Birth Story: An Unmedicated Home Birth after Miscarriage with Luisa Gates

Show Notes:

[2:00] Our Reviewer of the Week is Canadiandoctormom, who says, "Thank you for the great knowledge and support! I am a family Md/OB in Canada and currently pregnant with my 3rd. Though my knowledge base from my work is obviously more than a lot of people, the personal experience is always so different! My two babies to date have been born without complications and with the help of hypnobirthing unmedicated, and I love that there is a place I can listen to positive birth stories and direct my patients if they are feeling anxious or overwhelmed or not heard! I love listening and appreciate how you give evidence based, non biased opinions. I’ve already used some of your suggestions for the exercises, essential oils, etc. Now to work on having my husband listen along as well!"

[3:49] Our birth story is from Luisa Gates who lives in Eagle Mountain, Utah with her husband and baby. 

[5:16] Luisa shares about her past pregnancy experience, which ended in the miscarriage of her baby girl, Genevieve. She went into early labor because of an incompetent cervix, which is when your cervix starts to dilate early before it's time for the baby to come out. She went into labor at 26 weeks and lost the baby. She got pregnant again shortly after, and the doctor was able to put a stitch on her cervix to make sure it stayed closed. She was able to have a healthy birth at home. 

[7:44] Stephanie asked how Luisa was able to work through her fears of miscarriage. Luisa talked about how she prayed a lot because she didn't know what else to turn to. She had so much fear that she was going to lose this baby too. The only thing she knew to turn to was prayer and even then I was scared. She tried really hard to have happy thoughts, but those were hard to come by when she was scared of losing another baby. Once she had the surgery and passed 26 weeks, she knew if her baby was born then, her chances of him surviving have gone up so much. She thought if she could just make it to 30 weeks, then 32 weeks, and so on.

[9:10] Stephanie asks if she had any complications or other issues during pregnancy. Luisa's biggest issue was with her providers. She loved her doctor who was the one who was there for her when she lost Genevieve. As she started getting closer to birth and labor, she wanted to make sure that the doctor she saw in the emergency room the night she lost her baby, was not the one who would deliver her baby.  She was told that whoever was on call would deliver her baby, but she just didn't trust them, and she didn't want him to be the one to help deliver her baby.

[14:11] Luisa told her doctor that she wanted a home birth, and her doctor freaked out. Luisa was given podcasts and statistics from her midwife to equip her and empower her. Luisa had gone through a traumatic experience, but she didn't let that deter her or scare her away from having the birth experience she wanted. She met with several midwives and asked them questions until she found a midwife she resonated with. 

[15:34] Luisa's husband was nervous about having a home birth, but Luisa sent her husband podcasts from My Essential Birth along with others from her midwife until he felt more secure in the decision to do a home birth. She got the stitch taken out of her cervix at 36-37 weeks. 

[16:38] Luisa started doing the birth course around 26 weeks. She was scared to get invested since she lost her baby around then. She did a lot of meditations and labor rehearsals. Her husband also helped her by doing counter pressure. She also did lots of walks. 

[20:14] Luisa walks us through her first contractions through birth. She woke up in the middle of the night because she thought she was peeing. Her water had broken so she called her doula who said to just monitor her contractions and sleep if she could. She had an appointment with her midwife that day and went home. After a few hours, her contractions became more intense. Her doula came over once her contractions were 10 minutes apart. She felt like she needed to push, but her midwife said she was only 6 centimeters, and her baby was caught on the cervical lip which stalled her contractions. The midwife eventually had to push it out of the way, which was intense. She did a rotation of standing, squatting, and sitting, which eventually helped her baby come out. She also had affirmations all around her room that helped her push through. 

[28:47] Our bodies are so wise. If we allow ourselves to listen to our bodies, we can do this! In a hospital setting, a 45-minute stall is cause for panic! But at home, your body can rest before the hard part begins! Listen to your body. It's the same thing as being able to listen to yourself. Midwives are giving recommendations and that's great! You can take those, but women have the opportunity to listen to themselves as well, and trust that intuition.

[31:02] Luisa was 39 weeks and a few days when her water broke. Her first contractions felt like her uterus was tightening up, but then became a sharp pain down her back. Her contractions were more intense because her baby was in a posterior position. She talks about how easy it was to deliver her placenta even though it had an extra lobe because her body was ready. When she lost her baby, delivering the placenta was much more painful because her body was. not ready. 

[35:01] Luisa's advice for moms and dads: "Honestly, I feel like you don't really know until you know, but if you just like trust your instincts, your body really does know what you need and you know, what's best for you. And maybe that is a home birth or maybe that's not a home birth, but whatever it is, it's going to be what is right for you and your baby and you should just go with whatever your instincts tell you to. For dads, I think it's so important that that they listen to the podcast, and they do the exercises because when it comes to giving birth, your spouse really needs you there, and if you both are doing all that practice, you're so much better prepared, and you don't feel as scared when you go into it."

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