Why Should I Give Birth In A Birth Center?

By: Care Messer Hypnobirthing October 3, 2019


Davina first contacted me when she found out she was pregnant. She and her husband were stationed in Jacksonville Florida but would be moving to San Diego by mid pregnancy. She got all the latest information on the best care providers, what classes she could take and what network she would need to establish when she arrived. All that pre-planning and forward-thinking paid off! She located the UCSD birth center and had the birth center birth she wanted and planned for. There were a few wobble moments where she had to voice her needs and communicate with the midwives asking for some leeway in the time department. These patient midwives not only accommodated and respected her birth journey but were there for her in the moment when she needed them the most.

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Video Transcript:

– We’re living in Jacksonville, Florida. And when we found out we were pregnant in January, we knew that we were gonna be stationed in San Diego in May. So we did our research knowing we wanted a natural birth. We found the Birth Education Center, and spoke to Care about Hypnobirthing classes and breastfeeding classes ’cause those were our biggest concerns. And she was able to connect us to a class close to where we were gonna be living and that worked with our schedule. It’s definitely never too early to start. I think the earlier, the better, so then you can learn more before the baby comes. And you can find all the resources that you need and that works best for you.

I knew that I wanted a natural birth. I’ve always had really difficult periods. And with that, I know that I don’t adapt well to medicine, so I wanted to be able to be present and aware of my birth experience. It’s something that I’ve always really looked forward to. I know that’s weird but… So with that, we looked at different ways of birthing and different methods of dealing with pain. And Hypnobirthing really resonated well with me. So we found the Hypnobirthing class and signed up. And we also took a breastfeeding class because that was one of my other concerns, both at the Birth Education Center. And they both really were influential to our birth experience.

Tuesday morning, woke up with Justin. He has to be at work at five in the morning, so we spent the morning together. After he left, I started watching my Monday morning show, or Tuesday morning show of “90 Day Fiance.” As the credits were rolling, my mom actually walked in to help me through that day. And I felt a pop in my lower stomach. I thought that might’ve been my water broke, but nothing came out. So I gave it a couple minutes. And as I was getting up to go to the restroom, I realized, okay, yeah, that was my water breaking. So I called Justin. He had just gotten to work. So he had literally sat down, answered the phone, and turned right back around home.

We called the hospital, and because of one of my conditions, they had me go ahead and head towards the hospital. So we got to the hospital, and they checked us in to triage and made sure that it was in fact my water, the amniotic fluid. Once they confirmed that, they let me know, “Okay, so since your water broke at six in the morning, “you have until 6:00 p.m. to be in active labor “and you have to be six centimeters dilated.” At that point, all the stress came in because I realized I wasn’t really contracting. My contractions were 15 minutes apart, and they wanted them to be able one minute apart. So me and Justin got to work, and put our Hypnobirthing tools to the test.

We made sure that we were walking every 30 minutes around the labor and delivery birth center floor. I made sure that I was using the restroom, drinking water after every contraction. We turned our music on. And the contractions had gotten about three minutes apart when they wanted to give castor oil. One of my affirmations that I learned from Hypnobirthing was trust the process. This is my birthing process. Trust my baby. So I said, okay, if that’s what you think is the best, we’ll go ahead and try that. So castor oil started, and it was a trigger.

So the contractions turn from three minutes to about a minute apart. At that point, I turned on my visualization rainbow relaxation and just tried to relax through them. And then they checked my dilation to make sure that I could stay in the birth center because it was about 6:00 p.m. I didn’t wanna know the amount that I was dilated just because that would mess up my relaxation state. So they told my mom and Justin. And I had my blindfolds on. So I didn’t see their face, and it’s probably a good thing because I was only three centimeters dilated.

Mind ya, I had to be six centimeters. So they talked to me and wanted to move me to labor and delivery. I told them that if they were to give me Pitocin at that point, it wouldn’t have been good for me because I was able to manage my contractions. But with the Pitocin, I think I would’ve just lost control of where I was at. And luckily, enough they were able to listen and keep me in the birth center and give me a little bit more time. And with that, it gave me the confidence to really move things forward and be able to truly relax into the birth process. So Erica, the midwife, she was awesome. She jumped in at that point and had me switch positions because I had been laying down for an hour. And movement is really important through the laboring process just to make sure that your baby can move through and you are also moving through. And so they had me up this, I don’t know what you would call it.

– It’s kind of like a U-shaped balloon where she can put her forehead on the front of it, and her stomach fits in between. And then we also put the peanut ball in between her legs, so she could rest on that. And then we started rocking her back and forth. She didn’t want to very much. But so we just had two people on each side doing it for her. It helped a lot.

– Yeah, I was on there for about an hour and a half they said. And I didn’t wanna leave, but they knew that it was time for the next position and for me to use the restroom. And at that point, they checked me again. And mind you, I didn’t know this at the time, but I was only four centimeters. And this was at 10 o’clock, right?

– Mm-hmm, it was 9:30, 10.

– Yeah. Yeah, 10:00 p.m. So went to the restroom. And then when I came back, they had me sit on this huge birth ball that I didn’t even think I could climb on top of. And they wanted me to do hip circles, which I was used to doing ’cause that was one of my preparations. I would watch TV and sit on the ball, do hip circles and eights–

– Figure eights.

– Figure eights. But at that point it hurt, but I still had to keep moving and breathing. And it’s kind of a blur at that point, but I just know after sitting on the ball, I started feeling, oop, I need to poop. And I realized from the class that that probably means I need to push. I told them that I wanted to push. But they knew that I was only at four centimeters, so they told me, “No, no, no, don’t push. “You can hurt yourself.” But I kinda was like, screw that, I’m gonna do what my body wants to do. And so I just went ahead and kept pushing and kept pushing. I didn’t know if I was gonna poop on myself or if the baby was coming out. But something was gonna come out . So it go so intense on the ball.

After about an hour, I was begging for medicine. I was ready to give up. And they were, Justin was so great. He was like, “Just give me three more contractions. “Three more, you can do it.” And I was like, “I just gave you four. “I’m done.” And he’s like, “All right, “well, you wanted this water hydrotherapy, “so let’s get in the tub and try that.” And I was like, “Okay, okay.” That tub took about 30 minutes to load up, so after that, I was done. And I was still asking for medicine, but they knew that that’s not something that I really wanted. And so they did their best to assist me in other ways. They kept doing the hip…

– The hip squeeze.

– The hip squeeze and the light touch massage and just talking me through it. “You got this.” And I think at one point, we had so many people in the birth room, but I didn’t know. But I had like 10 people’s hands on me, nurses. And it was amazing.

– Yeah ’cause we had, ’cause I was rubbing her back, talking to her. Her mom was doing the hip squeeze. My mom was rubbing her feet. Then we had some friends come by, and they just kinda helped rub her back and help give her encourage that she could do this. So, then we had the deep theta going–

– Oh, yes.

– Like, right by her, I had it on my phone right by her ears, so she could hear it. It almost felt like we had a whole tribe there with the music and so many people. So I think that helped a lot too.

– It really did. Yeah, the deep theta helped too, and it felt like, okay, we’re in this village and tribe. And we’re gonna bring this beautiful baby into our tribe. So Erica was hearing that I wanted to have medicine, but she knew that before she gave me any medicine, she needed to check me. And if I was too far along, she knew I would be able to push through it. And so she asked me to stand up. And she checked me while I was still over the birth ball. And I guess when I stood up, she started laughing.

– Mm-hmm, yeah, she started laughing. And I was sitting there. And we were all getting pretty tired. And I didn’t know what she was laughing for, so it irritated me. I was about to say something to her, but then she was like, “Come here, give me your hand.” And I didn’t know what was going on. I was still trying to help her. And then next thing I know, they’re like, “You just need to give me one push.” And then one push came, and then all of a sudden our girl, Jocelyn, came out.

– Her face.

– And she started crying immediately. So got Davina up on the bed did skin-to-skin immediately. The cord stopped pulsing like a minute after cut it, which was an awesome experience. And then, oh, yeah, the placenta, Erica gave us a detailed explanation of it, showed it to us.

– It was awesome.

– Let us know everything about it. And then we got to spend time with our new daughter.

– Oh god, I’m gonna cry. Well, I was really irritated when she asked me to touch because I was just exhausted. But when I put my hand back there, I felt the top of her head, and just something came over me. And I just took a deep breath and pushed. And I felt her come out. And it was the most amazing feeling ever. Oh, I’m gonna cry. And then right after, we heard her scream, and I looked at her. And it’s kinda just like, oh, there you are. There you are. You’ve been here the whole time. It was amazing.

– So it was definitely us communicating. Any time we found new information or something we liked, we’d talk to each other. We’d always figure out what would work best for us. The comfort measures from the class helped really well ’cause I was nervous about, hey, what do I do besides just stand there, hold her hand, and say, you got this like I’m coaching a baseball team or something? Well, yeah, just a lotta communication between, or like, as soon as you find out you’re pregnant, start researching, figure out what means the most to you, how you want it to go. Go on a lotta tours to the hospitals. Just figure out exactly what you want. I would also get her in labor. Like, they taught that she’s gonna give her signal when she’s having a contraction. But later on in labor that doesn’t really happen, so you just need to pay attention and know. ‘Cause with her, she would just go silent and just be limp. And you kinda have to, okay, well, now I gotta go. And then you just gotta really be like, really be in the zone, like, the same zone she’s in almost.

– Definitely take classes. And we looked at different options for classes. There’s so many out there. And what we really benefited from was having an in-person class because we were able to ask questions right then and there. We were able to connect with other families that are doing this as well. And they had questions that we didn’t even think about, or they had different situations. And also, you gain a good support group as well. You are part of a community now, and that’s what’s really important and kinda helps you through prepping for the birth process, being a part of that birth process, and then after it as well. Yeah.

About the author:
Care is the founder of the Birth Education Center, San Diego HypnoBirthing and Cuddle Sanctuary San Diego. She is a Birth Educator, Hypnotherapist, Birth and Postpartum Doula, INNATE Care Provider, Erotic Blueprint Coach and also professional Cuddler. She specializes in connection work between people and increasing self boundaries for a more balanced life together.