How I Had A Natural Birth In A Hospital Setting

I’ve known since I was a little girl, that I want 6 children. I’ll never forget when I was at the grocery store at about 7 years old, the cashier asked me what I wanted to be when I grow up. I’m sure she was expecting me to say doctor or lawyer, but I told her I wanted to be a mom of 6 kids! You can imagine the look on her face! Shocked and in disbelief. To this day, I still want to be a mom of 6 when I grow up.

Currently, I have one beautiful angel baby named Murphy! He is my pride and joy. He is wild and untamed and I wouldn’t have it any other way. My little adventurer is always exploring and finding new ways to get himself into sticky situations.

I could absolutely do this 5 more times! Motherhood was made for me! I love every moment. There are ups and downs, but the ups outweigh the downs.

When I found out I was pregnant, I had already known, “all natural” was the route I wanted to take. I’ve been through a lot, and I KNEW I could have a natural birth. Ideally it would have been completely intervention free, but I didn’t expect to go to 42 weeks (see my natural birth story here!!).

After some research, my husband and I decided to hire a doula. Maybe you’re wondering what a doula is. A doula helps the mother have a safe and positive birth! A doula helps you advocate for yourself, whether you want an all natural birth, or you get an epidural! A doula is trained to provide advice, information, emotional support, and physical comfort to a mother before, during, and just after childbirth. So obviously, I hired the best that there is. Bridget Ballenger with BB Birth Services!!

She is an absolute goddess. Hands down the best that there is. We interviewed each other in my home, and after our meeting I knew she was the one for us! She has this overwhelming calming and positive sensation. I cannot say enough nice things about her. She is everything you’d hope for in a doula and THEN SOME.

Here is all three of us (Bridget, Kevin, and Me), right after Murphy was born!

She also does placenta encapsulation!! I’m sure you’re cringing right now, but it’s so natural!! Almost every other mammal eats their placenta! There are so many benefits, and as long as it’s done properly it’s safe!! I’ve struggled with depression in the past and I was genuinely scared of post partum depression. I made sure I was as educated as I could be, and one of the benefits to placenta encapsulation, is reduced risk of postpartum depression! WOOT WOOT!! I was willing to give it a shot! It has many other benefits, but it can also increase your milk production! I was all for it!!

In terms of care providers, I’ve personally never had success with an OBGYN. I just feel like another number. There is never any patience or compassion, and I feel like my thoughts and feelings are mitigated. Fortunately I was able to find a group of midwives!! They’re 100% supportive of you, and each visit they take the time to actually LISTEN you. I highly suggest looking into a midwifery. The level of care is unlike any other.

The Bradley Method gave me the birth I wanted!

We also took The Bradley Method of Husband-Coached Natural Birth. It was 100% worth every penny!! It was a 12 week class, and in those 12 weeks we learned about prenatal nutrition & exercise, relaxation for an easier birth, your husband as a coach, birth plans and so much more! There is so much to learn, and there are so many things that you’re led to believe are mandatory, when in fact you have so many options!

Side note: I really wanted to deliver in a free standing birthing center so that I could have a water birth. It seems as though most hospitals will only let you labor in water, not actually deliver in water. My husband and I decided together, that being in a hospital was the right decision for our family and I have no regrets about that! I don’t know how things would have played out in a birthing center, however Murphy needed immediate assistance and I am so happy that we had the hospital staff help him.

Luckily, we found a hospital within an hours drive that had a birthing center attached (it was called the Birthing Inn)! As long as I was 100% low risk, I was a candidate to deliver in their birthing inn. I worked my butt off to meet all the qualifications, and 4 weeks before my due date, the facility flooded with fecal matter and they had to shut it down. You can imagine how deflated I was to get that phone call. They did tell me that they would honor as many as the birthing in perks as they could, on the hospital side.

Being in a hospital environment, there are a lot of things that, you as the mother, need to decide what’s important to you. Example: it was so important to me that I be able to wear my own clothes! That might sound silly to you, but I didn’t want my beautiful birth to feel clinical! There was no reason for me to have to wear a hospital gown. So I wore my husband’s tshirt (let’s be honest it’s my tshirt), and a pair of my favorite pajama pants.

Sitting on a peanut ball!

It was also important that I was able to move freely while in labor. One of the birthing inn benefits was, to not have to wear a fetal monitoring device. As a compromise, I wore a wireless fetal monitor. It was waterproof so I could still labor in the tub with it.

Another very important thing to me was to be able to deliver however I felt comfortable. If I wanted to pop Murphy out on the floor, that’s where I was going to do it. If I wanted to pop him out on the toilet, that’s where I was going to do it. Everyone seems to think you have to be laying on your back, with your legs in stirrups. You can in fact, deliver however you want! Now if you choose to get an epidural, I’m not sure what the “rules” are.

Long story longer, DO YOUR RESEARCH!!! Know what you want and advocate for yourself. Also, there’s nothing wrong with an epidural if that’s what you want. Just KNOW what you want. Also, we have c-sections for a reason. They can literally SAVE LIVES!!

Also I need to add something extremely important. My husband!! I could have never done what I did without him.

No one would go out for an Olympic event with less than 3 months of training. Shortening the time of preparation for birth is like being in a rush to run a marathon and only starting to train the week before. Training to run in a race takes time and the human body takes time to prepare for birth.” -The Bradley Method

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