointing as what I'd expected from an OB.

That said, the positive part was that when we admitted, one of the nurses (who was v. v. sweet and level headed) asked if we wanted them to call in a volunteer doula, we were ambivalent, she said she loved them, we said sure, what the heck.

I'm so so glad we did. In the midst of the labor fun, she was someone who was looking out for ME, not what insurance would cover, not what malpractice would cover, she was on my side. She gave great coaching which gave something for my husband to follow so he didn't feel like he was standing silently by and helpless.

The doula made it possible for us to have a positive birth experience - and I think with her, the experience would have been positive WHEREVER we were. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Ally DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 7:03:00 PM EDT I think it's great that you are checking out all of your options. Have you considered hiring a doula to support your hospital birth? It might be a good compromise between the granola birthing center and the sparkling clean hospital. Anyway, Guy's comments made me smile. You are lucky to have such a supportive partner. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Stimey DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 8:01:00 PM EDT The place you feel comfortable is the place you need to be. Have you considered a doula? I had one for each of my first two births. They helped me labor at home for as long as possible so I could eat, drink, and be comfortable. And so my husband could take a little nap and I wasn't alone. And then at the hospital, she was able to help act as my advocate so I didn't have to. I highly recommend one. That's about the only childbirth advice I have because everyone has their own way, but it's nice to have someone there who is calm, doesn't leave, is on YOUR side, and has done this dozens of times before. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Bananas DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 9:19:00 PM EDT Wow. Such a big decision, but I absolutely think you're right to stick with your gut. Have you considered a doula? I have several friends who used one with GREAT success... it's an excellent way to enure that you have an advocate... who has done the whole birth thing many many times. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Arkie Mama DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 10:21:00 PM EDT With my first, I had several last-minute complications (including pre-eclampsia) and ended having an emergency C-section.

So with the second, I wanted not only a vaginal birth, but also one with as little medical intervention as possible.

I used a hospital, but we also found a doula. She's the reason my second birth experience turned out so well. Yes, I was in a hospital setting, but she made it feel so much less clinical. That was important to me after my first birth experience.

I can't begin to describe what a wonderful walking support system she was. (And she kept the Hubs busy. He wants to help, but needs instruction!) ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Schiller Clan DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 11:02:00 PM EDT It's great that you went with your gut on this decision. And good luck with your birth, wherever you have it. It's possible to have a fantastic and intervention free birth, even in a hospital.
We had the bean in a hospital, with the head of obstetrics as our Dr. He was an exceptional Dr. and read our 4 page birth plan, including our use of hypnotherapy, without cracking a smile or rolling his eyes. And he helped us when the time came without offering narcotics or an epidural, and let me see my long (21 hour) labor through to the end without mentioning c-section or doing invasive baby-monitoring. I wore my own clothes, and had a hep-lock instead of an IV. I wouldn't have done a thing differently. I knew that if anything went wrong, the NICU and an operating suite were readily available. That was worth putting up with the grumbling of some skeptical nurses.
Anyhow, good luck! It's a powerful, wonderful experience: all of it. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Liz DATE:Thursday, September 13, 2007 at 11:49:00 PM EDT well, first, i'm very sorry that the birthing center didn't match or even meet your expectations. there's nothing like being let down in that kind of way.
but, does your ob work with midwives? does the hospital your ob is associated with work with midwives? have you considered hiring a doula to ensure that you have someone really working on your behalf during the delivery?
doulas are wonderful, and really a great thing to have around, especially when you feel very strongly about the kind of birth you'd like to have. maybe this is a nice alternative, a half-way between OB and granola birthing center? ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous gail DATE:Friday, September 14, 2007 at 7:07:00 AM EDT You know, I had my Doogal in a hospital, in a tub, without an IV, in a sports bra. I hate hospitals but will always have very, very fond memories of this one. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Becki DATE:Friday, September 14, 2007 at 10:48:00 AM EDT Good for you for realizing all this now! And how awesome for your hubby to want to be so involved :) Mind didn't leave my side through 33 hours of labor, and the midwives said that's the exception, not the rule. I couldn't imagine doing it without him! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Kate Winslow and Guy Ambrosino DATE:Friday, September 14, 2007 at 11:52:00 AM EDT I, too, was very set on an Ina May birth (though in the hospital) and was really hoping that a particular doctor would be the one on call for the birth. I ended up having to be induced and the doctor on call was the only one in my practice that I had seen only once. Happily, she was amazing, the birth was amazing, I quickly got over my disappointment of needing to be induced (and opting for an epidural) -- the sight of our slimy, messy, gorgeous baby boy made everything perfectly fine. With your strength and Guy's support, you'll be just fine, too. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Whymommy DATE:Friday, September 14, 2007 at 12:21:00 PM EDT I appreciate your wishes ... but I like the idea of you being in a hospital after all. We wanted a pretty natural birth with Widget ... but he had other ideas. After 24 hours of medication-free labor, we ended up having interventions. Several interventions. But it got him out safely, and, in the end, that's all we really wanted.

OTH, my NYfriend has had two natural births and is a total advocate of Ina May. Awesomeness, if you can do it.

Can't wait to hear how it goes for you! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Heather, Queen of Shake Shake DATE:Sunday, September 16, 2007 at 11:20:00 AM EDT Sounds like you are making a very informed decision! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Jennifer, Playgroups Are No Place For Children DATE:Monday, September 17, 2007 at 3:02:00 PM EDT It's this attitude that will help you have the birth that you want! Can't wait to hear your birth story and how wonderful your evperience was!!! ----- --------