Saturday, April 16, 2011

Stella's Birth Story

Let me start by giving some background information. I had been going to a GYN since I was 17 but she was only a GYN. When I got married I started researching OB practices and switched in the beginning of 2010. Up until 34-35 weeks I was going to have a hospital birth at Winnie Palmer with my new OB practice. I had decided early on I wanted a natural birth. I did a lot of research about childbirth and was shocked! When I first found out I was pregnant three different doctors in my OB practice told me I needed a C-section due to a previous surgery. I then went to the doctor who preformed my previous surgery and asked him if I needed to have a C-section. He thought that was ridiculous and told me he would even attend my birth if needed. My OBs told me I needed a script from the doctor who performed my previous surgery saying a vaginal birth was ok. I then started researching other options because I found that to be stupid. I then spoke to the midwife at my OB practice and she suggested a birth center because I wouldn't get the experience I wanted at the hospital and there was a chance that if anything looked off the OBs would do a C-section anyway.

On the morning of the birth I woke up around 4:30am feeling off and like I needed to use the restroom. I tired to go back to bed but I knew this was it and I was really anxious and I kept having to go to the bathroom! My contractions started off really light and I wasn't really sure if thats what they were. I called my mom at 6:30am and she said it could be labor. I then called my sister because she was my doula (birthing assistant), she told me to try and go back to bed. I tried again but I couldn't sleep. Around 7:10am Steven's alarm went off (it was a Monday morning), I told him I thought I was in labor and he should come to my 10am appointment. This was already scheduled for a non stress test because I was overdue. I called ahead and told the birth center I thought I was in labor. We (Steven, Kim, and I) arrived at the birth center at 10 am and were taken into a birthing room. I was 3-4cm and she was postioned wrong so they gave me some exercises to try and move her. We walked around, I did some exercises for about 40 minutes and the midwife told me to go home and continue to do the exercises and call when my labor progressed. When I got home active labor started (between 11:30-12:00). My contractions were 3 minutes apart and 45 seconds to a minute long (they were this way almost the entire labor). This is when things picked up... I had really bad back labor!! I tried one of the positions to move her (lying on my side with my leg up) and my contractions were just too strong. I had a heating pad my mom had given me for cramps that became my best friend. It is the kind you need to heat up in the microwave- Kim's main job during my labor. My sister tried to get me to eat; I had half a banana and gatorade. Kim then suggested the tub. I sat on the toilet awhile before I got in the tub. I got in the tub for about 35 minutes. I labored on the floor of my room for a few minutes and then I got in the shower for over a half hour at which point I tried to talk Steven into taking me to the hospital for drugs and I told my sister I hated her.

At around 2:30pm I called the birth center and told them if they didn't take me I was going to the hospital. They told me to come in. The car ride was not fun but I survived! I was 6cm when we got there at 4pm and I immediately got in the tub. I then threw up and the midwife told me I was in transition. My contractions were between 3 minutes and a minute and a half apart and 45 seconds to a minute and a half long. I was checked again around 5:30pm and was 7-8cm. I asked the midwife how long she thought it was going to be and she told me if it was my 3rd kid it would be about 15 minutes but since it was my first I had a few more hours. They had me get into a position to try and move her, I had three contractions and my water broke, my sister ran out to get the midwife... I was ready to push! The midwife said I defied the odds. I pushed on the bed and on the toilet. They put the oxygen mask on me because she wasn't getting enough oxygen. I pushed for an hour, Kim holding one leg and Steven holding the other, 

Stella Grace Capers was born at 7:10pm 
7lbs 10oz and 20in long

Steven pulled Stella out after her head and shoulders were out and put her on my stomach. Her umbilical cord was really short so she hung out on my stomach until the placenta stopped pulsing. I delivered the placenta about 20 minutes later and Steven cut Stella's cord. 
I tried to nurse right away but she wasn't having it. I nursed about an hour later. After she nursed they came in to check me. I had a first degree tear that required 4 stitches and a labia tear (which sucks!!). Both sets of grandparents and both aunts got to come see Stella. We left the birth center at 12:30am after they made me pee twice.

I will say that after she came out the pain just stopped. I am not sure if it is because all I could think about was her or if the labor is over so the pain is over. I am so glad I chose to do the birth center. Steven got to be extremely involved and I felt at home. I got to hold her and nurse her right away. The midwives were awesome and although it was definitely painful the bonding was amazing! My body learned to cope with the pain and work through it. I didn't know I had that much strength.


  1. So excited you got the birth YOU wanted! And it was so great you had so much support not only from Steven but your sister too. I can't even imagine a labia tear! OUCH! I'm happy you and Stella had a happy drama free birth.

  2. You are amazing! Super strong! Doesn't it make you proud? Don't you think to yourself, "dang, I'm freakin' super woman!" LOL. Enjoy that little darling girl... and try to sleep!
    Prayers for you always.