The End of a Chapter
It is with great sadness that we announce the closing of the birth center on September 30, 2012. We have been blessed to have attended over 700 births since 2003. It has been a great pleasure to work with our families and help them give birth in a safe, comfortable and supportive environment. Our belief in and support of women seeking natural childbirth in a setting of their choosing is unwavering. We are so sorry that our community will no longer have a birth center to serve those that want that option. Thank you so much for inviting us into your lives.
~The Greenhouse Birth Center Staff (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lola Elizabeth’s Birth Story
After big brother, Ethan’s, birth we were positive that we would never give birth in the hospital again. Although Ethan’s birth went well, we knew we could have an even better experience out of the hospital. We had already known about the Greenhouse and knew that would be where you would be born. We had taken Heather’s birth classes when pregnant with Ethan and were lucky enough to have Mitzi and Julie as doulas at Ethan’s birth. We both already felt very comfortable at the GBC even before we started our care there. Our prenatal care was absolutely wonderful and both your Dad and I were at ease. We decided not to have an ultrasound this time around and at times I worried that may have been a bad idea but overall I knew it was the best choice for us. Your pregnancy could not have gone any better. I never had morning sickness and throughout the pregnancy I had a lot of energy. I was still able to run and pretty much do anything I wanted.
When 38 weeks rolled around I started getting anxious to go into labor. I still felt great but I just wanted to meet you so darn bad! Your brother came a few days early so I kind of expected that you would as well. Everyday Daddy would ask if I thought I would go into labor that day, this started getting old real fast, lol. When I hit 40 weeks I was shocked that I was still pregnant and felt like I may be pregnant forever. I think Daddy was more anxious then me at this point. I went to work Monday, 40 weeks, 1 day pregnant and of course everyone was asking when I was going to have you. I started mentally preparing myself to be pregnant for another week. When I left work Monday night I told everyone I would see them tomorrow because I was sure I wouldn’t go into labor overnight. That night after dinner I decided I better get on the treadmill so I could at least feel like I was doing something to persuade you to come out. I was able to run 1.5 miles and walk another 1.5 miles. After I got done I was a little crampy but surely didn’t think labor would start anytime soon.
We gave big brother, Ethan, a bath and both Daddy and I read him some books in his bed. Before we left the room I gave him extra kisses just in case I went into labor that night and wouldn’t see him in the morning. Daddy and I watched some TV and then went to bed. Around 3:00am I woke up to a somewhat painful contraction. I went to the bathroom and much to my surprise had some bloody show. I tried to lie back down but decided that I was never going to fall back asleep so I got up and started cleaning things around the house and getting everything ready to go. I didn’t want to wake Daddy until I knew for sure this was it. I went downstairs and got on the computer. Around 4:00am Daddy woke up and asked if I was in labor. I said, “Yeah I am pretty sure this is it”. At this point I wasn’t really timing my contractions but I think they were about 5-8 minutes apart but were not extremely painful yet. Daddy put in a Seinfeld DVD and I sat on the exercise ball while we watched a couple episodes. At about 5:00am Daddy thought we should call my mom (Grandma Dickinson) since she was going to come over to watch your big brother. She got over here very quickly and by this time I was having contractions that were way more intense and were about 3-5 minutes apart.
We decided to call the birth center just before 6. I talked to both Kip and Clarice and told them we were coming over because I was surely in labor. I was hesitant to do this because I didn’t want to get there too early in labor, but with a 30 minute drive ahead of us I knew we probably should go, of course Grandma and Daddy both had to persuade me to come to this conclusion. I told Grandma I don’t really want to do this anymore, this is not fun. I remember saying, I hope it is over by noon because I don’t know if I can handle anymore than that. She assured me that everything would go great and we were going to meet you very soon. Of course before we left I updated Facebook of my current status. We left around 6:15 and by this time I was having very intense contractions and some were coming back to back. The roads ended up being bad because of some fresh snow. Daddy had to drive very slow but I honestly didn’t notice because I was having contractions that were now VERY intense and quite close together with some more that were back to back. This was taking all my focus so the last thing on my mind was how slow we were driving.
round 7:00am we finally arrived and when I walked in I was like, “I don’t really want to do this this right now, this is too painful.” Of course, I am sure both Kip and Clarice had heard that before. The tub was all ready for me and candles were lit. The room was so peaceful. Clarice asked if I wanted to be checked and I was unsure because I was scared that she would tell me that I was only a 3 and that was going to really be hard to hear. I decided to have her check anyway and she said I was an 8-9 and fully effaced! I was just so relieved and yet nervous at the same time. I got into the tub and it felt wonderful. I was having contractions that were very painful and I remember I was saying that I wish I could have a break. I leaned over the edge of the tub and Daddy put a cold wash cloth on my face. I started to feel lots of pressure in my butt and now started to push with contractions. I kept saying this is too hard I can’t do it. Clarice just kept calmly telling me that I was doing great and the baby would be here soon. She told me to reach down and feel for the baby. I felt my water bag but I still felt like I had a long way to go.
Now I started to get real serious with my pushes but still kept saying that I couldn’t do it anymore. I was really vocalizing at this point. After another push I felt your water break. I think I had one or two more pushes and your head and then body were out. Clarice guided you underwater to my hands, and I reached down and grabbed you. It was the most amazing feeling I have ever had. Less than an hour after we walked in the door you were born! We still didn’t know what you were at this point. I laid back and held you, I think I started calling you a he because then Clarice was also calling you a he. I decided to finally look between your legs and MUCH to my surprise you were a little girl! I looked at daddy and said "It’s a GIRL!" He and I were both in absolute shock, Kip captured the perfect picture of my reaction. Daddy had tears rolling down his face. Throughout the pregnancy I never allowed myself to believe that I could have a daughter even though I have always really wanted one. Now we have you and you are so lucky to have a wonderful big brother to look out for you. I feel like the luckiest Mom in the whole world to have both a son and now a beautiful daughter.
After another 10 minutes your placenta was out and you stayed attached to it. The placenta was put into a bowl and Daddy got to hold you while I got out of the tub and cleaned up. Then you and Daddy came to bed with me along with the placenta that was covered up because Daddy didn’t think he could look at it. We all laid in bed for the next hour and you nursed like a little champ. Then, Daddy got to cut your cord because it had stopped pulsating and he did so well! He was a bit unsure if he would be able to cut it because he wasn't able to stomach cutting your brother’s. For the next few hours we all laid in bed, ate some food, and just enjoyed your presence. Kip brought in her laptop so I could again update Facebook. I had to let everyone know that you had arrived. Kip did your newborn assessment and weighed and measured you. Much to our surprise you weighed in at 8lbs 12 oz and were 22 inches in length! We were expecting you to be much smaller and you ended up being only 3oz smaller than your big brother.
We then had an herbal bath together and then got ready to go home. Your placenta was set aside for Jaime to come pick it up and encapsulate. We left around 3:00pm and were back home to meet big brother Ethan by 3:30pm. I still can’t believe how fast everything happened! It was such an amazing experience and we are so lucky to have the Greenhouse in our lives. You are now 3 days old and your big brother is loving you more each day. You are nursing extremely well and I feel absolutely great! You are such an easy-going baby and an absolute joy in our lives. Shelie will be here tonight for a home visit and she is bringing me my placenta pills, which I am really excited about.
Now I have the task of convincing Daddy that we need give you a younger sibling so that we can come back to the Greenhouse for another wonderful birth experience. I am pretty sure over the next couple of years I can do it.