The amazing Andrea Scarberry, Tatum Marie (4), and Silas Michael (16 mo).
Andrea says that she feels thankful to have had fairly easy pregnancies with both of her kids. She had minor bouts of nausea in the first trimester with both of them, but otherwise no major complaints. When she was pregnant with her daughter she was set on an unmedicated hospital birth, and the midwife group and hospital that she chose prepared to assist her in reaching that goal. She and her husband attended the childbirth classes, read books, and prepared as much as they could. She went into early labor a few days past her due date and tried her best to rest. She labored at home through the following afternoon and then made their way to the hospital. Her water broke after about an hour in triage, and she was admitted to a room. She already knew she wanted an epidural, but made it another couple of hours in the tub without one before making the request.
She remembers hanging out laughing and joking with her family and friends and before she knew it she was ready to push. The labor and delivery staff were training an EMT on how to deliver babies than night, and the midwife asked if she would allow him to help deliver hers. "I was totally comfortable with that, and thought it was so cool that his very first delivery would be for my very first baby. I'll never forget the way I felt when she came out. You see a lot of people cry with joy when their babies are born, and I totally thought I would too. But I laughed! I was so happy, I couldn't stop laughing".
As she approached her due date with her son, Andrea was already attached to the idea of an epidural, since her experience had been so good the first time around and was worried that things would happen too fast and she wouldn't have a chance to get one in time. She made it to 41 weeks with him still snugly nestled inside and her midwife offered to induce me that week, since she would be on duty. Andrea agreed but was really nervous going into induction without knowing what it would be like. She woke up the morning of her induction with mild contractions and proceeded with the induction. Once Pitocin was started, things progressed quickly. "I was set up with the smallest dosage they could administer, and within a couple of hours I was in full-on labor, my water had broken, and I was ready for an epidural. As it was being placed, I was beginning to feel the pressure to push. Again, I had a wonderful experience with the epidural, and received it just in the knick of time". Delivery went smoothly and Andrea says that once again, she couldn't help but laugh from joy once he was earthside.
"Being a mother has changed me at my core. I was uncomfortable in my body for as long as I can remember, until I got pregnant for the first time. It was like a switch flipped, and I suddenly understood that there was a greater purpose for my body beyond looking smokin' in a swimsuit. Today, I feel strong, confident, and happy, just the way I am. I carried and then breast-fed two children, and I am so proud of what my body has done for me. I am so grateful to feel the way I do about my body today. I stand in awe of what it has created and sustained. It feels so freeing to let go of all the discomfort and self-consciousness I carried for so long. I also think there's a lot to be said for positive birth stories. Moms-to-be need to know that it doesn't have to be scary, and it can be wonderful. There are so many things that can happen through conception, pregnancy, labor and delivery, and I don't ever take my experiences for granted. My wish is for every mother to go into her birth feeling confident, informed, supported, and unashamed of her decisions".