|View Poll Results: How do you feel about giving birth?|
|I have NO FEAR!||22||29.73%|
|I am confident, but have a healthy amount of fear.||40||54.05%|
|I am nervous.||5||6.76%|
|I am absolutly TERRIFIED!||1||1.35%|
|I have my ups ad downs- excited one minute, scared the next.||6||8.11%|
|Voters: 74. You may not vote on this poll|
I am a soon-to-be Bradley Instructor and have been poking around here gaining insights from everyone, which I think will make me a better teacher, doula, and lactation consultant.
So I was wondering, what do you anticipate your birth will be like? I am curious to know what is going on inside your heads right now. If you would like to share how far along you are, if this is your 1st pregnancy, which if any childbirth classes you have taken, and anything else you can think of it would be greatly appreciated.
I was terrified of birth when I first found out I was PG, but by the end I was super excited to give birth! Let me know how you are feeling!
I'm due Thursday with my 3rd. I was induced the last two times and while I'm getting antsy to be done and doc is wanting to induce, I'm sticking it out day by day.
I'm so wanting a natural birth (no pitocin, basically) that I'm nervous it will end up the way I don't want it to. Mostly I'm trying not to think about it. I don't fear the pain as I've managed the last two without an epidural. I fear so much that it won't turn out the way I hope, that I'm not anticipating anything whenever my brain allows that.
I know my nervousness comes from not believing enough in my uterus and from a superstitious attitude about having two healthy babies and feeling like I'm pressing my luck asking for another AND from knowing that this is my last pregnancy/delivery.
I just feel like I have so much riding on this one.
If that makes any sense, you're crazy like me.
I took Lamaze with the first pregnancy.
Something funny: With the last two, I was very concerned that my toenails be polished and my feet be presentable. I'm not at all preoccupied with that this time.
I did Bradley with my first pregnancy, I had a 12 hour labor and a 10 minute second stage with an intact perineum (the easiest labor of any of my friends)... yet Xiola died minutes before birth. I had actually gone into the labor with a good amount of fear because I had had a preminition that something awful was going to happen to our daughter the whole pregnancy (this is not the first time I had experienced 'knowing' something I could not have otherwise known). We had a drug-free hospital birth (I had been in a car accident that twisted my pelvis and it was not known till I was pushing wether or not I would need a c-section) with a very natural-birth oriented doc and two (clueless) Bradley doulas. The nurses we had were a joke.
This time I am not taking any classes, although I am re-reading Susan McCutcheon's book as a review. I have found a wonderful midwife and we will be birthing at the birth center near our apartment. I would do a home birth but our place is tiny and I want room to move. This time we'll also skip the doulas, I would rather have Mike and my midwife and as much privacy as possible so I can feel free to do what I need to do to birth my child (the doulas actually interfered quite a bit last time). Thus, I am expecting this birth to be shorter and easier then my last. I have a peace and a confidence about this birth that I did not have regarding Xiola's birth.
I think I could best describe how I am feeling about this labor as a calm assurance. I am eager to face labor again, confident that this time I will be rewarded with a baby in my arms. Sometimes I feel some fear, but most of that is residual from the loss of my daughter. I feel nothing but confidence about this pregnancy.
This is my first, so of course I don't know exactly how its going to affect me. I don't know how I am going to react. I am mostly excited about it, though. I really can't wait for it. I like challenges and this is going to be the most rewarding one's I will ever face.
I have read a lot about natural birth and unassisted birth and believe in my ability to have a natural, satisifying birth.
My concerns focus mainly around the hospital and the health of my baby. I'm a little worried about just how things will go, even though my midwife will be there the entire time and she knows my birth philosophy. I know I would be more comfortable at home. We took the hospital 2 day Lamaze class and the nurse who taught it got me a little bit worried, but when I spoke to hear about my concerns she said, "oh you're birthing with Jan? Well, she will let you do pretty much whatever you want. She is very laid back."
The pregnancy has been healthy, but I just get scared that there's going to be something wrong with my baby. Everyone probably worries about that a little, though.
When I was younger I was very frightened of labor and didn't want children due to my fears, but that was a long time ago. After finding mothering and participating in MDC and reading so many positive things and bascially just becoming informed I have a completely different mind set about it. I think that was a bit of good fortune finding all this information. I don't think the mainstream exposes people to these ideas and that's why, in part, we end up with 80% epidural use and 25% C/S in this country.
I did want to emphasize to all the mamas out there that the preminition I felt about my daughter went above and beyond the *normal* worrying that most expectant mamas experience. Like I said, I had previously had the experience of 'sight' so I am not suprised that I knew that I would lose my child... just as now I am at peace with the knowledge that this baby will stay. I have known of other things as well, sometimes good and sometimes bad. If any of you have experienced this yourself then you know what I am speaking of. This pregnancy I have experienced what I would consider the typical worries of an expectant mother, however since it is not at all as intense as what I experienced when pregnant with Xiola it really does'nt faze me.
So PLEASE do not think that just because you worry about your Bean that you are experiencing what I did with my precious daughter. It is perfectly normal to have some concerns. All pregnant mamas have these concerns. It is part of the process of becoming a mother... of having that passionate concern for another being that is a part of you. It does not mean that anything bad will happen to you or your baby.
I also want to say to those of you who are pregnant with your first that labor is definitely the HARDEST work you will ever do... but you can do it. Your body knows how. Lea put it so well when she stated that labor was going to be the most rewarding challenge she would ever face. I also cannot reccomend Susan McCutcheon's book enough for those who want a natural birth for their baby. It discusses the Bradley method but the information (especially an *awesome* chapter about recognizing labor and how far along in it you are) is invaluable to all mamas, and a wonderful resource.
mom to Theodore (3), Issac (1), EDD 10/1/03
Shane - Homeschooling mom to three boys (12, 1-, 8) and living the open life with my husband.
this is my first baby, but I think I've come to it from a different place than most first time moms. I am an aspiring midwife, and (until the pregnancy started, and my focus shifted) was a doula.
I once heard some good advice about attending a birth - that a midwife without a healthy sense of awe/fear about birth is a stupid midwife. while I know that this is MY baby, and my job to birth, not to safeguard the birth in the same way my midwife will, I feel a sense of that anyway. I know most every possible thing that can happen in a birth, good, bad, surprising.
maybe I would say my fear comes not from worrying about what will happen to me or the baby, but that I will not be able to let it all go, and forget about it to focus on the task at hand.
actually, I do worry a little about the baby - that she will be slow to start, or won't nurse well. or that we will transport to the hospital (am planning a homebirth) and someone will do something with her against my wishes, like take her to the nursery. when I remember that I have seen and heard of these things happening and the situations still turn out ok, I feel better.
I didn't know if my body could do it, sure it's supposed to but could it. How long was it going to last, how painful was each stage going to be, I was also in prodomial labor for 3 weeks, with contractions constantly getting stronger closer and more painful. I work 2 hours from the hospital/birth center where I delivered, what if my water broke would I make it in time. With all the contractions I'd been having would I even know it was real labor. What if a different midwife delievered the baby, ours was very respectful of our wishes but what if another wasn't. What if something went wrong, what if I couldn't handle the pain.
THere were so many unknowns and I'm a planner that the worry just about did me in. This time I'm really feeling pretty good about it.
Oh and after all the worry, I was in active labor for 2.5 hours and pushed for 30-40 minutes depending on what you call pushing, so it went really well, what was I so worried about. Our midwife was there, it was great.
I had crapola self-esteem when I birthed my dd into the world, but in spite of all my fear and the certainty that I wouldn't be able to do it, I did it. I was induced for convienince, had a nasty Pit drip and 2 epidurals that didn't take, laid in the hospital bed all day w/ a urinary catheter & an IUPC, and I pushed my baby out all by myself (could've done it without the episiotomy, too, BTW, but hey, that's not my doc's style.)
If I can endure Pit contractions while not moving, whatever happens THIS time while I'm at home will be cake.
I have fun imagining this birth...will I be squatting, touching my baby's head with my hands and doing the birth myself? Will it be raining? Will it be night or day? Will I be on my bed, or on the floor? What will I drink and eat? How will I sound?
I think this birth will be so cool! After baby's born, we'll know the sex, I'll hold my naked baby to my body, we'll put a cute hat on his/her head, and celebrate!
I think my confidence was high because I knew that my midwife ALWAYS errs on the side of caution (sometimes to the point of it being annoying, like when she had me treating for a *possible* yeast infection at 35 weeks, just because I was having some pain with intercourse but no other symptoms--I ended up stopping the Monistat because I think I was allergic to it!) Anyway, I knew/know that if there is even the hint of something going wrong, she will either have me in to see a specialist (if during my pregnancy) or into the hospital, pronto (if during my labor). She has a lot of good connections with doctors and speciailists. She knows some VBAC docs, docs with the best external version success rates, perinatologists, docs willing to deliver breech, etc. Also, she will remain as my labor support if we transfer while I'm in labor.
Basically, I feel like I have all my bases covered with her. And she has proven to me over time how much she cares about being informed, and about moms informing themselves.
That confidence caused me to not really worry or speculate about what my first birth was like. Therefore I didn't really have any preconceived notions. I didn't have hopes or preferences or a "dream labor" mapped out in my mind. I just knew it would be hard and I would need to cope, but that it would just be one day and that I could do it.
When I actually went into labor, everything went much faster than I had expected. I just rolled with it and dealt with one contraction at a time. I was in transition by the time we got to the birth center. I had no idea, but was really excited to hear I was 7-8 cm already! Since I was already feeling the urge to push, I figured the baby would be there within an hour or two. I ended up pushing for 3 hours and fighting with a stubborn cervical lip, but I just kept on plugging. It never occured to me (probably because I was so intensely focused) to wish I had drugs; they honestly never corssed my mind. However, the feelings/urges I had while in labor were incredible. VERY uncomfortable. I had all back labor until pushing time. I never once recall my uterus hurting, only my back and pelvis-area.
Okay, so fast-forward to this pregnancy. I admit that I am nervous about how overwhelming labor was for me last time. I'm nervous that it will go even faster and we will have trouble making it to the birth center in time (espeically since we have to coordinate childcare arrangements). We don't live far away at all, maybe 7 miles, but in rush hour traffic it can be at least 30 minutes. Morning rush hour was the time we were driving there last time, and I was on the back bench seat of our minivan, on my hands and knees, drapped over the back of the seat moaning with each contraction. This time we only have a Honda Accord and there is a toddler carseat (and there will be an infant carrier too) in the back seat! So I guess I'm wondering how I'm going to manage the car ride there.
I'm thinking of doing some things differently. For one, I really over-exerted myself. I had not exercized during my first pregnancy, and I relied on adreneline for the birth. I spent a lot of those 3 hours pushing in a self-supported squat. Hard on my body, I found out the next couple days! Even towards the end of labor, i remember my legs just being all shaky and worn out. Also, I pulled my own legs back when I was in a reclined sitting squat. I have since found out (by reading Susan McCutchen's book) that I pulled them back the *hardest* way--that is, with hands on the outside of one's shins. She suggests looping your arms under your knees to where the crooks of your elbows are under the crooks of your knees. I'm going to remember this!! My arms KILLED me for a few days after birth.
I hope to try out the birth ball, and maybe even get in the tub for labor relief (it just wasn't a consideration with the first, since I was practically pushing by the time I got there. I don't want a water birth, and my midwife isn't wild about them either).
I just have a feeling that the intense, overwhelming crazy pushing sensation I experienced is probably something I am going to have at each labor. I just hope I am not told to lie on my side for 30 minutes and "blow like I'm blowing out a candle" this time! I had to do that at one point to prevent swelling to the cervix (that dumb cervical lip!) I'm really hoping I only have to push a few times and baby will come right down.
OH, this time around, I am doing aerobics 3x a week and squatting a lot, as well as stretching and trying to remember to do kegels and breathe very deeply.
My midwife did not appreciate that Violet's head was in a funky position, which lead to my cervix not dialating completely...she didn't push the cervix past V's head until I had suffered through 10 hours of transition labor.
I had been laboring for two days at that point (off and on) and was very tired. When I didn't think I could go on, she said to me "What? Do you want to go to the hospital, is that what you want?" in a very judgemental way. So, not only was she not proactive about managing me (and I had no idea what to expect b/c it was my first labor), she was coming down on me for not being able to "take" it.
Needless to say, I am afraid of getting "stuck" again but am in the care of much better midwives this go around.
Up until I got stuck, my labor was fantastic. If I could have the same labor and not get stuck, I will be very excited.
Zoe EDD 2-14-03
I was induced with my first and told to stay in bed because my bp was high (130/80ish : ). If I can endure a fast, hard induced labor in the hospital without an epidural, then I know I can endure a normal labor in the comfort of my own home. BTW, my aquarias pool (birth pool) should be arriving this week. I can't wait!
I have things I need to do before the babe comes, but I'm looking forward to the actual birthing process as much as I am holding my babe in my arms. I think the two go together really well.
With my first I didnt really pay attention to being pg....I mean I knew I was pg and I was excited, but I worked up to my 8th month and concentrated on that (which was great exercise atleat : )...so I didn't do any classes or anything...
I was really scared of labour with that pg, and read Dr Sear book and a birthing book my mom got me, they seemed to help...but I think I was thinking, my body will know what to do....
For the most part it did, but after 24 hours, I ended up with a section...which was good in the end, as dd had a knot in her cord that would have cut off her oxygen before she got out completely.
So that being said, I want a natural child birth this time....and I know I can do it, but every now and then I think, what if this baby has the same problems....kwim?? That is wear my downs are.
As for labour, I am going to re-read my birth books....but I know that I have to listen to my body too....I am afraid of pain, but not as much as I use to be...and I know I can manage this pain.
but this time, i am very nervous that i won't be able to handle the pain and be patient as i was the first time. I feel that i want to go the same way, of course, totally natural, but can i do it this time? i feel that i won't be able to....just a feeling.
Momma to GG (dd - 14 yrs old), Active (ds - 10 yrs old), Toon (dd - 8 years old), Olive (ds - 5 years old), Princess (dd - 4 years old) and Keemo (ds - 24 days old)
As far as the labor and delivery go, I had a lot of intense fears early on about unnecessary interventions. After DH and I decided to plan a homebirth with a midwife, those fears all went away. Now I am really looking forward to the experience! I have been fascinated by everything (good and bad--morning sickness...ugh!) that has happened with my body so far during this pregnancy and, I am so curious about what my birth will be like.
After reading Birthing From Within, I was inspired to do something creative to express my feelings about the upcoming birth. I found that writing and drawing was a good way to articulate the fears that I had early on about interventions. After we hired our midwife, I wanted to do something else to expressing my positive feelings about the upcoming birth. I've been keeping a scrapbook of images that I cut of out magazines, etc. The clean bright colors, abstract shapes, natural themes that I am drawn to are the perfect outlet for my excitement. Everyone once in a while I flip through the scrapbook and it makes me smile and gets me really excited for the birth!