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Having a baby is always an unpredictable experience, especially for first-time moms. A caring, compassionate health care team can bridge the gap between what a mom understands about labor and delivery and how she goes about making the experience memorable and positive. Unfortunately, for mom Asia Batton, this was not what happened.

Asia gave birth to her first child, Carter, in August 2018.

“I was in labor with Carter for around 36 hours. When they told me ‘We need to do a c-section,’ I was like, ‘Whoa, not what I was expecting.’ I felt rushed. I needed more time, but I was just a number there, and they clearly wanted to get me out.”

Carter was fine following birth, but Asia was distraught, anxious, in pain and disappointed.

An Introduction to Stellar Patient Care at WakeMed North Hospital

When Asia learned that she and her husband were expecting again, she was initially excited, but before long, her excitement turned into nervousness and anger as she realized she would once again need to rely on hospital care teams to help deliver her child.

“I had a flood of emotions. I did not want to have another c-section and knew that I never wanted to return to the hospital where I had Carter. I’d only ever heard great things about WakeMed North Hospital, so we decided that was where we would have our child.”

Asia got right to work researching how to inform her care team of her preferences for labor and delivery to avoid the traumatic experience with her son. Before long, she ran across information about WakeMed Supportive Birth Services on Instagram.

“It was a new program, and when I talked with intake social worker, Betsy, we had a helpful conversation about my past birth trauma. I told her that this time around, it was important to me that I was heard, understood and not pressured or pushed to do things their way. Betsy was warm and comforting. She assured me that they would take good care of me and referred me to the labor and delivery nurse for a tour of where I would give birth and an opportunity to discuss my birth preferences.”

When Asia and Jamel arrived for their meeting, they were pleasantly surprised to a see a familiar face. They knew nurse Katie as she’d helped with a prior obstetrics visit. They were equally impressed that she remembered them. Katie allowed the couple to tour unused spaces in the labor and delivery wing. She also emphasized that Asia would be heard and supported in her decisions.

“This time around felt totally different,” shares Asia.

A Labor and Delivery of Asia’s Making

Fast forward and Asia was home managing prodromal labor for three solid days. The morning of day four, Friday, April 29, 2022, she woke up and sensed it was time. Her pain was increasing.

“Jamel gathered my son and I into the car. He dropped me off at the hospital and took our son to school. I checked in, and they triaged me. Before long, my contractions completely stopped, and I thought to myself, ‘Here we go again. Just more prodromal labor.'”

As Asia sat in the room with her husband who’d recently arrived, she soon felt encouraged as she overheard hospital medicine physician Gregory Mohs, MD, FACOG, state just outside her room, “She’s definitely going to be able to have a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). I see no issues.” Asia was delighted.

“I became very emotional. I would not need another c-section. Even better, they honored my birth preferences and gave me a monitor that allowed me to walk around while I went through labor. They also did not push any medications on me and allowed me to try different positions. Before long, my contractions started back up again.”

Asia returned to active labor around noon. She was five centimeters dilated.

“During that time, I was able to breathe through every contraction, walk around and sit on the toilet — since I’d heard it was the dilation station. I also lie on the bed and on a ball for more comforting movement.”

Around seven hours later, nurse Brooke checked Asia to see if her water was near breaking. Her water was bulging, so the nurse broke it and encouraged Asia that the time was near and that it was time to practice pushing. “I just felt her head move down.”

“At that point, I felt a bit nervous because I knew she was near. My contractions grew stronger, and I began panicking a little because they’d honored my wishes not to give me any medication, and now I knew the time to change my mind had past. I was still able to breathe through each contraction though. Then, 15 minutes later I was pushing and within another 15 minutes, my daughter had arrived.”

Asia delivered her daughter, Myla, at 8:20 pm with the help of WakeMed community obstetrician Alison Shew, MD. She and her husband were exhilarated, and Asia was proud of herself that she’d had a completely natural labor and delivery.

“My endorphins were through the roof. I was on cloud nine.”

The care team verified that both Asia and baby Myla were doing well and then transferred them to a postpartum recovery room.

Asia says, “The nurses were so amazing. My doctor made me feel so comfortable and empowered. I was also able to have a doula. This experience was completely different from the one I had with my son. At WakeMed North Hospital, they listened to me. I felt supported and heard. I definitely recommend Supportive Birth Services and WakeMed North.”

About WakeMed North Pregnancy & Childbirth

The newest addition to the WakeMed family is WakeMed North Hospital. Our mission is to deliver happy, healthy babies while caring for birthing mothers throughout the entire delivery process. We have also added the around-the-clock services of board-certified hospital-based OB-GYNs to your team. A valuable extension of your own obstetrician, hospital-based OB-GYNs provide an added level of safety because they see only patients who are in the hospital and are focused on you throughout your entire experience, from labor through post-partum care.

About Supportive Birth Services

Are you a mother-to-be who is excited to meet your baby but also fearful of labor and delivery due to a traumatic life experience? There are many reasons why labor, delivery and postpartum care could bring up difficult emotions.

If you want help, the WakeMed Supportive Birth Services team is here to listen to your fears, help guide you during this life-changing season and patiently walk you through your birthing experience.

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