This is an inspiring story of a 2nd time mom whose amniotic sac released/broke at 32 weeks, was rushed to the hospital & told she would need to be induced. BUT her body & her baby weren't ready & she didn't go into labor! So she is currently home at 37 weeks & waiting for the natural progression of her labor to start. She advocated for herself & her baby & trusted her body & her baby.
(This story was shared by Kathie Dolce, Vice President of the HypnoBirthing Institute. I have permission from the mom to share it on my blog).
I've corresponded off an on for a year and a half with a mom in western Canada, who first posted to the Q & A Forum with questions about preparing on her own for a gentle birthing. There are no practitioners near enough for her to take the course. Her first birth in June 2008 was wonderful, and Stephanie hopes to become a practitioner one day. I next heard from her recently after she had been transported by air to a large medical center because release of her membranes at 32 weeks for her 2nd pregnancy. She was being told she would have to be induced within a few days, the baby would be in NICU, etc. I responded with some things to ask, where to look for research and reassurance that she'd do well with whatever turn her birthing would take, etc.
I heard from her just last night. She is now 37 weeks, home again, is looking forward to a gentle HypnoBirthing, after two days of oxytocin/pitocin that failed to do anything. I've attached her letters below. They are so inspiring and really a tribute to woman's wisdom when she trusts in her own body, her baby and natural birthing. I asked her if Icould share her story on our practitioner board, and she readily agreed. Here they are:
Hi Kathie! Not sure if you'll remember me or not, we were in contact last year after my daughter's birth because I was looking for somewhere to take a HypnoBirthing instructor course. We had one I was going to in Edmonton, Alberta and it didn't pan out. Anyway, I'm emailing you quickly because I'm in my second pregnancy and last Monday at 32 wks pregnant my water broke and I've been flown out to a hospital in Kamloops BC. Because we were flown out we didn't have a chance to pack a hospital bag...ie my HypnoBirthing book, my ipod with the Rainbow Relaxation hypnosis script cd on it. They stopped my labor before I was flown out and I am on complete bedrest until the baby is born at 34 wks. If I go into labor naturally before then, they won't stop it, but if not they will induce me on Monday, July 13 at 34 wks pregnant.
My birth with my daughter was completely natural and beautiful, no induction, no pain relief except HypnoBirthing breathing and no stitches or episiotomy, etc. Kathie, I am so anxious about this birthing experience. I don't have my book or rainbow relaxation cd. I don't have my doctor who was such an instrumental part of our natural birth with the perineum massage, the lights dimmed, did room control, kept the environment calm and respected our no drug 'policy'. I feel as though I've been stripped of all my resources and rights to a natural birth. This has quickly turned into a 'medical procedure' rather than a birthday party. I've been told I will be woken up Monday morning, told to shower, eat breakfast and then have an IV put in with oxytocin/pitocin, I will labor with the IV in and deliver with it in, the baby will be taken from my body and given to doctor's and nurses to assess, insert feeding and breathing tubes and an IV to the scalp and it will be taken to the NICU. I will be allowed to stay in the hospital for 48 hrs and then be discharged and sent to a hotel for however long it takes for the baby's lungs to develop and be strong enough to breathe on its own. I was told to buy a pump so that they can feed the baby at night when I'm not here. This turns my stomach. I don't want to labor with an IV. I don't want to stress my baby (they said preemies sometimes don't 'adjust' to the oxytocin so well). I don't want to have my baby ripped from me and I don't want to leave it for someone else to care for it.
Now I know some of this is necessary, like the assessment when its born so it can breathe and I guess my discharge afterwards but its compounding on top of the other things I can't control and do in my own time. I want to have a chance to start my labor naturally and assess the situation at each stage. I don't know how I will even sleep Sunday with my anxiety over the whole thing. Their answer was to give me a sleeping pill! So my question at the end of all this is have you had anyone else in this situation and how can I possibly avoid the drug induction and use HypnoBirthing to have my labor develop naturally? Or is this possible? I would like to try walking for a little while to induce but is there anything else I may not know about that could help? I don't want any risk involved with the age of this baby and oxytocin/pitocin is a risk to me and an IV is not a calming concept while I'm laboring and birthing. Any advice would help Kathie! This turned into a very long email but I hope you understand I have too much time right now! Sincerely,Stephanie +++++++++++++++++++
Just an update Kathie, we are back at home, I got a second opinion before I had talked to you from our doctor back home & he called a specialist in Vancouver Children's hospital who advised him that the best thing to do was go thru with the induction, so we did. I was 34 wks and 2 days and they put me on the oxytocin/pitocin for the whole day (about 8 or 9 hrs). Nothing happened. They put me on again the next day, and this time I was under the supervison of a different doctor (thank goodness) who after 9 or 10 hrs of being on the oxytocin/pitocin with the same result as the prior day, turned the IV off and started to question why we were forcing the labor if baby and I were so healthy and happy and there was sufficient fluid. He said many times in the conversation that if I had already had one baby and my water had truly broke, I would have delivered the baby the first day of oxytocin/pitocin. This made us again phone our doctor back home & he advised us to come home as I was almost 35 wks by this time and able to safely deliver at home.
The doctor overseeing my case the whole time we were there was not happy to hear I wanted to wait and go home. She advised us to stay and again try to be induced on the Monday after a break through the weekend. My doctor phoned her and she then talked to me again and tried to convince us he agreed with her. I know, of course, this was not the case. On Monday, she arranged for an air ambulance to take me home. I have been home now almost two weeks. I'm being monitored very closely. I'm not leaking fluid, which has lead the doctor's to believe that this was a hind leak. This can happen after the baby so much as scratches the membrane, causing a small gush of fluid and later healing over. I am still on low activity, but I'm at a very safe time in my pregnancy now to deliver. If there is a sign of infection from the blood tests they give me every second day, they will induce immediately. But according to all testing, white blood cell count is normal, baby's activity and heart rate is perfectly at ease and normal and I am as well. We're hoping for a natural labor and HypnoBirth just as it was with our first a year and a half ago, and we're sure this will happen! My doctor at this point is expecting me to carry to full term.
Also an interesting thing....the nitrizene (I think that's what they call it) test strip that they test me with to see if any fluid that is coming from me is amniotic fluid keeps testing positive. However, they do what is called a ferning test with that fluid after putting it on a slide and examining it under a microscope....if it forms a fern pattern, it's amniotic fluid, if it doesn't, it's just normal vaginal discharge or urine, etc. They did this ferning test at the time my water 'broke' or I 'leaked' & the ferning test was negative. They did it again when I came back, negative again. Either way, we are home safe and sound and now awaiting the safe arrival of number two...must be a boy with all this ;o) I will let you know what happens and thank you so much for the advice and counsel. Sincerely, Stephanie ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Thanks Kathie! Yes, you absolutely can share with the board. I was 32 wks to the day when my amniotic sac first ruptured. When they were administering the oxytocin/pitocin, as crazy as it sounds, I could feel myself not releasing, I told my husband and my Mom before they even started the induction both days that it would not work. I can remember walking the halls on both days and telling my husband that I just couldn't let it go. When I labored with my daughter, I let my body labor, but this time, I could feel every part of me fighting it. After walking through their NICU it was something I completely felt like I had to hang onto and wait. I remember even reading in the HypnoBirthing book about the power of animals and how they are able to stop their labor if they feel they are in danger. I really felt like I understood my body and was able to work with it to keep baby where it would be safe. I completely and totally believe that! So I will be 37 wks on Monday (I may have mentioned that previously) and I will definitely keep in touch and let you know what happens! Thanks so much again, Stephanie
Kathie Dolce HypnoBirthing® Childbirth Educator VicePresident, HypnoBirthing® Institute
Thanks, Stephanie, for sharing your inspiring story! I hope that you have a wonderful birthing experience & look forward to hearing how everything works out!