Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Faerylady's VBAC client had her baby in the wee hours of this AM. She was letting me primary the birth in hopes of signing off another one. It was a transport. She got to 10 cm, verrrrryyy slowly. Then pushed for many hours. She made some progress, but the biparietal diameter never got past zero station. My stubby fingers were having trouble reaching far enough in to get a good feel, but evidently, it was only the molding that made it feel like the baby was making more progress. Finally the mom said she couldn't do it anymore and I agreed that it looked like the baby just wasn't going to come out that way. The baby was just over 8 pounds, so not too big. Why was this baby wedged so tightly in there? Why did the mom's pelvis close instead of open when she opened her legs? (I felt it do this. Weird)

The mom feels good about her decision. I am sad. I always hate transports.

I also always look back and wonder if there was something I could have done better or differently. In this case, I don't think so.

Some of my thoughts from this birth:

At one point, about 4 hours into the pushing, when I started to worry that the baby was NCO (Not Coming Out), I had a sudden and powerful urge to snap off my gloves and tell Faerylady that I didn't want to do this anymore and I wanted her to take over. I didn't, and I kept the sentiment to myself, but it was there, nonetheless. Sort of a "I dont' want to keep telling her there is no progress. Maybe FaeryLady can make something happen that I cannot." But she couldn't have either.

I was ruminating on how this work that is so essential to my being is so impossible for some folks to comprehend. I was thinking of some apprentices who come to a practice and then complain that they have to stay up all night. Hello? What do they think a birth is?

I would occasionally lay down on the floor next to the birth pool and close my eyes. After being awake for 36 hours straight, I start to feel a weird buzzy surreal sort of feeling. As I would close my eyes, I could feel sleep creeping up and caressing me with velvet fingers, whispering sweet nothings into my ear and pulling me into the depths of dreams.... then the mom would moan and UP guilt would yank me again to remind her to keep a low voice and an open throat. The dad was not very involved (slept all night) at first, so I needed to do all her labor support. It is tough being midwife and doula.

I had to take Posie and my 12 year old daughter with me, and they were absolutely wonderful the entire time. I was at the couple's house for 26 hours, plus the 2.5 hours driving time each way.

This picture was taken at the birth, while Posie and my daughter played in the afternoon.

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