In the last eight months, I've been gearing myself up for something I've wanted to do ever since our first child, but have never made it. Natural Child Birth.
Most comments I get after announcing that are:
"Wow, you go girl."
"Did you know they can make it painless?"
"To each his own...."
And so on....
Yep, sure know all of that. I KNOW all of that. Heck, I know its going to hurt like heck. But, here are some of my thoughts.
1. The pain. I love what my friend Kim said about this. You have to set your mind to recognize the body working. I have read some amazing books, and the pain I have experienced, that I am so afraid of, can be worked through. Don't get me wrong, its not that the pain will go away, but perceiving it as work and that our body is preparing itself for the most amazing experience a woman can have, that is different. The mind can prepare you, the mind can be told what it is experiencing, and change something insurmountable, into something challenging yet attainable.
2. With Nathan, my body didn't dilate, yet I knew I was in labor, yet the doctors wouldn't admit me or give me any anesthetic. I didn't know how to handle it. And when I did start to dilate, it was so quick, the epidural didn't react fast enough, and I was so numbed up by the time he was here, you could have tied my body in lovely bow. I need to know how to work through labor. I want to be able to have my husband be there right with me, and him knowing I can't do this alone, I need him. It may seem dramatic, but I look forward to David being able to help me through this, and using him to be a sort of relief to relieve some of the discomforts...to know I am working through a contraction and that by pushing on pressure points, getting me a pillow, supporting my back, or whatever I'll ask, he'll be there. I hope it brings us closer together.
3. We have four wonderful children. I have had an epidural each time. I HATE that cold feeling down my back when the epidural is in. I HATE the shock they warn you about when the epidural is going in. I HATE being hooked up to IVs. And I HATE that I fear for my body each time. By that, I mean that I know that everything could go wrong with an epidural. Tapping into someone's spine is not a light thing. Your spine is a central part of your body, and by tapping into it, severe problems could result. Like I said, its the one thing I have even worried about the last four births, because I know my child will be fine, but I pray I will not be a vegetable by the time they are done.
My purpose in writing this is not to convince anyone to have a natural birth. It is mainly to convince myself to have a natural birth.
I am 3 1/2 weeks away from delivering our fifth child. We are excited. I am in terror some days of what I will experience, but I know I can do it. I've prepared my mind by reading all I can on ways to work through labor. I've prepared physically. I stretch and walk every day. I have a spiritual reassurance that things will be fine, and I can do this. And I have the positive support of my husband.
3 1/2 weeks.