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Signing Up For An Epidural - Page 4

post #61 of 167
I get really sick of the "you're in pain from labor because you were sexually abused" line, especially when midwives use it (I've read it in more than one book by MWs). Wow, how presumptuous. Maybe an individual mother who was sexually abused can draw this link for herself, but it was not the reason in my case. I was sexually abused and got through 3 unmedicated births just fine. Some births are more painful than others. Can I spell it out any more clearly? You can sway circumstances to or away from your favor to a certain degree, but it's the luck of the draw ultimately, even if you are super prepared, relaxed, made great choices, surround yourself with a good environment, etc..
post #62 of 167
ITA that labour can be very, very painful. I am not a sexual abuse survivor and damn it hurt. For a long long time. Unimaginable pain. I've heard the line that it only hurts if you're afraid and damn, I resent that. As though if only I were more 'enlightened' it would have been easier. Right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by danotoyou2 View Post
And, the part of natural labor that isn't talked about... the hormones! OMG, it's 100 times better than sex. Henci Goer talks about this in her book, explaining that the hormones are blocked in a medicated birth. And wow, I wouldn't miss that for the world. It's the reason I want to give birth again.
Can you explain this more? I've never heard this, but I know there was SOMETHING in my natural birth that made me higher than I have ever been in my life, once the baby came. And I was high for days and days. What a way to greet motherhood and a new child. That is why I want to give birth naturally again.
post #63 of 167
I remember being on a high after both my babies were born but I wouldn't say it was better than sex but thats JMO. I just felt like I drank too much coffee and was a bit wired.

After my first son I didn't sleep for more than a short nap here and there for 36 hours after he was born. I was just so wide awake.

After my second son I slept just hours after his birth. It was so quick (25min) I think i didn't get as much of a hormone boost but I was still feeling great the next day.
post #64 of 167
I know I want an epidural. This is my first baby, and I've already decided.

1) I don't deal well with pain. I cry. I feel fusterated. I feel humiliated. I feel weak.

2) I've had Braxton-Hicks contractions that have hurt like hell, have put me to tears, and where I was unable to talk or even hear what my husband was saying to me.

3) As a rape survivor I know I'm going to have to deal with things that make me think of that time like unknown people staring at my genitals, people other than my husband putting their hands in intimate places, and several others. Pain "down there" is something that immediately triggers me to get panicky, scared, and sometimes irrational. (And now that I've read this thread I'm also scared of the loss of control. That could definately screw me up.) That's not something that I'm willing to even consider during a moment so precious as bringing life into the world.

All in all I want my birth to be a happy joyful occasion, and I don't believe I would be able to do that without the aid of an epidural.
post #65 of 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by meowee View Post
I get really sick of the "you're in pain from labor because you were sexually abused" line, especially when midwives use it (I've read it in more than one book by MWs).
Whoa here. I didn't say that this was true for all survivors. But of the patients I've had come in planning an early epidural, a large proportion of them were survivors.
post #66 of 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by brackin View Post
This is interesting to me, too...I have friends and acquaintances who are huge NCB proponents, but also practice CIO!! What, you're super-concerned about the baby during labor, but once she's born, set her aside? :
I used to work with a lady that had un-medicated homebirths, but then started Ferberizing her babies at 4 months old. She would go around telling people that having a medicated birth was child-abuse, but then would get super pissed when people criticized CIO.
post #67 of 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
Can you explain this more? I've never heard this, but I know there was SOMETHING in my natural birth that made me higher than I have ever been in my life, once the baby came. And I was high for days and days. What a way to greet motherhood and a new child. That is why I want to give birth naturally again.

It's the most amazing feeling, IME So completely empowering and exhiliarting. I didn't get that with my Pit/epidural/every other intervention birth. He and I truly missed out on something extremely important, and I didn't realize what we had lost until I had experienced a physiologically normal birth.

Here's one of my favorite birth articles that explains the natural process. HTH
post #68 of 167
I haven't read all four pages of posts, just answering the initial question.

With my first two, I knew I was going to be having an epidural. Because they were both also inductions, we had them send in the anesthesiologist early on, so I could have all of the paperwork signed before they needed to actually put it in. With my first, my midwife wasn't going to be awake and in the hospital in the beginning stages of my induction, so she pre-approved the epidural at any stage of dilation. (Meaning I didn't have to be X centimeters dilated to get the epi; I could have it whenever I wanted.)

Honestly, natural childbirth (i.e. going into labor on my own, doing it without drugs, etc.) seemed like such a "martyr" thing to me to do. Why would you put yourself through that if you didn't need to? It's what happens when the mainstream media shoves that down your throat.

I am planning this birth in a birthing center, drug free. As soon as I say that to people, their initial reaction is usually, "WHY?!" And, admittedly, that was always my response when pregnant women would tell ME that they weren't getting an epidural.

They very rarely put a "mainstream looking" mom on The Baby Story having a baby at home/in a birthing center with no drugs. Natural childbirth is not presented in the media (and let's be honest; in my generation - the 20-somethings - we're a media-driving generation) as what is "normal".
post #69 of 167
Sorry, I should have clarified the "better than sex hormones."

It's not DURING labor, but after the baby is born (and during crowning, but I was too intent on pushing to really notice it). The body is flooded with hormones that are similar to the effects after an orgasm... but, about 100 times the amount of those hormones. It's the same as a 'runner's high' (but you don't get a baby at the end with running )

It's basically the body's way of coping with any pain that might set in after the baby is out. You don't notice any pain because you're on this incredible high. It also helps with bonding with the baby.

For me, the high lasted about 3 or 4 days. The first few hours were amazing, I felt like I could climb a mountain! My MW even commented that most women aren't so "energized" after a long labor, but I felt great. Those hormones were working great for me.

I'm sorry that I don't have time to look up the particular reasons for why those hormones are blocked during a medicated book, but it IS in Henci Goer's Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth. So, all I can say is that I've read that it is blocked during a medicated birth... and I wouldn't trade that high for all the medication in the world.
post #70 of 167
I signed on with an epi with my first because my mom told me to. She had both my sister and I with no drugs, and told me to get the epidural, that it "wasn't worth it".

Of course, I listened to my mom. Even though at the time, I didn't feel I needed it. I got the epi a whopping hour before my daughter was born, and wasn't even in anything close to pain. Just minorly annoyed with the contractions.

Now, I feel cheated, and on top of that, I feel like my mom didn't trust my ability to handle it.
post #71 of 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redifer View Post
I signed on with an epi with my first because my mom told me to. She had both my sister and I with no drugs, and told me to get the epidural, that it "wasn't worth it".
My mom also did this... when I was about 9 months pregnant. All growing up she'd told me that having a baby wasn't a big deal, and that having me (her 4th) was a piece of cake because she'd done lamaze classes. Then, she watched a show on birth (one of those "Birth Day" or something shows) and said she forgot how awful it was, and I should just "get the drugs." I felt really betrayed by her because of that. It was a little late in the game to be springing any new developments on me, like "it hurts like an SOB," to possibly scare me. As it was, I'm now able to go on and on about how birth is so cool and I had fun with it.
post #72 of 167
I didn't have a birth high. I had a completely NCB, no drugs, no episiotomy, etc. No birth high. I got scammed!

(Still hoping for one for next time . . . .)

Fortunately for me, my mom had non-epidural births - she was told she couldn't have one due to a prior back injury. When my brother was born, she had pitocin. When I was born, nothing (she showed up at 10). Her main line was that it was not a big deal and that I'd be fine. I think my NCB was tougher than hers!

She also had Leboyer births and liked the dim lights, calm voices, warm bath and slow transition for baby aspects of that kind of birth.
post #73 of 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgia View Post
It's the most amazing feeling, IME So completely empowering and exhiliarting. I didn't get that with my Pit/epidural/every other intervention birth. He and I truly missed out on something extremely important, and I didn't realize what we had lost until I had experienced a physiologically normal birth.

Here's one of my favorite birth articles that explains the natural process. HTH
Thank you for that!

I mean, my labour really really did hurt. A lot. I had serious pain for probably... 28 hours? A long arsed bloody time. I got transferred to hospital for stalled labour and was begging for the epi, and anything else they would give me in the interim. But the nitrous oxide in my room didn't work and the epi didn't come til I was 9 cm, and by then I was able to refuse it. For awhile there though I was trying to figure out how to suicide it was so shocking.

But man... was it worth it. For me, honestly it was. I hope I can endure again for that reason. Well I hope it's not so hard next time but if it is I hope I can hold out. When the baby came, all the pain disappeared and I was so so incredibly high... like that 'I am wide open and in love with everything' feeling you get on MDMA, but ten times more intense. I'd never seen anyone so beautiful as my baby, I was instantly in love with her. She was amazing and so familiar to me already.

When they released us from the hospital the next morning the tag on her didn't match the number it should have, and they tried to calm me thinking I would be freaking out that someone switched my baby. But I knew her already and a mismatched number seemed so stupid, like if my best friend was wearing the wrong number i would still know who it was, yk? By contrast my friend who had an epi said there was no way she could pick her baby out of a lineup, and I don't know if that is why but it feels true to me that there is *something* amazing about natural birth.

After doing that, I felt incredibly powerful, fully confident in my mothering abilities (what was basic infant care after *that*, yk??) and in LOVE with my baby immediately. I would say I was totally stoned for about 5 days, didn't need much sleep, time passed without notice, it was like those old cartoons of the old hospital where someone drops a bottle of ether and everyone is just floating around. Anyone remember those? Nothing hurt (like my stitches etc), I was just soaring, with the babe. Amazing.

I would do it again for that reason alone really. I don't worry too much about epi side effects myself, or about possible effects on the baby, and I think it is really fine and good for a mama to not feel she has to endure agonizing pain as a gift to the baby during birth, etc. But man, the high, and meeting my infant in that space, it was unreal.
post #74 of 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by Romana9+2 View Post
I didn't have a birth high. I had a completely NCB, no drugs, no episiotomy, etc. No birth high. I got scammed!

(Still hoping for one for next time . . . .)
x-posted, sorry. I had the screen open for a long time. I think it is different for everyone, and that's why judgment about women's choices in birth really feels out of place to me. 'Everyone gets super stoned' is about as accurate as 'you felt pain because you weren't enlightened enough.' I think it's really good to talk about personal experiences with natural birth, but it is important to remember our experiences do not necessarily mean anything about how other women will experience birth.
post #75 of 167
Quote:
I remember being on a high after both my babies were born but I wouldn't say it was better than sex but thats JMO.
Me too. I got the high with my NCB, but I've described it to people as a "post-orgasm" type feeling. Just relaxed, happy and on top of the world. I remember being amazed at the amount of energy I had afterward and I suppose that was all part of it too. I felt completely wiped out after my epidural birth.

The epi definitely blocks the birth high. I attended a conference where Linda Smith spoke this summer and she talked quite a bit about that. She pointed out that if the epi doesn't work for you, or wears off, you're actually somewhat worse off than you were before because this hormone rush is blocked. It also appears to interfere with the baby's ability to deal with the birth pain, which is a rather horrifying thought to me. Interestingly, too, the birth rush hormones do hang around and get into the mothers milk--the evidence seems to indicate that it's something that actually makes the mother's milk more comforting to the baby.

Jen
post #76 of 167
I don't know, I had an epi and I definitely felt "high" after birth. Definitely an altered state of consciousness. Maybe it's way better if natural, but I felt it!
post #77 of 167
When I got pregnant with my first, I thought for sure I would have an epidural; everyone around me had one, so why wouldn't I?

Well, fate had a different plan. I got to the hospital, was only 3 cm, but I had been contracting for only 45 minutes...but they were very close, very intense. They sent the anesthesiologist into the room to put in the epidural, and when I sat up, it was show time!! I couldn't sit on the bed; my baby was coming! i pushed three times and she was out! Total labor was just over 1.5 hours (first contraction to delivery)...for a first timer, that was amazing!

My second, I wanted an epidural...same scenario, I was pushing before the doctor (even the OB!!) showed up!

I didn't even bother with the 3rd, 4th and 5th; I survived it, and now wouldn't have it any other way. I handled the pain much better than I thought I would; perhaps because I wasn't aware I was ready to deliver!!

I have precipitous labors and deliveries...the decision was made for me. My labors have gotten shorter each time (if that's possible), and my water never breaks.

I loved the fact I could get up and walk so soon after the delivery; I was elated for days!
post #78 of 167
I'll try this again...I got x-ed out.

I chose not to get one before I got prego because my mom had two horrible experiences with them. One of them involved being post op with no pain releif, and I got the message loud and clear, no pain releif is infallible. Watching my Mom shake and wimper and beg for the nurse made a huge impression. She still has backaches, and she had the epidural fever and a headache that lasted months.

My SIL listened to the horror stories, and didn't want to hear any ncb stories.

She chose sedation during early labor, 'something to help her sleep' they said, then received an epidural after dialating to 4 cm in two hours in no pain.
But, she BELEIVED that pain was on it's way so why wait?
She desparately wanted to nurse for a year, and ended up being unable to establish breastfeeding at all. This I feel is a high price to pay for 'just in case' pain releif.

If she wants to try breastfeeding withdc#2 whenever that will be, I will have to be honest but kind. Missing that hormone cascade cost her her breastfeeding dream, not to mention a pretty awesome high!
post #79 of 167
I don't think it necessarily follows that an epi = no breastfeeding. How could you establish that this was the case with your SIL? Many women who have epis nurse successfully, and many women who do not have epis have major bfing difficulties.
post #80 of 167
No, but there is a risk of bf problems. My bf problems with my first were most likely caused, at least in part, by my epidural and idiot nurses.
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