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Below are the 16 most recent journal entries recorded in UC_help's LiveJournal:

Thursday, October 16th, 2008
4:49 pm
Is unassisted birth even possible after c section? Have any of you ever done this? I am doing some personal research, aiming to put my demons to rest regarding my c section 4 years ago. I want to go all natural for my next birth, at the very least a natural birth in a hospital. I don't know what the NHS guidelines are regarding HBAC, but I believe it's not recommended. I'll probably end up doing it anyway because I live about 15 minutes away at the most from my local L&D ward if something was to happen. I'd love to UBAC, but I am so so scared - I still feel scared when I remembering my last labour, which was a horrendous cascade of intervention.
Saturday, August 2nd, 2008
4:14 pm
I am new to this community and currently exploring the idea of an unassisted birth. My husband is in the Army and we live less than 5 minutes from the hospital on post, so that is where tricare will pay for me to give birth. If I switch to standard, tricare will cover a home birth with a CNM, but all the CNMs up here work at hospitals.

I am hesitant about going unassisted because there is a decent chance that I would be completely and totally alone. My husband is set to deploy around he time the baby is due and I do not have any friends up here. Our families live in Texas and the chances of someone being able to come up here to be with me are slim to none. In the event that something should go amiss I would rather have more support than my dog or cat can offer.

Has anybody else in this community giving birth completely alone? Also, if there are any military mamas in here, how did you deal with the military after giving birth?

Current Mood: curious
Wednesday, July 2nd, 2008
6:29 am
Going supposed past due dates and working around medicaid..
Hi new member, and been meaning to introduce myself, and possibly joining the main UC community (since at this current rate it might be looking like that's how I will be birthing in the next few days/week due to the current turn of events and circumstances)
I apologize for the cross post and to those who've already seen this post in a few other lj communities a bit ago, I just figured since part of this post pertains to UC, and some questions some might be able to help with.

Does anyone on here have experience with going over there (supposed) due date like over 42 weeks, and had to deal with Medicaid, and avoiding transfer of care and inductions? and what did you do?

Right now I'm in a weird predicament and major time crunch for decision making, and trying to really figure out my options and what is the best course, and figured it couldn't hurt to inquire in here.
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Current Mood: nervous
Tuesday, March 4th, 2008
8:33 pm
Does anyone know where I can get stories/advice about natural/unassisted birth after caesarean? I am not pregnant yet, but my partner and I are planning for our second child.

Put simply: I will be having a caesarean over my cold dead body. Or more realistically, only if not having one will mean either me or the baby will die.

Last time I was pregnant I had an awful time. I had consistently low blood pressure and kept fainting. I had pre-eclampsia and polyhydramniosis (sorry about my spelling!) I was so very ignorant about childbirth and ended up having a caesarean after 'failure to progress'. I did so well until 6cm dilated, then the pain got unbearable because of the position my son was in. I had a few gulps of gas and air, vomited and refused more. Then they gave me a shot of pethidine which ended with me vomiting all over my midwife and having an asthma attack which put me on a nebuliser and then an oxygen mask. It also stopped my contractions, cold dead. They had previously been regular and almost..relieving. After 4 hours of bearing down, they wanted to give me an episiotomy and do a forceps delivery, but I refused and asked for a caesarean because the idea of a cut through my perineum was horrifying to me.

I feel really ashamed of the whole experience, although I'm trying to let go of old feelings, especially as another pregnancy becomes more likely. I'm such much more knowledgeable about pregnancy, nutrition, rest, exercises, perineal massage, exercises to turn the baby etc. I know breathing exercises for the birth, massage techniques and would possibly consider using a TENS machine. But I absolutely don't want drugs, doctors or a caesarean unless me or the baby is dying. I'd rather do it with just my partner, my son and myself. A friend actually said to me, oh are you sure they'd let you do that after last time? I was like...let!? There is no question of 'let', I will do what I want with my baby and my body!

I really want to read as many different experiences as possible. Can anyone share any links/experiences with me, pretty please?
Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008
4:28 pm
Hey, I'm new here. I'm 3 days overdue, and Monday night my water broke. There was meconium in the water, and I'm wondering, what would you do if you had meconium in the water? Or what did you do? I'm planning an unassisted birth. No labor yet, just pushy feelings. Or if I am in labor, I don't feel much other than some cramps.
Monday, November 26th, 2007
7:30 pm
feeling dejected.
 I want a homebirth. More specifically I want an unassisted homebirth. I've done my research on the safety. I've attended a meeting on Neonatal Resuscitation. I'm cpr certified. I've read everything I can on preventing and addressing a postpartum hemorrage. I've sought prenatal care with a skilled midwife, and I haven't had a single issue this whole pregnancy (aside from GBS, which I'm working on with a garlic+echinacea regime). I am feeling strong and healthy and capable. I believe that my home is the safest and best place for my liilte one to be born. I also believe it is a healthier transition for my 2 year old son. It won't be like we "went out to the store" and brought home a new baby while he was at meme's house or something. I've advocated for myself as well as I can, have educated myself, my mate, and my mother on possible complications that would indicate the need for assistance. I've read and studied, and prepared, and meditated, and envisioned. 
And I'm getting so badgered and beaten down at every midwifery appointment I go to. "what if the baby dies? your husband would be so heartbroken your marriage would fall apart." "what if the baby was braindead, and it was something that happened because you weren't able to have fast enough access to medical care?" "could you live with yourself knowing that your choice contributed to your baby's death?" "What if you hemorrage, your husband doesn't know enough about uterine compression or uterine massage to keep you alive, how can you put that burden on him?" "you delivered your son here with us at the hospital and it was great, you even said so, why not just do that again?" etc etc. And now, with 2 weeks left to go, I am so exhausted with this. The "what if's" come creeping in sometimes. It's hard to accept responsibility for my own birth, but I've done so thus far. It's very difficult to stand up to a mate who is resisting because he is concerned for our safety. It's difficult to trust in birth when it really feels like no one trusts in me. It's difficult to sit across for a midwife that I respect while she tells me how afraid she is for me, and looks at me with "why would you do this to your baby" written across her face. I believe that home is the safest most natural place to birth. A home birth is my dream birth, and there is nothing that indicates that my baby will die or be horribly mangled by the birthing. I've delievered one beautiful healthy 8lb 12oz baby boy with absolutely no medical intervention (aside from being in a hospital) without a tear, scratch or complaint. Everything with my prenatal care indicates that this little one is growing beautifully. I'm 38.5 weeks along. And I feel like giving up, and consenting to dragging my laboring self into the L&D ward, waving my white flag of surrender. I've written up two birth plans, one outlining my intentions for a homebirth, and the variations that would cause me to go to a hospital. I have also written a plan for what I would want at a hospital (which more or less says, leave me alone and let me leave when I'm done. Thanks.) but I just don't know what to do anymore.
Sunday, October 28th, 2007
2:10 pm
Possible retained placenta?
Ok ladies... I had Lillian about 2 hours ago. The placenta appeared to come out ok, but there's a dangler hanging between my legs. My mother looked over the placenta and although it looked whole to me, she thinks it came from the placenta, and pointed it out to me, but as I've just given birth, I'm screwy in the head at the moment. It's been two hours and it's still dangling. Although she breast-crawled (unintentionally, we were waiting for the placenta) and nursed (like a champ!) immediately, she's been pretty sleepy and hasn't been too milk-happy, so I haven't had much of a chance to use nipple stimulation to try to get this little dangler to come out.

Is there any other suggestion? I'd hate to call my scalpel happy medwife about it cause she'll just tell me to come in and not give any alternatives first.

Got it! A gentle tug took care of it. It ended up about 8 inches or so, sure enough it's a strip of the sac.
Tuesday, October 23rd, 2007
2:02 pm
Birth Story
This is the birth story of what was pretty much a UC, but I did have a small amount of assistance - I had a membrane sweep at 42 weeks and 5 days, and I had midwives turn up to assist with cord-cutting and clean-up.

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Sadly we didn’t get any photos of the labour and birth as I hadn’t arranged for an extra person to come and take photos, and Nick wasn’t able to do it as I needed both of his hands on me the whole time. But he did take a few photos of me nursing the baby within minutes of the birth (see icon) and he took several more photos of us the next morning. Once I figure out how to post pictures I’ll attempt to post them here in a separate picture post.
Sunday, August 26th, 2007
2:00 am
UP with morning sickness
Hi. I can't remember if I ever made an intro post in here, but if not I'm Sarah. I have a 6.5 month old daughter named Arianna who was a natural hospital birth and OB managed prenatal care. I won't detail my experience right now, but it has lead me to the decision that all future children will be born at home into loving arms. That said, I do have one concern that I'm not really sure how to handle and maybe there is someone here who can help.

I had horrible morning sickness with my daughter. It was more than morning sickness. It was all day, every day for 20 weeks straight no natural remedy could touch sickness. Since this is fairly common in pregnant woman, my OB kept telling me that it was normal and that it would pass by the second trimester. Well by 20 weeks it hadn't passed and one night I started throwing up blood. It didn't turn out to be anything serious, just a small tear in my throat from heaving so hard, but it finally prompted somebody to prescribe me something (Zofran) to get the vomiting under control. Oh and it wasn't my OB who prescribed it initially, it was the ER. I went because I was scared when I saw the blood.

Along with an unassisted childbirth, I would really like to have an unassisted pregnancy, but I'm not sure who I would turn to if I end up sick again. The first time around it was just me. This time around I'll have at least one young child to care for (I also have stepkids and who knows at what point they'll be living with us permanently) and I just can't be sick and unable to function. Who would I go to to prescribe me something? If I went to the ER, they would undoubtedly want to know why I was not receiving prenatal care. Could they get me in any kind of trouble if I refuse to seek prenatal care? I know there is no law stating that I HAVE to, but I also know that it's their job to report people who they feel are endangering themselves or another. I am just now getting my husband on board with the idea of a UP/UC which I was convinced would be impossible. The last thing I need is some holier-than-thou doctor throwing around threats and scaring him out of it.

I feel like I'm already so mentally prepared and even excited for this. My confidence has been given an extra boost now that my husband has gone from "no way in hell" to "I think we can do this". There are just a few little bumps I need to work out and this is one of them. Thank you for any help you can give.

Current Mood: contemplative
Thursday, August 16th, 2007
8:40 am

I just served as doula for the third time the other day! Hoorah! I've had my own birth, and have attended 3 others and I just HATE the medical model of care. I can not possibly put enough vemon into the word hate where this is concerned. This is what's been going on:
My mate and I have been doing a lot of research (to the point where I dream of birth on a nightly basis) for our upcoming UC in december. My mate is beginning to waver, after our midwife brought up the what-if factor. But I understand that she is not doubting my ability to birth. She atteneded my last birth and it was completely complication-free, and no one did anything more than listen to a heartbeat periodically. Anyway, I've been trying to calm his worrying by explaining how much safer we are at home, and how much more comfortable everything will be without any hovering over us at any point. Anyhoo, I digress.
Yesterday I got the call from my friend+client that she was being induced at 38 weeks for high blood pressure. This, for one, is irritating because she was told to be on bedrest, and never listened. When she was lying down her BP wasn't high, so had she just mellowed out for the last two weeks odds are she would not have been induced, but whatever. So I arrive at the hospital, which is easily the worst of the 5 hospitals I've been to. No security of any kind on the labor and delivery floor. No joke. How do you get in? Usually there's a buzzer and someone beeps you in. Not here. Take the elevator to level 2 and there you are, free to roam around. Also, no tub or shower for relief. No small room set aside for people as a rest area/snack area so they can grab a drink or have a bite to eat without eating right under the mom's nose. (STUUUPID that they "don't allow" women to eat in labor btw) No birth ball. No birth stool. So they've got her on pitocin, with a 3cm balloon in her cervix, and she's trying to deal with the contractions but after a few hours the pit is really starting to wear her down. And she hasn't eaten for ages. Ans because of her high BP they "won't allow" her to stand, or leave her bed so she is more or less stuck laboring in a supine or sidelying position. Which is horribly uncomfortable. And of course the OB makes her appearance, all fake smiles, and says "honey, there is not prize or medal for suffering. an epidural will make you wonderfully comfortable. You're going to be in pain like this or worse for hours and hours, why not just have the epi so you can rest and relax?" To make it worse, she didn't just make her suggestion and then give her a few minutes to consider it. She sat there and stared at her until she agreed to it. Even though she didn't want a medicated birth... Then, 2 hours later (after they've upped the pit to max) they say "you  baby is showing late decels which is a sign of distress. YOu're going to be laboring for a long long time and the baby will be distressed and you're going to need a c-section. If I were you I'd just get one now and spare yourself and your baby." This is about the time that I wanted a 10blade to ram through this stupid ob's face. The baby's heartrate was great. Why on earth were they surprised by the fact that the baby was having a hard time when she was on max pit??? Anyway, she ended up with a c-section. It was so textbook. Pitocin, leads to epi, leads to more pitocin, leads to distress, leads to c-section.  It was like something out of some sci-fi horror movie. I wasn't there for the c-sect, but at one point there were IVs in her arms, the epi in her spine, the catheter in her bladder, the bloodpressure cuff on her arm, two fetal monitors in her vagina, just ugh tubes and cords and beeping things and blinking things and when nurses came in they would ask other nurses "how is she", not ask her "how are you dear". That and the fact that her room had FOUR doors through which various people where in and out on a constant basis. 
Just the worst damn thing.
What kills me most was the OB, with her "no one gets a medal for suffering" argument for the epidural. It's not about the "suffering" that most educated women don't want it, it's about trying to avoid interventions that lead to other interventions. Which obviously didn't happen. Poor thing she seriously got steamrolled. It is her responsibility to take her birth and make it want she dreamed, but ugh, it was terrible. They were just on her like white on rice. And I tried to help, and feel guilty that I couldn't prevent that for her. But it's my job to be encouraging, comforting, and to facilitate what the mother wants. If she doesn't take a stand or express any of that to her OB how to I support her? Arg...

Current Mood: surly
Wednesday, August 15th, 2007
1:21 am
Birthing kit, labor bath herbs and Placenta Essence
Ok, I'm sorry if this is the wrong forum for these questions, but I wasn't sure where else to ask... My first birth was in a hospital, although very easy, short, and not terribly traumatic, I was forced to have an epidural and it really ruined the last of my faith in hospital birth. My family is aware that I would like to have this baby at home, but they've been dead set against it. I've continued making comments, and dropping random statistics and facts around my hubby. Well, my husband has started insinuating that he's ok with the idea of an unassisted birth. Yay!!! Today he asked what all we need for a birth kit at home, that I should go ahead and make sure we have a good birth kit around and that he felt that "he could do it if it comes to it...", which is actually a huge step. I think it was his way of saying yes to homebirth after he'd already said absolutely not. That leads to my questions... I've never been to a birthing class, but I have absolute faith and trust in my body, so I don't really think I'll need to be charged $350 bucks to be taught how to react to childbirth. Is there something I can read to help prepare myself for an unassisted birth at home? Most books I looked at were 20-30$ and I can't afford to buy them all, obviously. I have Spiritual Midwifery, and my husband ordered Emergency Childbirth.

So, we want a birthing kit. There's SO many of them out there. I have 50-75$ budget for the birthing kit and extras, but I don't know what is useful/helpful... All I know for sure that I want is 2 peri bottles, lots of those jumbo puppy pads things (for lack of the "real" name), something to protect the mattress, a footprint thingy (what types are best?), several pair of mesh panties (are there different ones?), and a cord clamp (what kinds are there?). I also want the Born At Home onesie. BTW, what is shepherd’s purse for? What else would I want? I want everything I might possibly need. This is my last baby, so I want things to go as smoothly as possible. Anything to increase comfort before, during and after.

There's a good selection here, but I am totally clueless on what my husband and I need to have? Could someone suggest a specific kit + additional supplies? Or at least a specific birth kit? It doesn't need to be from that site... I have no clue on where I should shop.

I have a deep, jumbo 3 person bathtub with spa jets and stuff (the corner kind that are triangular), so I don't need any kind of birthing pool, I think... but is there some kind of herbs or soak that I could put in the tub while I'm laboring? (preferably one that colors the water :/ my husband's kinda squeamish, and just in case I bleed a bit, I'd rather not tint the water myself.)

Lastly, and kinda off topic; I'm really intrigued by Placenta Essence, and want to do that... but I think my husband and family would seriously question my sanity if I mentioned it to them. Has anyone done this? What would be the best jar to use? I would want the placenta water to be stronger, and more the color of strong tea. I didn't get to see my placenta last time, I was told it was hazardous waste as they took off with it, so, I haven't even the vaguest idea how big a placenta might be. And... silly question... will it work if the distilled water has added fluoride?

Heh.. I'll cut this off here before I think of any more annoying questions.

X-posted to unassistedbirth

Current Mood: curious
Saturday, July 7th, 2007
11:55 pm
Intro and Questions
Hi there. I'm new to this community. My name is Denise. I've been married to DH for almost 4 years and we have a 2 year old little girl. I am currently 15 weeks pregnant with our 2nd. We are not having an unassisted pregnancy as I had three miscarriage between July 06 and Feb of this year. Therefore, we decided to see a midwife for our prenatal care, especially during the first trimester. I feel comfortable continuing prenatal care now.

Originally we wanted a homebirth. Some things have happened financially and that's not possible with a midwife. There is only one legal midwife close to us (I had a fast first unmedicated labor, so we don't even want to risk paying the midwife who's 2.5-3 hrs away to come to the birth if there's a good chance she won't even make it!) and we just can't afford the out of pocket cost right now. She doesn't accept insurance, either. So our options are delivering at the hospital we're seeing the midwives at (where I had dd with the high risk OBs there) or go UC at home. I just do not feel that there's any way I will be able to get what I want during the birth at the hospital without fighting tooth and nail every step of the way. And even though I have people willing to do the fighting for me, I don't want the hostile energy around me when I'm laboring!

So...I am looking more and more towards UC. But...those of you who have BTDT- how did you convince your partner's? I want Dh to be on board, as I am pretty needy when pregnant, and if I'm the same way in labor, I want to have him supporting me. I did want to be alone during labor with dd, but every experience is different so I'm not counting on feeling the same I did laboring with her. I have a feeling if I present him with reasonable information and can intelligently answer his questions and concerns, he'll be fine with it. But any tips or ideas on how to present the information would be appreciated! Or just stories of "well, this is what I did..."

Also...what did you have in your birth kit that you found absolutely necessary? What were the things that were nice to have? And what did you not have but looking back would definitely plan to have for next time?

Friday, June 1st, 2007
11:07 am
Today I am 39 weeks along. This is my first pregnancy. My plan up until the third trimester was to deliver at a hospital with one of the many midwives at my OB/Midwife office. At the beginning I didn't have much faith in my body and it's ability to support this baby let alone it's ability to deliver it. I was honestly scared shitless about UC/home birth and thought that women who do it must be INSANE. As time went on, I read and read and read. Ina May's Guide to Childbirth was just.. amazing. Reading all those stories of women who were doing it without any medical intervention?? Then I started reading stories of UC. I cried. It was so beautiful. I found myself DREAMING of "oops, I couldn't make it to the hospital in time!" Laboring in my tub, delivering in my tub, having a comfy area set up just outside the tub should that get uncomfortable. The only thing holding me back is all the planning for the hospital "natural" birth. I've got a birth plan, my bags are packed, I've pre-registered. I'm GBS positive but I'm about 90% sure I'm going to refuse IV antibiotics after the research I've done (if I make it to the hospital).

Needless to say, the idea of having a homebirth/UC is.. exciting and scary and I've got a big grin on my face just THINKING ABOUT IT. Have any of you changed your mind this late in the game?

I guess what I need to know at this point is what items I will need. I've got puppy pads from potty training one of my dogs and garbage bags for easy cleanup. I plan on spontaneously delivering the placenta and waiting for the cord to stop pulsating/turn white before cutting. I've got plenty of towels and spare blankets.

Another question - obviously hospitals worry about everything being sterile. I try to keep toxins to a minimum (I clean the bathroom with vinegar, baking soda and h202) but is there anything I should be boiling (the scissors I'm thinking)? Is there anything I'm not thinking of?

Sorry if I'm rambly, I just don't have a lot of time left!

crossposted to unassistedbirth
Thursday, May 17th, 2007
1:33 pm
For those of you that have had UCs, what made you choose a UC over a midwife attended homebirth? If you've had both, what were the differences?
Monday, April 30th, 2007
8:39 pm
Hi. I recognize a few names in the user info, but I'm new here so I thought I'd introduce myself and let you all know where I'm coming from. My name is Sarah and I'm 21.

Current Mood: contemplative
8:36 pm
Okay so I've referred several people here regarding midwife related questions/ birth questions/ unassisted questions and no one has posted yet! There are ZERO posts here, So maybe it's like at a potluck and no one wants to be the first to uncover a dish.

I want people coming here to post to understand that this community is indeed filled with UCers! You are not being put in some corner where no one cares. We are here to help, support, and answer.

To everyone else, thanks for sticking around! :)
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