The Birth of August
The Birth of August
The birth of my fourth baby was so much more than the birth of one sweet, squishy baby boy. His birth summed up so much of my adult life. I've now birthed four babies of my own, been witness to the births of many babies and with them the births of many mothers and fathers and grandparents and sbilings, and I've given birth to my passion and career as a doula. So I went into this birth, the birth of my last baby, with much intention and reflection. I felt that I could draw on the strength and courage (not to mention fantastic playlist ideas) I'd witnessed in all the women I'd supported. In a way, I felt surrounded and lifted up by these women. And I had no fear. I've personally had so many varied experiences during birth, foley catheter, pitocin, cervidil, preeclampsia, waterbirth, and I've witnessed so many other variations during birth that I was mentally prepared. I was ready and the raging cold I had that lasted weeks and turned out to be pneumonia made me even more ready.
Beginning at roughly week 37 of my pregnancy, after no ultrasounds, my doctor ordered a diagnostic ultrasound to determine the position of the baby. She thought baby might be coming out face first rather than crown first. Results were good in that category, but not good in another: my amniotic fluid was low-8.5. So she asked me to follow up with another ultrasound two weeks later. That ultrasound showed amniotic fluid level of 6.0, even closer to the induction level of 5.0. My doctor agreed to give Damon and me the weekend to try to get labor going on our own before taking further measures. I was stressed and scared that the natural birth I wanted was slipping away. I began with two sessions of acupuncture on Saturday and another on Sunday, herbal tinctures, massage, nipple stimulation, and sex, followed with a dose of special Chinese mushrooms meant to increase amniotic fluid levels. By Monday nothing had happened, so my doctor ordered another ultrasound fluid check, which came out at 5.0, below the safe level.
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