Saturday, May 29, 2010

K's Birth story

After about 3 ½ weeks of BH contractions I was getting anxious to meet the new baby. On May 5th, I was having contractions every 6-7 minutes that were uncomfortable enough that they woke me up. This went on from about 6 a.m. to noon and then they just sort of stopped. The next couple of days I didn’t feel anything and started thinking that the baby might stay in until 42 weeks. On Friday, Jason, my mom, the kids and I went to Costco to buy a bunch of food just in case the baby decided to make an appearance. When we were there we picked up a pizza with lots of basil on it to see if that might help things along. We also headed to Stevanie’s (my amazing friend and chiropractor) office to see if an adjustment and some reflexology might start things moving.

On Saturday morning, May 8th, I woke up with some uncomfortable contractions. They were painful enough to wake me from my sleep at about 6 a.m. I tried to go back to bed but found that while I could lay there through the contractions I couldn’t really sleep through them. I decided to stay in bed as long as I could so that I could rest up just in case this was it. At about 9 I got out of bed and told Jason that I was having contractions. I thought that this was probably it but didn’t want to get anyone’s hopes up so I just said I needed to take it easy. I ate some breakfast and took a shower. Around noon I wanted to get out of the house and we started talking about where to go. I really wanted a pretzel so we headed up to the Anthem outlets. At this point I told them that today was probably the day and that I wanted to walk around a little to speed things up. Once we got to Anthem and walked to the food court I was sure that I was going to have a baby. The kids were acting all crazy so we ate the pretzel and decided to head home. We stopped on the way home to look at curtains. When we were in the store I had to stop to breathe through the contractions every 3 minutes or so. Once we checked out and headed home we started to make plans for later that afternoon. I called Emily (another amazing friend) to let her know that the kids were going to be coming over to her house soon because it would be time for us to go to the hospital. Once we were home I texted Stevanie who had offered to come over and adjust me before we headed to the hospital. She texted back that she would be there is 10-15 minutes. When she arrived she adjusted my stomach first (which immediately made my stomach feel much better) and then my back. She worked on my lower back during a contraction and showed Jason the pressure points to help move the contraction from my back to my stomach. There was immediate relief as the pressure from my lower back moved around front- it felt much better to have the contraction fully in my stomach. Then she worked on my entire back. When she adjusted my spine I could feel the baby move- it felt like a pretty big move so it was probably getting right into position. When she was done we loaded everyone up and headed to Emily’s house to drop off the kids and then to the hospital.

We got to the hospital at about five and once there we headed up to the third floor where we were hoping to register. Since it was a weekend we had to register in the ER. Jason headed downstairs to register and my mom and I went into the LDR triage. The nurse checked me and I was 2 cm dilated and 70% effaced. I had not been checked before so I had no idea how much progress that was or if it was progress at all (she couldn’t believe I hadn’t been checked at 41 weeks). She called the midwife on call and I told her that I was fine with heading home. The midwife told the nurse to send me home and so we were just waiting for Jason. He came upstairs about ½ an hour later and I asked the nurse to check me again because I had had a few strong contractions. She checked me again and I was a 3 ½ to 4 so we decided that I should stay. We went to the room and immediately filled up the tub. I jumped in and started the jets- it was amazing. The water really helped ease my discomfort. At about 6 the midwife came in. She was the one midwife in the practice that I hadn’t met yet but I immediately liked her (a lab tech knocked on the door and she yelled at them to leave so I knew that she would have my back ,lol). I labored in the tub for a little while and was feeling the contractions in my lower back. Jason started using the pressure points that Stevanie showed him and that really helped. After a while I got out of the tub to use the restroom. After I was done I decided to go and lay down on my side to see if that would help with the back pain. I labored on my side for a while with Lisa, the midwife, rubbing my back and Jason rubbing my upper arms and shoulders. It was much easier than either of my previous labors and I think that is because there was a constant pressure on my lower back from her massage. We worked this way until about 8:30 when I asked her to check me. I joked that I was probably at a five but she checked and I was at a 9. We talked about it for a little while and decided it was time to break my water. She broke my water and I labored a little more to get to a 10. At this point I told her that I had never felt the need to push with my previous two labors and that I would need coaching. Once I was at a ten I started pushing. This was by far the most difficult part of labor for me. I really didn’t feel a need to push and couldn’t really tell when I was pushing. My mom, Jason, the nurse and the midwife were all trying to talk me through it. At one point I told them that I quit (I was actually joking because I figure that you have to quit at some point but I don’t think anyone took it that way). I was getting scared because I thought that if I didn’t feel the need to push I might not be able to push the baby out. Finally the put a squat bar on the bed and wrapped a sheet around it. I held onto the sheet and that seemed to help me to push. After I had been pushing for a while Lisa started to get a little gruff with me (I guess the baby’s heart rate was dropping and she really wanted me to get the baby out). That seemed to be what I needed and I started pushing harder. I pushed the baby’s head out so quickly that Jason didn’t have time to get to the foot of the bed to catch the baby. At that point we stopped so that they could get the cord off of the baby’s neck- it was wrapped around the neck three times. Once the cord was removed the baby sort of slid out and Jason and I pulled the baby up to my chest. I felt around and announced that it was a boy. He was born sunny side up which explains why I never really felt a strong urge to push (and the back labor). I told everyone that he was so tiny and someone said it was because I was so used to Wyatt. I said that he was a tiny baby and when they weighed him he was only 7 lbs 10 ounces- much smaller than either Mia or Wyatt had been. The placenta was delivered and it was huge. Baby boy looked perfect and started nursing about an hour and a half after he was born. We finally named him Mathieu David when he was six days old.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Giveaway: Breastfeeding With Comfort and Joy

Go check out this giveaway for Breastfeeding With Comfort and Joy, on the Bellies and Babies blog. I've heard this book is a wonderful read so entered the giveaway my self :)


I found this poem on Bellies and Babies blog....I found it to be an insightful piece into how we raise our girls in this country. I thought of my 7 and 10 year-old daughters as I read it. I hope to raise them to love themselves as they are.

I saw a friend's Facebook status contain a quote by Redd Fox and absolutely loved it...

"Beauty may be skin deep, but ugly goes clear to the bone."

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Nutrition Corner: 15 Foods For Healthier Eating

I found this list of 15 foods (at WebMD) you can buy at the store for healthier eating and weight loss.

  1. Eggs - I'm always harping on eating more protein and eggs definitely fit that bill. The protein source right at the start of the day helps keep you feel fuller longer. What to avoid? Bread!
  2. Beans - beans contain a weight-loss hormone called cholecystokinin. Beans can also stabilize blood sugar, keeping you feeling satiated longer, as well as help lower cholesterol.
  3. Salad - since salad tends to be almost calorie free (excluding the dressing of course) you should eat large quantities to feel full. You are then less likely to eat too much of less healthy things.
  4. Green tea - contains antioxidants that boost your metabolism.
  5. Pears - this fruit is now the top fiber source in fruits so better to fill you up!
  6. Soup - apparently when you eat soup your brain believes you are full - I knew our brains were suckers!
  7. Lean Beef - certain amino acids contained in lean meats can help you to slim down while still feeling satisfied. Dairy products and fish contain some of the same amino acids.
  8. Olive Oil - boosts the metabolism, extra virgin is the best bet!
  9. Grapefruit - no, no, not the grapefruit diet....but eating half a grapefruit before each meal or drinking one serving of juice three times a day can help you drop' real! The phtochemicals reduce insulin levels, which forces the body to burn the calories instead of storing them as 'fluff'.
  10. Cinnamon - helps lower blood sugar levels as well as cholesterol. Put it on everything!
  11. Vinegar - Really? Vinegar? It likely helps you feel fuller faster due to the acid content slowing the passage of food into the small intestine. It also helps prevent the blood sugar spike that can occur with refined carbs. So go ahead and dip you bread in some vinegar...or maybe not!
  12. Tofu - So you thought tofu was worthless and unappealing? Well, guess's good for you and can taste good as well! Tofu is an appetite-squashing protein. Cook with seasonings and it tends to take on the taste and flavor of what you are cooking it with. I love it in a stirfry.
  13. Nuts - while nuts have more fat content, they are more filling and rev the resting metabolism. That means you burn more calories while sitting on the sofa watching TV then you would if you hadn't eaten any nuts! Walnuts specifically can be a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids :)
  14. High-fiber cereal - eating a bowl for breakfast can curb your appetite. After all, breakfast is the most important meal of the day!
  15. Hot red pepper - capsaicin is an ingredient found in red pepper, which works by suppressing the appetite.

All of these foods are easy to incorporate into your daily diet...give it a try and let me know what you think!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Healthy Moms, Healthy Baby Refrain

"one of the reasons the refrain, “healthy mom, healthy baby” only hampers women – it negates the fact that we’re experiencing anything other than pure bliss. "
--Reader Larissa at The Unnecesarean

I love this line. It really says it all about that phrase that we toss around in the hopes of comforting women when things don't go the way they might have hoped. The reader Larissa is hoping to start a project focusing on accumulating women's stories about the good, the bad, and the ugly of women's experiences birthing. Larissa, rightly so, points out that experiencing childbirth isn't solely a sum of physical feelings but also emotional/mental feelings.

If you would like to submit your story, the deadline is 7/31/10 and you can email Larissa at

I look forward to hearing more from her.

Preniva - Must-Have For Every Woman

Hat tip to Jill at The Unnecesarean

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Mother of Many

My daughters stood and watched this with me, throughly absorbed. Thanks to Jill and crew at Unnesecearean where I found this.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Nutrition Corner: Omega-3s

Omega-3s rock. That's all there is to it. They are fantastic for you whether you are pregnant or not, and at any stage of your life!

Omega-3s are found largely in fatty fishes such as tuna, mackerel, and salmon. They also can be found in walnuts, flaxseed, and full-fat salad dressings (but use in moderation!). You can also purchase supplements at any store selling vitamins, etc.

Why should you? Here's some of the benefits...
  • A recent study published by Human Reproduction showed that women with ample omega-3 consumption may have a lower risk of endometriosis. The study involved 70,000+ american nurses followed over a 12 year period. Of these women, those that consumed plenty of omega-3s had a 22% lower risk for endometriosis!
  • Omega-3s lower inflammation and can decrease your risk for cancer, heart disease, and arthritis.
  • Omega-3s seem to be highly concentrated in the brain and it is felt that they are important for cognitive and behavioral function. Infants of mothers who did not consume enough omega-3s during pregnancy, were found to have more risk for developing nerve and vision problems.

Symptoms of omega-3 defiency include fatigue, poor memory, dry skin, heart problems, mood swings or depression, and poor circulation.

Another type of fatty acid necessary in the diet is the Omega-6s. This fatty acid promotes inflammation. Having a careful balance between the omega-3s and the omega-6s can lead to optimal health. Most Americans have 14-25 times the omega-6s then the omega-3s....this isn't good. Using a mediterranean diet tends to lead to a healthier balance of these fatty acids. The Mediterranean diet does not include much meat (which is high in omega-6 fatty acids) and emphasizes foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, including whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, olive oil, garlic, as well as moderate wine consumption (unless pregnant of course).

Have I convinced you? I hope so. I recommend omega-3 supplements to all my patients....running out to go pick up some more for myself :)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A's VBAC story

I had been having surges for the past week off and on. By Saturday night I had called my doula to let her know that we were getting close. On Sunday, I had bloody show so I was wearing a cloth pad and we went to trader joes and while there I felt my legs sorta wet and so we headed home. I definitely had lost some fluid.

I called my doula and so Sunday night she slept the night since I was having contractions every 7 or so minutes and was 80 percent. We tried moving my placenta since it was a bit anterior, but it didn't do a lot of help. I wasn't dilating. Monday I did a lot of walking and the contractions were staying at around 6-7 minutes apart. I again called my doula, she came up around midnight or so from another birth. SHe told me she'd have to head to the other for around 6 am. At around 4:30 I was still having contractions and went to the bathroom and I had a very thick discharge and saw some meconium. We decided that I should probably head into the hospital. She had another doula accompany me. This new doula was very awesome! She was very calming and in spite of not knowing her she was super supportive and helpful. At the hospital they checked me and I had a leak in my fluid so they kept me rather than turning me home. I was 100 percent.

I was having surges every 5-6 minutes at this point. With some walking and rest I wasn't progressing. I was around 2.5 cm around 10 am. I was doing some laps and using the birth ball to get through surges. I swear I was the only one walkin, so I had no idea where all the other birthing moms were. Shortly after that the nurse came in and said that I had to stay on the bed now since she had read the policy and VBAC patients had to be under constant monitoring. At this point, I started crying. I asked to see my midwife. While we waited, the new doula let me know that each thing was my choice and with policies there are ways around it. In my mind I kept thinking that there was just no way I could progress from less than 3 cm to 10 without any movement. The midwife came in and let me know what my options were - stay there and listen or request an AMA form (against medical advice) to allow me to walk. Apparently this policy isn't always enforced, and it is up for review in May. Anyway, while waiting and talking (and plenty of tears) my progression definitely changed. I had been having contractions/surges every 5-6 minutes and after the situation, I had barely 2 contractions over a 45 minute period) and definitely affected how I was feeling about the whole situation. After I signed the form I laid in bed for quite a while and did some thinking. I had received some beads from a birth circle meeting and another set from my friends at a blessingway. I asked for those and thought about all the well wishers I had through this birth. I got up and we tried to do some nipple stimulation and a shower to try to get things going, and I just didn't feel it happening so we requested a breast pump, which I also didn't feel helped the contractions get closer. By this time my doula had come back but was exhausted so shortly after she went home. It was around 6 pm and I spoke with the midwife and we decided that we'd try a small amount of pitocin to try to get my body moving again. I knew that once this happened I'd have to stay on my back so we did some walking again. Ravi and I had a few disagreements - I posted via my blackberry that I needed some "eggplant parmesan" (there's a recipe on the web that "guarantees" labor), and Ravi wanted me to remained focused, I was beginning to waver in my belief that I could get through this. I tried some stadol to get some rest because I had been up for basically 3 days and hopefully it would allow me to relax some. While I was able to get some rest, I wasn’t sure if I had progressed. I asked to be checked (we were minimizing this due to the water being broke) and I was at 4.5. My "agreement" to myself was to do the pit if I wasn't at a 5.

We started the pit and the contractions were within 2 minutes of each other within a few hours but I was in horrible pain. They had been slowly upping the pit and I didn’t feel I was able to handle the pain since I had barely any down time between contractions. I had asked that no order be put for an epidural because I wanted to be sure that I spoke with my midwife again before asking for it. The hospital staff had been mostly awesome to this point because I know they wanted to ask me for an epidural for quite a while but in my birth plan I had asked to not be asked. I called for the nurse and let her know that I wanted the pit turned down. This helped the contractions subside but I knew that wasn’t going to get me closer to having the baby! I was without a doula at this point and was confused and definitely losing focus again. I asked for the midwife, and I swore she was just never coming because every contractions felt like an eternity! While waiting for her to come back, I requested the pit be turned off. The nurse basically told me that if I asked for it, she could, but she couldn’t keep changing it. She turned it off, and I let her know I’d like an epidural. She had to call the midwife who was on her way to get the order. I felt so sad and deserted at this point. No doula, midwife was taking forever, I wasn’t progressing!
Finally just as nurse came in and turned off the pit, the midwife came in and we had a short talk and we agreed that the best bet would be to do the epidural. The anesthesiologist came in and explained the procedure to me. I still think it is a bit funny that they didn’t tell me the side effects of this, but I got the whole “fetal death” talk when I asked for intermittent monitoring. Anyway, we started the pit again along with some antibiotics (this may have happened earlier?) since I had been ruptured for a while and was having cervical checks. The epidural didn’t fully take effect but I was able to get a few hours of sleep. I woke and was feeling the contractions and was able to use breathing to hopefully make them more positive. I had feeling on my left side and most of my vaginal area. Around an hour later I was still awakeand felt the rest of my water break. I asked for the nurse and she came and said I was a 9. I never felt so good in my life! I was getting the urge to “bear down” and she said that it wasn’t time yet. I didn’t really stop myself , but she told me it’d be at least 90 minutes before I’d probably be complete. I looked at the clock- it was 6 am and he was almost all the way in position. Shift change was in an hour. Couldn’t help but think of this! Anyway, the new midwife came in around 6:40 and checked me and said I was definitely at a 10 at this point and baby was fully ready! I could feel that she was trying to help me stretch. She had me do a few test pushes so I’d know what to do. I swear I thought I was pooping (earlier on I had called the nurse to change the bed pad because I swore I pooped, apparently I had farted and there was some show). We worked on where I should be pushing and adjusted the bed (I had wanted to birth squatting but only had use of half a leg so without an additional support person this wasn’t possible. I began pushing with the surges and could feel him progressing again and again. At one point he was crowning and she asked me to feel his head and I said I can’t. Apparently both she and Ravi thought that meant I was giving up, but when I showed them, my arm was too short! Anyway, around 7 am, more people began coming in and I kept saying WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE! It definitely was distracting. A midwife from the UK was in to catch the baby, and I was fine with this, the previous midwife had asked if I was okay with this, which I was. We continued pushing and I felt him begin to come through and was getting tired but knew I had more in me. I was being cheered on by the nurse and two midwives and Ravi. Finally at 7:17, less than 30 minutes of pushing, Rohan Jakob entered the world. I am glad the epidural didn’t fully take effect, without it, I’m sure pushing would have been more difficult. I also am thankful for the entire process of getting this baby here. I now have confidence in my body that I didn’t know I had. I had wavered many times but we made it through.

In the end, he was a vbac and I'm so happy that we were home within 12 hours of his birth. He never left our side :) Official stats (after nursing and pooping and all that jazz)
Born 4/28/10 at 7:17 am19.5 inches long7 lbs, 4 oz13.5'' head

Tons of thanks to my friends who’ve helped me get to this point and especially to Sarah for coming to our house before 5 am to pick up Viveka. I’m so thankful that I knew Viveka was in good hands while we were in the hospital!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Guest Post: Pregnancy and Chiropractic Care

Pregnancy and Chiropractic Care

Yay... You're Pregnant! This is an amazing time in your life, one that will never be experienced again because each pregnancy is different, be excited. You have, or are working on creating an amazing supporting team for this adventure, and along with your OG/BYN and/or Midwife, Chiropractic Care is essential.

A large percent of pregnant women experience back discomfort or pain during pregnancy due to previously unnoticed imbalances of the spine and pelvis that are accentuated during pregnancy. During this time women undergo many structural and hormonal changes that affect the spine, nerves, joints, ligaments, connective tissues, center of gravity and stability. Specific, GENTLE adjustments elimintate the stresses in your spine and pelvis restoring balance and resulting in greater comfort, health, and vitality.

Chiropractic care is a drugless alternative to pain management. Since nearly all drugs and medications can cause fetal damage or malformations it is important for pregnant women to avoid them as much as possible.

Along with pain management, optimum nerve function is extremely important for mom and baby during pregnancy. Just as mom needs to pay closer attention to good and nutritious foods in order to grow and nurture her new baby, she needs to pay closer attention to the functioning of her nervous system. All life functions come from the nervous system, if the spinal cord is cut, there is no life. Chiropractic care removes all nerve interference from misalignments of the spine and allows life to flow freely... Baby needs 100% of moms life to be flowing freely in order to create 100% of life flow to the baby.

Baby's Position:
Prenatal chiropractic techniques release stress on the pelvis and uterus, helping the unborn child to turn and position itself properly for a healthy birth presentation. If a woman's uterus is constrained as birth approaches, the baby can be prevented from getting into the best possible position for birth. Even if the baby is in the desirable head down position, often times constraint to the uterus affects the babys head from moving to the ideal position for delivery. Any baby position even slightly off during labor can slow down labor, and add pain to both mother and baby.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is chiropractic safe during pregnancy?
Of course! A safe alternative to drugs is wonderful for both mother and baby.

2. Is there a time in pregnancy when chiropractic adjustments should stop?
No! Some women even receive chiropractic care during labor to aid in reducing pain with delivery.

3. Should I see a chiropactor only if I have a painful pregnancy?
No! Regular spinal check ups should be as common as weigh ins. Remember that your body is changing i nmany ways and can place a great deal of stress on your spine and nervous system. So rather than wait for problems to arise, prevent them by frequent visits to your chiropractor.

4. What about after pregnancy?
Spinal care can help the postpartum woman return to pre-pregnancy fitness by balancing her spinal column, realigning her pelvic bones and removing vertebral subluxations.

If you have any questions please call me anytime,

Dr. Ashley Waggoner

Ashley Chiropractic


3006 S Rural Rd

Tempe 85282

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Nursing Mothers Group Discussion Topics for May

Nursing Mothers Group Discussion Topics
May 2010
Wednesday Mornings: 10 AM – Noon

Join us in the Breastfeeding Support Center. Babies and toddlers
always welcome. Bring your questions and concerns –
In addition to the discussion topic, we’ll explore answers that work for YOU. This is informal and fun!

May 5 Happy Mother’s Day
This holiday is earned day in and day out! Candidly discussing the ups and downs of motherhood can help new mothers cope with the reality behind the holiday.

May 12 Breastfeeding Hormones
Understanding the effect of the hormones involved in breastfeeding will help you understand WHY culturally-popular suggestions for when and how long to breastfeed can backfire.

May 19 Milk Supply Issues
What is the difference between true insufficient milk supply and perceived insufficient milk supply? Sometimes, it is a lack of information – which we will happily share!

May 26 Thriving Breastfed Babies
A brief look at the components of human milk that help your baby absolutely thrive.