Well, a week has passed since baby Jack was born, and we just wanted to write to tell you how happy we are and how much we enjoyed working with you. As you know we originally had an obstetrician, and we just did not feel like I was getting the personalized attention a new mother needs. We had heard about the great care that midwives provide and thought that might be a better option. We interviewed several people, including Jeri. From our first meeting we knew she was the right person for us.
Jeri provided excellent prenatal care and advice. She always took time during our visits to answer all our questions and to make sure I was doing the things I should in order to give our unborn child everything he needed. What a pleasant change of pace from the ten minutes, cold visits with the obstetrician!
Labor was intense and thirty hours long, but I loved the experience so much. The hospital did not want me to go past twelve hours from the time my water broke. They would have given me labor and delivery drugs or a cesarean section in order to birth the baby within their idea of a reasonable timeframe, but Jeri, in accordance with our birth plan and her philosophy, stepped in and was confident I could have a natural, vaginal birth.
Our baby was posterior, but Jeri successfully coaxed him to turn just before it was time to start pushing . After 26 hours of contractions, I was only dilated to 6 centimeters. I was so disappointed... until Jeri said, I could start pushing. At six?! I hadn't heard of anone pushing before ten. Jeri said it was an old midwives' trick. She was right! With four or five pushes I was fully dilated. I couldn't believe it! I had three and a half hours of pushing because our baby's head was hitting my pubic bone, which kept him from coming out easily. His umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck, though loosely. He was just over eight pounds. Despite the obstacles and his healthy size, Jeri delivered our baby with no episiotomy and no tears at all. She kept me focused and was encouraging all through our labor. With her support and the support of my husband and our Doula, I never felt discouraged and I was able to stay true to my birth plan, which included declining the hospital's offer of an epidural and other labor/delivery drugs.
I love telling our birth story and feel so good about my pregnancy and my labor experience. I am so grateful to Jeri for all she did to make this wonderful time in our lives all that we hoped it would be. If and when we decide to have another child (we're discussing those plans already!), we don't want anyone but Jeri to provide my prenantal care and deliver our baby. She gives tender loving care to all her patients. We highly recommend her to anyone who is planning a family.
Jeri, thank you again for everything you've done for us and for being you! You ar a goddess!
Lots of love,
Kelly, Don, and baby Jack Johnston