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Pregnancy and Childbirth
Alecia Cunningham’s surprising second pregnancy
Alecia Cunningham’s first pregnancy wasn’t typical. While pregnant with her now 11-year-old twins, Alecia spent months on bedrest because her pregnancy was considered high-risk. Born nearly three months prematurely, the twins were in the hospital for five months after their birth.
A decade later, Alecia went into her second pregnancy uncertain about what to expect. “In a way, this was like my first true pregnancy, because nothing about my first pregnancy was normal,” she said. Anxious about the possibility of another high-risk pregnancy, Alecia wanted to find a provider who could help her navigate a healthy, low-risk pregnancy and support her goal of a natural birth.
A couple of months into her pregnancy, Alecia visited Maternal-Fetal Medicine Associates at St. Joseph Medical Center for an ultrasound. Alecia was so impressed with the office and providers that she asked to transfer her care from her established provider to obstetrician-gynecologist Richelle Olsen, MD.
Transferring her care to Dr. Olsen’s office was the right decision, Alecia said. “Having such a complicated first pregnancy, I’d already been through a lot. I was jaded. Dr. Olsen helped talk me through some hard decisions, like whether to do genetic testing. She normalized my anxieties and helped me see that I could still have a healthy normal pregnancy.”
After an uneventful, healthy, full-term pregnancy, Alecia gave birth to a son, Carter, on November 3, 2018 at the Family Birth Center at St. Joseph Medical Center. Alecia achieved her goal of a natural birth without an epidural and was thrilled with every aspect of her care, she said.
The most surprising aspect of her pregnancy and birth was just how easy, normal, and natural it felt, from start to finish, Alecia said. “I really didn’t know what to expect from this experience, but I was pleasantly surprised. From Dr. Olsen to the ultrasound technicians, everyone was wonderful. The entire experience was great.”
She’d make the same decision again without hesitation, she said. “If I’d had this experience the first time, I wouldn’t have waited so long to have another one.”
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