Just a stargazer Just another Poetshome.com weblog

October 27, 2008

The Awesome Natural Birth of Our Baby Girl

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 11:09 am

When I found out we were expecting, a few well-meaning friends suggested I read up on my options for birth as they had had negative experiences with theirs. I took their advice and read as much as I could. My research suggested that the best option for mom and baby was to plan a natural childbirth and to avoid medical interventions and drugs as much as possible. I wanted to give my baby the best start that I could. We decided to labor at home for as long as possible to avoid interventions and to enjoy the experience in a comfortable environment. Here is the story how our little girl was delivered into my arms.

I had my first contraction around 9:00 am on a Saturday. The strange tightening of my uterus continued relatively painlessly throughout the day, coming as often as every 5-7 minutes. We knew the baby would be on his or her way soon so we spent Saturday preparing as much as we could. We did laundry, cleaned up in the house, took two enjoyable walks to nearby parks, and spent time together.

The regular contractions continued throughout the night. I awoke at 4:30 am Sunday when they became painful. I was unable to go back to sleep, but I stayed in bed to rest up for the labor ahead. At 7:50 am, we headed to a nearby church for Mass (much earlier than our usual Mass time). Contractions occurred regularly throughout the Mass. When I felt one coming, I’d just stop singing and hold on to my husband. The Deacon blessed us after Mass. We told him the baby would be coming later that day. Our doula, Sandra, stopped by in the morning to check my progress. She said I was about 3-4 cm dilated.

Labor increased in intensity around 11:00 am and had become so difficult then that we would not have been able to attend our usual 11:00 Mass. My husband helped me make some chicken soup with extra celery and carrots for lunch. That was pretty much the last food I had before delivery. As we ate, he helped me focus whenever I had a contraction by showing me some fun photos he’d had printed for the occasion. After lunch, on our doula’s advice, we headed out for a very difficult lap around the block. I’d have to stop at every contraction (they were coming pretty quickly at that point) and lean on the husband to make it through. Halfway around the block, one of our neighbors offered us a ride. We declined.

When we returned from the walk, my husband filled the bath for me and put some lavender-scent in the water. He turned on my favorite relaxing music. I listened to the whole album in the bath, and he came in to help me whenever I had a contraction. After the bath, I showered off and got on the birth ball. I was starting to shake and I knew that we needed to get to the hospital fast or we’d be having a baby in our bedroom. My husband called the doula to see how close she was to arriving. Since she was only a few minutes away, we decided to wait for her to check me before we left.

At 2:40 pm, I moved from the ball to labor on the toilet and we heard a knock on the door. My husband went to let Sandra in as my water broke into the toilet during a violent contraction. I couldn’t have asked for it to break in a better place… very easy cleanup! Flush! The doula checked me and said I was 8 or 9 cm (yikes!) so we grabbed our gear and we headed for the hospital to deliver the baby.

We arrived at the hospital around 3:15 pm. We got a wheelchair for me and headed straight for Labor and Delivery. The wheeled me up to a room and got me up on the bed. They checked the baby’s heart rate and barely managed to get a Hep lock (IV needle with nothing attached to it). They asked if I was planning to have anything for the pain, I said no. I think it would have been too late at that point anyway. I kept thinking I might throw up, but I didn’t.

I decided I had to go to the bathroom so I headed for the toilet and while there my body started writhing and pushing spontaneously. It was really weird. When I got back to the table, they checked me again and said I still had a little lip of cervix left, but they decided I could start pushing I guess because it’s hard to stop nature from doing what it wants to do.

At our doula’s suggestion, I pushed lying on my left side with my right leg up against my husband who felt solid as a wall. Pushing took about 15 minutes. Maybe less. I was really motivated to get the baby out because I really wanted to know if it was a boy or a girl (not knowing was a great motivation). When the baby was crowning, I moved to my back at the insistence of the attending nurse. At 4:24 pm, the rest of the baby’s body slid out quickly and my husband looked at me with tears in his eyes and tenderly delivered the line… “It’s a girl.”

Our little girl rested on my chest while we waited for the cord to stop pulsing before it was clamped and cut. I was so happy about having my little girl that I forgot I still had to deliver the placenta. The doctor told me to push again. I didn’t think to look at the placenta when it came out, but apparently it was like a deflated basketball. It was good to have the baby out. She looked so perfect with all her fingers and toes and a full head of brown hair. She was so beautiful! We are very blessed.

The whole birth experience was truly amazing! Experiencing a natural birth was awesome! I highly recommend it. My body knew what to do to get the baby out and it did it. I was so glad to have done my reading into birth experiences, and I was blessed to be able to give our daughter a great start to her life outside the womb. We had a wonderful weekend of becoming three.

*    *    *

At birth, our little one weighed 6 pounds, 15.6 ounces and was 20 and 1/4 inches long. She has straight brown hair and dark blue eyes, for the time being. Her long fingers and toes get a lot of attention. (Future piano player perhaps?) She is super cute and we love her very much!

Brief Return of the Blog

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 10:57 am

Hey readers who probably (hopefully) never check my blog, but may read this if you have an RSS feed. I took a long hiatus from blogging throughout a relatively uneventful pregnancy. I am now the proud mother of a beautiful baby girl! I thought I would post a couple notes about things I’ve learned about having and raising babies. Perhaps someone will come across my blog in a web search and be helped by some of the natural childbirth and child rearing methods we’ve chosen.

November 21, 2007

Biggest Game EVER!

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 8:02 pm

Go Tigers!!!!! Beat KU!

October 28, 2007

A Major Award

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 7:54 pm

Last Christmas, I made my husband watch “A Christmas Story” with me. While we were watching the film, a brilliant idea came to me. I would create a “leg lamp” costume for halloween!

This spring, we were pouring some concrete for a deck and I noticed that I could fit around the cardboard cylindrical stuff that we held the concrete in place. We had enough extra in exactly the size of a lampshade!

We painted a our bedroom in our new house a nice color of lampshade light yellow. So I painted the cardboard cylinder.

A couple years ago, I had crocheted a black poncho with fringe on the ends. I stapled the fringe of my poncho to my lampshade, slipped on some black fishnet stockings, candy apple red heels (borrowed from my mom), wriggled into the lampshade, pinned up the poncho, fashioned a flashlight around my neck using a lanyard, and prepared to leave for the party. I also had my husband make a box labeled “FRAGILE” (pronounced fra-gee-lay, “it must be Italian”) to wear.

The costume was a huge hit at the party. The “lamp and the box” won first prize! It was a lot of fun.

September 2, 2007

Guitar Zero

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 1:49 pm

I am not a big video game player. If given the choice to play or not to play, I usually choose the latter. But who can resist a round of Guitar Hero, especially if you’re actually a guitar player?!

As it turns out, I am really bad at Guitar Hero. I am a Guitar Zero. Now, I have improved with practice and tutorials, but I am really bad considering that I do actually have the ability to play a real guitar decently. My friends can all ace some songs in the game on hard and quite a few on medium. I’m lucky to even get though a song on medium, and sometimes I can’t make it through on easy! They laugh at me. I don’t understand why the talent doesn’t translate. I’ll never be a guitar hero at the game, but I bet I can play a real guitar better than most.

August 15, 2007


Filed under: General — stargazer @ 12:42 pm

If you haven’t heard, we sold our house and have to be out by the end of the month!! We are working on moving into the new house we bought, but it is not yet habitable so we continue to work, only more quickly.

August 10, 2007

Unlike 99.99% of Facebook users, I was born in the 70s

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 10:08 am

I don’t understand Facebook. Really the only reason I signed up was to try to find people who wanted to participate in a schizophrenia study, but I quickly realized that my plan would not work. Now my friends, who are mostly the same ones who read my blog, though a few are second cousins who share my surname, keep emailing to request status as a Facebook friend. Then I have to confirm that they really are my friend. I just don’t get it. I don’t know how I feel about a public group forum associated with your name and birthdate and where you went to school where anyone could look you up. If I happen to not confirm you as a friend, it’s just because my profile is lame and you won’t be missing anything if you can’t see it.

There really is a facebook group with a name similar to the title of this post. It didn’t say much, but I wonder if they’d accept people born in the 80s?

August 6, 2007


Filed under: General — stargazer @ 9:54 am

I am having a hard time deciding about how short I want to cut my hair. I could continue growing it long and just get the split ends trimmed off, or I could cut it off to chin length. I know it would look really cute short. I’ve liked it that way before, but I know that once it’s cut I am not growing it long again. It looks really pretty long and maybe I should enjoy it for some more time.

I need your votes. Cute short hair? Or pretty long hair?

July 24, 2007

36.9 MPG and rising

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 5:55 pm

My husband read about this thing called “hypermiling,” and we’ve found that a few changes in the way we drive make a big difference in our miles per gallon. We jumped from averaging about 28 MPG to over 36! Hopefully someday we’ll even hit 40. We used to have to fill up every 300 miles or so… now we get 400 miles on a tank!

I think the thing that makes the biggest difference is driving slowly on the highways. We try to go about 50 MPH. A general rule for hypermiling is to stay at or below the speed limit as you theoretically run into fewer stoplights, which leads me to my next point, that you should anticipate stoplights. If the light ahead is red, don’t speed up to it, just coast and hopefully it will turn green before you have to stop. Yeah, you might bother the person behind you, but you’ll be getting better gas mileage!

The secret to better gas mileage: no speeding on the highways, try to maintain constant speed, and don’t push the gas pedal more than absolutely necessary! Good luck!

July 20, 2007

FREE There’s Nothing Wrong With It

Filed under: General — stargazer @ 10:29 am

I can’t recall many times where I’ve stopped a car to pick up something on the side of the road. I remember my dad stopping to snatch some foamy mats that he put down in our basement so I could practice tumbling when I was little. I used to be able to do back flips down there. Now I think I can touch the ceiling without even jumping.

The other night, we were driving down a very annoying street we call “Sin Haven” on our way home. Something caught my husbands’ eye so he turned around to check it out. I was like “why do you want to go down this street again?” Turns out there was a toilet in someone’s front yard with a sign that said “FREE there’s nothing wrong with it.” It seemed well maintained and clean so we took it apart, dumped the water onto their front yard and loaded it into our car. We took the sign too. It was a strange moment; picking up a toilet on the side of the road at 11:30 at night is not a common occurrance.

Why did we need a toilet? Well, almost any toilet is probably better than the one at our new place. I don’t think the previous owner cleaned it at all in the 20 years he lived there. It is really disgusting. Our “new” toilet can’t get in there soon enough! I can’t wait until it’s installed. Yay free toilet!

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