Holly Wiersma, Doula Services 


DONA-Certified Doula

Lamaze-Certified Childbirth Educator


 (925) 947-5874     hdwiersma@hotmail.com

Birth Stories

While supporting you during your birth, I log the significant moments during your process.  At our postpartum visit, I give you a special writeup of your baby's delivery.  Please find a sample birth story below.  Of course, names have been changed to ensure privacy.  


Birth Story of "Zoe", by Holly Wiersma

On Monday, July 9, 2007 at 4:00 PM, Rachel noticed leaking fluid. She called Bob at work and he quickly headed home. She called her doula, Holly and then her OB, who suggested she come into the clinic for an assessment. By 5:00 PM Rachel had been to the clinic and Dr. H. had confirmed rupture of the membranes. The doctor presented several options: induce labor now, wait twelve hours to induce or do a non stress test and then make the decision. After the tests turned out normal, Rachel and Bob decided to wait.


They headed home and relaxed. By late evening there were still no signs of labor. Rachel and Bob were feeling a strange combination of excitement and anxiety. Rachel had contractions off and on all through the night. They timed a few and felt like Rachel was getting into labor. They woke at 6:30 AM. After showering and gathering their bags, they went to the hospital. Rachel's mood was upbeat. She was cracking jokes and making light of the situation. By 7:30 AM, she was admitted to a labor room and seemed almost too relaxed. Dr. H. came in and announced that Rachel was going to have her baby today. She also commented that Rachel didn't seem like she was much in labor. Rachel's early contractions had indeed subsided. Those nighttime contractions were very early labor contractions. The nurse did some initial procedures and started an IV with Pitocin.


Bob and Rachel slept on the bed together, trying to rest up for the events of the day. As the Pitocin began to strengthen the contractions, Rachel found it helpful to move around. She especially found sitting on the ball, rocking and breathing with Bob useful for coping. Bob was watching the clock, the Pitocin drip and wondering how much more intense this could get. The Hypnobirthing classes paid off here: Rachel's slow breathing techniques worked really well for her at this stage.  By 12:30 PM the contractions were extremely strong and they called their doula to come to the hospital.


Holly arrived at 1:30 PM, which was perfect timing. Rachel was feeling more intensity in her back. She changed position to her hands and knees with heat applied to her back, then moved back to sitting on the ball. She leaned forward holding onto Bob's hands, moaning low sounds with each strong contraction. Holly lightly massaged her back and shoulders and offered positive encouragement.  By 3:00 PM we'd seen four different OB's! Dr. M. checked Rachel's cervix and found she had progressed to 3 cm, 90% effaced and baby was low at -1 station. Rachel was encouraged by her progress and situated herself sitting up in bed. Shortly after, Rachel got up the bathroom, returned to bed and then tried sitting on the couch. But she quickly decided the ball helped her manage best. She leaned forward into pillows on Bob's lap with her back supported by her doula. Bob held her hands and kissed and encouraged her.


The intensity was becoming quite challenging by 4:45 PM and Rachel asked to be checked. She was beginning to consider medication. Her cervix was now dilated to 5 cm. Rachel tried again to sit up in the bed with heat to her back. At 5:25 PM, Rachel decided she wanted some pain medication and the team discussed the options. She was so tired and the contractions were long. She opted for a narcotic. This allowed her to rest and she even got fifteen minutes of sleep. At 6:00 PM Rachel began to feel bearing down sensations. She focused on blowing through the contractions. It was quite difficult and she moaned that she "didn't want to do it anymore". Considering an epidural again, Rachel was checked and found to be 6 cm. She opted for another dose of the narcotic. Rachel was so tired. She tried lying on her side to rest. She concentrated on the blow breathing techniques. Bob got on the bed with her and talked her through the feelings of pressure. He encouraged her, telling her she could "overcome her challenge". Bob placed a piece of baby clothing in Rachel's hand to motivate her to keep on going and focus on the baby.


At 6:45 PM Rachel felt she had reached her limit and wanted the epidural. Our nurse suggested the shower. Rachel agreed to try it. Bob was halfway in the shower helping her to focus on her breath and to stay as relaxed as possible. Her doula also continued to encourage her focus. Rachel made her best efforts to manage the intense pressure, but at one point she yelled her demand for the epidural. The team had discussed this scenario quite a bit when working on the birth plans. Rachel told Bob she wanted to try other options before an epidural, unless it was substantially medically indicated. Rachel was making progress and Bob felt pretty confident that the team should keep trying comfort techniques, especially since mom and baby had perfect vital signs. The shower turned out to be very useful as Rachel spent thirty minutes there.


Dr. M. came in to check Rachel at 7:25 PM. Rachel had progressed to 8 cm and baby was very low. But there was still some thickness in the front of the cervix. Dr. M. encouraged her to continue her breathing. At 7:40 PM, Dr. M. checked again. There was just a little "lip" of cervix left. With Rachel giving a test push, the doctor was able to move the lip out of the way. Rachel was then completely dilated and able to begin pushing in earnest. Rachel was resilient as she got to the task of pushing. She agreed to try multiple positions to help move baby down. She pushed with the squat bar and in a kneeling position over the back of the bed. She squatted, leaning over the bar and she leaned back, pulling her legs open. And then she repeated the routine... over and over. Rachel really took charge at this stage! Finally, at 9:05 PM, Rachel pushed her baby out! Zoe was born! Rachel welcomed her daughter saying, "Oh my god, oh my god... oh my baby!"

Happy Birthday Zoe!