Birth Stories

Prenatal Yoga Helped Sarah During Her Birth Center Birth

  • When did you realize you were really in labor?

    I felt like this part was the longest wait of all. I was anxious about going into labor to begin with because it was a 2-hour drive to the birthing center. I didn’t want to end up having to be in the car that long with really intense contractions or have to be concerned about not making it there in time to give birth. It turned out that the timing was perfect. A few days after an appointment with my midwife when I was 37 weeks, I lost my mucus plug. I then started to feel cramps, not intense enough to be real contractions though. This continued for a couple of days and I remained in close contact with my midwife. After trying to get things to go ahead and move along with going for a walk ( they didn’t) I felt discouraged. My midwife told me to go ahead and come in the next morning for a checkup and to get some rest that night. During the early hours of the morning, I started to feel more uncomfortable and when I got up that morning I couldn’t really eat anything. On the drive there I started having contractions, but I wasn’t really sure it was the real thing until we got there and the midwife told me my water was bulging and about to break. I went for another walk and then did a squat and it broke, I knew it was for real after that!

  • What was the most challenging thing about going natural?

    How intense it all was! I have been in a lot of pain before and I was prepared to feel pain going natural but I wasn’t prepared for how intense it would be. Every other time I had been in pain, the goal was to get the pain to stop. Labor was so different because, in order to have my baby, I had to work with the pain and even embrace it and allow my body to do the painful work of moving my baby down to where he could be born.

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  • What was the most helpful thing you did to prepare for childbirth?

    Prenatal yoga. My baby dropped early and was in the ideal position and ready to go.

  • What surprised you about your birth?

    How fast it was! I had heard that labor is the longest the first time and even expected that my baby might not be born on the same day that I went into labor. I was surprised when my midwife told me I could start pushing, I didn’t think I was that close. I also did not expect to have complications after how well my labor went.

  • Go with a midwife! I completely trusted my midwife which was crucial as my life was in her hands as she made decisions quickly when I had complications. She knew what I wanted for my labor because she knew me.
  • What pain relief strategies worked best?

    Hands down, the tub! I was pretty miserable on the bed. Once I had dilated far enough I was able to spend the rest of labor in the water until I started pushing. I don’t know how I would have gotten through those intense contractions without it.

  • How did it feel to hold your baby for the first time?

    Amazing! I was so relieved when I heard him cry and they placed him on my chest. I knew that he was healthy and that the worst was over. He was so small and absolutely precious!

  • What did you name your baby, and why?

    Seth Michael my husband and I both liked the name Seth which means appointed and Michael is my husbands’ middle name as well as his fathers’ first name.

  • What advice can you give to other mamas who want to go natural?

    Go with a midwife! I completely trusted my midwife which was crucial as my life was in her hands as she made decisions quickly when I had complications. She knew what I wanted for my labor because she knew me. My checkups weren’t just about getting medical information, she got to know me and what I wanted. I also loved that it was her goal as well for my birth to be natural. When I was in the most intense moment it didn’t even cross my mind to ask for an epidural because I knew it wasn’t an option. I think my labor would have been completely different and lasted much longer if it hadn’t been for the advice and methods my midwife used and taught me. I also really liked the aspect of the birthing center. By the time I went there for the birth, I was very comfortable there because I had gone there for all my prenatal checkups.

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