Friday, February 11, 2011

I Want a Bradley Birth

I'm pretty sure that I've said repeatedly that I want a Bradley Birth; it's important to us. Us as in my husband (Let's call him George because I love that name) and I. But many people don't know what that is or think that the birth process needs to be something they think about. I didn't realize this either until I cried thinking about an epidural and giving birth to a watermelon aka Moose. So I did what all good Enlgish Majors do: read (yeah, I'm a horrible speller and okay at grammar, but I do have a degree in English. It's my literary interpritation skillz which got me the degree.)

I read The Business of Being Born about different births and then I read some more. After reading and talking with "George," we decided that the best choice for us was Bradley. It's not right for everyone and I firmly believe that everyone should do what is right for the mother and partner. I am not one of those "oh, you didn't have a natural birth so you're a horrible mother," people.

Every situation is different and should be discussed with a doctor.

Anyway, back to me. Once we decided on Bradley, we immediately started classes. By this time, it was pretty late in my pregnancy, so we needed to get on the ball. We'd go every Saturday, bond with our other students and with each other, bicker over being late, and dread doing homework (nothing that bad, just reading and worksheets). Through all this, we learned what to expect. What my body would go through, how to handle it, and how "George" could help me get through it. We did this for several weeks until I started having what I thought were Braxton-Hicks contractions on Friday. They weren't.

Skipping ahead...

We went to our room at the maternity ward/birthing center and "George" coached me through each contraction. "You're going to have one soon. Okay, just 15 more seconds (until it ebbs), you're halfway through, now it's starting to ebb and it's done" He set up music; The Cure because they're awesome and meloncholy.

He coached me through each contraction because we knew what to expect. It wasn't unknown. It was "this is what we trained for," and "this is what we know." It was good to have something known because we were in the unknown. It was good to have him there at every step telling me what was going to happen, when it was happening, for how much longer.

My #1 tip for labor is go to the bathroom when you need to go. There is nothing worse than you're body trying to push everything out of you and you not listening. I mean, if you want to poop on the table before you deliver, don't go to the bathroom. Otherwise, just go to the bathroom. It makes everything so much easier. And if you want your partner to go with you, it's the least they could do. I totally made "George" come with me.

Anyway, I labored in the tub. Just laid in that tub with warm water. Contractions were easy there. I was warm. Still "George" counted and coached.

People may say I did the hard work, but "George" sat beside me, putting his pain to the side, and took care of me. I had a distraction; he just had me and I could do nothing. He was my advocate. He was my voice. He did everything. Just like he was trained. Just like he wanted to do.

As we were trained, about 20 minutes before I went into active labor, I wanted drugs. I was adament about drugs. I thought they'd give me something to send me to Jupiter for my mental anguish. They didn't. They gave me crap. It wasn't worth it at all. I still hurt and felt everything.

Then I delivered a Moose. For the first time in 34 weeks, my body was all mine. No little Moose parasite. Just me. Yeah, the delivery went really quickly. (I did my Bradley exercises like I was told which helped me push that baby out in less than an hour)

Anyway, all that coaching from "George" made the difference. All his training with Bradley made it his second nature. It brought us closer. It made us a team like never before. I think our team would be just as strong if we had Moose, but we didn't. And since we didn't, it made it easier for us to talk about our pain. To tell the other everything. It's still that way. We tell each other everything. We're open to each other, even the crazy things that we'd never tell anyone else and never thought we'd tell anyone.

Taking Bradley Classes gave us the tools we needed to get through the labor and delivery. It made it possible to live through our loss.

Ironic thing about the day I delivered: our Bradley Class was taking the Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and SIDs class as I was delivering.

I've already signed up for Bradley Classes for Wombat's birth since we never finished the classes for Moose's. After Wombat's birth, I am really hoping to become a Bradley Instructor. They need some Angel Moms in that organization because they have no idea about Angel Moms. They, like so many, don't know, but need to know since they are teaching birthing.

Any other questions? Here's a link to their FAQs or feel free to ask me.

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