Birth Knot: Bravery and Love

We featured Sonya's first birth story in Hawaii here and you can see more beautiful photos of her and baby Kelau when she participated in the Breastfeeding Project.

Denver Birth Story

2nd birth (loss)

We planned our next pregnancy. It was perfect. Our kids were going to be spaced 3 years apart. At 8 weeks I started bleeding. I thought we miscarried, went for an ultrasound and it turned out to be a subchronic hemorrhage. We were so happy and yet very nervous. Something still did not feel right. At 14 weeks, I started having random contractions - we went to the doctor so many times I lost count. They informed us the hemorrhage was gone so that was a relief, and put me on several things to try and stop the contractions. A few of these medications caused my blood pressure to drop and gave me horrible shakes.

Then at 17 weeks it happened. Bleeding and contractions. I went to the hospital. They said I was not far enough along to admit into labor and delivery so they sent me to the ER. They did an ultrasound and told me baby was fine: moving great and looked great. But the contractions were not stopping. The nurse told me to go home and lose the baby in the comfort of my house. I could not understand that. I kept asking her how? The baby is still alive. What do I do? How? How do I do that? How to I give birth at home and watch my baby die? The bleeding was getting worse and I was so cold that I could not stop shaking. They kept me in the ER for 12 hours until my doctor's office opened in the morning.

My husband and I headed there for an appointment. When I arrived, I was in full labor. So much blood - so much pain - so much fear. They called an ambulance and brought me back to the hospital. This time they checked me into labor and delivery. They stopped my contractions and checked me. The placenta was coming through my cervix. Nothing could be done. All I wanted was drugs. I wanted to be put out of my pain, my hurt, my heartache. After 8 hours at the hospital I was given a drug to restart my contractions. Then I gave birth to a deceased little boy.

Birth of Kelau

Six months after our loss we tried again. Yes!! We were pregnant. After the last birth, I was scared and excited. We chose not to tell anyone. We made it far enough until people started asking and pretty much suspected. We finally made our announcement at 28 weeks. I wanted to stay relaxed and happy as much as I could during this pregnancy. I went in for massages. We hired an amazing doula, Liz Green. My friends provided me the most amazing support.

At 33 weeks my contractions started picking up. I am blessed with constant contractions during pregnancy. They start around 16 weeks and never go away.  Well, at 33 weeks they started getting regular. I started effacing.  I told myself, "hell no," and went to an acupuncturist. She was awesome and was able to successfully control the contractions.

My sons due date was 5/12 and on 5/11, I started having regular contractions.  I woke my husband and told him that I thought it was time. We called out Doula, and started getting things ready. Then my water broke. Wow! It was like the movies. I was on the commode when it happened. I actually said "Holy SH%#! " out loud.  There was meconium in the water so I started to worry. I spoke with Liz and she said it would be ok and kept me comforted. We went to the hospital with our goodie bags for the nurse. (They could always use the appreciation).

My contractions were consistent and I was progressing nicely. I jumped in the jacuzzi tub and then walked in circles around the room. I started humming some tune and I would hum louder and louder as I walked in a trance in circles around the room. At 4:30am the excitement happened. I jumped on the bed and said I am ready. I started to push while on my hands and knees, but baby's shoulder was stuck so they flipped me and encouraged me to keep pushing.

Though it was so hard to push between contractions, it worked and baby was born! I pushed about 10 times. My son was here!

This beautiful little boy could not have been any more perfect. He laid skin to skin with me on my chest while the cord continued to pulse life-giving blood to my son. This amazing 8lb little miracle!  He was born hungry. After a few minutes he was ready to eat. He was so strong he found my breast on his own and started nursing. It could not have been any more perfect.

Reflections

All our children's sexes were a surprise. I could not have asked to be blessed as much as we were.

Be brave. I personally hate it when people say be strong because when you hurt then it makes it feel like a weakness. Life is not about strength. It is about bravery and love.

I am blessed with the 2 most amazing children ever. Some day I hope to have another to add to our little family.

One funny thing I have to add. During my pregnancy with Kelau that I kept telling myself. "Be the unicorn, Be the unicorn" Those of you that have seen What to Expect While you are Expecting will get the reference. All I wanted was to be the Mystical Pregnancy Unicorn. I feel like that got me through some trying times. Always made me laugh.