"I am so in love. This baby boy is so stinkin cute and perfect. I had the best team of midwives. Liz O'Shea, Amy E. Miller, and Andrea Goldstein walked alongside one of my strangest and hardest labors yet. Thank you for all you do and keep doing it. Yesterday would have looked very different if I had been in the care of a hospital and I am so grateful that we had a beautiful and healthy homebirth." ~ Jessica Cote
"I am incredibly thankful for midwives who allow me to birth the way my body instructs. I gave birth to my 6th baby March 5th 2015. He brought a tremendous snowstorm in his wake but that did not stop the attendance of fantastic loving midwives to witness his entrance earthside. Because of an unexpected crazy fast birth for our fifth, our amazing student midwife came beating down the door to make sure we had all we needed when she was called for our sixth. She layed all the materials out and listened intently when I expressed where I wanted my baby to be born. I don't birth well on soft surfaces, I needed to be on the floor and my wishes were granted. I birthed my baby freely with me and me alone guiding the atmosphere. I asked not to be touched and it was granted. I absolutely adore the team of midwives I chose to share my birth with. Respect, love, joy, strength. It is a wonderful thing to be supported by women who are confident in you and your baby. I would never birth any other way." ~ Nicole Pagnotta
Adelaide Kolette Trenary was born on 2-22-15 at 4:47 p.m. at home, weighing 10 lbs 14 oz, 21.5" long...after 2 hours and 22 minutes of labor!
On Saturday 2/21, my blood pressure was really high (it had been creeping higher and higher over the last 2 weeks of pregnancy). My midwife, Liz, wanted me to go to the hospital for a possible induction. She had to break that news, or idea, to me gently because it was definitely NOT something that I had wanted. She didn't want that for us either, but her gut was telling her that if I didn't get checked out by an OB in Labor and Delivery, then I could possibly seize with the blood pressure spiking during and after labor. I protested a bit and told her that I wanted to see if my BP would drop a little bit if I were to get in the birth pool. We were getting ready to set up the pool, when the birth assistant Amy called and talked with Danny, explaining it was probably not going to change anything, and it was in our best interest to get to the hospital. So, for the sake of our unborn child, we put away the birth pool. I went to the bedroom and just fell on the floor crying and praying. I was so disheartened. I was sad for 2 big reasons. #1 being that I just had no peace at all about being tied up basically with tubes and an IV, and giving birth on my back (been there, done that - times three). #2 big reason for being upset was that we don't have health insurance, and that bill would be at least $10,000. So I prayed and prayed, and just gave my life, my day, and my baby back over to God... just trusting in Him and that His plan is perfect. The thought that maybe I would need an intervention and possibly a c-section was on my mind, and breaking my heart the entire ride to the hospital. I should also mention that this was during a huge snow storm. They were calling for about 8-10 inches of snow, and we already had 4 on the ground. My mom was at our house with the older 4 kids, which was a huge blessing and provision from God. We took the pickup to Winchester and checked into L&D. My Dad met us there, and he was very giddy. He actually had gone to get a haircut just a few minutes before meeting us - because he wanted to "look good for Adelaide". That's so adorable.
I'm going to skip through this part pretty fast... urine test was perfect, NST was fabulous, blood tests were outstanding, BP was great. I got sent home with blessings from the OB to have the home birth. So I'm not sure WHY God had us going there, but I know there was a good reason. Danny and I stayed the night at my parent's house that night since they live only 5 minutes from the Winchester Medical Center, and also, remember? Snow storm. Could not have possibly driven back to Inwood - 20 min away on a clear day.
That night Danny and I were bored out of our minds... there were no kids to entertain us. Normally we would have enjoyed it, but there was just not a thing on TV, and we couldn't exactly cuddle because of being 41 weeks pregnant - just not possible.
We went to bed at 9:30pm, but I couldn't hardly fall asleep because I couldn't check on the kids... Ahhh I love them so much! I just had to fall asleep trusting that the kids were sleeping peacefully with Grandma at home.
The next morning, all we had on our minds was getting home and having a baby! The sun was up and melting all the snow on the roads, everything was gorgeous, all the conditions were perfect. The next day was going to be icy and horrible. So I knew this just had to be the day! We rushed home, texted Liz and got the go-ahead to take some castor oil. I ate a big lunch, and at noon I drank 2 oz of castor oil, waited an hour, drank 2 more oz... and then the magic started to happen LOL. About an hour after everything started to "work"... I was lying on the bed watching a documentary and I felt 2 big contractions - one on top of the other. I couldn't even get out of bed, they were so bad. Which was awesome!!! I got up finally when they had ended, and went to the bathroom.... texted Liz from the toilet (yes, indeedy)... telling her that I was pretty sure this was labor, but not positive. I got in the tub with my bathing suit on.... texted Danny and told him he might want to come home (he had gone to work with my blessing...). I asked Mom to text Grace to see if she could come. Originally I had told Grace I didn't need her this time (my doula and friend), but something changed when I knew this was labor. I knew my midwife, Amy, and Andrea (the other birth assistant) were coming from over 30 minutes away and I knew it'd be a quick labor. I know Grace has caught babies, so I just needed her there! I texted Mary and told her to come. I enjoyed the warm water as the contractions were coming on stronger. I knew it was labor at this time. I was SO excited!!! It was 3:20 pm when I sent those text messages. Danny got there and I told Mary to tell him to set the pool up. The kids were excitedly running around the house!. I barely had a chance to say two things to Danny. Dad showed up at some point, and took the kids back to the boys' room. I texted Liz and Amy at 3:50 pm saying "DEFINITELY LABOR. I bet she'll be here by 5."
At this point I was in the living room, getting in the birth pool even though there was only about 4 inches of water. It wasn't warm. The hot water heater had worked as hard as it could, so now the team - my mom, Mary, and Danny, were working on filling pots with water and trying to get some boiling water in the pool. The contractions were painful. I needed the music (spotify playlist) turned down. It was time to focus. I was almost ready to push. That freaked me out a bit because this was SUPER fast. Amy showed up at some point and started giving orders. Next thing I know, she's telling me that I need to get out of the pool since I feel the need to push. The water isn't going to be warm enough and could hurt my baby. Hurt my baby. "Hurt my baby" It was her words that carried my body out of that birth pool. I did NOT want to get out! But I couldn't let something happen to my baby ;).
It was all out of my control. But God knew what needed to happen. I trusted Him and I knew he gave me a great birth team with a lot of knowledge. Andrea had shown up at some point. I did not know what time. Then next thing I know I'm doing is --- leaning over the couch, pushing. I heard Liz. She was there but I had not seen her yet. She and the other girls were all encouraging me. All the while, Danny was there by my side, sitting uncomfortably on a crock pot (so he told me later), as I was squeezing the life out of his hands during contractions (I do have a foggy memory of this). Mary was snapping pictures and taking videos. Mom was there, talking and watching. Grace had been applying pressure to the center of my lower back almost the entire hour that I was in hard labor, from the time I felt like I needed to push, all the way through until the baby came out. I don't really know much else. Not sure who told me to do this, probably Liz, but I was told to lift one leg up. SO I had been in a squatting position, but then lifted up one leg so that one foot was flat on the floor, and the rest of my weight was resting on my opposite knee. I was pushing through all of this, grunting of course very low, and LOUD... and then another good piece of advice came through to me - Amy told me to use all that strength - that I was using for my sounds - turn it inward and use it all for pushing. It was like a light bulb went off. Of course! So I started doing that. And I felt the ring of fire. I felt the baby coming. I felt that I was opening up. Liz said to switch legs, so I put my right foot on the floor and knelt on my left knee. Amy was feeling for baby - said she felt her and she was coming. That's all the encouragement I needed. I know it was about 3 more contractions, and finally I pushed her out!
At one point during the pushing - Danny asked me, "Are you okay?" in the most concerned and sweet and supportive husband voice. Through my pain, I thought, "What a horrible thing to ask", but I also saw the humor in it, and I want to remember that forever. He later told me he knew it was a stupid question, but he cared so much and didn't know what to say. I love that man. This was the first birth that I felt him WITH me, going through the pain with me. At one point I was basically biting his hand, and he was in pain with me.
When Adelaide came out, it felt like forever before I was able to see her (in reality it was only about 20-30 seconds!!).. I was leaning over the couch, and they were wiping her down behind me. I heard Mary say how beautiful she was, and that she heard her cry. I heard a brief cry from her too. It was gorgeous. I heard Liz say she was covered in vernix, and from the video I watched afterwards- she certainly was a white slimy mess. A beautiful mess.
I really felt like several minutes had gone by so I told Grace I wanted to see the baby. Grace was quick to request that for me, and they slipped the baby up between my legs, where I finally got to hold her. Liz told me to turn around and sit on my bum, so that they could examine everything and help me with the afterbirth. Let me just tell you - Adelaide's eyes were wide open and we definitely had a moment. Danny had tears just springing from his face. What a wonderful moment. After I birthed the after birth, and the cord stopped pulsating, Danny cut the cord, and he got to hold Adelaide. He held her for quite a while, and all the kids met her for the first time while she was in Daddy's arms. Not sure how long it was until I got to nurse her but I'm guessing 20 minutes. I was all checked out on the couch, and ready to latch. That baby was and is the best latcher of all my kids. She is a little tongue tied but she isn't letting it stop her from getting her meals. She's a great nurser, and a sweet little baby girl. Can't imagine life without her - and it's only been 10 days since she entered this world. ~ Katie Trenary
Carsien Jones' Birth Story
On the evening of Tuesday August 18th as I sat on the couch watching TV with my 3 year old and my Husband, I started to feel these little twinges in my abdomen. These were not unfamiliar to me though since I had them come and go for the past month as my body's own little practice runs. This time I was not going to call anyone or mention anything until I was sure the baby was on his way. So I made my way upstairs, got my little boy ready for bed and went to sleep. This didn't last as long as I would have liked it to though. At 3 A.M. I woke to those same twinges and decided to get up and get a nice hot shower, do my hair and make-up because at an enormous 41 weeks pregnant, this was becoming more and more of a reality. Some women carry their babies with adorable tiny little bellies and have 6-8lb babies. I am not one of those women. By the end of my pregnancy the maternity clothes that I had bought in a size bigger (knowing how much I would grow), I had grown out of any way. At my 36 week appointment my back up care provider (who was supposed to be a midwife) told me that I needed to prepare for an epidural and start doing things to get the baby out as soon as possible because this was "going to be a 10lb baby". She even sent me for a growth scan because at the hospital they do not allow you much leniency with having big babies. This midwife sent me into a panic and I talked to Liz and Amy about my concerns at the next appointment. They reassured me and told me they have seen 12 lb babies born naturally and that my body would have my baby when it was ready for him to come.
At 4 A.M. I pulled out the birthing tub and laid it flat on the floor of our living room. By 5 A.M. I sent a "warning text" to Liz telling her that I was having irregular contractions and that they had been coming since the night before. She called and while on the phone I experienced bloody show. She said she would send over Amy to check me and see if this was finally the real thing! Amy came around 8:30 and my excitement turned into determination. I was only 3 1/2 cm dilated and my contractions were nothing like they had been with my first son. I made the mistake of assuming that this labor would be a lot like my first son's labor and delivery. I figured that was just how my body delivered babies; everything was perfectly timed and contractions grew in duration by the second and they became perfectly closer together. But like this pregnancy was different from the last, so was this birth different from the last. They were coming between 2 and 7 minutes apart and the durations were anywhere from 20 seconds to 60 seconds. Amy said "try having breakfast, going for a walk and then come home and lay down for a nap. Sometimes that burst of energy followed by the rest brings labor on stronger." So I looked at my husband and said "lets go out for breakfast!". We sat down at the table and I was realizing that the contractions were not as comfortable to sit though as they were to stand through. We ordered our food and monitored my contractions but they remained scattered at best. We told the waitress I was in labor and had some good laughs over breakfast. When we had finally finished, we decided we were going to go shopping for a few toys to keep our son busy while I was in labor, so off to the outlets we went! We got there at about 11:30 and walked from shop to shop enjoying each contraction and the idea that we were getting closer to meeting our sweet baby. By the time we got to the car I was pausing with each contraction and figured I would go home, put our son down for a nap and try to nap with him. As soon as I laid down I realized that was a pretty unrealistic goal. My contractions had gotten strong enough that I could no longer lay on my side. It was definitely my least favorite position. It was about 1 P.M. when Amy stopped back to check me and told me that I was 6cm dilated. Anticipation and adrenaline washed over me knowing for sure that this was it.
My husband started to set up and fill the birth pool and I continued standing and working the baby down with lunges and stretches. I kept thinking when will my contractions become regular like before? As far as discomfort goes during labor I remember thinking "WOW I could do this again! 6 cm dilated and walking/talking/lunging/laughing through contractions? This is cake!". I got into the birth tub and relaxed, enjoying the relief of no body weight and the warmth of the water. Intermittently Amy and Liz would check the baby's heart beat and my cervix. I held my husband and he squeezed my pelvis or pushed my tail bone with each contraction. At about 5:00 they said I could start pushing with contractions and about a half hour later they told me that I had a little bit of a lip now from pushing and I needed to take the pressure off of my cervix so I could reduce the swelling. That meant a really uncomfortable change in positions and no pushing which was definitely when I started thinking "okay maybe this is not cake!".
I stayed in the pool on my back for what seemed like an eternity. I prayed, cried, and most definitely yelled. Each desperate cry led me closer to our baby. I prayed out loud, "God PLEASE let him come. PLEASE!" over and over again. My mom sat behind me kissing my forehead and praying in my ear. My little boy came over to me to hold my hand, giving me hugs and kisses. Everything was quiet except me. The intensity was building and Liz finally told me, "If you get up and walk to the bedroom that will help the baby come down". I pretended I didn't hear that suggestion and hoped it would go away but she continued. "It's time for a change in positions. Sometimes that change is what is needed." I said "I don't think I can get up" so they were there to help me. My husband came in front of me and someone grabbed my arms and I relied on them for their support. I stepped out of the tub and was hit with a contraction. This one was rough. I took a few steps and was hit with another, and another, back to back. I thought the hallway had stretched! When would I get to my bed? I finally collapsed into the bed, pulled myself onto my side as someone pushed a pillow between my legs and I endured the most painful contraction that I had up until that point. Someone said "the first contraction in a new position is the hardest". They were not joking. Liz crawled into the bed with me and held my hand for a couple contractions and when Liz got up, my sister did the same. The contractions continued and Liz said she was going to insert some primrose oil to help my cervix dilate so we could get the baby past that lip. I rolled onto my back. She started to massage the oil on and with the next contraction told me to push. My husband crawled next to my head on the bed and my son on the other side of my head. I grabbed the back of my legs and I pushed. The contraction stopped and I waited for the next and I pushed again. I repeated this about 3 or 4 times and finally his head was out. At the time I didn't realize his head was out and I was waiting for the next contraction! I waited and then pushed against the pressure and with that push our sweet baby was out. At 8:05 PM Liz and Amy "caught" and he was placed right on my chest. We rubbed him and he left out a little cry. He was big and squishy with lots of baby rolls and a full head of hair! I held him and kissed him and welcomed him to the world. In a few minutes my husband cut the cord. They listened to his lungs and heart while he laid in my arms. There is nothing on this earth that smells better than your own newborn baby.
In a very easy push I birthed the placenta. I put him to my breast and he nursed like a champ. Within an hour Amy picked him up to measure and weigh him. This was the second biggest event of the night. We had all taken guesses on the size of the baby because we were both growing so much. At my 39 week appointment they guessed he was between 8.5-9LBS and it had been a whole two weeks since then! They measured him first and he was 22 3/4 inches long! Next they wrapped him in the sling and hooked him to the weight. He weighed 10lbs 8 oz! In that moment I felt like a champion. I was so proud of the journey he had taken to get here and so in love with this precious new baby. I was so proud of my body and all it had accomplished. I had most definitely earned the right to the stretch marks and I would wear them proudly. I wanted to call the midwife who tried to scare me into an unnecessary intervention and parade my sweet chunky baby in her face. I was so absolutely blessed to have found a midwife team who would help me birth this big boy in the peace and security of my own home surrounded by people who I knew, trusted, and were all so dear to my heart.
Thank you Liz, Amy, and Andrea for rising above the stigma of our health care system to help women birth their babies where they are most at peace. Thank you for taking the time to get to know us and our family and for being a part of our lives. We count each of you as a blessing. ~ Brieann Jones
Birth matters. It brings us into being, on many levels." ~ Ananda Lowe