Unassisted Pregnancy Journal- 12 Weeks “Why an Unassisted Pregnancy?”

How did I come to the seemingly radical decision to avoid all medical assistance during pregnancy? It started 8 years ago.

I am currently 12 weeks pregnant with my 6th pregnancy. I have 4 children, from 7 years old to 20 months. I had a miscarriage two months before my 2nd baby was conceived.

I was 22 years old with my first pregnancy and followed things by the book, more or less. I wanted a natural, vaginal birth but I never considered seeing anyone besides the OB/Gyn I was already seeing before pregnancy for well women care. I never considered a homebirth. I did watch The Business of Being Born and my eyes were opened to the cascade of interventions. I sought to avoid that by talking to my OB, despite his terrible attitude towards me, and writing my birth plan.

Oh, the birth plan! That two page list of wants and do not wants. It was taken from me with a roll of the nurses eyes, and they said “well, we will see how it goes”. I wont get into my whole birth story here, but suffice to say it was traumatic emotionally. I did end up with a vaginal birth, but I didn’t avoid many other interventions.

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My firstborn! Miss Noemi

For my second baby. I decided that I would see midwives. I was taking suboxone (as I had been for years) so they would not do a homebirth for me, not due to any actual increased risks but because of the burdensome laws midwives work under. Many things make a woman “high risk” under the current system, even when it makes little sense and lacks credible evidence. So, a hospital birth it was. I had a bigger room in a different hospital, and I was able to labor in a tub but I found that I preferred land.

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Labor of Love

My midwife made me feel like I was inconveniencing her by coming to the hospital in early active labor, and she didn’t treat me with the warmth I expected. It was far better than my first birth, and I was focused on going through my first all natural labor. Towards the end of my labor, after about 12 hours, I was starting to say “I can’t do this!” (always happens before baby comes!). The midwife suggested she push aside the last bit of my cervix so I could push. I agreed, but once it started and I realized the tremendous pain it was causing me I cried out for her to stop. To my astonishment and hurt, she did not stop. I told her about my history as sexual abuse victim. I told her how my OB forcibly broke my water with my oldest child. Yet, she kept her hand inside of me as I screamed “AMY *(not her real name) STOP!”.

After that I had to get ready to have my baby, because she was coming down the birth canal quickly. I breathed and breathed, and she was born without too much pain although I was stunned by the sheer power of it all. She was my tiny baby, 6lb6oz.

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I tried to minimize and excuse that violation and how I was made to feel like an annoyance. When I realized I was pregnant again, I knew that things had to change. I wasn’t sure who to see, so I went to a new OB practice as I gave myself time to consider my options. I was still talking suboxone, so no midwives would see me at home. And to be honest, I was less than thrilled by my experience anyway.

I had regular prenatal care with a team of OB/Gyns until I was 20 weeks. They started to pressure me about doing the Gestational Diabetes test, that disgusting glucose drink that is worse than soda. I knew I did not have GD, and I knew I was not willing to drink that garbage. I started to think about WHY am I seeing these doctors?

I realized I had NEVER been helped by a doctor during pregnancy. No doctor or midwife did anything to improve my health or my baby’s health. In fact, I had been physically and emotionally injured. It dawned on me all at once that I was doing this solely because society says pregnancy is dangerous and needs to be monitored and overseen by professionals. I realized that it was indoctrinated fear.

My experiences all contradicted this fear, and this belief that pregnancy is a medical condition to be closely monitored. I saw clearly that I was simply a woman who was pregnant, and this was a completely normal and nature state of being. I was not sick, or diseased, or in danger. I did not need help, testing, or assistance. All I received from prenatal visits was stress, which was hardly good for me or the baby.

I left that appointment and told my husband my plan to go unassisted, and have the baby at home unassisted too. He was very supportive. I felt free!

Unfortunately, my little one was facing OP (her face to my front instead of my back). This caused a very long and very painful labor. I had never experienced back labor before, and I had no relief from the severe pain. I managed to endure it for 23 hours, but my mother was very fearful. I cannot blame her for my choice, by any means, but her fear kept rubbing off on me. Finally I checked myself and I was more than 9cm dilated. I knew  my baby was almost here. I could see the worry and concern on my moms face, and she suggested we go to the hospital. I knew that it was either right then, or never, because birth was imminent.

Out of fear, I choose the hospital.

I arrived there with my mom and my husband. I refused their IV and other interventions. The OB was condescending but didn’t fight me. I allowed him to break my water, and immediately my baby was coming down. I was on my back, legs in the air (the typical hospital birth position). I started screaming, really SCREAMING. It was difficult, and everyone was yelling PUSH at me. I pushed as hard as I could, knowing that I was damaging myself in the process. The pain was too severe to insist on changing my position.

The OB yelled at me once again to push, and he pulled on her, and out she came. She was 8lb12oz, my biggest baby by far. She was perfect. Although I had only superficial tearing, not requiring any stitches, my insides hurt badly. I was in a lot of pain, and unable to resume normal sexual activities for 6 months. I knew that being on my back, and forced to push so hard was the cause of my suffering. I resented that, and I was angry with myself for allowing it to happen.

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My Big Beautiful baby girl

My next pregnancy came when my 3rd daughter was two years old. I felt elated to be having another baby. I saw the same OB practice just long enough to get confirmation of pregnancy for his birth certificate, and to get an ultrasound. I found out that we were having our first boy!

I chose to have an ultrasound/anatomy scan, because I wanted to make sure that my baby had no serious health issues before having an unassisted birth. If my baby had a heart defect that needs immediate attention, or some other condition that required medical help, I wanted to know that. Many women having a UP/UC forgo ultrasounds, and that is a perfectly valid choice as well.

My birth with our son was finally, finally, my freebirth! It was everything I knew birth could be. It was a dream come true. I was so excited about it that I told everyone who would listen. You can read about my freebirth story here

After that incredible experience, AND a peaceful pregnancy where I did not have to constantly defend my right to choose my own medical care/refuse testing and interventions; I could not imagine NOT having another UP/UC!

So, really the question is, why NOT have an unassisted pregnancy and birth?

Shalom!

 

 

 

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Thoughts on Turning 30

Psalm 16:11 
You make the path of life known to me.
Complete joy is in your presence.
Pleasures are by your side forever.

There is a path of life and a path of destruction. Ten years ago, I was on the wrong path and quickly heading towards the grave. In the blindness of addiction and mental pain, I never imagined another way was possible. I have not always followed the path of life smoothly. There have been stumbles, doubts, and falls. The important thing is to never give up hope, and hold onto the truth because the truth truly sets you free. I am beyond grateful for this life I have, and I want to keep growing and learning and loving in each year I am given.

Jeremiah 29:11
I know the plans that I have for you, declares Yahweh.They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope.

What a powerful thought it is, to realize that there is a plan for our lives. Sometimes, it sounds corny when people say “God has a plan for your life”. Often times its said during a time of loss or difficulty, as a way to diminish someones pain. But, if we truly consider the implications of our creator having a plan for us, it can help to rid of us the anxiety of modern living. Will we get that job? Will those bills be paid? Maybe, and maybe not. Regardless, he has a plan! It is a good plan, a hopeful plan. I am seeking to let go of my feeble attempts at controlling things that are beyond me, as I enter into this new decade of my life.

John 16:21

A woman has pain when her time to give birth comes. But after the child is born, she doesn’t remember the pain anymore because she’s happy that a child has been brought into the world.

I met my husband when I was 20, and we welcomed our first child together when I was 22. I have had three daughters and one son in my 20s, and I’m expecting my 5th baby this coming year; my first baby in my 30s. Becoming a mother has changed me profoundly, not a single cell in my body or aspect of myself has been untouched by their amazing presence. They are the greatest blessings in my life, along with my husband who helped give them to me. I look forward to watching them grow in my 30s. When I turn 30 tomorrow, I will have a 7, 5, 3, and 1 year old. Ten years from now when I turn 40, I will have a 17, 15, 13, 11, and 9 year old. What a difference this next decade will be!

Psalm 27:4

I have asked one thing from Yahweh.
    This I will seek:
    to remain in Yahweh’s house all the days of my life
        in order to gaze at Yahweh’s beauty
            and to search for an answer in his temple.

I want to set aside what snared me in my youth, and let go of the guilt and shame. I will choose to gaze on His beauty instead, all the days of my life.

Shalom! I’m 30!!! (Its midnight)

Why I Had to End My Suboxone Detox; And The Physical Effects of Being so Sick

Hey everyone. I spent a week in bed, unable to move without help a few feet to the bathroom. At times I laid in bed so thirsty, but I couldn’t move my arm to grab the water next to me in bed. I wanted so badly to continue, but my body couldn’t do it. The first time I attempted to get off suboxone, it was my mind that was the issue. I had cravings, depression, mood swings. I went back on it to avoid relapse. This time, I am happy to report, I experienced no cravings whatsoever and I was in generally good spirits (despite being so sick).

The major complicating factor; I am pregnant. It was very early, and I had hoped to have a pregnancy off suboxone. In the end, it felt dangerous to continue. I said from the start, “I will not risk the baby’s life”. My husband was so busy with the children, he simply could not help me to the degree that I needed help. I need someone to essentially be my nurse for weeks if I do this again.

Now, I am still feeling very weak. My muscles have not recovered, and my dose is whacky. My body was shocked by having this drug withdrawn and now it has it back, but I have not found an equilibrium again. I was also hit with morning sickness (all day, and at night) which made my dehydration and inability to eat even worse. Thankfully, the nausea has  mostly gone and I am eating very healthy whole foods again.

I am very disappointed to still be on suboxone. I am dreading the cycle of doctor visits, scripts, etc. That said, what can I do? I gave it my very best, but my body being pregnant could not do it.

So, will I try again? Absolutely. Especially now that I know I can do it without cravings or mental health issues resulting. I just need more help. My body has been reliant on this drug for nearly a decade now, that is a long time. I am on lower dose that usual which is nice, but detox is no joke after being on it this long. Obviously, next time I will do it when I am not pregnant. But, I have to honest that I do not know HOW this will work out. Not only is it weeks of sickness, but then perhaps months of recovery. I will have five children, who I homeschool, needing me.

My thoughts at this point are focused on the following; get healthy and strong again during this pregnancy, find a good addiction specialist, and try a very slow detox process instead.

I would love to hear from anyone who has been able to successfully detox from long-term opiate dependence.

With just me, it may be impossible. With Yahweh, all things are possible.

Shalom.

P.s I plan on writing about pregnancy, and breastfeeding on suboxone/subutex. It is happening much more often now, yet many moms do not have much information. I have a lot of experience, and thankfully all of my babies were very healthy and needed no treatment. Many doctors still recommend methadone to moms, whereas suboxone has a much better track record with neonatal withdrawal.