Eight years after my first birth, I was working as a registered nurse, happily married and expecting a baby girl. Now “properly” educated and working on an OB/GYN surgical floor, I felt more than prepared to have this baby. I really loved my doctor. He was an excellent surgeon and obstetrician and had great bedside manner. I was often the nurse taking care of his patients. He really cared about them and often called several times a night to check on their progress and see if they needed anything. I felt like I was in good hands with my pregnancy and trusted him to make sure everything went well for me and my baby at the birth. The years of training to be a nurse, learning protocols and procedures, had given me a new sense of “knowledge”. But I had lost some of the connection with trusting myself and my body. This birth was not drug free. I had learned about pain scales, pain control and the safety of pain medications during labor.
The birth was easy and quick. It was a standard hospital delivery without any real complications. When my contractions became consistent, I decided to get rest in case it was a long labor. I woke up in the middle of the night wondering if I had just wet the bed or if my water had broken. The contractions were intense and close together. We rushed to the hospital, and I was placed in a triage room on a stretcher-like bed. The Labor and Delivery was busy that night, and there were no birthing rooms available at the time. By the time I was settled into the triage room, my contractions were right on top of each other and very intense. It was hard to breathe through them at times, and I gave in to getting a dose of pain medication in my IV. Less than an hour later, my beautiful girl was born. I remember in between the few pushes telling my husband about the possibility of the baby needing Narcan – a drug to counteract the effects of narcotics. I was given the medicine so close to the end of the delivery that it was likely going to be in the baby’s system. She was given Narcan. It seemed so normal to me though because of my training. I thought it was ok and safe to have the drugs.
Thankfully everything went well. I was able to nurse without much difficulty, and we were released within 24 hours. I was able to go home with my sweet baby girl.
Twenty two months later, I was ready for the birth of my third child. This time another boy! The birth experience was very similar to the last. I labored mostly at home, and after just a few hours at the hospital, my baby was born. I am lucky to have been in an actual delivery room this time. I received a couple doses of pain medications in my IV, but no Narcan was needed this time. Overall, it was a standard hospital birth without complications. I am blessed. Soon after the birth, things changed again for me. My little boy was getting all the “standard” newborn care. He was circumcised. We were nursing fairly well. I did not question any of this. At this point in my education and career, I still had not come across any information about homebirth or other options available to women for birthing. I was “stuck” in the system. After routine vaccinations at two months, my sweet boy developed a very high fever, becoming limp and pale. He laid and moaned. He was too weak to even cry. I made a call to the triage nurse (someone I know) and decided to just hold him. I nursed him the best I could, and as often as he would for the next eight hours. I naturally placed him skin to skin. Something woke up inside of me. I knew that taking him into the ER would mean poking and prodding and cold rooms and tests after tests. I decided to watch his breathing, and as long as he would nurse I just held him close. I had not yet heard of kangaroo care and the effects on babies. It just felt like the natural thing to do. After about eight hours, he snapped out of it. He stopped moaning and became more alert. His color returned to normal. I started to question once again. I spoke to a pediatrician I know, and she recommended I never give him the DPT vaccination again. She had had a similar experience with one of her children. Upon attempts to report the reaction to the vaccination hotline, we were told that it could not have been from the vaccine. I was outraged. I KNOW what happened. Mother's know. My research started and the more I read, the more I questioned. My real education began, and the birth of my next child would bring me back to my roots.
Tina Clark is a spiritual advisor, mother and healer. As a Reiki master and Healing Touch practitioner apprentice, she is a certified energy worker as well as registered nurse and Reverend. Guided by her spirit guides and angels, she holds sacred space, connecting you with divine messages both desired and needed. Her practice is inspired by the work of Louise Hay, Emily Andrews and Christiane Northrup, the poetry of Kahlil Gibran, and the vision of H.H. Sri Swami Satchidananda (Sri Gurudev).