Babies are born at Upstate just about daily

You may remember Baby Henry, the first baby born this year at Upstate University Hospital at Community General. Little miracles are born here just about every day, instilling lasting memories for moms and dads. Meet three families, each of whom grew by 2 tiny little feet at Upstate’s Community campus in 2011:

Mom: Erin Tapia of Baldwinsville.

Baby: Isabella Grace.

Born: 1:58 a.m. March 27, her due date.

Weight: 8 pounds, 2.4 ounces.

Labor began: after a busy day of work, school, and family activities that included a science fair and karate belt testing for Isabella’s 8- and 9-year-old stepbrothers. While at the science fair, Tapia looked to her husband, James Tapia: “I sighed and said, ‘we’re ready; she can come now.’ My contractions started 10 minutes later.”

Delivered by: certified nurse midwife Susan Kneeland, on a blanket on the floor of the delivery room, just the way Tapia wanted.

What was special: Tapia wanted a ‘hypnobirth,’ which relies on deep relaxation and involves lots of breathing and freedom of movement. “It was very free and empowering. It was amazing,” she recalls. “The whole time I just listened to my body’s signals and James, Susan, and Lisa, my labor nurse, enabled me to do whatever I needed to feel comfortable and strong throughout.”

Tapia says her midwife was calming. “I felt like she was a sister of mine or somebody I’ve known always. It was just incredible.

“It was truly the most powerful, energizing experience of my life.”

Mom: Jennifer Godlewski of Syracuse.

Baby: Jackson.

Born: Oct. 31, four days after due date.

Weight: 9 pounds.

Labor began: with cramping overnight Oct. 29. As it became apparent that she was in labor the next day, Godlewski and her husband, Jody came to Upstate’s Community campus. Medication helped her rest while contractions continued into Halloween morning.

Delivered by: nurse practitioner Jan Beaman.

What was special: Godlewski, a physician assistant, has seen several births, and those experiences helped ease her mind about her own delivery. Still, she was excited.

She enjoyed the Jacuzzi tub, in which she soaked for about 20 minutes that morning. “I got myself out and realized the contractions were getting much closer together.”

Her husband and her mother were present for Jackson’s birth. Godlewski admits that she was in pain, “but it was the best experience I could have hoped for.”

Mom: Danielle Booher of Syracuse.

Baby: Lucas.

Born: Oct. 8, two days before due date.

Weight: 8 pounds, 5 ounces.

Labor began: with contractions about every half hour all day Friday, quickening by Saturday to about 5 minutes apart. Booher and her husband David Booher waited for his mother to come to the house to care for Lucas’s 2-year-old sister Madelyn. Then they drove up the hill to Upstate’s Community campus. A wheelchair and admissions bracelet was already waiting and they quickly settled into a birthing suite.

“I wanted my mom in the delivery. It was wonderful to have that big of a room because she was not in the way at all,” Booher says.

Delivered by: nurse practitioner Jan Beaman.

What was special: If she had been asked beforehand, Booher says she would have declined to assist in her son’s delivery. But Beaman asked her in the throes of labor.

“His shoulders had just come out. She said put your hands under his shoulders like you’re going to pull him up, and on your next push, just pull him up.

“Looking back on it, I would recommend that to any mom, so you’re the first one to be able to touch your baby.

“As soon as they’re born, you cuddle them and hold them for a minute.”

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