Ep 179: Deundria’s Birth Story – Prioritizing Childbirth Education for a Successful Unmedicated Birth

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Deundria’s birth took a lot of unexpected twists and turns. She went into labor a month early, switched care teams at 34 weeks, and was diagnosed with COVID while in labor! But because she decided to pursue childbirth education during her pregnancy, she was able to roll with the punches.

This was her third pregnancy and she knew she wanted something different this time. After negative experiences with epidurals during her first two births, she decided to try for unmedicated this time around. In order to do this successfully, she knew she needed childbirth education and she actually chose to take my birth plan class! What she learned helped her to make empowered decisions for herself and you’re going to hear all about that today.

In this Episode, You’ll Learn About:

  • How my birth plan class helped Deundria spot red flags in her medical care
  • What were some of those indicators that her medical team wasn’t a good fit
  • What made the midwife prenatal care experience so much better
  • How Deundria was treated differently by staff as soon as she received the positive COVID diagnosis
  • How the medical team induced labor without pitocin
  • How her doula helped her with pain management during birth despite the fact that she wasn’t allowed in the room

Links Mentioned in the Episode

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Dr. Nicole (00:00): This is a great birth story episode of an unmedicated vaginal birth, despite being diagnosed with covid while in labor. Welcome to the All About Pregnancy & Birth podcast. I'm Dr. Nicole Calloway Rankins, a board certified OBGYN, who's been in practice for nearly 15 years. I've had the privilege of helping over 1000 babies into this world, and I'm here to help you be calm, confident, and empowered to have a beautiful pregnancy and birth. Quick note, this podcast is for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice. Check out the full disclaimer at drnicolerankins.com/disclaimer. Now let's get to it.

Dr. Nicole (00:55): Hello. Hello. Welcome to another episode of the podcast. This is episode number 179. I am so glad you are spending some of your time with me today. In this episode, we have a fantastic birth story episode with Deundria. Deundria is a registered nurse and a wife to a police officer, and she is now a mom of three. As a family, they enjoy vacationing, outside play, and just spending time with each other. So in the episode, you're going to hear about Deundria's third birth. This was her first birth that was unmedicated, and she took a different approach this time. She was very intentional about getting more educated so that she went into her birth more prepared for this birth. She actually took my birth plan class, and as a result, learned some red flags about her doctor. She ended up changing from a doctor to a midwife practice in her third trimester.

Dr. Nicole (02:03): She also had a doula this time, although her doula couldn't actually be in the hospital with her because she tested positive for Covid when she was admitted to the hospital. Despite that, however, she still had a beautiful unmedicated vaginal birth, and you are going to hear about all of that in the episode. Now, I mentioned that Deandre took my birth plan class, and you should too. It is called Make a Birth Plan the RIGHT Way. And it is a step by step process of helping you make a birth plan or teaching you the exact way to make a birth plan. So it actually works to help you have the birth that you want. Printing out a piece of paper from one of those templates or forms that you found online is well meaning, but completely inadequate. Showing up with that at the hospital is not the best strategy.

Dr. Nicole (02:56): The best way to help you have the birth that you want, really a birth plan or making a birth plan needs to be a process where you will understand that the people who are there for your birth, the doctors and the hospital where you give birth, actually support what is on that piece of paper. And if you wait until you go into labor to find that out, that is too late and it can potentially set you up for massive disappointment. So in my birth plan class, you learn specific, you learn specific questions to ask so that you will know whether or not the people who are there will support you. That's what Deundria found out about her doctor. That's why she switched. So you need to take the birth plan class. It's called Make a Birth Plan The RIGHT Way. You can sign up for it at drnicolerankins.com/register. All right, let's get into the birth story episode with Deundria.

Dr. Nicole (03:53): Thank you Deundria for agreeing to come onto the podcast and navigating the little bit of tech challenges we had here recording. I am excited to have you come on and share your birth story.

Deundria (04:04): Yes, I'm happy to be here.

Dr. Nicole (04:06): All right. So why don't you tell us a bit about yourself and your family?

Deundria (04:10): So, um, I am, uh, a registered nurse. I've been a nurse for about eight years. Um, my husband is a police officer. We got married about, uh, we got married six years ago. Um, we have three kids. Uh, Allison, she's, uh, five, um, Cason's three, and Asher is six months. Um, we love to, uh, go outside and play kickball. Um, family time is is huge for us. Yeah, of course we have a busy schedule, but, um, we, we try to make, make due and have that time, so.

Dr. Nicole (04:50): Gotcha. Gotcha. And what kinda nurse are you?

Deundria (04:53): I am, um, mostly, um, step down ICU, Med Surg Telemetry.

Dr. Nicole (04:57): Okay. Yeah.

Deundria (04:59): But right now actually, um, I am an instructor now at a college.

Dr. Nicole (05:04): Okay, nice. That's a nice, I'm sure maybe break because step down folks, were kind of getting slaughtered in covid time. Yes, yes. All right. So we are going to focus mostly on your recent birth, baby number three, uh, just because that one was different than your other two. So we'll talk about how things were a little different this time around this. For this one, you had an unmedicated birth and you had a doula, and we'll get to that. But first, let's talk about what your pregnancy and your prenatal care was like. Did you see a physician or a midwife? How did you feel about the care you received during your pregnancy?

Deundria (05:44): So, um, when we first, we, we decided, um, when we got pregnant, when we found out, we decided to go back to my, uh, the doctor that, uh, delivered our first, um, cuz we just loved the hospital. But, um, I found this podcast and actually I, um, I have always wanted to pursue something like more, um, not as much intervention, um, and just that, that comfort of being with someone that truly listens and that you're comfortable with. And so midwife was always in the back of my head. Um, and literally I would say we went to our OB for about 37 weeks. And finally, I, I started, I actually, um, used a few of your brochures, um, to see if, if it was a right fit for me. Right. Uh, and I was asking questions and there was some red flags and, um Mm.

Dr. Nicole (06:45): What kind of red flags if you don't, if you, you remember? Oh, yeah,

Deundria (06:49): Yeah. So, um, I asked if, um, I could have like maybe a little bit of popsicles or something to kind of moist my mouth during, during delivery. Um, just something at my bedside. And he's like, absolutely not. Oh, like you can't anything to eat or drink once you, uh, come through the doors, pretty much because of the risk of, um, a possible C-section and the need to stay in po Um,

Dr. Nicole (07:23): Yeah, that's a red flag.

Deundria (07:25): Yes. That was one. Um, another was, uh, I'm trying to think, delayed cord clamping. Um, I, I really wasn't just so strict about it. But I just kind of wanted to have that time where by the time they get the baby on your chest, um, you're having that bonding time and cutting the cord kind of coexist, I guess. Um, and he also kind of said that that wasn't gonna be feasible. Um, they do the, the hospital is a firm believer on that, um, straight to the mother's chest, but he, it wasn't like he was truly interested in what I was asking.

Dr. Nicole (08:13): Okay. Okay. Yeah. So then at 37 weeks did you change?

Deundria (08:19): Yes.

Dr. Nicole (08:20): Wow. Wow. Okay. So you, did you change to a midwife or another physician?

Deundria (08:26): I changed to a midwife, so I did not know that the hospital that we were delivering yet, actually has a midwife team. And when I found out about it, I, I, um, took my husband, we both went for a consult. He was kind of on the fence about it cuz he didn't know really how it worked. Um, but our first consultation, we both were like, this is where we need to be. And we transitioned over, um, to the midwives team at the hospital.

Dr. Nicole (08:58): Gotcha, gotcha. Were you worried at all about hurting your doctor's feelings or anything like that?

Deundria (09:07): Um, I, I, I was, but then I wasn't because there was, like I said, there was a few things and I can't remember any more, but there was just some things that I, I truly wanted. I know this was our last, this was gonna be our last baby, and I felt like I deserved to have the experience that I was looking for.

Dr. Nicole (09:28): Mm-hmm.

Deundria (09:29): And so I think that kind of just ruled it, ruled it all.

Dr. Nicole (09:33): Gotcha, gotcha.

Deundria (09:35): Went for it.

Dr. Nicole (09:36): And was he ever, like, during your prenatal visits, was he ever mean or anything or short, or was it just like, it wasn't until you kinda asked these more specific questions that you realized, hey, like this is not gonna work.

Deundria (09:56): Um, he was never mean, uh, that was really wasn't the case. It just, he, there was, there was just things like even with pain, um, with pain management, I do remember, I, I told him that I wanted to, um, uh, do different, um, positions. And, and things like that. And he was like, well, as long as the telemetry, uh, not the telemetry, but the, um, monitors don't become affected

Deundria (10:29): Like, it was always like, as long as this, as long as that.

Dr. Nicole (10:33): Gotcha, gotcha, gotcha.

Deundria (10:35): And, but he was, he was really, he's a, he's still a really good doctor. I think overall I just, from what I was looking for, that just wasn't it.

Dr. Nicole (10:45): Gotcha. Gotcha, gotcha. And did you have any problems or issues during your pregnancy?

Deundria (10:52): With, uh, the two? With my other two pregnancies?

Dr. Nicole (10:54): Yeah. With, with any of the three, like any blood pressure issues or issues with the baby's growth or anything like that, I guess more specifically with this third pregnancy that made him cons, was there, was there a reason why he would be, have a heightened concern at all?

Deundria (11:11): Yes, I did have blood pressure issues in the past. Um, so, uh, the first, it was pretty intense where, um, my daughter's heart rate dropped, my blood pressure skyrocketed. I couldn't, um, I wasn't, uh, I had stayed at a six for a very, very long time. Okay. Uh, they actually rushed me to the emergency, uh, the, um, uh, to beat to have a c-section. But then by the time I, I got an epidural, ended up getting an epidural, an epidural, and by the time I got to the C-section room, everything was fine. Um, it was, I could still push and I could still feel everything, but it's like my blood pressure stabilized and her heart rate, um, came back to, uh, where it needed to be. Okay. So that was the first time. Now the second time, um, it was pretty fast. I was able to, the drive was about 40. We live in a rural area and so the drive is always about 45 minutes to an hour with all of the hospitals that I've delivered.

Dr. Nicole (12:24): Okay.

Deundria (12:25): And by the time we got there, I was at an eight.

Dr. Nicole (12:28): Okay.

Deundria (12:29): My second one. Um, and everything was progressing, but then they restricted me to the bed. I couldn't move, I couldn't get up. My back was killing me. I was, I kept asking to move, they just really wouldn't work with me in, in moving. Um, and I became to where I just stayed at an eight for like, I'd say five hours. Um, got the epidural again because I just couldn't take it anymore. And then half of my body was numb, the other half wasn't

Dr. Nicole (13:06): Ooh.

Deundria (13:08): And so that they accept tilted me. And, um, trying to find a way, it was just a bad experience both times was Gotcha. Was a bad experience.

Dr. Nicole (13:19): Gotcha. Gotcha. So you definitely wanted something different this time?

Deundria (13:23): Yeah. That second time I actually had to get on mag, um, for my blood pressure. It was just still, it was pretty high in the two hundreds, uh, to the point where I had to go home on blood pressure medication, so. Okay. It definitely was there in my, in my history.

Dr. Nicole (13:41): Gotcha. Gotcha. But during your pregnancy, or d especially, I guess during this third pregnancy, did you having the issue with, with blood pressures, and I take it that midwives still felt comfortable taking care of you?

Deundria (13:55): No, I actually, um, all the times I did not have blood pressure issues until labor. Um, so even with this time, I did not have any blood pressure issues. It, it was stable. They had me on the baby aspirin. Um, for, you know, prophylactically. But other than that, I didn't have anything wrong.

Dr. Nicole (14:20): Okay. Okay. Okay. So then at 37 weeks you switched to the midwives, and then from there, how did things go?

Deundria (14:30): I think it went very well. Um, they already had a lot of things on my birth plan in place. Um, there was, it, it, there was really nothing I would ask them, Okay, do you do this? You do that? And then they just would say, Yeah, that's what we do. That's what we've always done. Um,

Dr. Nicole (14:51): Okay. So it really felt smooth going forward.

Deundria (14:56): It did. Um, even like the, going into like the, um, the appointments, it was so different, like compared to getting up on a table, a medical table, um, at the midwives clinic they had, um, a couch and it was like calming music. I mean, it was just very different. Just a different take on, on, on, um, prenatal care.

Dr. Nicole (15:27): Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So what did you do to prepare for your birth?

Deundria (15:37): Um, I literally listened to the podcast every day, all day.

Deundria (15:43): I mean, so much, so much. Um, I, like I said, I live in a rural community and so, um, whenever I drive to work as well, about an hour commute, um, to and back. So that's two hours in the car and literally I would just binge your, um, the podcast. I loved the birthing stories. Um, there was a lot of things like whenever I was actually thinking about trans transferring to my ob to my mid, uh, to the midwives, there was a session that you spoke on, um, with a, with a birthing story. And she moved at 40 weeks. And I was like, Oh, okay.

Dr. Nicole (16:25): Right, right.

Deundria (16:26): So it's possible.

Dr. Nicole (16:29): So,

Deundria (16:29): Um, it was, that is really what I did. Um, I don't really think I did much other than like a lot of your, um, your pain management things on your website and, um, the birthing plan, I, I, I listened to that and created that. Um, and then your podcast. Yeah.

Dr. Nicole (16:52): Nice. Nice, nice, nice. So what are some things that you wanted for your birth?

Deundria (16:57): Yeah, so, um, I, the main thing is I wanted it to be, um, no medication. Um, I, I have used the, um, I, I used the, um, the epidural. I used the epidural like twice. And I was like, I really don't want to use that again. It was just not a good experience for me. Even with my first, I really didn't have, like, it just made me knocked off the edge of my blood pressure and her heart rate. But other than like pain management, it really wasn't helpful. And then the second time it was just dreadful. It was horrible. So, um, I wanted to definitely find a way to where I don't have, I didn't have to use that. And so that's when the do doula came into play. Um, I heard from all your podcasts that that would, that's a really good thing to have, um, especially going into a non-medicated birth. Right. And so I got a doula. Um,

Dr. Nicole (18:04): And at what, at what point did you hire a doula? How far along were you?

Deundria (18:09): I actually, uh, reached out to my doula, I would say, uh, four months in.

Dr. Nicole (18:15): Okay. So pretty early.

Deundria (18:17): Yes. And that's about the time I found your podcast as well. So, um, about four months in. So we got a really good, a rapport with each other, which I think was very important. I felt very comfortable with her.

Dr. Nicole (18:30): Gotcha. Gotcha. And, um, so you felt like she was a good resource for you as you were going through your pregnancy also?

Deundria (18:38): Absolutely. Um, absolutely. She, uh, gave me a huge, uh, handbook of different positions and, um, pretty much gave me the idea of how it would work, uh, with her, um, with her plan of coming in and using my husband to help calm me, relax me, massage me, um, even herbal teas, she actually gave me like an herbal tea to kind of help, um, the red raspberry tea.

Dr. Nicole (19:15): Mm-hmm.

Deundria (19:16): She gave me that and I could start drinking that after the, after I started the third trimester to help my uterine contract the way it should. She also gave me like, um, the herbal bath up, just so many different things that I did not know about and I had to do research on. But she was a very, a very good resource for me. So with those things.

Dr. Nicole (19:37): Gotcha. Nice, nice, nice. So let's get into what your labor and birth was like. What did, how did that, um, happen?

Deundria (19:49): Okay,

Dr. Nicole (19:52): So,

Deundria (19:53): Um, and going back to your other question, water is also what I wanted by the way.

Dr. Nicole (19:57): Oh, gotcha. Okay.

Deundria (19:59): Definitely. And my hospital had the water tub, but they weren't able to deliver in the water tub. Got it. But you could do all your labor in there. So, um, so, uh, it was a month. Um, Asher came a month early. I woke up one morning and uh, literally just felt a gush in the bed and I said, Wow. Um, it's time. So my husband started freaking, and he's like, Okay, I got this, I got the kids. And he was getting the kids ready. It's so much different having children and going into labor. You definitely have to have a plan. So, we don't live far from my parents. And they came down to, um, to, to grab the babies and so we could go ahead and head out. Um, the only thing was I wasn't having contractions.

Dr. Nicole (20:47): Okay.

Deundria (20:48): So I called, um, she said just to hang tight, my, my, um, doula hang tight. Uh, but then she notified my midwife and she said, Well, this was before I got the strep test. And so I needed to go ahead and come in because I had, I had ruptured my membranes and they need, they need to come and give me the antibiotics. And so. Got it.

Dr. Nicole (21:17): Um, so wait a minute. How many weeks were you again when you transferred to the Midwives?

Deundria (21:21): Uh, oh gosh, hold on. Let me see. Had to been 34? Actually,

Dr. Nicole (21:29): Maybe 34. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay.

Deundria (21:32): Yeah, cause I was, I was early and so,

Dr. Nicole (21:36): Okay. Okay. But so you only must have had a, just a couple visits with them?

Deundria (21:41): Yes. I only had probably like three visits.

Dr. Nicole (21:44): Okay. Okay. So

Deundria (21:46): I guess even, it could have been even 32. Uh, I just know I was a month early. I wasn't even 36, I was 35 weeks whenever, um, Asher, um, came.

Dr. Nicole (21:58): Okay. Okay. So you weren't having contractions, but they said because you were early, that you needed to go ahead and come on in?

Deundria (22:05): Yes.

Dr. Nicole (22:06): Okay. And did you say, was it your doula who called your midwife? Or was it you who called the midwife?

Deundria (22:12): It was my doula.

Dr. Nicole (22:14): Huh. Okay.

Deundria (22:15): Yes. She has a very good connection with all the midwives there. Like I, they could be friends, I don't know. But she was like, Let me call, uh, let me see who's on call and I'll let you know what to do. And she called me back and told me that I needed to go ahead and come in cuz I hadn't got that test yet.

Dr. Nicole (22:35): Got it, got it. Yeah. Okay.

Deundria (22:38): Okay. So I wasn't having contractions by the time I got in the car. Uh, we decided to stop by Whatta burger and grab some food, of course. Um, Whatta burger. When we got in the line, I started contractions

Deundria (22:53): So my husband's like, Great

Deundria (22:58): So that was that. And so, um, we got food and we started heading to the, uh, hospital. And at that moment I was having contractions. Um, so by the time I got to the hospital, uh, I walked in, everything was fine. I had a little towel in between my legs. I felt like a weirdo, but because it was just constant. Right. Um, right. And so I got up to the, um, OB floor and uh, I told him, I said, I'm in labor. My water broke. Um, by the time we got in the room, by the time we got in the room, uh, my contractions stopped. All of a sudden they, they, they weren't present really anymore. I really didn't feel anything. And of course they check you for Covid. So I got my Covid test and they came back and they said that I was positive for Covid.

Dr. Nicole (23:54): Oh.

Deundria (23:56): So everything changed after that. Um, they wouldn't allow my doula to come in.

Dr. Nicole (24:04): Okay.

Deundria (24:05): And I was really upset about that cuz I was, I bet she was my, my comforter. I, my mom couldn't even come in. It was just me and my husband. People were coming in with like these, you know, the yellow gowns and it was like, I had this horrible disease. You know, it just felt like I was just yuck, you know?

Dr. Nicole (24:31): Oh.

Deundria (24:32): Um, and so that was kind of like, Oh my God, I cannot believe it. I'm, I can't, I came, went into labor a month early and now I'm positive for Covid and Right. Can't leave and my husband can't leave everybody in here. So, um,

Dr. Nicole (24:49): Were you having any symptoms at all?

Deundria (24:52): So, um, a week ago, a week before this happened, I had this crazy like, sinus thing and it was enough to like, I just felt so tired. I didn't know if it was, that was it. That's all it was. It was just. It wasn't like I didn't have a fever, I didn't have the chills, I didn't have any of the symptoms that you would think that's all it was, was sinus pressure and just, I just wanted to sleep.

Dr. Nicole (25:19): Sure. Okay.

Deundria (25:20): And I guess that's kind of where it was

Dr. Nicole (25:23): Uhhuh

Deundria (25:23): But I had no symptoms at all going into the hospital.

Dr. Nicole (25:28): Gotcha. And had you been exposed to it that you knew of?

Deundria (25:31): Not that I know of, but I, you know, I'm a nurse and so Yeah.

Dr. Nicole (25:36): So of course. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So then that obviously threw you for a huge loop. Was your doula able to provide any support for you?

Deundria (25:48): So she did everything, um, by the phone. Um, she used, um, uh, for the most part we just text back and forth and her and her, her and my husband talked on the phone. Okay.

Deundria (26:03): And she would tell us what to do, how to apply pressure to the back. She sent us, um, uh, like photos of where to position his hands on my back. Right. Because I was telling that everything was just the pressure, the counter pressure on my back was very helpful. Um, she talked to us about when to get in the tub and if I'll be, and, and when, um, and when I need to get out the tub. Um, which the nurses was talking to me about that as well. But, um, that's kind of our communication. Gotcha. At this point was by, by, um, she was actually supposed to, she, uh, was also a birth pro photographer. I was unfortunately. Um, so anyway, it was, it was, it was something. So we got the antibiotic started. I still have not went back into contractions yet. And they told me, um, we may have to start Pitocin.

Deundria (27:07): And I was like, We are not starting Pitocin. We are not starting Pitocin. I actually had Pitocin my first, and it was brutal. I think it was worse than contractions for me personally. Um, I was like, I don't wanna start Pitocin. So Right. I said, What are my options? They said, Well, we can start you on a, on a breast pump and uh, maybe that'll help with the contractions. Um, I said, Okay, let's try it. So I actually started pumping and I would say probably an hour in, I started having contractions again. It activated them back up. I was like, Thank God. So, um, but then when they came, they came like vengeance.

Dr. Nicole (27:50): Okay.

Deundria (27:51): Um, so I was getting antibiotics, uh, I was pumping. I started having contractions and I went into labor, um, as it was like full blown, um, contracted labor. Um, at that, you

Dr. Nicole (28:06): Said after about an hour of the breast pump?

Deundria (28:09): Yeah, after about an hour with the breast pump, I went into labor. Um, when I got there I was at a six and, um, literally between from six to, um, for in three hours I was pushing

Dr. Nicole (28:31): Okay.

Deundria (28:33): After the contractions, after the contraction started back.

Dr. Nicole (28:37): So that was pretty fast.

Deundria (28:38): It was very, very fast, very fast. I almost gave up. I was like, I need, I may need something. My husband was there, he was so helpful. Um, I wanted to get in the tub, but they wouldn't allow me, Um, they would not allow me because of something. I cannot remember why, but I couldn't get in the water and I really wanted to get in the water. Um, but finally they were like, Okay, you can get in the water. Um, so it takes forever for those tubs to fill up. And by the time I got in the water, it took 10 minutes to fill up the, the, the tub. And I was like, Can I get in the water? Can I get in the water and say, Yes, you can finally get in the water. So I got in the water. I literally was in there for three minutes and got out the water.

Dr. Nicole (29:26): And it was like, I gotta push or,

Deundria (29:29): Cause they told me, you cannot have this baby in tub if you start to feel the urge, you need to get out. And so, um, I got in there and I guess it must have relaxed me just enough to be ready. So I said, Okay, I gotta get back out. Um, my, uh, midwife came in. She was in, in and out throughout the whole thing. That's another thing that was different for me. I never seen my OB and either first and second time until it was closer to birthing. Right. Like, they'd come maybe for a little bit at the beginning when I first got there, but then I never really saw 'em again. Right,

Dr. Nicole (30:08): Right. But this time your midwife

Deundria (30:12): With the midwives, It was,

Dr. Nicole (30:14): Uh, they were a lot more present

Deundria (30:16): With the nurses, like just constant, um, which I really appreciated.

Dr. Nicole (30:21): Okay. Especially since your doula wasn't there. So then what was pushing like for you?

Deundria (30:30): Uh, pushing. I would say I pushed five times. Okay. Yes. It was very, it was, I mean, I don't, it, the experience was like night and day when it comes to going toward this approach. And I'm so thankful I was, I had the, the guts to, to just advocate for myself if that, if that was the experience that I wanted. Um, advocate for myself for that to happen. And, um, so I pushed five times. The baby came out. I think she had to tilt my pelvic my pelvis just a little bit. Um, and everything was, was great. He came out, he was six pounds, um, 10 ounces a month early. Um, his score was, I can't remember, I don't know how it's been a while doing OB, but it was high. It was one of the highest scores. They said that he was perfect. Um, he, it was great.

Dr. Nicole (31:42): Nice, nice, nice. So completely different than your other two experiences.

Deundria (31:46): Oh my gosh. It was so different

Dr. Nicole (31:49): In a good way. Of course

Deundria (31:50): In a very good way. Yes.

Dr. Nicole (31:53): Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Do you regret like not doing it sooner, trying to do it this way? Or were you just happy that you had this type of experience?

Deundria (32:03): I, I, overall I'm happy. I'm happy that they're all here. You know, I have three beautiful babies. Um, but I just wish that I had the education. I, I educated myself so much with this pregnancy. Um, I wish I would've done that with the others instead of just kind of going through the motions. I think that that's huge is educating yourself and

Deundria (32:28): All your options. Um, and even post postpartum, it was so simple. Um, and to top it all off, I didn't have blood pressure issues.

Dr. Nicole (32:42): Mm. Okay.

Deundria (32:44): Which is, yeah. I mean that's, that's so strange. It's like, you know, I've had blood pressure issues these last two times, but with this time, I, I didn't, my blood pressure was fine. Um, we stayed extra three nights just because Asher had, um, Billy Ruben level. Um, the jaundice, he had jaundice. Sure. But that was with all of my babies. Um, so he was just with them. They were all like that. So, um, and they wanted to watch him closely because he was technically a preemie. Cause he wasn't at that, what, 36 weeks?

Dr. Nicole (33:24): Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. But he was able to go home with you?

Deundria (33:28): Yes. He was able to go home. He never went to the, um, uh, the icu, the, the PD icu. Yeah. Uh, he never went the nicu. He never went to the nicu. Um, he stayed in there with me. Uh, the only thing, like I said before was we just couldn't leave and nobody could come in, um, because I was considered covid positive, so. But, um, thankfully they were just, they just kept us in our room, including the baby. Okay. And, um, even the, uh, the doctor, the pediatrician, he was actually happy. That, happy at one point that I did have covid because he said that the antibodies, um, was transferable into the baby. Gotcha. Depending on how long I, prior to, um, me getting there that I had it, so.

Dr. Nicole (34:24): Gotcha. Gotcha. And then, so then afterwards, you didn't have any symptoms or issues or anything from the covid?

Deundria (34:33): No, I had no issues from the covid. Um, thankfully.

Dr. Nicole (34:37): Did your husband ever test positive?

Deundria (34:40): No, he never tested positive. Um, he, he, it, it literally, we were just very surprised Right. That positive whenever we got there. I, I honestly think I had the, the, the actual, um, virus the week before, and it was just me still being positive.

Dr. Nicole (35:03): Mm-hmm. That's, that's probably exactly, exactly what happened. And then did you breastfeed?

Deundria (35:09): I did. I breasted, I, I breastfed all three. Um, and with Asher, I, I went straight to it as usual. Um, he latched it was perfect. I did use the, um, consultant, the breastfeeding consultant, always, um, a good refresher to, um, see her tips. But at, she came in and he was perfect and he was, she was like, Well, there's nothing for me to do. So he, um, latched good and he is eating, he's breastfeeding till this day.

Dr. Nicole (35:45): Okay. And how old is he now?

Deundria (35:48): He is now six months. Okay.

Dr. Nicole (35:50): All right.

Deundria (35:51): He started.

Dr. Nicole (35:52): Awesome, awesome, awesome. So although things didn't go exactly as you intended with the covid and your baby coming early, when you look back, how do you feel about things?

Deundria (36:07): Well, I I'm just glad it all worked out. I was very scared when I went into, when I, when my water broke a month early, it was scary. Um, I, I just didn't know. I didn't know right. What was gonna happen. Um, and then even with just everything with the covid and me not being able to have my doula in there, I just kind of broke down a little bit at, um, at the hospital just because, but then I remembered, um, I remembered, I remember honestly, your podcast. I remember how it says, you know, you have a plan, but at the same time, be open minded that things may not go as planned and to adapt and to adjust and, um, stay focused. Um, so overall, looking back, I think I, I don't, I wouldn't have had it any other way. Um, of course I would've wanted certain things, but it all worked out. Um, at one point I was able to still get a lot on, on my birth birthing plan. I was able to have a child, my last child non-medicated and use water therapy and, um, have my husband present and, um, midwives be available and at hand. I mean, those are a lot of things that I feel like, um, worked for my good.

Dr. Nicole (37:34): Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So then what is the one piece of advice or one thing you would tell women is they get ready for their birth?

Deundria (37:45): Educate, educate.

Dr. Nicole (37:47): I thought you were gonna say that

Deundria (37:49): Education is so big, and I wish I would've known sooner. And I actually, I have multiple friends that were pregnant with me, and I would just say, Hey, I seen this on, um, this podcast. Um, I'll send it to 'em. Or, uh, there was a lot of questions out there and, um, it's so, it's, it's so simple just to kind of go with the motion, but if you were to educate yourself and truly understand how things work, even in your body, like there was one thing that you said on your podcast about pain that really kind of set with me till this day. And that's, you know, this is a different type of pain. And if you readapt your mindset on the pain of birthing compared to hitting your, um, your big toe on furniture, like it's two separate different things. And it's a good thing. This pain is good, it's going to lead to something good. And so just those little things can change your mindset. And so I absolutely get into something, uh, listen to a podcast, do a birthing class. Um, include your husband, that's huge. Or whoever your support system is. Um, those are the things that I guess Yes.

Dr. Nicole (39:14): Love it. And y'all, I promise I did not pay her to say any of those things. Oh, alrighty. Well, thank you Deundria, for agreeing to come onto the podcast. Where can women connect with you? And you can say nowhere, totally up to you.

Deundria (39:30): Um, I'm on Instagram. Um, I d I don't even know what my actual what my actual name is.

Dr. Nicole (39:39): Oh that's okay. We can put it and we can ask you later and put it in the show notes.

Deundria (39:42): Okay.

Dr. Nicole (39:43): All right. Well, thank you so much. I so appreciate you taking the time to come on and share your story of how this like beautiful baby Asher was born.

Deundria (39:53): Yes. Thank you so much.

Dr. Nicole (40:02): Wasn't that a great episode? I am so glad that things turned out well despite the fact that she was diagnosed with Covid in the hospital and that she didn't have any long term issues with having covid. Now, after every episode where I have a guest on, you know, I do something called Dr. Nicole's Notes where I discuss my top takeaways from the conversation. Here are my Doctor Nicole's Notes from my conversation with Deundria. Number one, nice and supportive ain't the same thing, y'all Okay? Just because your doctor is nice doesn't mean that they will be supportive of the things that you want for your birth. I've seen so many people get tricked by this, where they're like, Oh, the person is nice. So you just assume that they will automatically be supportive. And that is not the case. I think sometimes social media makes it out to be like, people who don't support you are like, they're villains and they're terrible, and they force you to do these things in labor and they force you to stay in bed and they force you to do this and that.

Dr. Nicole (40:59): But that's not actually how it typically goes. Most people are pretty reasonable. And it's actually not that common that folks are gonna be straight up like mean or forceful like that. It's typically that people are relatively nice, you know, they're not screaming or yelling, but they're not necessarily supportive of the things that you want. So in order to understand if they are supportive, you really need to ask those questions. Which brings me to point number two, and that is how getting educated can make all of the difference. Okay. Getting educated is so, so, so important. And yes, you are doing that through this podcast. Yes, yes, yes. So I'm glad that you are listening to the podcast, but you really need to do things like, take it a step further, do some great childbirth education at a minimum. Take my birth plan class. Again, it's make a birth plan the right way.

Dr. Nicole (41:55): You can sign up for it at drnicolerankins.com/register, but get educated because it really can make all the difference in your birth experience. And then the final point that I wanna make, and this may seem a little bit outta left field, but I see, or I've heard, I've had a lot of folks on the podcast, not a lot, but enough. And just like talking to people say that they have switched from physician to midwifery care, and that is perfectly great. Um, I obviously support midwives. I work side by side with midwives on a regular basis. I am an OB hospitalist and I work side by side with certified, certified nurse midwife hospitalist. I've trained with midwives. I fully support midwives 1000%. They, they provide excellent care. But the thing is, midwives are not always readily available. There are lots of places where you won't have access to a midwife.

Dr. Nicole (42:58): And quite frankly, although there certainly is a lot of push for having more midwives, I can anticipate that the ob gyn specialty field organ organizations will push back to some degree because they don't want to give up completely taking care of obstetrics. Like, I don't ever see that happening. Where we ever go to a model like, say Europe for instance, where there is primarily midwifery care for low risk people and doctors are only for high risk patients. I, I just don't see that happening. And even if it does happen in, even if it does happen, it's going to be decades before that happens because, um, of education and training and all of that good, great stuff. So I say all that to say, if you can't find a midwife, then try to find a doctor who has midwife like qualities. All right? You may not necessarily find a doctor who has like long appointments where you can talk and have conversations, but you can find doctors who will be supportive of the things that you want for your birth.

Dr. Nicole (44:08): Um, I am proud to call myself someone who is a doctor that has midwife like qualities. As a matter of fact, I think that is what is gonna be a temporary solution or something that needs to happen regardless, is that we adopt some of the things of midwifery, um, care into our regular obstetric care for low risk patients. So you can find a doctor who has midwife like qualities, who listens to you, who's patient, who gives you time, who answers your questions. So if you can't find a midwife, look for a doctor with midwife like qualities. All right. So there you have it. Do me a favor, share this podcast with the friend. Sharing is caring and sharing helps me to reach and serve more pregnant people, which is at the heart, soul, and passion of my work. And I appreciate your help in doing that.

Dr. Nicole (44:53): Also subscribe to the podcast in Apple Podcast or wherever you are listening to podcast right now. And if you feel so inclined, leave me in review in Apple Podcast, I read those reviews. I love to hear what you think about the show, and it also helps the show to grow, helps other women find the show. And we can also continue this conversation on Instagram. I am on Instagram at Dr. Nicole Rankins. I'm also on the TikTok at Dr. Nicole Rankins as well, although I'm much more on Instagram, but I've started being on TikTok a bit too. You can follow me both places at Dr. Nicole Rankins. So that is it for this episode. Do come on back next week and remember that you deserve a beautiful pregnancy and birth.