Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The amazing home water birth of baby Chiu 2!

I woke up Tuesday morning June 17th, the day after my guessed "due date" with stronger than usual contractions. I've been having considerably regular braxton hicks for months and knew something was different this time. My husband and I ate a yummy breakfast of fried eggs, fruit, yogurt, and rib eye steak with some coffee, and then he left for work all while Zoey was still sound a sleep in bed. (Poor thing hasn't really napped in the past week because of all the changes with our new restaurant opening up the previous week, so shes been sleeping in late, hallelujah.)

When Zoey woke up around 10am or so, I fed her yogurt and berries on a towel on the floor in our bedroom while she watched cartoons. (She LOVES eating upstairs and we call it having a picnic on the floor.) I slid into a nice FULL warm bath. (I can see her there from our bathroom/bathtub). She finished her little breakfast and joined me in the tub for over an hr. She played sweetly while I texted and called a few friends, Sam, my doulas and midwife, just to let them know that I thought I *might be* in labor. I snapped a pic of us hanging out in the tub, and uploaded it to Instagram and Facebook where I have a pretty amazing group of awesome friends, and I felt the love pour out of my phone while I read all sorts of encouragement comments.

Zoey and I headed downstairs to make lunch around 1 and one of my doulas, Jessica Pace, suggested I download a contractions timer app and keep track for 30 minutes. At this point I knew the contractions were stronger but I was still not convinced if I was actually *IN LABOR*. They were ab a minute long and 5 minutes apart and continued to increase. We texted and Chelsea my other doula let me know that she was ready whenever I wanted her and Jessica to come.

Fast forward to 3pm and I called Jessica and she said she came into Greensboro and was almost to Chelsea's house. I laughed and told her when I have a contraction my toes were curling and I was thinking "Oh wow this is labor I think, I need help." but then it would dissipate and I would think "nah, that wasn't labor, I'm fine!" She asked if I wanted them to come over and before she could even finish her sentence I said YES. She also told me, "Jade, you are in labor" to which I laughed bc it was such a relief.

At this point my husband is still at work and not able to leave our new restaurant. I had a little pit in my heart, scared that he wouldn't make it or that if he did, all hell would break loose at our new place. I was scared and was literally unsure of what to feel... I had a little resent, hope, trust, fear, love, sympathy and anger all mixed up and I needed him. I needed my husband's support. So much.

Chelsea and Jessica arrived around 4 pm and at this point I was eating raw carrots walking circles around the couch, with the air conditoner blasting, in my bathing suit, and Zoey was all excited running around with me in her undies. Jessica and Chelsea and I hung out downstairs as the contractions went from meh, to whoooaaaa. They took pics, helped me decide when to call the midwife and my friend Jihae to come and help with Zoey, and they did COUNTER PRESSURE... sweet relief that counter pressure is. Soooooo sooooo soooo soooooo import! Every contraction they were helping me thro, suggesting new positions and such.
Around 5 we called the restaurant and Sam said he was on his way home. THANK THE LORD.
Sam came home and we took a shower while I held on to him, just standing in the warm water relishing in his presence. I was so happy he was home and I was literally trying to wait to have our baby, till he got there. After our shower he last touches on the cord burning box while I sat on the birth ball in "Zoey's room" (she's never actually slept in there, technically...) the lighting was beautiful as the sun shown throw the blinds and curtains. We took more pics and Jihae was there and being a huge help with Zoey, and brought me some apples bc I NEEDED apples. (Haha thanka again girl! Im so blessed by you! <3)

Then I declared I needed to throw up... I rushed to the toilet just in the nic of time and started to feel a scary flash back to Zoeys birth where I couldn't stop throwing up and needed an iv to replenish me. Thankfully, after a few big heaves, I was good to go and Chelsea and Jessica reassured me that it was a good sign of my labor progressing quickly. I smiled in relief and disbelief.

Our midwives arrived around 6pm and everyone prepared my labor space by filling the birth tub, setting the mood with lights, candles, and music, organizing supplies, and laying down plastic and towels to protect the carpet. I hopped into the tub and WOW, that water was for seriously the most amazing body water I ever encountered, (since Zoey's birth and I labored in the same pool. Hehe.) I smiled looking at my birth team and thanked them from the bottom of my heart. I couldn't get over how manageable the contractions were and we joked ab how if they got too manageable, how I would need to get out of the pool to keep thing moving. Zoey hopped in with me and we all talked, smiled and laughed for a while.

Around 8pm I got out of the pool to try and pee and was hit with a contraction so scary I screamed for Sam to help me as I couldn't catch my breath and was really scared by the duration and intensity. I insisted I immediately get back into the pool. Everyone, such as my doulas and midwives were talking ab gravity...and how sitting on the birth ball would help with gravity, etc. I was horrified by the thought of another freakishly strong and unmanageable contraction and asked to buy some time by saying after a popsicle, I'd get out of the pool and onto the birth ball. I told them I was scared to get out and they all assured me I was safe and strong and had absolutely nothing to fear.

Then my midwife mentioned checking me after I said I was worried bc I was getting tired. I was scared bc thats the number one reason for a homebirth to hospital transfer and I was absolutely mortified at the thought of a hospital transfer. I mentioned how we had some strong black coffee downstairs leftover from breakfast in the fridge and how maybe chugging a half a cup would help. My midwife said not until she checked me so I said ok.
Dude, she checked me and I was a 7. A SEVEN! I WAS OVER THE MOON! WHHHHHAT?! FOREAL?! SERIOUSLY?! HECK YEAH!!! Everyone was shocked and super proud of me and I felt a rush of energy flow into my body! They gave me the ok to drink some coffee, and I chugged half a glass of cold black coffee dude.
I told Sam for the 4th time I wanted him to get in the pool with me and he did. FULLY dressed. He just stepped in and I was like, WAIT what about your phone and wallet?! But he said his pockets were empty and he forgot his phone at the restaurant. As I laid in his strong and safe arms, I felt overcome with love, pace, and beauty. I was centered, my eyes were closed and Sam's touch felt so magical. Like superhuman. He was so strong and gentle and I was so happy to be in his arms in the pool.

Boom. I had a few contractions that I could feel in my tale bone/ butt. What was happening I thought as I announced when each surge overcame me. I was floating on my back and felt the sudden urge to push! My bathing suit bottoms were still on and I yelled for Jessica to pull them off as I pushing! Whaaat was happening I thought?! So fast and so soon?! Midwife checked me really fast and said she felt babys head and asked if we wanted to reach down. I said no as I let out a humongous push and could tell Sam wasn't interested in interpreting that. With my eyes clenched shut I asked if I should squat in the pool, bc thats what my instincts told me to do. Midwife didn't hesitate, she said yes and to my sheer disbelief with 2 loud as hell screams/ pushes, (and one f bomb), babies head was out! Like for a hot minute babies head was out just chillin underwater. They expected him to turn but he didn't and just like Zoey, this kid born with his arm out. YEAH! Little stinkers! What are the odds?! Right?! Two kids both born with one arm by their head! SHEESH! So with another enormous push babies body slid out and I was paralyzed with exhaustion! I was on my hands and knees and couldn't see behind me. The midwife said the cord was short, so I was scared to move and didn't have an oz of strength left. They helped me lift a leg over the cord and handed me the baby and said to hold the baby, and they were gonna pull me out of the pool and to laydown on the bed. I asked for them to get Zoey, and I was so weak I could hardly keep my eyes open. I just kept thanking God out loud, over and over. I was overcome with a profound gratitude and was utterly spent. Midwife checked me and I only had a tiny 1st degree tear that thankfully, did not require stitches! We let the cord completely finish doing its thing and once it was emptied and white, we prepared for the cord burning ceremony. Ha. It ballooned funny and after what felt like 10 minutes of Sam, Zoey, and Jihae trying to burn it to no avail, I was like... "Ok guys, thats enough someone can cut it, that was fun while it lasted, but its taking to long." Sam cut it and I switched my focus on latching baby onto my breast.  Jessica fed me some juice, crackers, and a popsicle, and I relished in the high. I had a baby boy. I had him in our bedroom, in the same birth pool I labored with Zoey in, and I was surrounded by such astonishingly amazing women, and my husband was my gentle rock helping me more than he will ever know. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Dusti, my friend and local placenta encapsulation specialist arrived with some awesome herbs for me and made me the most delicious and nutritious smoothie ever, in Chelsea's vitamix. The smoothie had juice, strawberry yogurt, avocado, banana, pineapple, strawberries, oh yeah, and a chunk of our raw placenta. Yummy! I downed that bad boy and Dusti refilled my cup. (THANK YOU SOOOO MUCH!) I felt a new surge of energy! And she explained how she was gonna freeze a few placenta chucks in veggie capsules for me to take till she could encapsulate our placenta and how she was gonna come back tomorrow to bring me food! Word?!? Wow, I am so humbled and beyond grateful!

10pm everyone left but Jihae and her bf Mo, who is amazing with Zoey and such a good friend to Sam and me! Mo left to get cookout for dinner and Jihae helped get Zoey ready for bed, changed the babies diaper, and closed up open snacks and took the dirty dishes downstairs. (SERIOUSLY, how amazingly blessed am I to have such phenomenal friends?! Thank you Lord!)

Mo came back, we chowed down and then, they announced they were gonna stay the night, which is seriously so generous of them. They even offered to try and put Zoey to sleep. Ha! Wow. That probably would be close to impossible, but what an offer?! Such kindness! Plus, they both have to be at work at 7am. CRAZYNESS! Seriously, awesome friends I am telling you!

So as I lay awake in bed at 6am typing this in bed with baby 2 on my breast all tiny and freah, Zoey behind me sound asleep, and Sam zonked out and occasionally griding his teeth, I am full with an abundance of humble gratitude, still high from my *dream* homebirth with my precious baby 2, who still needs a name! Hahaha
Thank you all for reading this! Thank you for your support, thoughts, prayers, and love!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Current Pregnancy Supplements for Baby Number 2!

I remember when I was pregnant with Zoey (baby number 1) , I took a prenatal that made my urine bright yellow. I didn't know why it did that, but I took it anyways. I think now looking back, it meant my body wasn't able to absorb all the nutrients. When Zoey was born, she had passed meconium and was rushed off to the NICU for an infection in her lungs. She was in the NICU for 6 days. It was pretty emotionally overwhelming needless to say, but all ended up ok and she is absolutely incredible and very very healthy, thankfully! <3 Also, when Zoey was about 18 months we took her to the dentist because her top 2 front teeth had little arches and the back of her teeth were blackish grey and looked soft. I blogged about our experience in my last post, but I never followed up. We never went back to the dentist to get the procedure he suggested, and... WE HEALED HER TEETH!!!! We read the book Cure Tooth Decay and I joined a few Facebook groups and we completely changed her diet and spent A LOT of money on supplements. I should do an blog post updating what we did/do for her teeth! <3

Needless to say, when I found out I was pregnant, the researching, and information loving, crazy mom that  I am;  I wanted to take our past experience with Zoey's meconium and NICU experience, as well as the tooth decay/ enamel issues, and tuck that in my pocket while i took a bit of a more *intentional* and different approach for prenatal supplements with baby number 2. Yeah, so funny story... I actually thought I had diabetes because I googled my symptoms, frequent urination, extreme fatigue, sudden weight gain.... and was about to spend a $100 bucks on a blood test when Sam rolled his eyes at me and told me to go to the store and take a pregnancy test. To my complete and utter shock, I was pregnant and Sam and I were/ are absolutely elated with joy! Zoey will make a PHENOMENAL big sister and she is VERY excited. She tells people she has a baby in her tummy too! She also LOVES babies and really wants one of her own! So I keep telling her "Ok Zoey, mommy is making you a baby sister or brother, so hold on, it's gonna take a while." ^_^

Ok so here is a picture of the supplements I am taking, and most of these supplements I was taking regularly and on daily basis anyways, before I even knew I was pregnant!

Left to Right:
1) Green Pasture Blue Ice Infused Organic Virgin Coconut Oil. The coconut oil is infused with Fermented Cod Liver Oil, Skate Liver Oil, and X Factor High Vitamin Butter Oil. This product is great for everyone in the family! The FCLO and SLO contain high amounts of fat soluble vitamin A and D which is greatly beneficial in small daily and the HVBO is great because it is high in Vitamin K and together they work much more effectively than if you were just to take the FCLO or SLO by itself.  The HVBO is considered Activator X according to Dr. Weston A Price, an awesome Dentist who researched what made some ancient cultures completely immune to tooth decay. So basically this combo is awesome and easy because it is just one huge bottle instead of buying several different bottles. It is ideal for optimum eye, brain, and teeth development in babies, and for everyone, especially if you are trying to boost your overall immune system and health, or heal and cure tooth decay.  It is however, pretty disgusting, I am not gonna lie. But ya gotta do whatcha gotta do. So I do it. For More info I recommend checking out the Weston A Price Foundation website and the Green Pasture website. I keep it in the fridge, and take a big ol spoon full. It melts in my mouth as I chew up the oil and then I chug room temp water to wash it all down. YUM!!!!

2) Amazing Grass Green Superfood Original. This stuff is helpful for overall nutrition and contains a variety of alkalizing green super foods. There are also pre and probiotics, acai and maca, and has the antioxidant equivalent of 7 servings of fruit and veggies. I put a scoop of it in mason jar glass of room put a lid on, shake it like crazy, and chug. It also is not all that delightful to drink, BUT it makes you feel really great afterwards! Like instant energy and really strong!

3) Vitamin Code Garden of Life Raw Prenatal. This prenatal is awesome. I really like it! I have steadily been taking prenatal vitamins since college (great for hair and nails, which is why I took them back then) and this is my favorite! It is food based, raw, vegetarian, dairy and gluten free. It has ginger to help with morning sickness, probiotics for healthy digestion, and has twice the minimum recommended folate for healthy support of neural tube development. (decreases the chance of birth defects related to the brain and spinal cord). It also does not make my urine neon yellow, score!!!! I take one with breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They are easy to take and I love them!

4) Natural Calm Calcium and Magnesium. Calcium and Magnesium work extremely well together, and can help prevent preterm labor,  optimizes blood pressure levels, helps to increase pain threshold tolerance, can reduce the risk of birth defects, and is helpful in relieving constipation as well as helping reduce stress and anxiety, promotes more restful sleep, helps alleviate morning sickness and nausea, and is great for bone and teeth health! This is powder form and you start of very slowly in small doses because your body has to build up the amount it can tolerate, if you take too much your body cannot absorb it all and it will be a waste. I  mix with water, and it tastes great. I have the lemon raspberry flavor!

5) ReMag.  This is a stronger, pure magnesium liquid drop. The directions say to mix with water and start off slowly. The same benefits as listed above. Here is what the ReMag website says " Magnesium is a necessary cofactor for over 700 enzymes that preform vital metabolic functions in the body. It's a simple mineral that prevents and treats diabetes, high blood pressure, anxiety, insomnia, and a dozen other health conditions" -

6) Living Streams Probiotics. The website has a disclaimer that pregnant and nursing women should not use. But I have spoken with the owner/ creator of this of amazing probiotics, several times over the phone, and he assured me it is safe, but it must be taken in VERY small doses and increased VERY VERY SLOWLY. Like one drop a day for a few weeks and there may be some uncomfortable die off side affects associated with detoxing.  I started taking these probiotics when my got them for my daughter over a year ago. In my opinion they are amazing and have helped aid in the healing of her tooth decay! It is a liquid dropper form and tastes a little like water. It is easy to take and give to Zoey.

7) Living Streams Alfalfa Probiotic Complex. The alfalfa is paired with silica from volcanic ash in this complex and is highly concentrated in vitamin k-2, aka the miracle vitamin. Alfalfa is high in protein, calcium, minerals, iron, and vitamin A, C, D, E and K. I also started taking this with my daughter over a year ago and I believe the two living streams probiotics have been the key to her tooth decay healing. <3 And I take it because it has just been a great source of nutrients to me as well, and am hoping it helps baby number 2's developing teeth grow extra strong and healthy! This also comes in liquid dropper form and tastes a little like swamp water and is easy to take and give to Zoey because its only a droppers worth and the taste disappears after a few seconds, no yucky aftertaste.

8) Red Raspberry Leaf Tea. Sounds like some red refreshing summer drink but it actually kinda looks like weed... haha, and it is super yummy as iced or hot tea without any sweetener needed. I drink it throughout the day and have been drinking it steadily since I was 16 weeks pregnant with Zoey! It is fantastic for uterine strengthening/ toning and is often used in many pre packaged pregnancy teas as well. It is high in vitamin and minerals with vitamin C, E, A, B, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and potassium. It can reduce the changes of hemorrhaging, reduce labor pain intensity, and can help to increase milk supply. This is only recommended to take in the second and third trimester due to its uterus stimulating properties but I have heard/ read conflicting info on this, so just use your best judgement. OH this is also fabulous for PMS moody issues and cramping!!!! ^_^

9) Stinging Nettles (AKA Nettle Leaf, NOT ROOT). High in vitamins A, C, K, D, calcium, potassium, iron and a great all around pregnancy tonic. It is found in many pregnancy packaged teas. It can help with relieving low iron related fatigue, exhaustion, and digestion discomfort. It can also help with increasing milk supply, and lessens hemorrhoids, reduces labor pain intensity, and is only recommended to take in the second and third trimester due to its uterus stimulating properties. The first few times I made an "Infusion" and it tasted like thick smiley mud water. I since then have discovered using a little less and combining it with RRLT (below) makes it much more delightful to sip on or chug.  Sam, Zoey, and I all drink this regularly with out any need for sweetener, were gangsta. :)

So there you have it. Everything that I am currently taking for baby number 2 and all the reasons! Please keep in mind I am a hormonal sensitive pregnant lady, so if you have mean, negative, or hateraid type comments, keep them to yourself, thanks but no thanks.  BUT,  if you have happy, encouraging, positive, open minded comments, you are more than welcome to share. ^_^ Thanks!


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Zoey's First Trip To The Dentist

I am calmer now. Even though I am still pretty emotional.
Let's start from the begining. I noticed Zoey's to top front teeth looked chipped when she was around 11months. I did some research and started to ask some natural mama friends that I knew whom were dealing with healing their childrens tooth decay, and trying various routes to remineralize, heal, and reverse their childrens cavities.
I read some articles on mothers having success reversing tooth decay with nutrition and changing their childrens diets. Not dousing them with fluoride and sedating them for surgery. which is the only way to "fix" tooth decay according to modern medicine.
I ended up having our naturopath looking at Zoey's teeth, and he suggested taking Zoey to the dentist... So I called 5 dentists offices and was laughed at when I shared my concern, my research, and asked them what route they would go if it were tooth decay, not just 2 chipped teeth.
I ended up making an appointment and later canceling after being condecended and patronized over the phone by the dentist. He was so pompus and said "hahaha no tooth decay is irreversible, you can try all you want, but if you bring your child to me, I can help you."
Well against my better judgement I rescheduled and this time I talked Sam into coming with us. Hoping he would be supportive and have my back. I did not want to get bullied and I did not want a confrontation either.
Well this morning was the apt and it went like this.
The dental assistant told me the routine, flouride toothpaste, show me how to "properly" brush my childs teeth, and then a flouride varnish. I smiled and said, "actually, I brought our toothpaste." She said "ok we can just use that then and after, do the flouride varnish." I smiled and said " no flouride, thank you anyways."
The dentist came and said "EARTHPASTE, what in the world is earthpaste, is it made from the earth? Hahaha!" I smiled and said "yes, its made with redmond clay, salt, xylitol, and essential oils". After several other negative questions and comments about our choice of toothpaste, he continued to condecend me and tell me that Zoey would benifit from the use commercial flouride toothpaste...
He examined her teeth and yes, she does indeed have tooth decay and cavities in her two front top teeth. I knew it...but I needed to confirm it for Sam to believe me and have him be on board with how aggressively I plan on treating it naturally with diet, nutrition, supplements, and education.
He went over reasons why she may have it, and I responded no to the first questions, like does she drink fruit juice? Nope. Does she drink milk from a bottle or sippy cup? Nope. Does she eat candy? Nope. Does she still breastfeed? Yes. On demand? Yes.
Then he said her age. "19 months. Hm well, how do I put this... Every bird gets kicked out of the nest and learns for fly". (WHO SAYS THAT?!?) When I looked at him with a confused furrowed brow, he reiterated. "Well we reccomend you wean her at 1 and shes 19 months so defiantly cut back and wean and we will would like to see you again in 2 months. If she isn't better by then, we will need to discuss sedating her to have me fix the decay, oh and I know you don't want to hear this again, but using just a tiny bit of fluoride on her decay will help tremendously."
I just smiled, nodded, and wanted to freak out and go crazy, as Sam chimed in reassuring the dentist that Zoey will wean soon since she is almost 2...
Then the dentist laughed and said, "Well you must be doing a good job brushing her teeth, because most kids at this point would have bought me a boat." (What?!) He explained that by this point other kids would need to have extensive oral surgery for multiple teeth, and reiterated how lucky we were to have brought her into see him "just in the nick of time".
We thanked the dentist and left and the assistant asked if we wanted a prize for Zoey... I smiled and said "no thanks she doesn't know what that stuff even is", as I looked into the vast plastic containers filled with small brightly colored pastic toys, and wrapped up in plastic.
We got to the front desk and she asked if we wanted to go ahead and make a 2 month appointment. Sam said yes, and I said "I need to check the kitchen calendar first." We thanked everyone and walked out the door...
The first words out of my mouth as soon as the door closed behind us, were really ugly, emotional, angry hateful words...
I am and was angry, scared, and frustrated.
As soon as I got home I called the library and asked if they had the book Cure Tooth Decay: Heal and Prevent Cavities with Nutrition, by Ramiel Nagel. They didn't have the book in any of their branches and the lady even checked the local university libraries. Nope. So I filled out a request/suggestion form for the library to buy the book, and explain why ita important.
I also pinned several articles about reversing tooth decay to my pinterest, and messaged some friends ab our experience...
I need to get my hands on that book and on some fermented/raw cod liver oil... And I have a bag of frozen lamb bones defrosting on the counter in the kitchen.
Dentist Weston A Price has extensive international research documented from all around the world. He studied first hand how people in other countries lived and ate and their oral health outcomes. He found that families who ate grass fed beef and other grass fed animal by products, had significantly less cavities and tooth decay.
I am hesitant to ever go back to that dentist...but it would be fun to take her back after I halt, heal, and reverse her tooth decay... That pompus, condescending, dentist...

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Desperate and disappointed

So Zoeys cutting her first tooth and is in a lot of pain. She has a Baltic amber teethibg necklace from Algimantas Bamber on etsy. I just tested it to see if it was real because Zoey is obviously suffering... Bless her heart. And after wraping it in a washcloth, smashing a section of it with the handles of some scissors, I tested by burning it with a lighter, its fake. It burned and smelled like cheepo burning plastic and not like real pine sap. Bummer! I just jumped on etsy and wrote to the seller and asked them to please send me a real one or refund my money because my baby needs a Baltic amber teething necklace and the website I got it from stated that it was real and raw...
What else can I do?
My poor baby... :(

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Tweeking the herbal formula

Today is day 3 of poor Zoey not feeling well...
Called back The Lotus Center and talked with Michelle, the senior practitioner, who whipped up a bit more bulk Chinese herbal "umph" for me to make into tea and add to the other tea decoction that we made Thursday.
She said to call her back after 24 hrs and that Zoey should definatley improve by then.

The reason for me doing all this, is to help Zoey get better and avoid needing antibiotics... And Sam has been patient, but if he dosnt see the fruits of these herbal remedies ASAP, he's gonna push hard for little Z to get on some antibiotics.

I also called the nurses hotline for my pediatritians after Zoey bumped her head, told her that Zoey was also not feeling well and how we were actually at The Lotus Center picking up some more herbs. The nurse sounded thrilled and said wasn't allowed to talk ab the Chinese herbs she takes, but she said she was proud of me for doing what I was doing and that she fully supported my choice to taking Zoey the "natural" route. She then drilled me with all sorts of other questions, and said Zoey's bump to the head should be fine and just continue to keep a close eye on her.

Here's the new mixture of herbs I cooked and the pre made batch of herbs for ZoZo's little cough.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Back in the game!

After a little battle with thrush, Mama Chiu is back in the milk pumping game, so bottoms up to my little milk son Noah!