Jennifer's Hospital Birth Story 

I have a cousin who has had two children at home and told me that the hospital was a horrible experience.  I had read a lot of pregnancy books when I first became pregnant and most discouraged a home birth for the first time and I agree.  I also am a firm believer in enjoying the experience of childbirth and if a little medication helps you do that then I think it should be available.

My water broke on a Wed evening.  I called my Dr., who wasn't quite sure if he believed me, and he told me to go to the hospital.  The contractions started about an hour later.  Since my water broke, the nurses were a little hesitant to let me out of bed due to infection, but when the contractions got bad I really wanted to walk.   The nurses unhooked the monitors and let me walk.  That didn't last long because I hate pain and the contractions started to come a lot stronger and quicker.  When I got sick from the pain, I asked for an epidural.  My parents and husband where there the whole time.  My parents went home around 2 a.m. and my husband and I took a nap.  The nurses only came in when the fetal monitor slipped (external).  Around 4 am the nurses examined me and decided it was time to push.  She woke up the doctor and got everything ready.  She showed my husband how to help hold my leg and told the best way to push and took the other leg.  When the Dr.,who is very good but not the greatest bedside manner, kept trying to lower the back of the bed more flat and I complained the nurse would raise it again.  It was not comfortable lying flat.  I only pushed about ten times and my son was born at 4:54 am.  I found the nurses wonderful and the whole experience pleasant. 

I was able to do what I wanted and wasn't treated bad at all.  The only drawback to my hospital stay was there were only six rooms and due to a
hurricane over 27 babies were born within 24 hours.  I am about to have my second baby in the same hospital, which has a new bigger maternity ward, and am looking forward to it.  The only change I've made, due to insurance, in I now had a midwife that practices with an OB.  I loved the security of the hospital and knowing that if something went wrong I was in the right place.

--- Jennifer McLaughlin


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