My pregnancy was great and baby and I were very healthy. We loved GBO and were looking forward to having a nice peaceful delivery at the birth center. But, as they say, things do not always go as planned!
Ten days prior to my due date, I began experiencing a lot of swelling. After keeping in touch with Cindi over the weekend, she advised us to get my blood pressure checked on Sunday afternoon (8 days before due date). Sure enough, it was very high.
Next thing I know, my partner, Erika and I are grabbing our birthing kit, baby bag and hopping in the car on our way to Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast. Cindi had prearranged with Dr. Esses to have us admitted right away and was also on her way to meet us there.
We were definitely a bit disappointed and bit scared. After all, the last nine months we'd been planning our totally natural child birth in a nurturing intimate environment. Once admitted to the birth center at Sacred Heart, I was diagnosed with severe pre eclampsia. The only cure was to induce labor.
Luckily, my partner, my sister in law and doula, Carrie Cain, and Cindi were all there to support me through this change of birth plans. I wasn't able to do any of the labor techniques we had learned in class, since I was hooked up to machines and laying in a hospital bed. But my body must have known it was time because I was actually having small contractions before they put me on pitocin. The night progressed and so did my labor.
With my fantastic support team around me, I breathed, focused and pushed through the stages of labor. Cindi left to get some rest, but Erika was in contact with her via text the entire time. She was there for us each step of the way as we were making sure the nurses were doing the right things for our birth.
By 2:30am I had the first urge to push. Erika called Cindi and the nurses called the doctor. Everyone was in place at 3:30 and little Camila arrived at 3:40! It was three pushes and she was here! I could never have done it without Erika and Carrie holding each of my hands and encouraging me through the whole journey.
As soon as Camila was born, she was skin to skin on my chest with Erika and I stroking her sweet little tiny body. Erika was able to cut the cord after it pulsed and we didn't allow them to take her from us. Cindi began helping her learn to latch on. She stayed right by our side for the first hour until Camila was nursing properly and happily.
It was an unforgettable and beautiful experience. As a first time mom, I did not know what to expect. But my body knew just what to do. Under the circumstances, this unplanned hospital birth turned out just fine. Thank you so much to Cindi and everyone at Gentle Birth Options for all of your support and help along the way! Before during and after you have been our advocates! And thank you to Christina for being an amazing lactation consultant and constant resource over the first weeks of Camila's life.
Melanie, Erika & Camila