A mother of eight, Ginger Atkins from Gadsden, TN is not new to the experience of giving birth. However, on February 16, 2011 her experience at McKenzie Medical Center was one that left a lasting positive impression.

“One of the best parts of my experience with McKenzie Medical Center was the personal attention. I really liked being able to see the same midwife for each appointment. I was used to a large clinic where I would see a different OB/GYN each visit. At MMC, the receptionist even learned my name.

Another aspect that drew me to MMC was the fact that they offered water immersion labor and delivery.

When I realized I was pregnant, I knew I wanted to research my delivery options.  My previous labors were slow and required pitocin to speed up my contractions.  I had previously delivered in a larger hospital that did not offer a laboring mother many options for labor/delivery.  I did not want to be confined to a hospital bed while in intense pain again.  I had done enough research to know that having the options to change positions or walk around would definitely be desirable.  I began to look for a certified nurse midwife that could deliver my baby within the safety of a hospital.  When I discovered that MMC offered many options including water immersion birth, I decided to make an appointment.

My appointment was with Anita Baker-Ross, CNM.  She listened to my previous birth experiences.  She shared how she liked to use water therapy with some of her patients.  She informed me that MMC would offer several options for birth as long as mom and baby were safe.  I was impressed by the amount of time that Anita spent with me discussing my options.  She made me feel very comfortable about choosing MMC.  

When I arrived at McKenzie Regional Hospital on my delivery day, I had begun to dilate.  I was put on a monitor while my nurses Tara Evans, Suzanne and Heather prepared the birthing pool in my hospital room.  Tara carefully monitored the temperature of the birth pool.  When I entered the pool, the water was the perfect temperature.  Immediately, I began to feel my entire body relax.  My contractions were less painful.  I loved the freedom to move around in the water.  The pool was very spacious.  I was able to talk and actually smile between contractions (something I could not do in my previous hospital bed deliveries).  

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 In a few short moments, I felt the urge to push.  Anita and my nurses surrounded the pool.  As soon as my daughter became visible, Anita put her hands on her.  As soon as she was able, Anita lifted my baby out of the water and handed her to me.  I enjoyed getting to hold my baby in the warm water.  My daughter was warm and had good coloring.  Her birth was a wonderful experience. I am so thankful to have found a medical facility that offers this option.

My recovery from this delivery has been faster and easier.  I experienced less postpartum issues than in any of my previous births.  I know the water immersion birth allowed me to have more energy and less pain during and after delivery. I also feel that this birth was less stressful on my baby.  I know the relaxing effect of the water and my ability to change positions helped my delivery to progress naturally without pitocin.

Gentle, relaxed, and peaceful are the words I would use to describe my water immersion birth experience with MMC. It was worth driving an hour for each prenatal appointment! After 8 births, this was my best birth experience!!” 

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“I’ve always gotten the best of care at MMC and I know by experience my Dad will too. You all are appreciated each and every day.”