Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Birth Processing, Part I: Review of Birth Hopes/Fears

I was looking for a completely different post, and I ran across this one that I wrote last August about my fears and hopes for my upcoming birth! Let's see how I did!

My Fears About Birth

- Pain

Yes, there was pain, but not nearly as much as the first time. Ladies - second births are SO much easier than first births!! All births should be second births!!

- Not being able to handle the pain

I was still a total, complete wimp. But all in all, not bad! I handled pain the exact same way I did last time - closing my eyes and making a lot of noise. On the video (review coming soon, I hope!) I actually looked pretty decent. Not birth-goddess quality, but decent.

- Doing something that disgusts people (I won't give details... there are a lot of possibilities)

Oh, well.

- Something happening to the baby (not that this would be minor, but I have complete trust in the competence of our midwives)

Baby did have a slow start into the extra-uterine world, but (as I said!) my midwives were totally competent and took care of it beautifully with a minimum of fuss.

My Hopes For This Birth

- Having an easier time, pain-wise


- Being able to handle the pain better than I did last time


- Experiencing birth ecstasy/high - last time I totally missed out on this, bummer!!!

No! Bummer! I guess I am just not a "birth high" kind of mother! Bummer! But I was at least happier this time. Last time was "I just want to go to sleep" and this time was "okay, we're done with that, let's move on and see what baby looks like!"

- Better bonding with baby - last time I was just in too much pain from afterpains

Unfortunately the afterpain issue still prevented bonding - my body just does not know how to shut up with the afterpains! But there was a bit better of bonding with baby.

- Easier start to breastfeeding

Gosh, no - much worse. Oh, so much worse. If there ever is a next time, I am getting baby checked for tongue-tie about 30 seconds post-birth - NOT 6 weeks post-birth.

- Better connection to DH during the birth

I still prefer being surrounded primarily by women during birth, but this was better. At the beginning, DH started doing the one thing that made me want to clobber him last time - that is, sympathizing ("I'm so sorry you're going through this") - but I asked him to avoid that, and all was well from there.

- Better connection to doulas

Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!!!!!!!! Oh my goodness, I love my doulas!! (Not that my doula wasn't great with birth #1 - I just didn't have much of a chance to bond with her.)

- Easier postpartum period - I think that this will definitely happen, barring complications - last time I was so exhausted from the hyperemesis that I started out utterly exhausted pre-birth, and it just got worse from there

Postpartum - not so great. Nursing issues and various other stresses made postpartum a rather awful time, though the physical recovery was much faster. Maybe next time - that is, if there was going to be a next time! Which there will not be, LOL!


Did anyone else out there have birth hopes/fears that were resolved or fulfilled? I'd love to hear them!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

"On Call" for the First Time

This past week was the first time in my life that I have ever been "on call" for a birth. That is, "sort-of" on call! Actually, though I was on call for a birth, it had nothing to do with a birth. I am doing substitute accompanist work at a church while their full-time accompanist is on her maternity leave, and as she wanted to work up until the very last second, I was on call!

I did get "the call" on Saturday afternoon that she thought she might be in early labor, so I did end up playing on Sunday morning. Thankfully I was prepared even though I didn't think I'd be called! (And baby was born shortly after midnight on Sunday morning - which is one oh-so-very short labor for a first time mama!)

So, what did I think of being on call (as it's basically the same thing I'd be doing in any doula or midwifery work)? Interesting! Very interesting. Kind of a low-level nervousness, a "high-alert" method of walking around my normal day, a heightened awareness of listening for the phone, making plans, wondering. I don't know if I'd be good at it or not! I know it wouldn't be easy, as I'm a list-making, control-freak, planning type - it would definitely take some adjustment. The future may or may not tell for sure (based on whether or not I ever dive into that work), but it was an interesting first experience.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers

Cross-posted from my birth blog:

I've had this post ready for some time, but as the time neared I found I was having difficulty actually posting it. I had nerves, jitters, second guesses, the whole shot.

Why? Well, for several reasons, all of which revealed some fairly revolting character defects. Let's look at it....

Firstly... I like to be liked! I just do! I admit it. I can obsess morbidly over criticism for days, if not weeks. Posting about a controversial topic is a great way to get criticism and/or personal attacks... and I found myself shrinking away from it.

Secondly... I have more to lose than I did last year when I posted on this subject! I love blogging, and I now have (*gasp*) a few blog followers! How many are going to click "unsubscribe me now!" after reading a pro-life entry? (The fact that I would even consider that factor disgusts me even as I write!)

What can I say? Apparently my character needs some work. A friend of mine this past week told me how much courage it took for her to post something controversial on Facebook, knowing how it might be received. I need the same kind of courage to post about things I believe in. And, after all, as one author wrote (I don't remember who, and this is a paraphrase) - "If nobody hates you, maybe you aren't speaking enough truth." I should probably take that to heart.

And so, without further ado, here is my contribution for National Abortion Provider's Day.

As always, civil, thoughtful and kind comments/questions are always welcome. Comments that are rude, spiteful or hateful will be deleted immediately without response.


Abortion is…

A young life

Ending in violence

A baby dying horribly

For our convenience

Abortion is…

An infant

Whose life is unwanted – and thus disposable –

Because her conception

Was not perfectly planned

Abortion is…

A baby with birth defects

“Sorry, baby – We only wanted you

If you were healthy and normal.

We’ll try again for a better baby later.”

Abortion is…

A baby with fatal anomalies

Dying - not at peace in its mother’s arms

Hearing a whispered “We love you, sweetie; go with God.” -

But an end of coldness, fear, and pain

And a careless disposal of its precious tiny body

In a hospital’s biowaste trashcan

Abortion is….

The biggest abuse

Ever perpetrated

Against the world’s women

And their little ones

Abortion is…

The greatest tragedy mankind has ever wrought

Upon itself.