The Power an Adjustment Can Release
By Mallory Josh
I first came to Dr. Lacey when I was three weeks pregnant. As a chiropractic student, I understand the importance of maintaining proper biomechanics within the pelvis and reducing and removing interference to the nervous system; what most surprised me is the power of an adjustment during labor. When those two faint, perfect pink lines showed up on that pregnancy test, my first thought was that I couldn’t wait to tell my husband…but my second thought was that I needed a rock-star chiropractor on my birthing team. Dr. Lacey meant much more to me than a weekly adjustment. She created a safe space that allowed me to be vulnerable and express my true potential.
I was checked twice a week throughout my pregnancy, and the few times I only went once a week, I could feel the disconnect within my system. How the disconnection manifested was different every time, spanning anywhere from the typical low back pain all the way to restless leg. The adjustment indeed helped with the discomfort pregnancy can bring, but more important, it increased my connection with our unborn baby. I remember vividly laying down on Dr. Lacey’s adjusting table; during the adjustment I felt the connection between our baby and myself deepen. This would stay true throughout my pregnancy and with each adjustment, especially during labor.
When that big question mark of a day finally arrived, I went into labor and immediately asked Dr. Lacey to come over and adjust me. As soon as she did, labor progressed and the contractions got closer together and increased in intensity. A little further into labor, she adjusted me again, and again labor progressed. Looking back at it now, I have a new appreciation for the adjustment. Without Dr. Lacey and her adjustments throughout my pregnancy and labor, my journey to motherhood would not have unfolded with as much beauty and ease as it did. I almost hesitate to use the word ease, because my labor was not without digging deep and doing the work that was asked of me. Through chiropractic, my body, mind, spirit, and daughter were fully connected, allowing the birthing process to unfold exactly as it was designed to. And so, yes, my baby was birthed with ease. It is my vision and hope that every mom has a chiropractor on her birth team to deepen the connection between herself and her baby, so each family can experience a fully connected birth just as it was designed by our creator.
A Chiropractor’s Story of Birth
By Lacey Wilson, D.C.
7:11 a.m. I woke up to a text message from Mallory telling me that she wasn’t going to school and that she was having “intense Braxton Hicks [false contractions] for a while now.” She asked me to come over whenever I wanted and that she and her husband, Ian, “would just be hanging out.” I immediately had a feeling that today was the day, but from the tone of Mallory’s text message, I figured we had some time. “I’ll come over; going to take quick shower and I will head that way,” I replied. I rolled out of bed and into my morning routine.
8:40 a.m. I was grabbing coffee from downstairs when I received another text message: “Just so you know, I am in labor and just had some bloody show and contractions are getting more intense.” Butterflies immediately set in, and, without hesitation, I sprinted to the car. That baby’s coming fast, I thought. Thankfully Mallory and Ian lived only 10 minutes away.
8:54 a.m. I arrived at Mallory and Ian’s place. When I walked into their home I immediately could feel the energy in the room. This full-moon baby was definitely coming Earthside today, possibly early that afternoon. Ian was reading birth affirmations as Mallory was grabbing on to her birthing ball. We managed to get Mallory in a position so that I could check and adjust her. After a sacral adjustment, she immediately had a contraction, which she mentioned was much stronger than the rest. Ian made eye contact and quietly mouthed, “Are we good?” I nodded, and we managed to get Mallory on her side on the table. She had another strong contraction only six minutes from the one after her first adjustment. After I checked and adjusted her atlas, Mallory’s contractions kept coming, stronger and stronger.
9:53 a.m. I called Mallory’s doula, Nicole, and told her that she might want to come because the contractions were stronger and getting closer together. Ian was on the phone with their midwife, Kim, at the same time. Kim told Ian that Mallory’s contractions needed to be lasting around 60 seconds before we moved her to the birthing center. I relayed the message to Nicole, and said I would call her when we were getting closer.
10:59 a.m. Mallory’s water broke in the bathroom, and we knew it was go time. Ian and I tried to get Mallory to stand up from all fours in the bathroom, but she was not interested. She told Ian to call Kim and ask her what to do. The birthing center was a 40-minute drive and the sky was pouring down rain.
Over the phone, Kim told Ian to check to see what he could feel. “I feel something really hard, like a baseball,” he said. Mallory had another strong surge. This time, Kim told Ian to put her on speaker phone and told Mallory that if she couldn’t get into the car right now, she was going to have to talk us through a delivery over the phone. With that conversation, we finally got in the car around 11:15, and the baby started crowning within 10 minutes of our drive. Can you imagine Ian’s face when I told him he needed to be prepared to catch?
11:45 a.m. We pulled up to Grapevine Birthing Center and got Mallory upstairs and into the tub. A beautiful baby girl, Henley Aurora was out within four pushes at a minute after noon. This was Mallory’s first baby, and both her midwife and doula approached me after and asked about her chiropractic care. Mallory was checked twice a week throughout her entire pregnancy, mostly because she felt more connected to herself and her baby after each adjustment. The people at the birthing center were amazed at how quickly the baby came, and how calm mama was. I am so thankful to have been a part of Henley Aurora’s birth story and for prenatal chiropractic care.
A Midwife’s Perspective
By Kim Daly, C.P.M.
Chiropractic care in pregnancy and labor, and more specifically the Webster technique, has been a game changer in my midwifery and birthing-center practice. I was able to experience this appreciation firsthand long before I became a midwife. When I was a first-time pregnant mom, I suddenly went from a perfect second-trimester pregnancy to a pain level of 10 while getting in and out of bed at 20 weeks. Thankfully, a friend recommended a Webster-certified chiropractor who was able to take me to a pain level of 0 in two adjustments. From then on, I was sold.
When I began my midwifery training I knew that chiropractic would be an integral piece to the success and health of my practice. Thankfully, I have been able to work alongside many Webster chiropractors in my years of practice, and the benefits never cease to amaze me. I now have a well-established birthing center in Grapevine, Texas, and have had a Webster-certified chiropractor on staff since day one. Thanks to chiropractic care, we get to see not only pregnancies transformed, but also labors shortened, and stalled labors start again without intervention. Not to mention that newborn babies’ breastfeeding issues vanish. (I really could go on!)
At Grapevine Birthing Center, we love that we get to see many chiropractic school students come through our doors as patients. I enjoyed seeing the fruits of Mallory’s long-term and frequent chiropractic adjustments that she had over the years, as well as the benefits she received from her chiropractor’s Webster technique adjustments. By all accounts, Mallory was a star patient. When combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle, chiropractic care in pregnancy and labor can be an integral ingredient to an amazing labor and birth.
This article appeared in Pathways to Family Wellness magazine, Issue #57.
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