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Bradley Birth Abida
Our Birth Story
Nathan and Lissa
On the birth of Abida Jolene
April 28, 2003

We hope that through this story, even one couple will be inspired to give natural, unmedicated birth to a healthy, un-drugged baby. A Bradley birth, the way our Creator intended it to be.

I am 27 and Lissa is 21. In the early stages of this pregnancy, we were looking for a birthing method that we, as normal, health minded people could learn and follow. This is our first child, and having heard many scary stories, we thought there must be a way to have a child without panic, torture, and drugs. We were exposed to a couple popular methods and promptly scared off. Would we ever remember all the technicalities of these methods?
Then we found The Bradley Method®, and knew it was the method for us. It is simple and sensible, something we can relate to.

Now for the birth story: For a couple days, Lissa’s contractions had been becoming much more noticeable, but nothing to stop her from working. Then at 7:00 pm on Sunday night, April 27, her mucous plug came out during supper. Contractions began to come stronger throughout the night, accompanied by small amounts of blood and mucous. Then at 5:00 am, April 28, labor started in earnest. Lissa wanted to go to work, but I said no, time to take it easy. Bradley Method Birth Abida Happy Family

I went to work until 10:00 am, then went home to help her. The contractions were 7 - 10 minutes apart whether she was walking, sitting, showering, or lying down. She has pain in her back, but we know it is pain with a purpose. She is trained how to relax, and I continually coach her and help her. By 11:00, the contractions are 4 - 6 minutes apart no matter what she does. It is time to go to the hospital, we have an hour to drive. Everything goes so slowly as we get ready, but we will not rush at all. Every contraction she squats while I hold my thumb and forefinger hard in the small of her back and coach her to relax from head to toe. Each contraction lasts about a minute, and I tell her on every one to let the baby down and out. We have done hours of exercise and practice beforehand and she knows exactly how to do this.

We finally pull on to the highway at 11:54 am. Contractions continue to come every 4 - 6 minutes. The road is bumpy, so I slow way down at each contraction. Halfway there she says it feels good to bear down a tiny bit with each contraction. I tell her fine just let the baby come down; relax everything else.

We arrive at the hospital at 1:12 pm. She has 4 contractions in the time it takes us to walk into the hospital, go up the elevators and to labor and delivery. It is slow going, but we are smiling.

Bradley Method Birth Abida Family We get to a labor and delivery room around 1:35 pm. The doctor and nurses read our birth plan and accommodate us very well. The external fetal monitor is only used intermittently. Contractions are 3 - 7 minutes apart and are not regular, but we know this baby is coming, there is no turning back. Around 2:15 pm, the doctor does an internal, and says she is 7 - 8 centimeters dilated. Around 2:30 pm, Lissa wants to go to the bathroom. I take her. On the toilet, the water breaks, and she wants to push. She starts to cry, Honey I need you. I say, good we are almost there, time to go back to the bed. I take her back to the bed.

Around 2:45 pm she HAS to push, cannot help it. The nurse says there is only a partial rim of cervix left. Lissa tries not to push for another 15 minutes, but the reflex is there, she is pushing no matter what. She is letting the baby down and out. All this time she has been on her side, now it is time to change position.

We sit her up into the classic sitting squat position. She starts pushing, three times with each contraction. By the second pushing contraction, we can see the baby’s hair. Within 15 minutes, the head is crowning. Our gynecologist arrives and asks if she is in pain. She quietly says that it does hurt down there. He asks if that is all. She says that is all. We all laugh at her extreme calm. She only smiles, she is too busy to laugh. Bradley Method Birth Abida

4 more pushes and the baby is out, a beautiful baby girl!

She was 6 pounds 14.8 ounces, born at 3:22 pm and her name is Abida Jolene.

The only drug given was a small dose of oxytocin after the baby was born, The nurse wanted the uterus to contract to prevent hemorrhage, because the delivery had been so fast.

The placenta followed the baby by about 2 minutes, and there was no epesiotomy, only three tiny stitches.

The next day the doctor told Lissa she performed better than the women he sees with an epidural or other drugs. He wanted us to know he considered it a privilege to be with us at the birth.