I had a wonderful experience. It was the opposite of my first birth. I felt in control, things were relaxed, and everyone was helpful. I had 12 hours of labor and for 10 of them I managed pretty well with the jacuzzi, massages from the doula, and using the birth ball. I decided at 7cm to get an epidural even though I had planned on going natural. The pain was too intense. I really admire women who can push through it. I relaxed for the next two hours and then it was time to push...he was out in less than five minutes. I was glad I didn't need pit or any other interventions. The birth was absolutely joyous and I was laughing as he came into the world. He was very lively and latched well. I was so relieved. We were able to delay the cord clamping and forgo the eye drops. Michael never left my sight the whole stay and we left less than 24 hours after he was born. I loved the nurses and midwives. The delivery nurse even made me a turkey sandwich to eat while my son breastfed. A mother/baby friendly hospital is the way to go if you're not doing a home birth.
I did have some trouble at home...my stitches were killing me even though the midwife said it was a 1st degree tear. My 2nd degree tear and episiotomy from my first birth didn't hurt like this so it seemed very odd. She ended up loosening some stitches later in the week and I felt a lot better. The only other hitch was we had a last minute name change. I called him Conor while I was pregnant but when I saw him it didn't feel right. Luckily we were able to redo the birth certificate before it was submitted to the state. My family teased me about it because my grandmother had a habit of changing all her children's names well after they were born. 5 of her 8 kids got new names at their baptisms.