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Am I crazy to be still hopeful for a natural birth?

  1. #9
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    As far as the size of babies goes...9 pounds isn't a "large" baby in many places in the world. It might be slightly bigger than average but not really large.

    I think the size of a baby depends on so many things--most of which are out of the control of the mother. I would say first and foremost, genetics. In my family, my younger brother is 191 cm tall and he isn't really all THAT tall for my family. I have a great-uncle who was around 220 cm tall. My father has biceps that are as big around as my thighs (and that's saying something!) and he used to haul around stone by hand for a living. So, I think when weight is mentioned often we don't talk about muscle-mass or height or even bone structure which all affect that weight.

    Basically, when I see a lot of local Chinese children they seem to be very "flimsy" in build--a strong wind could knock them over and injure them. My 4-year-old already has little bulging bicep muscles. He was 8 pounds, 1 ounce at birth but all of the newborn clothes we brought to the hospital were way too big for him. Instead we had to dress him in clothes for premature babies because he was solid like a brick--he was small but heavy because he was nothing but muscle--almost no fat on his body at all. So, even though some doctors may predict this or that about weight it really tells you nothing about the size of the baby when the baby is born. Every birth is different too. My son was smaller but much more difficult to give birth to--my daughter was bigger but a breeze to give birth to.

    Let's just say my kids come from "healthy stock"--they have a lot of different ethnicities in their genetic makeup including great-grandparents from Samoa.

    Then on top of this is the mother's health and the health of the placenta. A healthy placenta will produce a healthy baby...some placentas are not in good shape and the baby doesn't get sufficient supply of nutrients. A healthy placenta is related a lot to diet and stress.

    I supplement with high-grade vitamins and herbs. I'm really big into dark green veggies. I eat a lot of berries. I get a lot of protein in my diet. And...I let my baby go full-term--even if my baby had been labeled "overdue" I wouldn't have induced labor because my baby needs to grow until he/she is ready to come out--not until we reach the arbitrary "due date"--whether the baby is allowed to reach true full-term maturity has a lot to do with the weight and health of the child as well.

    So, having a "big baby" isn't good or bad--it's very relative.
    “Many women have described their experiences of childbirth as being associated with a
    spiritual uplifting, the power of which they have never previously been aware …
    To such a woman childbirth is a monument of joy within her memory.
    She turns to it in thought to seek again an ecstasy which passed too soon.”

    ~ Grantly Dick-Read (Childbirth Without Fear)

    Mother of Two
    JMW, boy, born November 29, 2007, 9:43 pm, USA
    MJW, girl, born March 17, 2011, 4:14 pm, HK

  2. #10
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Recent birth story from a mother in the States who (without gestational diabetes or any other health issues) grew a nearly 14-pound baby boy and gave birth to him 100% naturally in a hospital birth. Link here.

    From the article:

    When they finally could wrestle him away from his crying and rejoicing parents, they put him on the scale. I thought for sure he was smaller than Judah, because he just looked smaller and I was apparently disillusioned. He was not smaller. Not one little bit smaller. In fact he seriously over took his brother with a whopping 13lbs 12.8oz. He honestly didn’t look that big, but he was in all his little sweet glory.

    After he was born, the doctor stitched me up. I only had a 2nd degree tear this time, so we were really grateful for that! At this rate, hopefully next time will only be a 1st degree. A girl can dream, right? I was only in labor for 6 hours and pushed for 6 minutes. I guess I should also answer all of the frequently asked questions, since this is a birthing site and inquiring minds will want to know. No, I didn’t have gestational diabetes. We just grow big, healthy babies. My husband was 10lbs 8oz and I was 10lbs 2oz, and with our powers combined… Asher had no health complications and is completely healthy. Praise the Lord! Yes, it hurt and yes, I would do it again in a heartbeat. No, I don’t judge people who don’t have natural births (obviously), this was the choice our family made and we totally treasured the experience, that’s all. Yes, I would recommend doing it naturally, because I loved it so much.
    “Many women have described their experiences of childbirth as being associated with a
    spiritual uplifting, the power of which they have never previously been aware …
    To such a woman childbirth is a monument of joy within her memory.
    She turns to it in thought to seek again an ecstasy which passed too soon.”

    ~ Grantly Dick-Read (Childbirth Without Fear)

    Mother of Two
    JMW, boy, born November 29, 2007, 9:43 pm, USA
    MJW, girl, born March 17, 2011, 4:14 pm, HK

  3. #11
    TNT
    TNT is offline Banned
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    You don't say where you are having the baby; I'm guessing public hospital as you didnt mention a private doctor? Your major issue is the fact that you are trying for a VBAC as opposed to the size of your baby ( which, as others have mentioned is often very wrong in estimates and also the size doesn't necessarily equate to a harder birth). To have the best chance of success you need to know how supportive the hospital is of your choice ie when will they suggest induction as many hospitals wont let you go more than 7 days overdue and won't induce for a VBAC so it would be a Caesar. Assuming you know they are supportive, then you need to find out what their attitude is towards these things as that will determine whether you get to the starting line. Good luck, but if you are under time pressure and your baby isn't ready, realise that that does narrow your changes

  4. #12
    1sttimemom is offline Registered User
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    Thanks for all the replies, and encouragement. I've been MIA but actually still waiting for the baby. I am now 40wks + 4. My OBGYN asked me to go into the hospital (Baptist) for fetal monitoring today and he is moving well, so I am back at home waiting. My next doc appmt is Friday, so I know I will face A LOT of resistance from my OBGYN as she seems very scared that my baby is so big. I actually am a bit nervous, but feel that I can do this!

    To be honest, I have thought about just showing up at a public hospital like QMH (although I live in the NT) and... they can't just ignore me, can they? My risk-averse husband does not agree. :)

    Happily though, my husband is very supportive of my insistence on trying for a VBAC. We've agreed that unless medically necessary, a natural birth will allow for a quicker recovery. I have a 2 year old at home and I really don't want to be taking care of a wound + 2 kids.

    @ Thanka2 - thanks for sharing your birth story. I think I laughed and also freaked out... but I get the idea. Trust my body. :) And relax.

  5. #13
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1sttimemom View Post
    @ Thanka2 - thanks for sharing your birth story. I think I laughed and also freaked out... but I get the idea. Trust my body. :) And relax.
    I would add...submit to and accept the process. If you are fearful and you fight it you'll be going against "sphincter law". Before you get there really analyze what you believe about yourself, your body and birth. Find the fears that you have...the "what ifs" and confront them. It's important what you say and what you think because that will have a great impact on what happens...and if you have fear...even hidden fear that no one else knows about...it will come to bite you in the end. But if you conquer it now--even before you go into labor you will have a greater chance of having the birth you want. Also debrief with your husband and see where he's at.

    I had fear going into my second birth. I was afraid of hemorrhaging again. I was afraid of a long 43-hour birth again. I was afraid of going into shock again. I was afraid of a lot. I had a lot of bad feelings over the first birth and my recovery. It brought back memories of post-partum depression of the struggles with breastfeeding and of feeling alone and like my world had collapsed. Some people don't have all of this stuff to wade through but some people do. So, it's important to wade through that trauma or any negative feelings from the first time and any fears so you can start the second birth with a clean slate. It's important to know what affirmations you're going to tell yourself and what you really believe--in your heart. Sometimes it takes forgiveness. I had to forgive people who had wronged me. I had to let go of a lot--a lot of anger. But....that meant with my second birth I went in really free. It took me several months (probably 3-4) to go through all of this and have my realizations and epiphanies and to research and feed myself good, positive messages but I'm very glad I did. That is the advice I would have given to myself with my first birth if I could.

    Have a beautiful birth!



    “Many women have described their experiences of childbirth as being associated with a
    spiritual uplifting, the power of which they have never previously been aware …
    To such a woman childbirth is a monument of joy within her memory.
    She turns to it in thought to seek again an ecstasy which passed too soon.”

    ~ Grantly Dick-Read (Childbirth Without Fear)

    Mother of Two
    JMW, boy, born November 29, 2007, 9:43 pm, USA
    MJW, girl, born March 17, 2011, 4:14 pm, HK

  6. #14
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Another good Ina May Gaskin video.

    “Many women have described their experiences of childbirth as being associated with a
    spiritual uplifting, the power of which they have never previously been aware …
    To such a woman childbirth is a monument of joy within her memory.
    She turns to it in thought to seek again an ecstasy which passed too soon.”

    ~ Grantly Dick-Read (Childbirth Without Fear)

    Mother of Two
    JMW, boy, born November 29, 2007, 9:43 pm, USA
    MJW, girl, born March 17, 2011, 4:14 pm, HK

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