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High Risk without interventions?

Last post 05-29-2010 1:14 PM by marlenecpm. 9 replies.
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  • 03-16-2010 10:03 AM

    • Mama2B
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-16-2010
    • Posts 3

    High Risk without interventions?

    I am pregnant with my first child, 15 weeks along and I am scared. Not of the birth, nor the pain, nor the process of natural birth which I long for....but of the struggle I am going through to find someone willing to let me TRY a natural birth with minimal/no interventions.

    I have been in the care of an OBGYN whom I thought was 'Natural Birth' friendly only to be side-swiped with a nearly guaranteed IV, monitoring and likely a c-section. None of these things are in my birth plan, yet I'm told I really have no choice in the matter now. I was told I have gestational diabetes which is being managed with diet alone. I was also told I am "borderline" high blood pressure, as well as being overweight.
     
    I disagree with the high blood pressure for 2 reasons, one being that they never used the right cuff size until 1 visit ago. Secondly, they send me to the emergency room to have my blood pressure taken and I am in a rush to get in and out on time for the doctor's appointment. I believe the stress of that contributed to the increase. Each time I asked the triage nurse if the result of the blood pressure was normal and she said it looked "beautiful".
     
    I planned to give birth in a hospital, though I would have loved a birthing center. I changed from an OBGYN to a CNM whom I was told has a very natural approach, I won't get to meet with her for 2 more weeks.
    I sought a labor doula and met with her, we agreed to work with one another and when I was about to send her my deposit she dropped a bomb on me. She felt that she could not work with me because I will be dealt a handful of interventions I do not want and she would have no role at my birth. My main reason for hiring here was to advocate for me in case an unnecessary intervention was attempted.
     
    I understand I am at risk, but I do not feel I am a lost cause. I'm seeking an educated and knowledgeable opinion of my situation from someone who is of the same mindset I am concerning natural birth.
    Is it reasonable or even possible that I will find a midwife/caregiver willing to accept me and do little or no intervention? Is a birthing center an option for me?
    My conditions if it helps:
    Overweight (390lbs) - I've gained 6 lbs total during this pregnancy
    Asthma
    Hypothyroid
    Gestational Diabetes
    Heart-shaped Uterus
    "Borderline" high blood pressure
     
  • 03-16-2010 2:18 PM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    mom2b, 

    Welcome to MT and MTF.  Its pleasure to meet you and hope to stay you around.

    Congrats on your postive pregnancy test. 

    Have no clue and really have not that much info on this.  Have seen this topic in threads on here and off of here in the past, but at the same time have forgotten what were my responses to them.

    Highly recommend that you check out MT and MTF as well.  Also Our Bodies, Ourselves, The Boston Women's Health Book Collective and their companion website/blog as well.  Found its really helpful no matter what. At same time do recommend that you do additional learning and research besides the books and website I give you to give you. For more info on this.

    Hope my recommendations do help you.

    Good luck with your pregnancy and beyond.

  • 03-17-2010 10:51 AM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    Unfortunately, it's a struggle for many women to get the kind of care and birth they want.

    Have you tried calling some of the local independent childbirth educators and asking them who they would recommend as far as doulas go?  Your local (hopefully happy and friendly) childbirth educator will most likely have some good recommendations up her sleeve as she should have her finger on the pulse of your areas' birthing community.  And while you're on the phone with her, sign up for a good, comprehensive childbirth class (Bradley or CAPPA would be my first suggestions.)  I'm assuming you are in a small town because of some of the things you wrote about.  Some of the above resources might not be available to you.

    How's your diet and exercise going?

    Susan
    Moderator

    I get up every morning determined to both change the world and have one hell of a good time. Sometimes this makes planning my day difficult. --E.B. White
  • 03-17-2010 11:47 AM In reply to

    • Mama2B
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-16-2010
    • Posts 3

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    My diet is going well, I drastically changed my diet when I got pregnant and cut all sweets and sodas. When I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes I cut all carbs and very very rarely will I have a piece of white bread, typically when I am out and about and theres limited food options.

    I drink about about a gallon or more of water every single day and I started walking briskly 2-3 times a day which is REALLY helping keep my blood sugar levels down to a good range.

    Our town isn't too small, we do have 3 hospitals and 3 birth centers that are run by midwives with their own practices. California, however, is FAR less birth friendly than Oregon. The mindset here is pretty much "well the doctor said ___ was necessary, so I did it". Not many women, I'm finding, educate themselves on options or attend birthing classes at all.

    My partner and I are enrolled in a Bradley method class with a childbirth educator who came highly recommended, the classes begin for us in June.

    I created my birth plan and plan to take it to my midwife in 2 weeks and see what she says will be possible and not possible for me.

    Thanks for the replies!

  • 03-17-2010 1:23 PM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    You may find that by following a good diet high in protein combined with the daily exercise will be able to drastically reduce or possibly eliminate the diabetes and/or the high bp readings.  What's important is that those two things become non-negotiable.  It looks like you're doing well! Have you been to the Brewer diet website? http://drbrewerpregnancydiet.com/  Also, regarding diet, Midwifery Today puts out an excellent free e-newsletter and this time it's on ... nutrition!

    Glad you've gotten into a Bradley class!  (I teach them myself Wink)  And what you described as the mindset in your community is pretty much the mindset of most of the US.  Good for you and your partner, however, to get as much knowledge as possible.  Knowledge is always power.  You may find that you make modifications to your birthing plan after the class and that's OK.  You can still ask your teacher now for some doula recommendations; you may find that she can attend your birth herself.

    Are you close to OR? Is that why you mention OR?  If you're close to OR, could you birth there?

    Susan
    Moderator

    I get up every morning determined to both change the world and have one hell of a good time. Sometimes this makes planning my day difficult. --E.B. White
  • 03-17-2010 1:42 PM In reply to

    • Mama2B
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-16-2010
    • Posts 3

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    I actually used to work for MT so I know a lot about what they do and helped to pioneer some of it about a decade ago  :)

    I lived in Oregon for a long time and the midset of the midwives and birthing community is Oregon is SO different than here. Hardly anyone here uses a midwife and homebirth is a feared. This is the community where midwives are banned from one local hospital (if you've heard about the St. John's hospital and midwives protesting in the news). The same hospital is a sister hospital (same name) to the one I was told I had to labor at for my insurance to cover.

    I have a dietician helping me with my diabetes and I think the Brewer's diet may conflict with what I'm on now which is basically zero carbs, no fruit, no fruit juice, no pasta/bread/potatoes/rice.

    I'm concerned with a doula now because they seem to not want to be of assistance if I might little for them to do during my labor. I really wanted someone to help advocate for me, but the doula I chose does not want to work with women who she feels are destined for a landslide of interventions.

    I'm really lost and everyone is telling me to just come what may even if it absolutely contradicts my birth plan. I can't help but feel there's another way for me and my child.

  • 03-17-2010 7:05 PM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    Wow, that's quite a restrictive diet, but if it's working for you ... My husband's a full-blown diabetic and we've learned quite a bit in the most recent months concerning carbohydrates and fruits; not all are off limits for him.  Obviously Surprise he's not a pregnant woman but the things we've been learning from two books, the one I cited above and from Bob Green's new book are very good, helpful and they've been teaching us a lot.  Again, not geared specifically toward pregnant women.

    That's a real shame about the doula situation.  Again, your Bradley teacher is a doula and you may want her to attend your birth.  Although you may need more help than other birthing women--and we don't know that for sure because I'm constantly surprised, amazed and astounded by birth.  I know you've probably heard it before, but the more one is in this field, the more one realizes she doesn't know!  And that's what I love love love about birth.  Even if a women ends up needing every intervention known to humankind, her birthing experience doesn't automatically equal traumatic.  In fact, I believe that those women who need a doula the most are probably the ones who seem (operative word) headed toward a complicated or twisty labor.  You just never ever know, however.  But that's not the doula for you--the one who already has seen your future.  You want/need a doula who accepts you unconditionally.  A woman could be The Perfect Preggo, the one who's gung ho on "going natural" (I hate that term) and decide in labor that she wants an epidural and all the trimmings. Would I walk out on her?  Be disappointed?  No!  She hired me because she wanted support, not judgement.  And there you are with some stuff going on in your pregnancy and you're asking for that support and that unconditional help and someone turns you down because they have already judged and found the quality of your birth to be deficient.  It's a blessing, really.  That's not the doula for you.  Talk to your Bradley teacher and see if she can be with you.  If not, I bet she knows tons of other doulas who would love love love to be with you and have the privilege of seeing your baby brought to earth. 

    Susan
    Moderator

    I get up every morning determined to both change the world and have one hell of a good time. Sometimes this makes planning my day difficult. --E.B. White
  • 03-18-2010 6:56 PM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

    You sound really motivated and all that you are doing with diet and exercise will help all your conditions. Keep it up! I agree that was not the right doula for you. There are better ones out there- keep checking around. You can try the Birth Arts International site to look for some in your area. I hope you and the midwife will hit it off. You deserve the best chance for the birth you want. Another area in your life you might want to attend to is lessening any stresses- easier said than done, I know. There is help out there, keep asking and then accept! I wish you all the best for your birth.

     

  • 04-14-2010 5:16 PM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

     If I were you, I'd just stay home and have your baby, with or w/o help! At least that's what I did. Seems to me you should be able to find a midwife to help you. i would if I were closer.

  • 05-29-2010 1:14 PM In reply to

    Re: High Risk without interventions?

       I noticed no posts here lately. Hope thaty means your situation has improved, mama2b! I certainly feel for you! I had a homebirth client that sounds much like you, 30 yrs ago. She not only had a great homebirth, but we became good friends, so much so that she is one of my kids godmother! We still keep in touch.  If you are still having problems w the kind of care you're getting, call and chat, or troubleshoot w me anytime! 740-286-5756.

     BTW, here are some  tips:

     1) you might want to just buy your own BP cuff, that you know fits you right, and is accurate, since many HCP's just have cuffs that only fit "average" clients

    2) Natural Vit E (d-alpha, not dl-alpha) increases the insulin carrying capacity of your RBC's. This should improve your blood sugar levels. Speaking of which, I don't trust artificial sweeteners. Stevia is a good substitute, but I personally don't like its taste, but found some brands are better than others, I do like Agave, which is another good alternative for diabetics.    

    3) Many times w o'wt moms, the baby is quite content to stay up high in the abdomen, until far into active labor. I have seen this happen w several women, including my good friend, and a d-i-l.  In fact the d-i-l, had a C/S 1st time cause the baby was still high up at 6 cms, she was dxed w CPD. Well, she's had 4 VBACs since then, her fastest labor was only 3 hrs, and her biggest VBAC was 11 lbs, 8 oz, The C/S baby was 9 lbs 12 oz.  She has a quite adequate pelvis, it wasn't CPD after all, just impatience on the docs part. In all fairness, most womens babies are descending into the pelvis well before labor let alone 6 cms! Fat pads can hold them up (kinda like the baby is quite comfortable in its cushy womb, complete w pillows!, BUT you can push them past a fat pad, it just takes gravity & determination!  

    4) Say No thank you to all interventions, unless you're loosing the baby's heart rate! Don't let them scare you into anything.      

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