The Birth Interview Project consists of 17 simple questions designed to help mothers process their birth story & share it with others. All mothers are invited to take part in this project. Born out of Joy’s desire to help women discover, process and express the feelings surrounding their birth experiences, The Birth Interview Project strives to offer a platform for mothers and readers alike to share and be heard, to search and to discover, to identify and to heal, and to exhort and remember. The views and opinions expressed here are unique to each woman who takes part in the Birth Interview Project and may not always reflect the values of the blog author.
Hi readers! Here is Beth’s fourth interview! If you want to catch up and get a little more familiar with Beth, go read her first interview by clicking here, read her second interview by clicking here and read her third interview by clicking here. Enjoy!
Please give a brief description of yourself, and what number baby/birth you’re sharing with us.
I am a mother of five describing the birth of my fourth child.
What was your due date, and what was your baby’s birth date?
What was your baby’s weight and length?
Elisha Andrew, 8 pounds 5 ounces, and 21 inches long.
Please give a brief, one paragraph synopsis of your birth.
I tested positive for Group B Strep and lived 50 minutes from the birth center with a history of precipitous labors. With this in mind my midwife and I scheduled a non-medical induction. We arrived in the morning for membrane stripping, pumping and walking. My husband was tired of this routine because he hates walking.
Contractions progressed and we had one more dose of antibiotics before we’d have to send for some at a special pharmacy. So we decided to break my water. They could not get the tub filled fast enough for me. Love it! I just hungered to be in the tub. I was practically begging asking what I could do to get in the tub. Not because I was in terrible pain but because I seriously love laboring in the water. Finally it was full and I was allowed to slip into its wonderful depths.
But the water did not make me as comfortable as it had my first water birth so I was disappointed. I was irritated by the contractions until Jeanne told me that it might help if I bear down a little. I did and it helped tremendously. I think it must have been the final cm or so of my cervix opening fully. Because after just a few contractions of that we were pushing for real.
Baby boy was born within an hour of me getting in the water.
What did you do to prepare for your labor and birth? Did it help?
I walked a lot and took evening primrose oil. I believe this helped my cervix be prepared.
What did you like about your birth experience, if anything?
I like that things went as planned because that really fits my personality.
What did you not like about your birth experience, if anything?
I did not like being positive for Group B Strep. The antibiotics cramped my style.
What surprised you about your contractions/labor?
I was surprised that I was a little more vocal during this labor than others. It was surprising to me that Jean coached me so tenderly to bear down right before the pushing phase. She could see in my body language and face that something needed to happen. I love how perceptive midwives are.
In reflection, would you do anything differently, either before the birth, during or after?
I would take more pictures. It is hard to remember details years later. But images always bring them rushing back.
What do you remember the most about your birth?
I remember thinking that this “formula” of non-medical induction was really working for me.
How was your birth experience different from what you imagined it to be like?
I would have liked to have not had Group B Strep. The next time I got pregnant I did everything there was to prevent it and that worked!
What were your immediate emotions about yourself and or your birth experience after the birth?
I was so proud to be a mommy again. It really never gets old.
How would you describe your recovery?
My recovery was about 6 weeks. Nothing bad nor good to note.
How has your perspective of your birth experience with Elisha’s changed since the first week of having him?
My perspective is the same. I adored every minute of Elisha’s birth.
Did you learn anything about yourself through this experience?
I learned that I am really good at giving birth. With two hospital births and two waterbirths under my belt I still am in awe of the power in women to do this kind of work.
Would you recommend having a natural childbirth or medicated childbirth to other women?
I recommend natural childbirth to every woman who is open to the idea. I think it’s good to hear the bad and good of both sides of the experiences to find where you fit on the spectrum.
Any further thoughts, comments or advice you would like to share?
This was the birth after which I first considered eventually becoming a midwife. My kids and I got to hear a woman give birth while we were waiting for an appointment one day. It’s just amazing. Every. Single. Time.