The Birth Story of Matilda Jae Whaley (Part 1)
Two weeks ago today I was spending the day laying in bed, trying to sleep and stay as cool and calm as I could. I was approaching 42 weeks in my pregnancy and our induction had been rescheduled. We were supposed to go in that morning to Henry Ford West Bloomfield at 10am but they were full of laboring moms or moms needing an induction for a medical reason. Needless to say, I was frustrated, angry, and anxious.
My pregnancy up until this point had not been an easy one, which was difficult for me mentally because my pregnancy with Tegan had been a breeze. With Matilda I was super nauseous for the first few months. Tegan had brought home not just a severe head cold in December to share with me but the stomach flu in February. By the time I had switched doctors I was weighing less than my pre-pregnancy weight. This might not all seem to difficult to work through but what made this harder mentally was the fact that we had two miscarriages before conceiving this baby. Last summer when we started trying to conceive I experienced whats called a chemical pregnancy one month and the following month had an actual positive pregnancy test for 3 weeks and then lost the baby.
When you experience a loss like this it's very difficult to not think you or your body did something wrong. So when I physically struggled during my pregnancy, my mind would often worry about losing this baby as well.
Beyond the typical pregnancy symptoms and changes our family went through some intense growth as well. My husband was offered a job in Clawson which stirred us to look into moving since we lived a half hour away in Waterford. So we began the fun task of fixing up our first house to sell and finding a new place to live closer to his new job. We moved to our new home in May and closed on our old house at the end of June. I know, cutting it a little close to my due date.
All of these things were immensely wonderful for our family but a lot of the behind the scenes work fell on my shoulders, all while I still ran my own business and attended births as a birth doula. It was after one particularly long and difficult labor that I first experienced pre-term labor. I was only 28/29 weeks pregnant. Naturally this brought up a lot of anxiety from our previous losses. This is where my work really made a difference for me. I had to dig deep into my relaxation practice, listen to my body, and find rest. There were a few more episodes of pre-term labor that almost sent us to the hospital but we made it to 36 weeks and I felt like I could breathe again knowing our growing babe was at a healthy age, if they wanted to meet us early.
Little did I know that Matilda, or Tills as I like to call her, wouldn't join us for another month and a half! At my 38 week appointment Dr Prezzato was convinced that our babe would arrive any day. I was already dialated to 2cm and about 60% effaced. Not to mention the baby's head was engaged and was at about a 0/+1 station. Plenty of low pressure and good alignment had me convinced I'd be holding this babe before my birthday in July. From about that appointment until our induction date I had multiple episodes of what felt like the start of labor. Throughout any given day I would have 4-5 big contractions that would take my breath away and would require my full attention. You can imagine that this got old REAL QUICK.
I went to Optimal Wellness Family Chiropractic every week and my alignment was great. I slept on my left side, did my relaxation work at least every other day, and was fully excited and ready to meet this babe. And so was Tegan. She had woken up many mornings with tears in her eyes, asking why the baby wasn't here yet. KILL ME.
On Monday, July 16th I had an appointment with Dr Prezzato. The frustrating false labor had me exhausted, mostly because it would happen at night so I wasn't sleeping well. I found myself at the same crossroads that I was with my pregnancy with Tegan. I had a very similar experience with her. Lot's of false labor and because of this, chose an induction at 11 days after my due date. I felt completely defeated. Why was my body doing this to me again? I had done everything right. I did all the Spinning Babies things. I was getting regular adjustments. I was resting and putting my physical health at top priority. So what the hell?!?
At that appointment I told him I was done. I felt exhausted beyond belief and I needed this to be over. He very wisely suggested I give myself a little more time and a little more rest before doing anything. That while he knew I was at the end of my rope physically and mentally, a few days to rest at home would benefit me in the long run if we needed to schedule an induction. I agreed and spent the rest of that week basically horizontal. I'm glad we followed his advice because I was going to need all the strength I could muster to bring this little girl into the world. Story continued in Part 2!