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Yara's Birth Story

Just a few short years later I found myself expecting my next bundle of joy. I celebrated my twenty-first birthday five months pregnant. At that point, I had started down the path to healthier living because Aiden had so many health scares and allergies throughout his little life. We ate cleanly, we were incredibly active, and although I worked almost eighty hours a week to care for him, I felt great throughout my pregnancy. 

On December 30th, 2007 while playing Monopoly with my mother at 230am, my waters began to trickle as I leaned over to move my playing piece. I wasn’t due until the seventh of January. I hadn’t had any contractions so I decided to go home to shower and pack a hospital bag. As I began my long walk up to my third-floor apartment my water released dramatically through the open stairwell…all while my neighbor was walking up the flight below me with groceries. He got a little extra seasoning neither of us expected that day. 

Around 530am I arrived at the hospital and checked myself in where I was met by my mother. This time, it was just my mother and my best friend doula-ing me through this labor. I was calmer going in as I thought I knew what to expect after having experienced a “normal” birth. Pitocin was administered of course. I knew I couldn’t bear the pain of another pitocin labor so I signed up for the walking epidural immediately in hopes that I would have more control over my body and movements and be able to birth without support or coaching, except that this time…it provided zero relief when it was necessary. Knowing it was supposed to be working didn't, sent me into a panic. I felt so out of control. I remember the doctors checking for dilation and seeing that I was “only a six”, so they decided to leave the room. Almost immediately, I began to feel my sweet child come down all on their own. I never pushed - not even once. I’ve since learned that FER is not typical in augmented labor. My best friend yelled out into the hallway for the doctor and was told that he was unavailable and I had plenty of time since I was only six centimeters. A few minutes later she yelled back out into the hallway again saying the baby was coming out and the doctor made it back in there just in time to catch them and reprimand me for being so loud as I was going to scare the other laboring mothers. I’m not even sure he had time to put his gloves on it was so fast. At 315pm Yara was born with a nuchal hand - where their hand and head came out at the same time causing bruising and a broken nose - weighing in at seven pounds three ounces and nineteen inches long. They were tiny and perfect. I was moved into a recovery room almost immediately, and almost immediately after that, the epidural kicked in. For the next several hours I was forced to use a catheter as I couldn’t feel my legs or anything else to use the restroom myself.

I was sent home in less than twenty-four hours and it took almost ten days for my milk to come in. I was a hypervigilant mother with lots of self-education this time trying to listen to my intuition and advocate for my baby alongside the doctors in our life that were giving me all sorts of outdated, incorrect, and often contradictory advice. I had never been more frustrated and confused, made to feel insignificant and uneducated. In so many instances my gut was right, but it took years to get doctors to entertain my requests to confirm things Yara was struggling with. 

I grew though. My voice became stronger and I continued to research and learn. I was coming into my power as a mother slowly but surely, and my doula experience continued to grow as my passion for advocating for birthing people increased.

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