If you have been following me on Instagram, then you would have seen recently I posted a throw back of me when I was pregnant with Jojo. After seeing it and talking to so many different women about their own pregnancies it made me want to write Jojo’s birth story (I’ve been meaning to do this for so long). I’m going to write this in two parts. In this first part I wanted to focus on how I decided to go with a birthing center.
I will never forget finding out we were pregnant. I was convinced we couldn’t get pregnant for so long, that when my period didn’t show up when it was supposed to, I just shrugged it off and decided it must have moved days. After a while Joey was getting anxious so I told him I would take a test, and it will probably be negative and my period will start the next day (because yes this has happened) Well I took the test and when I saw the two lines my first words were “uh oh” and Joey knew!
Now after the Shock, excitement, and worrying (this mainly was Joey), I knew I had to find a doctor but I was waiting for my insurance to start which wouldn’t kick in until January (we found out we were expecting at the end of November). So while I was waiting I took like ten more pregnancy tests to make sure I was still pregnant (and every single test said I still was).
Once January came along I picked a doctor, set an appointment, and off me and Joey went for our first consultation. Now I will say this: I am not a big fan of doctors. What I really should say is I don’t like medicine, and I don’t like how quick doctors are willing to give out meds, its like they are giving out candy. Which is why I was not a fan of my first consultation with an Obgyn who as soon as I mentioned the words ‘morning sickness’ she was already prescribing me meds for nausea. I also asked about the hospital that she delivers at and asked if they have baths or showers that I could labor in (I know this is odd, but I for some reason, have always dealt with my pain by taking a bath or shower, I always joke that water heals, but seriously it’s how I’ve dealt with lots of migraines) she laughed at me and said you wouldn’t want to be in a hospital shower they’re dirty! Needless to say I got one ultrasound done there and then I went off to research Natural Birthing Centers.
Going to a Birthing Center is a lot like deciding to Cloth Diaper, its going against the norm. So everyone will laugh at you when you say you want to have a natural birth and you want to do it with no epidural. Seriously! EVERYONE thought I was nuts (even the first obgyn was laughing, telling me I’ll be asking for that epidural). The crazy thing is I was scared, I was nervous, but honestly I was more afraid of a c-section! I give it up to the c-section moms because I don’t know how you take care of your child after being cut open. The pain of having stomach surgery was made more apparent after having to take care of Joey who had hernia surgery while I was pregnant. Just like cloth diapering I wanted to prove everyone wrong, I wanted to feel empowered.
When finding the perfect Birthing center, I did a quick Google search to even see if there were any Birth Centers close to me. Lucky for me there were two. I started with the closest one. Unfortunately they didn’t take my insurance, but that was actually a good thing. The birthing Center I ending up going with was called Heart 2 Heart Birthing Center. It was a bit further away and with traffic it would take about 45 mins to an hour to get there. (we live in Orlando so really anywhere you go might take awhile especially if you have to drive on I-4) This Birthing Center is gorgeous it was like a house. They have a little kitchen, living room, three birthing rooms, all with big beds and tubs in them. One room has a patio that’s enclosed so you can be outside while you’re in labor if you wanted. It’s basically the closest thing to a home birth that you can get without being at home. I loved it! They also offered a lot of classes, from mommy and me, to cloth diapering 101, and even daddy boot camp.
After choosing an amazing Birthing Center, I was still nervous. Everyone says to just be positive and tell yourself that you can do it. This is not me – I’m more realistic. I hoped I could, but I was completely aware that things can and do happen. No one in my family had given birth naturally. My mom had c-sections as did my sister. When having a consultation with the Birthing Center I noticed it was literally right across the street from a hospital, so if any real complications happened, I would be able to get help quickly.
As the months went on, and my tummy grew larger and larger, I watched The Business of Being Born and Call the Midwives on Netflix. Honestly these shows/movies were the only positive feedback I had about giving birth naturally. I will say my close family was very positive and my mom was overly confident about me doing it this way. Joey was never worried because he knew how well I could handle pain. Watching these shows helped and gave me confidence that other women do this, and that it’s possible to do it naturally. We also had to go to birthing classes, which were great! It gave Joey a chance to learn how he could help and be a part of this amazing experience. We learned about certain things to bring to the birthing center that could help with pain:
- Massage ball
- Rice heating pack(we made ours ourselves with a large sock and rice) we also used this after Jojo was born, I’ll tell you more on the next blog!
- Water Bottle (I love my CamelBak)
- Essential Oils ( I did buy these but I didn’t use any)
- Chap stick (this is a must your lips get so dry)
- spray bottle (we had a dual spray bottle and fan. It was amazing!)
- Ice packs
- Snacks (We had Nutrigrain bars)
- candy (mints & lollipops)
This is just a list of what I used, I’m sure there are many different versions. Hope it helps!
Well that pretty much covers everything up to the actual birth itself! I hope this helps anyone wondering about birth centers and natural births. Next up the birth story, one of the best experiences of my life!