Browsed by
Tag: i am strong story

I Am Strong – MoMo Twins

I Am Strong – MoMo Twins

I am strong, because the day the test finally said, “Schwanger” (pregnant) was the best day of my life.

I am strong, because I had a solid plan for a natural pregnancy and birth.

I am strong, because my seven week ultrasound showed two heart beats, but only one amniotic sac.

I am strong, because for two horrible weeks they were thought to be conjoined.

I am strong, because my pregnancy vocabulary expanded to include monoamniotic monochorionic, twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome, and cord entanglement.

I am strong, because I spent six weeks inpatient under intense monitoring.

I am strong, because I mourned my natural birth, but embraced my C-section.

I am strong, because I gave birth at 31 weeks and five days to beautiful, healthy boys.

I am strong, because I stayed another five and a half weeks in the hospital so I could room-in and bond with the boys.

I am strong because, although everyone said it wouldn’t be possible, we left the NICU exclusively breastfed.

I am strong, because in the hardest phase of my life, I chose love over fear, joy over sorrow, and was blessed with gifts greater than I could have ever imagined.

momo

I Am Strong – Because of Hudson

I Am Strong – Because of Hudson

I am strong, because I was told I would never have children.
I am strong, because I have Endometriosis, PCOS, and Lupus.
I am strong, because in 2013 I became pregnant.
I am strong, because throughout my pregnancy I was hospitalized numerous times for problems stemming from lupus.
I am strong, because a week before my due date I had to be induced.
I am strong, because after 36 hours of labor I gave birth to my healthy baby boy, Hudson.
I am strong, because I breastfed for as long as I could before having to go back on medication to control my lupus.
I am strong, because I suffered from severe postpartum depression and being unable to breastfeed impacted that severely.
I am strong, because six months after having my child, a child that I thought would never be, I was told I needed a hysterectomy.
I am strong, because in December of 2014, eight months after giving birth to my miracle baby, I had a total hysterectomy.
I am strong, because I will never feel another kick in my belly or the gnawing anticipation of meeting the miracle that’s been growing inside me for nine months. I will never again get to experience the beauty of giving birth.
I am strong, because I have every single reason to be strong and never give up.
I am strong, because of Hudson.

hudson

I Am Strong – A Premature Birth Story

I Am Strong – A Premature Birth Story

I had my birth completely planned out to the smallest detail: I had a midwife, a birth center, a natural birth plan. Everything was perfect.

At six weeks until my due date I woke up to my water being broken, I had to rush to the nearest hospital without my midwife and with all plans going out the window.  My water was broken, but my body wasn’t going into labor, so I had to be induced. After 14 hours of hard labor I developed an infection and had to be rushed off for an emergency C-section.

My son Benaiah was born at 4:30AM, June 30th. Since he was six weeks early, he was rushed off to the NICU. He was hooked up to a CPAP breathing machine for his underdeveloped lungs, he was living in an incubator, and we didn’t get to be close to each other for the first 24 hours of his life.

premature1

My son spent two weeks in the NICU – growing, getting healthier, with both of us learning how to breastfeed and live life together. Through this whole process I learned how strong I was; for my son I am strong. I am strong enough to watch him struggle and be by his side through it all. I am strong to work with my premature baby on breastfeeding and be patient with him while we both learn. I am strong to smile and laugh with him when all I want to do is cry. My son made me strong and our birth experience bonded us in a way I can’t even explain. He was worth it all.

premature2

Now he is home with my husband and I, he is gaining weight, breastfeeding, healthy, and happy. We are in love with him.

I Am Strong – VBAC Without Fear

I Am Strong – VBAC Without Fear

There are a number of reasons why I am strong.

At 17 I became pregnant. At three months pregnant and only a few weeks after my 18th birthday, my daughter’s father threw me out. I felt like garbage – abandoned and alone. How would I raise a child just out of high school?

I am strong because I picked myself up by my boot straps, got a full-time job working nights, went to school full-time, and made myself believe I was enough, more than enough, to leave the mentally abusive man who had left me and his seed.

Two months later (and after many turn downs) I finally went on a date with a regular customer. I had no idea what the future held, but if a man was that persistent about dating me – pregnant, young, little ole me – maybe it was worth a shot.

Fast-forward four more months: I was told my daughter was big and I would be too small to go into labor naturally. I had been borderline with pre-eclampsia for months and trusted that induction at 39 weeks would save me and baby a lot of troubles. All the while, this loving, patient, persistent man stood by my side and held my hand. I am strong because I endured having my waters ruptured, Pitocin, and horrible, painful contractions for three hours before giving in to an epidural, and later having a cesarean at 18 hours in. My perfect, little 7 lb. baby was here.

I didn’t know my options and my recovery was miserable. I didn’t leave the house. I couldn’t walk for more than ten minutes for roughly three months, and I felt as though my birth was robbed of me. I was depressed. I knew PPD was a thing, but given my history of depression and anxiety I knew I had to overcome this. Pills weren’t an option for me since I was breastfeeding (I refused). The love from my man and daughter were enough. I am lucky to have pulled through it by love alone, but I did it, because I am strong.

During this time was when I found Birth Without Fear. Oh, January, if you only knew how you impacted my life! Through your posts I began arming myself with knowledge and information. I knew what I wanted with my future births. I am strong, because you are strong.

18 months later, my little one was growing more independent by the day. I longed for the feeling of being needed 24/7 again. Though we weren’t exactly trying to conceive, we weren’t trying to prevent it either. Just before Easter we found out we were pregnant! My little one had self-weaned abruptly and I knew something had to be going on! I am strong, because I faced this pregnancy with options; I was empowered and ready to take this journey head-on!

I knew from day one that I had to build the perfect birth team. I started interviewing doulas. This led me to finding a chiropractor specializing in Webster technique. Come to find out, I wasn’t incapable of having babies naturally, nor was my daughter “too big”. I had an anterior tilting pelvis. I hired a doula, the ever sweet Deanna Norris (@holisticbirthingservices), and began driving 35 miles to the chiropractor three times a week! I live in a very small, rural town, so my only option was to drive an hour for the care I needed with the best midwives the state has to offer at OU Medical Center in downtown Oklahoma City. I am strong, because I was armed and ready for whatever was coming my way.

My pregnancy was wonderful – smooth and humbling. I fought a lot of fears with the help of D. I embraced the birth of my firstborn and learned to be at peace with it. I talked to the moon a lot and fell in love with meditation. The person I was becoming was unlike any person I had ever been. I had found myself – humble, peaceful, and strong. I am so strong.

In early November my daughter fell terribly ill and was admitted to the hospital. My due date was only weeks away and I was terrified that the stress I was under would throw me into labor. One late night I was having a hard time resting (who CAN rest in those awful hospital beds?) and began having sharp contractions. I woke my mother to sit with my daughter while I showered. Luckily that put me back at ease. November 16th (my EDD) came and went. Fear began to brew within me. However, I am strong and knew my little bundle of blue joy would be here when he was good and ready.

Prodromal labor began around November 18th. I’m sure I was on the verge of pre-labor a few times, but as soon as my daughter would wake things would slow down. November 20th I went in to schedule some NST and a possible induction, one day before 42 weeks. I had no intentions of showing up and they knew that, but we were simply following protocol. I declined the stretch and sweep, but had my midwife check for dilation. She left the room and I began to get dressed. As I squatted to pull my pants up, it happened. My worst fear – my water had ruptured BEFORE active labor. I was hesitant to go straight to L&D. I didn’t want to be put on the clock. But who was I kidding? I was flowing like a river. No way could I go walk around Target until labor really kicked in. I put my best brave face on, called my doula (who was with a mother having her baby a little early) and reminded myself that I Am Strong.

I won’t go in to all the details, but after about five hours of labor (I had no clock or windows, therefore no track of time) my midwife discovered baby had had a bowel movement. Though she was concerned, she only monitored us a little closer. I walked, I showered, I sang “You Are My Sunshine” while swaying through contractions 1,000 times, squatted, groaned, breathed…all un-medicated. 14 hours in, fear came knocking. The midwives had switched for the day and the new one was a little less than pro-VBAC. She immediately started talking cesarean if this this and that didn’t go as she would like it. I needed this VBAC. I knew I could do it; I Am Strong.

I asked for an epidural to help me relax and it did…for my left side! I could still wiggle my toes and scoot my legs, but this only benefited me. My doula, mother, and sweet man helped me use a peanut ball. 24 hours was creeping on me and I was dreading what would soon happen to me. I couldn’t give up now. I thought about it, I even almost told my doula to go get the OBs to take me back, but I resisted. D rubbed lavender on my legs and we laughed and talked. Then, it was time. Like magic, I transitioned. At this point we were 22 hours into labor and thankfully the midwife was busy in other births. I had a nurse come and check me and sure enough – 9 centimeters. I went on to have my VBAC on the evening of November 21st. It wasn’t “easy” and it came with some scars, but as soon as that 8 lb. 16 oz., blue-eyed, spitting image of his daddy laid on my chest, I knew it was all true…I was strong and I will always be strong – for my children, for my soon-to-be husband, for my peers, and for myself.

vbacwithoutfear1

We are strong. We are designed to be powerful beyond our understanding. We can do any and everything we set our minds to. Thanks a million to D, January, and Lauren for educating me and pushing me – even when you didn’t know you were. Here’s to all the mommas who think they can’t. I’m here to tell you that YOU CAN. #vbacwithoutfear

 

{I Am Strong} Making Peace with the Epidural

{I Am Strong} Making Peace with the Epidural

I wanted to share with you, the story of the birth of my second daughter, which was at 3:43 am on January 10th.

Let’s go back three years, when I gave birth to my first: induced by cervadil, 14 and a half hour labor, and an epidural at 5-6 centimeters where I had lost control and couldn’t gain my focus back. She weighed 8 pounds, 11 ounces and was a week early! I pushed for well over an hour, and ended up having to have super pubic pressure performed by the nurses to finish birthing my baby. I swore I’d never “lose it” again and I’d never use another epidural.

Let’s jump forward, to Friday morning. I woke up at 3:30 am with mild contractions (hitting 41 weeks pregnant). After arriving at L&D triage, I was told I would be sent home due to lack of cervical change.

Apparently, baby had other thoughts because she became non-reactive and they immediately admitted me and started pitocin (something I was deathly scared of, due to the fact I was striving for an ALL natural birth).

The first stage was fantastic. I labored in different positions, walked, got on all fours. After they broke my water at 4cm, everything spiraled. I requested IV drugs to “take the edge off” but little did I know  the “edge” was nothing compared to pitocin-induced contractions. Still, I powered through because “Hey, my body was made for this, right?!”

Not even an hour later, I made my second request: nitrous gas to further “take that edge off.” I remember losing it, feeling like I wasn’t even in my own body, and that something else had taken over. Pain and fear (LOTS of fear!). The nitrous did nothing, but made me feel lost and even more unpresent in the birth of my daughter

My mother was in the room with me, and she was able to get me to find myself in her eyes (something I am beyond grateful for). I figured it would only be a matter of time before it was over, until I was checked and informed that I was “still barely a seven” and I lost it even more.

I was terrified of the pain, and it had completely taken me over. The LAST thing I wanted was an epidural, yet, not to much surprise, “Epidural!” was my next request.

My requests were becoming much more like demands, and I recall apologizing in between attacks on my support team and nurses. I felt horrible that I could not control myself. The epidural took centuries to start working (only 10 minutes) and I finally had peace… I was back!

My boyfriend and I (BLESS his heart) decided we’d take a short nap to rest up for the next few hours of labor, only to be awakened 15 minutes later by a nurse to set my catheter. In doing so, she discovered I was 10 centimeters!! I gave a light push and she felt baby come down! So at 3:30am exactly, I began pushing.

I felt relief, I felt empowerment, I did NOT feel pain! Thirteen minutes and just three pushes later, my 7 lb 6 oz baby was born, with zero complications.

Kaitlyn Medford

My story is long, but it is empowering to me. Yes, I got an epidural. Yes, I went against what I said I wanted the entire pregnancy. But with the point I was at, it was what both my baby and I needed! We needed a quick breath and a power nap so we could work together.

I faced my biggest fear, which wasn’t a natural child birth, but a drug induced child birth and the use of an epidural.

So for that, I am proud. I am strong.

{Submitted by Kaitlyn Medford}

Teaching Strength {I Am Strong}

Teaching Strength {I Am Strong}

I am strong because I got pregnant when my son was 10 months old.

I am strong because it was after a miscarriage and I spent my entire first trimester in fear of losing this baby too.

I am strong because I planned to birth at a birthing center.

I am strong because after only 3.5 hours of labor I welcomed my baby girl into this world in the water.

britt beaus i am strong

I am strong because I remained calm as it took her four whole minutes to take her first breath.

I am strong because at 4 days old my daughters pediatrician heard a heart murmur and referred us over to our local children’s hospital.

I am strong because eve though she said it was no rush, I demanded to be seen the next day.

I am strong because at five days old, my perfectly healthy baby, was diagnosed with multiple congenital heart defects.

I am strong because I let my six day old baby be wheeled away from me and have open heart surgery.

britt beaus baby

I am strong because she was so small she needed a shunt instead of a repair surgery.

I am strong because after her surgery I made it my goal to breastfeed.

britt beaus strong baby

I am strong because her vocal cords were paralyzed during surgery and we were sent home on a feeding tube.

I am strong because I pumped and fed her breastmilk through her nasogastric tube.

I am strong because she was exclusively  breastfeeding by 6 weeks old.

britt beaus i am strong baby

I am strong because less than 2% of heart babies breastfeed.

I am strong because she is thriving. She is meeting all milestones and beating all odds.

I am strong because I believe I her strength.

I am strong because I advocate for my daughters health every single day.

britt beaus baby girl

I am strong because my daughter has another open heart surgery at 4 months old in just two weeks.

I am strong because I will have to hold it together as I let go if my precious baby for a second time.

I am strong because I am a mother. A mother to a little girl who I am teaching to have her own strength.

{Story submitted by mama Brittney Beus.}

Special Needs Baby: Our Tracheostomy Journey {I am Strong}

Special Needs Baby: Our Tracheostomy Journey {I am Strong}

I am strong!

I am strong because I got pregnant right after getting married.

I am strong because with my first child I was put on bed rest at 17 weeks because of pre-term labor.

I am strong because despite going into preterm labor at 17 weeks I gave birth at 41 weeks.

I am strong because I was in labor with my first daughter for 6 hours and pushed for 5 min.

I am strong because I breast fed her until she wouldn’t breast feed anymore.

I am strong because despite being on bed rest with the previous daughter I got pregnant again 2 years later.

I am strong because I delivered my 2nd beautiful baby girl at 39 weeks.

I am strong because after I brought our new baby home I knew something wasn’t right.

I am strong because I would stay up night after night with our baby watching her sleep praying I wouldn’t wake up and her not be breathing.

I am strong because I took her to the doctor every day for 3 weeks demanding they listen to me.

I am strong because I didn’t listen to that dumb doctor and took her to another doctor.

I am strong because after the 3rd blue spell we drove our baby 3 hrs away to a pediatric hospital.

I am strong because I saved my babies life by making that decision.

I am strong because I said yes to the biggest decision I had ever had to make. To putting in a trach on my 4 week old baby.

I am strong because while my baby was in coma for 2 weeks I would sit by her bed talking and singing to her everyday!

I am strong because when I no longer could produce breast milk for my special needs newborn I turned to my friends for breast milk.

I am strong because I learned how to care for the trach, change the trach, place Ng tube, and replace her G-tube.

I am strong because the 3 months we where in the hospital I never spent a day away from my daughter.

I am strong because I make the decision when it comes to my daughter… Not the doctors.

I am strong because for 15 + months we have had nurses in out house for 18 hrs a day.

I am strong because not a day went by that I wasn’t so thankful for everything we had gone thru.

I am strong because I was the proudest mother of a beautiful trach baby!

I am strong because I embraced the life that we had!

I am strong because my daughter at 17 months pulled her trach out while we where sleeping and her stoma closed.

I am strong because I kept my cool and made the decision to fight to be trach less.

I am strong because my 18 month old daughter is now trach less!!

I am strong because I have an awesome, loving, God-fearing husband that has been there every step of the way. Emotional and physically.

I am strong because with every step I take in life I rely on God to take care of me and my family!

I am strong because I make the decision every morning when I wake up that this is my life, and no matter what it throws at me I will make the best of it!!

I am strong because I am a proud momma of 2 of the most beautiful girls!!

trach baby 1 trach baby 2

{A story from Holly & Matt}

Stopping the Cycle of Abuse {I Am Strong}

Stopping the Cycle of Abuse {I Am Strong}

My name is Ashley, I am 30 years old, and I am strong.

I am strong because I was 16 when I became pregnant with my first child. I am strong because I chose to keep him instead of giving him up for adoption.

I am strong because I stayed in school, worked part time to pay for his needs, and graduated with a 3.75 GPA.

I am strong because I gave birth to his little sister when I was 20 years old. I am strong because I took my children and walked away from an abusive marriage when I was 23.

I am strong because I later married a man who was in the military. I raised my two children and his from a previous marriage full time while he was constantly away with work.

I am strong because while I raised the first three children and was a full time college student, I got pregnant with my youngest daughter.

I am strong because I fought to hold my family together as my husbands preference for his job instead of his family pulled us apart. I am strong because I was mentally, verbally, and emotionally abused for 4 years and I still fought for my family.

I am strong because when I saw the emotional and verbal abuse begin to happen to my children, I said thats enough.

I am strong because I walked away from a second marriage with 4 children in tow (yes, his son came with me), as a full time college student, one semester away from graduating.

I am strong because I reconnected with a childhood sweetheart just shortly after my marriage ended and he accepted and loved all of my children like they were his own.

I am strong because shortly after we started dating, we found out we were expecting a child. I am strong because despite the nasty comments from family members, we chose to keep our baby and we ran away and got married.

I am strong because I found a man who was supportive of my birth choices and educated himself on home birth, circumcision, and all things pregnancy.

I am strong because at 37 weeks, I finally walked for graduation and received my college degree.

I am strong because I carried our baby to 42 weeks. I am strong because I labored at home for 5 hours before I felt the urge to push.

birth without fear
I am strong because I pushed for 4 hours ignoring my gut feeling that something was wrong.

I am strong because I finally listened to my gut and asked to transfer to the hospital after realizing I was bleeding every time I pushed.

I am strong because I fought against my body to stop pushing during the car ride. I am strong because once I was in Labor and Delivery, they told me my cervix was extremely swollen and I was only dilated to 7.5.

I am strong because I continued to fight my body’s urge to push and breathed through every contraction until I was dilated to 9.5 and the Dr. said I could push.

I am strong because after just a few pushes, I delivered my baby boy. His cord was wrapped twice around his neck, once around his arm, and had his left hand pinned to his face.

I am strong because after I delivered his placenta, I hemorrhaged. My husband stood by my side and helped the Dr. externally massage my uterus to slow my bleeding.

I am strong because my bleeding stopped just on the brink of needing a blood transfusion. I am strong because I was given my newborn son and allowed to have unlimited skin to skin with him.

I am strong because after planning a home birth and an unplanned transfer I had an amazing hospital stay and wonderful nurses.

I am strong because I have 5 beautiful, healthy children and an amazing husband who made the transition from bachelor to full time Dad with complete ease. He works so hard every day to support our family so I can stay home and raise our children.

family birth without fear
I am strong because I have overcome abuse from a young age and refuse to let the circle continue.

I am strong because I always have been. I just never realized how strong I truly was.

bwf blog

Overcoming Anxiety, Depression and Addiction {I Am Strong}

Overcoming Anxiety, Depression and Addiction {I Am Strong}

Hi my name is Bailey, I am 22 year old new mother. Here is my story:

I am strong because I have struggled with anxiety, depression and addiction since I was a teenager. I am strong because I can admit that.
I am strong because when I found out I was pregnant at 21 years old nothing else mattered. Every nasty habit, addiction and person in my life faded away.
I am strong because when my parents found out I was pregnant they told me I needed to put my baby up for adoption. I refused, I believed in myself when no one else did.
I am strong because I struggled through crippling morning sickness and heartburn everyday. I never missed a single day of work though, just to provide for my family to be. My fiance and I are strong because we made it through most of my pregnancy without the support or guidance of our families.
I am strong because when my Mother begged me to forgive her at the end of my pregnancy, after everything, I did. Without hesitation.
I am strong because I made it through 18 hours of natural labor only to have my labor stall. I am strong because when a doctor told me I had to have a cesarean due to my lack of progress; I listened to my instincts and told him no. I had gone to my birthing classes, I knew my options.
I am strong because I knew I needed an epidural to relax, and was able to make the best decision for me and my baby. Two hours and forty-eight minutes later I had my beautiful healthy baby boy in my arms. He weighed a whopping 8 pounds even and measured 21.5 inches long.
I am strong because the days after his birth I struggled with extreme cracked nipples and bleeding making it difficult to breastfeed. Even with people pushing supplements on me I never gave up. I am proud to say, he has never had anything but my breast milk.
I am strong because my anxiety, depression and addictions haven’t been a part of my life in almost a year. I am strong because I know I am a good mother, and I am proud of who I am for the first time in a long time.
i am strong birth without fear

Photo Credit: Blessed Beginnings Photography 

Pre-Order The BIRTH WITHOUT FEAR Book Today!!!

Click on one of the book retailers below to get your copy now!

Hachette Book Group • Amazon • Barnes & Noble • iBooks 

 Google Play • Books-A-Million • IndieBound

***Sign up below for more updates on the Birth Without Fear book!***

We respect your privacy.