Navy & Motherhood Intro

I cant speak for the other branches, but Im sure its just as hard as the Navy. I know pregnancy and birth and parenthood is rough no matter what your job is, but i feel its especially difficult while in the military. Some, like myself are very lucky to not deploy after we have our kids while others deploy 12 months after.

So, whats it like being a mom in the Navy?

Lets start off with the beginning- you dont pick your OBGYN, they are picked for you. You can request, and ask for a new one but chances are you wont get what you want. You dont pick the hospital- that is determined by the navy as well. Im sure we have had sailors do home births or water births but its unlikely, and you probably have to have permission. If you have a normal pregnancy you will most likely see a midwife, if you are like me and have very crappy , high risk pregnancies then you are stuck seeing an OB for every appointment.

You dont get much say. I didn’t want the flu shot while pregnant (personal choice) and I was forced into getting it. I knew with my second baby I wanted my tubes tied, but I had to have my husband consent.

Yes, we do get rather nice maternity leave. When I had my first son it was basically 16-18 weeks depending on the command. It was great especially since I had had a c-section. When I had my second son, it had been changed to 12 weeks. Which yes, is great but it sucked not being home the same amount of time. But that is the military- changes in a blink of the eye. 84 days is given to you by the hospital for recovery time. The rest of the time is not a guarantee because it comes from your command. It can be denied and given to you to take any time before your child is one. Nothing in the military is a guarantee, ever.

You are shore duty for 12months after child birth for bonding time, after those 12 months many return to sea duty…

I was blessed that my kids came when they did. Everything lined up for me to not return to sea duty. Still its rough. You child is sick or the daycare is closed, you better figure it out. Most of the time the commands and chain of command don’t care. You belong to the military not yourself or family. The job comes first.

Over the next few days I will be posting stories from Military and Veteran Mothers.

This is something close to my heart, and i hope you enjoy learning our struggles or more about how it worked in the service.

Birth Story{s}

Hello! Lets talk birth…

In the comments I’d love to hear your birth stories!

With my first child birth was nothing like i thought it would be. I went in due to swelling, I was a week and half shy of my due date so I expected and IV and to be sent home.

Turns out, my blood pressure was 209/92!! I was immediately told to dress down and that I would be induced that night. Strangely enough I was worried, I was just happy to know I would be done being pregnant soon.

November 22, 2015 I was induced with pitocin. I was 3.5 cm dilated and with in just a couple hours I was at 8cm. They broke my water and I got an epidural. Back labor is no jake y’all. No contraction had bothered me up until damn back labor started. I remember the pain, the puking… the crying…. no joke. Then that epidural started working… peace on earth again.

I did labor alone, my now husband, then boyfriend was deployed and our families scattered across the states. It wasn’t what I expected. I assumed to be in pain, and screaming like you see on TV, but that wasn’t it. I was lucky and had seriously the most amazing nurse ever. She helped me breathe through the contractions and the epidural. Eventually, they said it was time to push… I never felt the urge to push. So that is my advice- if you don’t feel the urge, express that. Long story short, I tore where you should tear and I refused to keep pushing. A few hours went by and my blood pressure began to raise again, and I went in for a cesarean section. Later to find out that’s the only way a baby would be able to come from my body.

1409 [209 pm] my sweet first born came earth side. I unfortunately wasn’t able to hold him due to medications but I got to see his sweet face and that feeling of everything was right again flooded me.

I never felt trauma due to birth, it didn’t happen how I thought it would… but it was perfect.

My second birth was a dream! It was a scheduled c-section for 39 weeks. Making it to 39 weeks was the scary part, but I made it.

It was so simple, and smooth going. Nothing spectacular. My husband, a Veteran finally was with me. We got to the hospital at 830am day of and I was ready to go into the OR within 30 minutes.

They had my husband wait until the spinal was in and curtain was up before he got to come in. I will say I got nervous before right before the spinal and my blood pressure dropped so they had to lay me down… no big deal. From the nurses to the doctors everything was smooth. They brought my husband in and began. 1052am our sweet baby boy was brought earth side. Stubborn as he was to come out, he had a bit of breathing trouble but the Pediatrics were brought down and within minutes life was back to normal again.

With my first son, I was bed bound for 4 days due to my blood pressure. I remember the catheter and not walking… it was rough. After I had my second baby I was walking 4 hours after I had him. YES, even after a cesarean. That’s the most important thing is to walk. A 5 day stay vs a 24 hours stay.

Every birth is different, and emotions are high. No matter how you gave birth, or how you became a momma…. just know- YOU are a momma and you are amazing.