#185 | Reyna's Unmedicated Twin Birth Against Doctors' Orders

November 2, 2022

When Reyna learned she was pregnant with twins she was told  she would need to be induced and get an epidural and that there was no point in staying pregnant beyond thirty-eight weeks. Refusing induction, she went into labor naturally at  39+2.  As labor progressed, her obstetrician told her she needed to give birth in the operating room. Without a second thought, Reyna turned and said, "No, I am not giving birth in the OR."  Instead, she went into the bathroom, dropped to her hands and knees and created a safe, quiet space for herself while her OB pleaded with her to at least allow her to "deliver" her babies.  "No, I don't like you!" Reyna responded. This is an inspiring and courageous twin birth story showing what is possible when a woman takes absolute full responsibility for her birth choices regardless of who attends her birth or where. 

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And they started scaring me with well, you have to be induced or your babies are going to die. You have to have an epidural because you'll probably need a C section and it's unsafe for you to not have an epidural you have to deliver in the O R. And the whole time that they're telling me these things. I'm like, so annoyed with them. And feeling like they're telling me we don't know how to deliver twins unmedicated. And so that made me feel very unsafe. I was like, obviously, you don't have experience. And I told her I'm not going.

I'm Cynthia Overgard, owner of HypnoBirthing of Connecticut, childbirth advocate and postpartum support specialist. And I'm Trisha Ludwig, certified nurse midwife and international board certified lactation consultant. And this is the Down To Birth Podcast. Childbirth is something we're made to do. But how do we have our safest and most satisfying experience in today's medical culture? Let's dispel the myths and get down to birth.So I'm Reina mustard. I live in Utah and I have four children. So my first two were I had an epidural with my first and my second I had a beautiful, like my dream birth right? unmedicated. Everything was so perfect. And so I found out I was pregnant again, and was really excited to have another natural birth. And now it's my midwives. And then there was two babies. Well, we were super excited and shocked. And they said, Okay, so we can't take care of you. Because in the state of Utah, midwives can't deliver twins, or for twin pregnancy was this also was a planned hospital or home birth and was your second hospital or home.

So it had been a hospital birth with my last one. And I was hoping to be able to do a home birth with this one. And I just went to my old midwife group who didn't do home births. But you know, just for the initial and then I was going to start looking.

I'm always curious to know how these laws get passed in states, like how did it come to be that someone appealed to Congress of all the things that they could be doing to better the lives of people who was so motivated to get to Congress and get a law passed that disallows midwives from supporting women? Having twins? It's a it's an impingement freedom. And was it like one thing that happened? And they built a case for it? And what incentive? Did they have to build a case for it? If that is what happened? Or is it something else? Right, I think it's more that when midwives get licensed in the state, they try to make it as restrictive as possible. Because what it is it competes, it's competitive. So it's initially when the legislation, the licensure is passed, and then you have to fight harder, they make it as restrictive as possible. So you have to fight harder over time to get more privileges.

Yes. And it's, it was totally ridiculous to me the whole time I was thinking, okay, so if you're thinking it's safer to birth in a hospital, then a certified nurse midwives cannot deliver my baby in a hospital. So an unlicensed midwife and Utah can deliver twins, but that's not in a hospital. So I'm like, What's your point, if you're trying to make it safer, and you think hospital birth is safer than you're making it more unsafe by not allowing the device to deliver there, right. So that didn't make sense to me. And I searched for an unlicensed midwife, I just couldn't feel comfortable with it. The closest one that I felt comfortable with was an hour away. And so it just didn't feel like it was gonna be the right move for me at that time. And so I switched over to an OB office, and it was the worst. did not like them. From day one. They were I met with five different doctors in the group, I wanted a woman that's very important to me, I feel like birth is a woman's face. And I love only man I want there's my husband and I love that feeling of just like women's comfort and power. And so they couldn't ensure that there was a woman because there was men in the practice and you get who you get. So then they started scaring me with well, you have to be induced to your babies are going to die. You have to have an epidural because you'll probably need a C section and it's unsafe for you to not have an epidural you have to deliver in the O R. And the whole time that they're telling me these things. I'm like so annoyed with them. And feeling like they're telling me we don't know how to deliver twins unmedicated. And so that made me feel very unsafe. I was like obviously you don't have experience

to say to a woman you need to have an epidural I find very like a major boundary crossing like how do you I understand that it's easier for them to build a case for induction though it's it's so rarely evidence based when you really look at how often induction is used and overused, but to say you need an epidural. It's like I beg your pardon what you're telling me I need to I need to be numbed. Why like there's no benefit to that other than a longer, less efficient labor, but a far more restrictive labor. That makes further intervention more likely, but I just find it a very unusual thing to tell a woman you have to have this medic question that is just anesthesia. Why?

Why aren't you ready for C section?

Like, what are they? What is their? What's their argument for it? If you say to that, Doctor, why now? Do I need an epidural? Are they really just gonna say, well, because it'd be more comfortable for you? What's their argument?

If the baby so there, they said they would deliver vaginally if baby a was head down and Baby B was breached, that was okay if a BB came out. So if Baby B was breached, then I would need an epidural so they could reach up and pull them out. So they didn't know how to do breech birth, right. And then second, because so that you wouldn't feel the discomfort of that incredible seizure, invasive procedure.

And then also, you probably need a C section there, like the chances of you having to have a C section with twins is really high. And if there's an emergency, we won't have time to get in. And we'll have to knock you out and you won't be able to hold your babies afterwards. And do that for school and our skin to skin. So you need an epidural.

That's the main reason they want to avoid general anesthesia. So you might as well just get the epidural because you're not likely to have a vaginal birth.

Yes, exactly. And so I knew I was like, obviously, I'm not going to deliver with you because you don't know what you're doing. So I actually reached out sorry, go ahead. I love I love that. You just phrased it that way. I love that we've had doctors to fish fine on the Podcast, episode 128, for example, I'll listen to it. i Yeah. And I just want to say that for listeners, if they want to quickly look it up. And you what you just said is exactly right, because they don't know how to do it. Right. It is a matter of whether a provider knows how to support reach delivery. That's what it is.

Yeah. And that's fine, right? Like, I wish they would just tell me up front. No, I don't know how to do unmedicated birth with twins. There's that okay, I'll find someone else. So I reached out to the doula that I used last time. And I asked her if she knew of any providers who could do in that area who did twin unmedicated birth me a list. And I chose someone off of it and went to meet her and liked her right away because she said this is you get to birth your way. This is your baby. This is your birth. And if you don't want an IV, you don't need an IV. If you want to eat you can eat like this was our female OB, my female OB. So I felt really good about her and loved the care that she gave me. Yeah, I still kept feeling though. Like, I wanted a home birth. I couldn't shake that feeling. And it just continued the entire pregnancy. 32 weeks I got food poisoning was in the hospital because of crazy contractions from being dehydrated. And I love the nurses there and I was like, Okay, we're good. Like, these nurses are great, they're supportive. I'm going to be okay. And then let's see. 35 weeks the contractions started. And oh my goodness, I had no idea how it could be that intense that early and not have any babies coming. And it was every night. It was like 11 between 11 and 2am. They'd start and they go till morning. And it felt like the middle of labor. So I 36 weeks, I went to maternal fetal medicine. And up to that point, I'd had a few conversations with them. So there's three different types of twins, you have mono mono, and that's where they share a sack and a placenta. And then you have mono die. And that is a share of placenta but have separate sacks. And then my babies were die die. So they had two sacks and two placenta. So my maternal fetal medicine doctor that I had met with before I really liked you. Like I said, he was hands off. And he said, Oh, you have died twins, you're basically he's like, you just it's like having two pregnancies at once. There's not a lot of danger, or worries that we have going on here like two babies and in one sack and post some more problems that could arise. So I love that he's like, You don't have to meet with me very often. You're all good, whatever. And so 36 weeks, I went in and I got a different maternal fetal medicine doctor. And she walks in and she says, okay, everything looks perfect. Let's get you scheduled for your induction. I said, I'm not getting induced, and just said, well, babies, you know, twins, they have a much higher risk of stillbirth. So after 38 weeks, they're more likely to die. So it's important that you can induce. And I have done a lot of research and I joined this amazing Facebook group that if you're pregnant with multiples, you have to join. It's called birthing multiples naturally. And it's just lots of women who are very supportive, great stories really helped me feel empowered. And I knew from there that this was a common question and had done a lot of research on it. And so I told her, Oh, are you referring to the studies that says the risk is below 1%? So it's point 8% risk of stillbirth? And the studies did not differentiate between twins who had their own placentas, so die, die or mono di where they're sharing a placenta. So I don't I'm not sure like, applicable this, this is me and I feel very comfortable going much farther than 38 weeks. She said, Well, you want to go. I said, I'm good 4142 weeks, she was so stressed out by that.

The fact that you could pull that research out. You probably knew more about it than she did. Yeah, I love I loved how she probably just tried to save face, you know, oh, yes, she keeps going. So she says, Well, past three weeks, your placentas are going to age too much, and it's not going to be safe. And I had just listened to your episode about the myth of aging placenta number 150. Yes. So I brought that up to her. And and she said, I said, Well, research indicates that that's not entirely true. And that centers don't age. And so I feel very confident going forward. She said well, that your babies are gonna get too big. So he said, well, which is it is? Is it going to be so like, is it going to fail? Or is it going to work so well that these babies get too big? I was like, I'm very confused here about what you're trying to tell me. And so she says, Well, there's no benefit in having a baby in utero past 38 weeks. So gosh, there's no point and I said, Well, I'm just gonna have to disagree with you. And I'm gonna keep going. She said, I'm just gonna write down that you're ignoring my advice. I said, that's fine. So and so she called my doctor and told my doctor that I scared her. And I said, Well, she was trying to scare me, and it didn't work. So maybe she should do some more research.

What is she scared about? The only thing she's scared about is her own liability.

Yeah, that's again, she's not.

I don't eat. I mean, I have such a different take on this. I just feel like if we could really remove ego, if we could really remove the conflicts of interest. This wouldn't be so prevalent. I mean, I maybe her research is so poor that she truly believes she's doing what's better for you, but to totally disregard what a woman wants, but totally disregard the birth plan you're looking to have. I mean, even a colleague is saying, in big letters take into account what the mother wants. A man gets totally ignored.

Yeah. And I was honestly I felt sorry for her. I walked away feeling like this poor woman is so scared of birth. And birth is beautiful. Like it's natural, and it's normal, and there's no reason to be afraid of it. So I felt sad for her.

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I had contractions every night. And I thought tonight is the night the baby's coming. And we talked to the doula. And babies didn't come and babies didn't come. And so I'm at the end of 38 weeks, and I'm talking to my mother in law on the phone. And she's like, Oh my gosh, you're having these babies, like you're almost 39 weeks, your body has been doing all this prep, like I'm coming tonight, and you're gonna have these babies this week. So she came and she took care of us and I was so grateful because I have what a four year old and a two year old and was exhausted. And I went into the doctor that week and got a membrane sweep. I had really thought about it. And I was like, I can't keep doing these up all night contractions like this is I feel comfortable with this form of of induction. And it didn't work. Oh, I went in two days later for a nonstress test. My daughter Sorry, can I interrupt did did it not only it did it. It didn't get you into labor. But did it make your uterine variability worse or was it just it was pretty much the same. There's a little bit of a Um, discharged like a little bit bloody mucousy discharge, but not much, and so that it just didn't work, right. I was like, Oh, well have a baby, I Oh, I should say this, I was dilated to a four and 70% effaced. So I thought, Oh, for sure we're having a baby like, babies. That worked. It didn't work. So I went in for my non stress test, because maybe B had a single vessel umbilical. So instead of having two arteries, and a vein, we had one vein and one artery in her umbilical cord. And so there is a risk of a couple different things, right, like she might might not grow as well might have a couple different problems. And so we just wanted to keep an eye on that. And after that, I got a second membrane sweet for my doctor, and nothing happened. So I'm like, Fine, the babies will come when they come. So at this point, and 39 weeks, two days, and everyone is shocked. They're like, I've seen anyone go this far. I'm like, That's because you induce everyone, but I'm not getting induced. So I'm gonna carry them as long as I need to. And I was sitting at dinner Saturday night, and I felt a huge contraction. And then I felt a little damp. So we thought, well, maybe the waters broken. And my husband and I are kind of like lollygagging a little bit. We're like, Oh, these babies. They've been tricking us for a while they're not coming. And my mother in law's like, please go to the hospital right now. I don't want to deliver babies at your house. We've packed up and went. And it was kind of inconclusive that couldn't tell if my water had broken. It broke with my two other kids. And it was like a flood. So I was like, I don't think it's broken, but maybe just in case. And they couldn't tell. But I was dilated to a five and 80% effaced. And so they're like, Please don't leave like, you're probably going to have babies has been and I thought yeah, we'll just say a couple hours and then go home. Nothing's happening. And I should mention at this point, my doula who has been just like my rock through this whole pregnancy is super sick. So she can't even stand up. And I was devastated because I thought I can't do this without her. So she sent someone else in her place. And I FaceTimed her and then we decided, Oh, she'll come and we'll get to know each other and maybe see if we can get things moving. And this doula was incredible. Like, I love her so much. She, well, you'll see the way she sent me thing. So we start moving around and take a shower and, and they start feeling okay, maybe things are getting a little bit different. Maybe this is for reals. And the doctor comes in the Doctor Who is not my doctor, because she's not available. Of course, it's an on call, Doctor. I've never met already a little freaked out that I'm going unmedicated. And it's telling me for sure I have to deliver in the O R, because that's not a choice. And I told her I'm not going to or, Oh, nice. Oh, really. So it was not fun. It was not fun. She just kept hounding me. And she wanted me to go and was giving me all these reasons. And I'm like, yeah, no, sorry. She's like, Okay, well, I'll be back when you progress. We'll talk about it more. So she leaves a nurse who we all could tell is not on our side. And I felt so sorry for her afterwards, because I'm sure you know, she had a lot of pressure from the doctor and for her job and everything, but she was not very supportive of me not going to the O R. And it's funny because this whole time, I don't remember if I said this, but the minute I found out, I couldn't have a midwife. I felt like I was gearing up for battle. I knew from the first moment that this was not going to be a beautiful peaceful birth, this was going to be a battle to get what I wanted, and I had to be ready for that. So every night in the shower for months, I'm running through scenarios, okay, if they say this, this is what I'm going to do if they do this, this is how I'm going to handle it because I want a natural birth. I know it's better for me and the baby and it feels good. And I love it. That's what we're gonna do. My, my OB was supportive of that, but the song call us so much. So let's see. So at this point, it starts getting more intense my birth photographer shows up and looking at my affirmation cards that I had made some beautiful poems from my favorite book called mother's milk and it's about his poems about the divine feminine and it just really helps me to feel centered and grounded and and I'm starting to make those noises right where you're, every time you have a contraction you you just like getting through those contractions and the doctor comes in and says, All right, really. Okay, so I have this environment right and like it was quiet. While I'm listening immune music, the lights are down and ready to go. She comes in and says, Okay, guys, looks like something has changed time to go to the O R. And I'm like, Yeah, Don't bring that energy in here.

Yeah, the room a little bit, go away. So that's it was like she snapped me out of it. I was so annoyed. And she's still talking to me. Well, we just want to have a safe baby. And this is the best way to do it. And we're gonna have our whole team there in case you need it, you know, anesthesiologist, and talking really loud, and I'm going, and she's talking over me, and this is what we need to do. And I'm telling her, I'm not going like I don't want to go, I'm not going. And my doula says she has already discussed this with her regular doctor. She says, she's not going to keeps going and keeps going, keep trying to get me to go. And my husband says, Can you please just give us 20 minutes?

That's a good strategy. You're asking for time, get rid of them for a while and ask for time. Yeah, it was kind of annoyed that she only listened to him and not me. But she did listen to him. And she left like, Fine, I'll be back in a bit. And the nurse says, Well, if you're not gonna go, we can always will you there. You will meet to the alar. And I will walk out of here and how many babies in the parking lot? And she's like, did you really say that? Wow, I was so mad at her. And so I was like, I'm having these babies.

I love that you can't judge how strong a woman is by looking at her or listening to her voice. I mean, you're all smiles and cheerful and feminine. And you're a force. And I love that you really can't judge a woman. And that's the mistake they often make. Like we can push her around. She's really sweet. This is a really nice woman. We can push her around and it's like, you're like Try me.

Oh, my husband always jokes about how I am during labor. He's like, you turned into a whole new person. It's very primal. Where I go. So we so they started saying that and I'm just like, it killed the moment, right? I was in such a good space. And I was so mad and it was so annoyed. I'm like, yelling at my husband and the doula like how dare she she only want a safe baby. And like, of course, that's like the baseline. For me that's like, that is best. Well, of course, Fred is best does this really lame baseline if we're trying to keep everyone alive? Like, why don't we have? Why don't we care about these other things? Like my job is to deliver the babies and your job is to keep them safe. Should an emergency arise, leave me alone otherwise, and I'm like, I can't do this. And I said, I She ruined my mood. Like she killed my vibe. I was ready. I need an epidural. Her husband's like, oh, no, you're gonna kill me if I let you get an epidural.

That's a tough moment.

I'm like, No, I need one. I'm like I can't at this point anymore. I just can't get back in the right headspace. And I'm trying and I'm looking at my cards I just my affirmation cards. I just can't do it can't get in the headspace. And so he says, Well, what if they check you? What if we just see where you're at? Because if you're 10, maybe you can start pushing. So I said, Fine, you can check me? And they said, Okay, you're an eight. And you're 80% effaced.

You are in transition.

I said, Give me an epidural. And I didn't have an IV. So they said, well, we'll start with the IV. And this, I'm getting emotional. Like already. This was like my moment where I felt, whatever you want to call it, divine intervention, something that was just very powerful made a huge difference to me. They started looking for my veins to give me an IV. And they tried many times and I had bruises on my arms for weeks because they couldn't find the vein. They looked everywhere. And they said we don't understand your veins look perfect. You're so well hydrated. This should be so easy. And we can't get a vein. And it hurts so bad. I said, I don't care anymore. Don't touch me. I don't want the IV. I don't want the epidural. I can do this. So my doula said, All right. You need to go to the bathroom. She said you need to go relieve your bladder so the baby can descend. And she said Chad, particularly to the bathroom. She had candles lit up in there and blankets on the floor. She later told me the nurse was not happy she was doing that. She's like, Oh, no, the bathroom is a great place to labor. I'm not setting it up for anything. It's just in case she's on the floor. laboring at some point. So we went in there. And when I relieve my bladder, I felt the baby come down and I said I'll rat me out to that nurse. I'm blushing. And my husband says, Oh, no. Are you gonna make me deliver this baby in the bathroom? These babies two babies on the bathroom floor of the hospital. And this is how I knew that the babies were coming out because I got into my real primal crazy place. And I said, No. I'm the deliverer. I'm going to deliver these babies. And he's just laughing at me at this point. So he gets out his phone flashlight If I'm on the ground, and he's like, okay, bend over, I'm gonna see if I can see ahead. And he's speaking with his phone flashlight. And the nurse opens the door at this point and says, Oh, that's cute. I've never seen a husband do that before. Wait a second. What are you guys doing in there? So she runs out to get the doctor. And she they come back in. And my doula comes into the bathroom is helping me and I'm like, I'm pushing. I'm like, Emily, this is it. Like, here comes this baby. I was so grateful that she had the bathroom ready, because it just was a safe place, right? Where no one was in there. It just me and my husband. And it just felt like okay, this is it. This. And so the doctor comes in and she's like, Fine, I won't make you go to the bar. But can I at least help you deliver your babies? And I said, No, I don't like you go away.

You said those words. I said those words and I'm on the floor of my hands and knees. And I reached for the door to pull it close towards me. They really misjudge the space and the door slams into my face. And it's, it didn't even hurt, right. Like I'm sure it looked terrible. But my husband's like laughing so hard. He's like, you're insane. You turn into a crazy person to have these babies. Like, I don't want her in here. And my doula is like, I can't deliver your babies. Your husband doesn't want to deliver your babies. Can you turn around and maybe switch out a little and we can get this doctor to help you a little bit. They said okay, fine. Sorry. Turn around, I back up out of the bathroom a little bit. So my hands and knees and crawling out backwards on your hands. So funny, like crawling out. I know.

They must have been talking about you for days.

My husband said later on, like, I kind of feel bad and he's like, don't you give him the best story of the year. He's like they're all laid. They're still talking about I mean, a lot of women describe themselves as primal but you really were primal.

Like this crazy person, not crazy. I'm just primal, right? I'm just having fun. Doing it my way.

And so we climb out of there and and I'm like it comes to the head and start pushing and the head comes out. Maybe is that is out and they said, no. That's his water. I said no, that's his head. And they're like, No, that was that's the bag of water. And it had bulged out, and it felt like pushing out ahead. So I feel like it pushed out three heads, which is really unfair. And then it pops it exploded everywhere. Everyone's covered in water and blood and then the baby comes out. And his head gets stuck. And they start yelling he's coming out head first or this is the second baby coming up. But first, this is the first baby coming out headfirst and they start yelling, it's a shoulder dystocia. And they're telling me to push and I can't push. I'm like I'm trying I feel like I'm bearing down and nothing I could feel nothing is happening. So they you were on your hands and knees.

Oh my hands and knees. And the doctor has got the baby by the head and she's just yanking him and my husband's yelling at her don't yank him so hard. He's got bruises all over his face afterwards. We've had to do we did chiropractic care because he was so stiff for the first couple of weeks. And I just felt like it's from this yanking like this. It was so hard, how hard she was yanking and he's relaxed so much since we've done this gentle chiropractic baby massage. And so they told me, I don't know who said it, but they said you need to flip over and I'm like I can't. I'm like I'm pregnant with two babies. I'm on my hands and knees and pushing out these babies and you want me to turn myself over? So my sweet doula. I pretty sure it was her at least in the picture. She stopped my leg helps me flip over and he just slid right out. When you flipped over because I flipped over he just slid right out. Did you fully over onto your back fully over onto my back I just he just needed a different position, right?

Do you mean your spine was flat against the surface? Or do you just mean you flipped over and your tail between your tailbone and your head, like your whole spine? Was that flat against a horizontal surface? Or were you angled upward? Because there's a big difference between the two? And if you're angled upward, I just wanted that distinction known? That's a good question, I would have to check the pictures

to see but it was in the case of shoulder dystocia. And where she was the optimal position, if you're going from hands and knees, if you were on your back, you flip the hands and knees. But if you're on hands and knees, you'd flip onto your back and put your legs up, but is at that point in the birth when the head is already out. And you're trying to rotate the shoulders? I thought,

I wonder is lunch was also a really good one. No, yes, that's what I was gonna say. You could have stepped one leg forward on your hands and knees. And that may have done it as well. But this doctor was not gonna support that she wanted full, full vision. You know, she wanted the MC Roberts maneuver, which is what they're trained to do when there's Shoulder Dystocia.

Yeah, I told my husband many times. I'm sure she's a lovely doctor, but she's a terrible midwife. Wish I had a midwife. So there's no reason to me over and there's no reason to even say I'm sure she's a lovely doctor. You had enough evidence to really Yeah, she really isn't right. Yeah,

I mean, I'm like, maybe she knows what she's doing medically, but she doesn't know what she's doing birth wise. And I don't like this. Yeah, but he came out, slid right out, they put it on my chest. I'm holding him and I have another contraction and baby girl's head comes out. And she just slides right out her water pops at the same time. And she has a little bit of the sack on her head. And she was also head down. She was also head down. They I don't think I mentioned their weights, Baby A was seven pounds. 15 ounces. And Baby B was six pounds. Oh no. Sorry. He was 712. And she was 615. Oh, and that was an argument we had had earlier to she's like, well, breech extraction. You know, it'd be good if the baby's breech if you're in the or we can just give you an epidural and pull her out. And I was like, No, I'm able to birth a breech baby and you're not going to reach up into me unless there's like an actual emergency, like, heart rate goes down or something.

It's such overkill. I mean, if a baby can come out breech, and they can, like why should hands be in there pulling it out. If your baby if the baby can come out with hands, then the baby can come out with the muscles of the body. And it just it's a weird argument to me. Either the baby fits coming out breech, or it doesn't exactly reason for them ever to go in there. I can't believe they do that to any woman. It's It's unthinkable to me.

Yeah. They really wanted me to be monitored the whole time. I wouldn't do that. I asked for intermittent intermittent oscillation, disassociation. auscultation. That's I learned about it from her episode. And then like, oh, we can't do that. Because it's two babies, we won't know who was who just, you know, they weren't very accommodating. Obviously, you seen that. But we got the babies out. And they're like, on my chest. And I started getting really nervous about the placenta, because everyone is like, oh, no, retained placenta with twins is a thing. And you should be nervous about it. And so I was nervous about it. But they were just sitting right in my vagina. And as soon as they like, got in a squatting position, they just slid out. So they were fine to beautiful centers. And, and I everyone's like, okay, for your babies, because my husband had them skin to skin. And I didn't care. I felt depleted, I felt like like I had nothing left to give. And now looking back, I'm really mad about that. I feel like I gave so much to having the birth and the labor that I wanted that this beautiful golden hour where I am usually feeling just flooded with love and excitement and protectiveness. It wasn't there. And I was really sad. If I'm still really sad about that I feel like I was I was robbed by the system, or the stalker or whoever, you know, just gave me this really tough time that I didn't have energy left for that moment. And I got it back after I had torn just a little bit. And after I got stitched up and everything I have them and love them. I was excited that you started feeling good again, but I'm really bummed out about that. That first hour that was gone. So you use the word robbed. I've used the word robbed so many times through the years because that is the feeling of so many women that they weren't necessarily assaulted or feeling assaulted or invaded, but they just feel robbed of what could have and they believe should have been a gentler, more satisfying birth. And that's a that's a horrible way to feel because it's just like someone stole something from you. And there wasn't a reason for it.

Exactly. And that's the hard part right is that there wasn't a reason for it. I'm very proud of my ability to advocate for myself to make sure that what I wanted happened and it did, right. The birth happened the way almost exactly how I envisioned it was like, Okay, I know I like giving birth on a floor because it's a harder surface in the bed. And I feel like I can push against it better. So I imagined like will probably be on the floor. And it'll probably go like this, down to the same room that I had imagined that I had been in before was the room that I got put in, which was pretty amazing to me that I felt like okay, I can, I can do this. This is exactly like I imagined and I did do it. And I'm very proud. And I wish that I had had a homebirth still. But you can do it right? If you want to have an unmedicated twin delivery, you can do it if there's no issues that you're seeing beforehand, right? We didn't have any problems. It was a normal, healthy pregnancy, preeclampsia, no, like nothing. Everything was perfect, though. Like you can do it. Two comments, one, that feeling that you described a feeling not wanting to really hold or see the babies after is not, it's not really terribly uncommon for women who have like, the intensity of what you went through, is so great. And then sometimes when it's over, it's just like your body. Everything needs to shut down for a little while. And even even in bursts where the woman had her total dream birth with her dream provider felt completely supported. Nothing was difficult. I've seen that happen to women, and they just get to know. And I think it's mostly physiologic, like it wasn't necessarily emotional or mental or because you didn't like your provider. Although that could have played into it too.

Good to know, that can help me like work through this a little bit more. Right? Like yeah, okay, then you had twins. That's a lot. Yeah, it's a lot and you and you had to fight a lot. So you really had to have all your adrenaline and things on on high alert. The other thing is when you were wanted the epidural, you were at the exact moment in space where, you know, a midwife would look at you and say, Okay, we're just going to ride through this, it's transition. That's the time and labor when everyone wants to quit when everyone asked for the epidural when everyone wants to leave the experience done over can't do it anymore. That's how you know you're close.

And I'm grateful my husband knew that from our last one. He's like this last time and then we had a baby really soon and it was it was within let's see, that was at that was around 4:30 And I had the babies at 5:03 and 5:06 even in a woman and even a woman who's been through labor multiple times, like you don't remember that you did that the second time and the first time but your husband did and if you had the same midwife they would also they would probably look at each other and be like well here she is we know she's close now she's asking for the epidural she wants to go to the hospital they were born three minutes apart 30 minutes apart one contraction apart. How did this birth of your twins change you?

This my birth of my twins made me feel we keep coming back to this word right powerful like I feel so powerful I feel so proud of myself I feel like I can do what needs to be done I have so much stress in body and what it can do that it carried two babies to term and I was so like my body did that I body conceived carried safely perfectly. I was able to reverse them wonderfully you know the little shoulder dystocia aside like that's manageable right it was managed he came out and everyone is fine and healthy and and I'm happy.

Thank you for joining us at the Down To Birth Show. You can reach us @downtobirthshow on Instagram or email us at Contact@DownToBirthShow.com. All of Cynthia’s classes and Trisha’s breastfeeding services are offered live online, serving women and couples everywhere. Please remember this information is made available to you for educational and informational purposes only. It is in no way a substitute for medical advice. For our full disclaimer visit downtobirthshow.com/disclaimer. Thanks for tuning in, and as always, hear everyone and listen to yourself.

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About Cynthia Overgard

Cynthia is a published writer, advocate, childbirth educator and postpartum support specialist in prenatal/postpartum healthcare and has served thousands of clients since 2007. 

About Trisha Ludwig

Trisha is a Yale-educated Certified Nurse Midwife and International Board Certified Lactation Counselor. She has worked in women's health for more than 15 years.

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