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#31 of 56 Old 12-28-2001, 09:57 PM
 
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Originally posted by RasJane
Oh, I also learned that my body would tell me what I wanted. During pg I thought that the idea of water sounded just wonderful. I headed into water at about 6cm and was screaming to get out 2 minutes later. It just was not right for me.
My second birth was a waterbirth, and it was great, there is no way you could have gotten me out of that tub without a hydraulic lift, LOL. I *needed* to be in the water. My third birth, though, I labored in the birth tub for about an hour (with horrendous back pain) then all of a sudden I thought, "this isn't working," and I hopped right out of that tub and knelt on the ground, and she was born two pushes later!
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#32 of 56 Old 12-30-2001, 03:45 PM
 
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I had a water birth at home without any drugs.
I was only 18 at the time too. My husband and midwife were present and it was a very special and sacred time. I read a lot of books while I was pregnant and prepared myself mentally as well as physically for the birth. I truly believe that because I knew what I wanted and I believed that I could do it, it made me that much stronger.

You can read as much as you like and know all the alternatives to drugs for pain relief, but the true key to having the type of birth you want is to believe in your ability to have a beautiful birthing experience. It was only once I believed that my body knew exactly how to give birth and that my unborn baby knew how to be born did I feel secure and completely prepared. I still had some anxiety but what mother doesn't?

My advice would be to read Barbara Harper's book called Gentle Birth Choices. It enlightened me a lot! www.storknet.com/guest/harper.htm
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#33 of 56 Old 01-03-2002, 03:22 AM
 
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Hi kibbles, just FYI, I would suggest checking out the La Leche League groups in your area. The leaders will help you with nursing. My LLL leader is a lactation consultant, and has offered to come to my house to help. Going to LLL meetings is free, unless you want to pay the 35 dollar membership. Good luck and congratulations!
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#34 of 56 Old 02-17-2002, 11:14 PM
 
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I'm not pregnant yet, but I'm thinking about no medication next time around. Can anyone talk me into this? I had an epidural last time and my baby was very sleepy for a long time. In fact, he was always pretty sleepy when nursing, and I'm wondering if that could be why we got off to such a bad start with breastfeeding. (I was sore for 8 weeks! : ) I'm also wondering if this "sleepy" habit could be the cause of his cavities. I think he got into the habit of sucking while asleep and not swollowing.....thus creating the pool of milk in his mouth and the cavities. This is probably a really far out idea, but I'm determined to figure out why breastfeeding can contribute to cavities in some children.

So if anyone has any more info about why it's good to have an unmedicated birth, please let me know. I'll take any and all info about nursing and/or cavities or ANY OTHER SUBJECT!!!

Thanks!
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#35 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 01:21 AM
 
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I also am not pregnant, but I decided to pop in and check it out and saw your thread and thought I'd respond.

I have had two unmedicated births. With the first I always intended to get the epidural. I had been in labor for 12 hours when my water broke and we went to the hospital. I was at 5cm when we got there (I had been at 4cm for a month so I was pretty bummed.) All the sudden I went into transition, although I didn't know it at the time and I was in so much pain all I could do was try to make it through the contractions that were coming one on top of the other. Twenty minutes when I was checked again I was complete. That was the absolute worst twenty minutes of my life. No, I take that back, my kidney stone was worse than that. I wouldn't wish that on anyone. I don't want to scare anyone, but I swore that I would never go through that again. That was in the heat of the moment. Natural childbirth is such a wonderful thing that I did decide to do it again.

My second labor was half the time, only seven hours, and SO much easier. I was positive for GBS so I was to be at the hospital four hours before delivery. Looking back this was a blessing in disguise, because otherwise I would have had an unexpected homebirth: . I never dreamed that when I arrived at the hospital at 7:05 in the morning that I would be at 9cm. I figured maybe 6cm if I was lucky (again I was at 4cm before I even went into labor.) Imagine my surprise when I was at 9cm. My son was born at 8:05am. I pushed for only ten minutes, and for the first eight I didn't put all my effort into it because I didn't feel the urge to push, but the nurse was badgering me (I had come in so dilated that I pushed back a scheduled C-section and she was irritated.) Once I felt the urge he was out in one contraction. He was 9lb, 22 inches with a 15 inch head.

I won't lie and say that there was no pain, but I would never have asked for pain relief. It was really easy IMO the second time. My first son did a great job of paving the way (he also had a huge head and a big ole body.) Only one mother I know hasn't felt that the second was amazingly easier than the first, but her second came out face up rather than face down -- ouch! Other than her, all the moms with two from my BFing support group felt that the second time was so much easier. Some got epidurals because they got them the first time and they were scared to try it with out, and some went natural the second time and found it to be much easier than they expected. Epidurals are pretty popular in my area, of my large group of mommy contacts only myself and one of my friends have never had an epidural. The moms that go natural with number two are overwhelmingly glad that they did. It is such an amazing experience to feel it all happen.

If you would like to talk further, please feel free to PM or email me.

Sorry to all to crash your board. One of these days I'll be here again, just not TOO soon I hope. The two I have keep me on my toes.
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#36 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 03:16 PM
 
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I've had an unmedicated labor, followed by unplanned (yes, medicated) c-section, and an unmedicated labor and birth. I would feel ripped off - like I missed part of the whole experience- if I had pain meds. Seriously... the joy of childbirth totally makes it worthwhile...

Also, IMO, I have great support that makes it possible to not need to escape from the sensations of labor and birth. Sitting in a birth tub, with warm water to my neck, getting a facial massage from the doula, with DH giving me sips of juice and craddling me and telling me I am the most glorious creature he has ever seen....well, it's not so bad, really!

As for the benefits...epidurals can contriute to sleepy babies, elevated birth weights (the baby can get bloated,too) that make it seem that the baby isn't gaining enough weight, trouble with latch and milk supply, not to mention, slowing down the actual labor and birth, and leading to other interventions. The other methods of pain relief - narcotics can cause a sleepy baby, or one who doesn't breath well after birth.

I am passionate about this...and love to talk about my experience, so I'll stop now. Mothering had a very informative article a while back about the relative safety of epidural pain relief...I can't remember exactly when, but that might give you more information. PM me if you want.

Good on you to be thinking about this now!

....living, learning and loving everyday with the Sweet Pea Bridgade
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#37 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 03:27 PM
 
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I had a wonderful unmedicated birth. I strongly suggest looking into a homebirth if you are considering an unmedicated birth- it was so easy for me to take control, do what my body needed to do, and be at ease in my own home. I walked, I squatted, I moaned, I did whatever my body told me to do. And it was wonderful and I never felt the need for pain relief (although I did really want a nap). Its great to be on your own turf during such an intense experience.

My Birthworks instructor showed us a video created to demonstrate the difference between a medicated birth and an unmedicated birth from the babies perspective. After each birth they placed the baby on the mamas belly. The unmedicated baby nudged forward slowly, rooting for and finding the breast and began nursing. The medicated baby rooted around the mamas belly towards here side, had a hard time moving, and did not find the breast. It was a powerful video.

There are tons of reasons why unmedicated can be better, others have mentioned many. I hope it works out for you, best wishes,
jeanie
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#38 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 03:35 PM
 
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Both my babies were unmedicated. One at hospital & one at home ( accidental unassisted ). I would never do it any other way. I suggest you read spiritual midwifery for the spiritual side of why & read birthing from within for the more techncial how to stuff.
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#39 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 03:41 PM
 
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I read "Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way" by Susan McCrutchon (sp?). I really liked it and found it to be very helpful with my second. Did the Lamaze thing with the first and though it was totally useless.
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#40 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 04:55 PM
 
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My birth was unmedicated and it hurt worse than anything, but I would never take those drugs. I hear the narcotics don't even work that well for pain and you can't get more when they wear off, and I have heard so many bad things about the epidural I can't imagine getting one of those!

I hear you have to be restricted to the bed, hooked up to a fetal monitor the whole time, and have your blood pressure taken every two minutes. And a whole bunch of other side effects for the baby!

The way I see it is, I don't have the right to force a baby to take unnecessary drugs, which is what happens when the mother takes drugs.
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#41 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 06:33 PM
 
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PB's Mom,

Read the "Thinking Woman's Guide to Better Births" and your mind will be set for an unmedicated birth.

~Laura
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#42 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 08:51 PM
 
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It's so great to really experience the birth of your child...on a spiritual level, there is something to be said for "being there" 100% during what is easily the most important experience of your life. The pain, which can be intense, goes away IMMEDIATELY afterwards, and you have the alert, happy, baby who can breastfeed immediately. As a La leche League leader i have seen so many babies who have trouble nursing right away after epidurals and demoral, etc. And there are ways to make the pain manageable...part of it ( a big part) is perspective... realizing that literally billions of women have given birth without drugs for all of human history, and even now in cultures where women aren't trained from a young age to be afraid of birth. Our bodies as women are about the most amazing thing ever created or evolved, that's for certain. I read that women in comas often give birth "effortlessly", the uterus being fully capable of pushing out a baby with our without our conscious help (it can apply 90 pounds of pressure per square inch, it's a muscle that strong). So much our difficulty in labor in "civilized nations" comes from our fear of it. It is interesting to note that some of the most active natural birth advocates say that it is Fear that leads to Tension of the body and subsequent pain, problems, etc. The way to stop that domino effect of emotions and physical responses is to arm yourself with information. Francis Bacon said Knowledge is Power, and in this case at least he is right...read as much as you can by authors who right truthfully and open-mindedly about labor...Childbirth Without Fear by Grantly Dick-Read outlines the fear-pain connection, Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way is a good one too, with lots of great pictures and diagrams that really teach you what your body can and will do in labor, so that you can help your body along in labor, rather than putting yourself in physical situations (like lying on your back) and mental sitiuations (where you don't understand what is happening to you or where you feel that birth is out of your control).

Check your local library for books by these and also Sheila Kitzenger to reall SEE and UNDERSTAND what birth without drugs really looks like.

Also talk to women who have had natural birth and get answers to your biggest questions..."What does it really feel like?", etc. or whatever your own ?s are.

Then you wil not only hear honest good things about it but you will know whether it is something you really want to do, which is essential to it working, i think--you making a conscious strong decision to avoid drugs in labor...like deciding that you WILL breastfeed rather than saying "I'm going to try".....birth is a vulnerable time and your decisions before the labor itself can be easily "persuaded away" by those around you who love you and don't want you to "suffer", as they may see it, or by medical helpers. What i am trying to say is that unmedicated birth can be a wonderful experience, but it takes a clear understanding of birth's stages and mechanisms for moving a baby out...a belief in your own body as capable and strong...and a willingness to make your ideas clear to others and make sure that those who love you understand your decision for your birth.

Anyway I didn't mean to write this long but maybe karma will reward me and someone else has replied to my question..

I wish you the best and I trust that whatever your decision will be it will be at least an informed one, which is very important...you need to feel like YOU believe in what you are doing most of all...more important than anyone's else's ideas, and also most likely to get you through it successfully..

Much love and light,

Joy
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#43 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 09:56 PM
 
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Hi PB's Mom,
Yay for you! I had a planned home birth - unmedicated of course! I also would urge you to consider home birth if you really want to avoid drugs - at home you can't help but have the support to do this - I mean it helps knowing you have no other choice. At one point I remember whining to my husband "Why can't I have an epidural like everybody else?" I realized I really had no choice and was just going to have do this birth like women have been doing since the dawn of time!

I think a lot of women agree that babies are far more alert when mom births without drugs - and the sense of empowerment really helps to keep mom on a high throughout those tough tough first weeks (months? years? just kidding!). This was a huge for me.

One last reason to have a drug free birth - when people look at the pictures of my daughter and I seconds after she was born they simply cannot believe it. We both look so alive and alert. I think a drug free birth, more often than a hospital birth with drugs, leaves you invigorated and able to be alive and awake to the tremendous event you're participating in. Why miss any opportunity to get back in touch with the wondrousness of life? I think having a drugged birth can take away this chance because it makes birth into a medicalized process.

Good luck to you!
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#44 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 10:08 PM
 
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Another vote for homebirth....I had to put myself in a place where I couldn't get drugs even if I wanted them to feel really committed to having an unmedicated birth. And yeah, your own nest is way better than the hospital IMO. Also, it is my experience that within seconds after the baby's birth I had NO pain -despite a pretty decent tear that needed several stitches- I think I was on a "baby high" for about three days, actually!

....living, learning and loving everyday with the Sweet Pea Bridgade
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#45 of 56 Old 02-18-2002, 11:50 PM
 
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I had an unmedicated birth... and although it was pretty darn painful, it was also wonderful, and I would never choose a medicated birth!!
Some things that did help me during labor and birth-
*having a doula (my doula is also a massage therapist- and helped by rubbing and massaging, to help calm me and keep my muscles more relaxed)
*I used aromatherapy- a plug-in diffuser w/ lavender oil to help calm and soothe
*I drank a "labor/birthing tea", made of valerian, black cohosh, and red raspberry- it helps relax the muscles, calm the body and mind, and is beneficial for the uterus
*I used acupressure points to keep things moving smoothly (I can explain these to you if you want to pm me)
*I partially labored and gave birth in a birthing tub- it helped sooo much! I had some painful back labor, this helped take away the stress of gravity, etc... and was warm and cozy, very soothing... plus: so nice for baby to be born in the warm water- just like a womb!

With my next birth, I am very interested in birth-hypnosis!!

I really hope you choose all-natural! It is really the best for you and baby!!!
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#46 of 56 Old 02-22-2002, 09:17 PM
 
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Mind over Labour by Carl Jones (and someone else, can't remember). Your body releases hormones to keep contractions going as well as it's own pain relief. When you start introducing meds. in labour you interfere with the natural hormones your making. A number of interventions follow resulting in things like episiotomies and forceps. I've had two unmedicated births. One was a home water birth! excellent! would never do it any other way! Lucid babes, lucid mamma!
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#47 of 56 Old 02-24-2002, 12:26 AM
 
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Everyone has already mentioned the good points for an unmedicated birth, all of which I agree with, and I've had three, two at home.
These are the "anti-med" points that I focused on...
*the risks of permanent damage to your spine, I have a friend who walks around in constant back pain due to the epidural she recieved;
*the affect of the drugs on the baby lead to so many complications already listed above, but also including the possible need for vacuum extraction or forceps--AHHHHH!;
*& I simply refuse to be that weak, to me it would feel like giving up.

I am in no way making a judgement call on those women who have them, I am in no position to judge another woman's threshold for pain. It hurts like a bitch, even now I am about to deliver my fourth and I am a little weary of the pain I know is just around the corner. But when it's all over, I can say I was strong enough to do it without drugs, that I trusted my own body to do it's work and that I never interfered with it's progress. And this makes me feel like the strongest most worthy mother to the three boys I have been blessed with. It also gives me another reason to thumb my nose at the allopathic community that thinks we are unable to withstand this sort of work, or be able to make these kind of decisions without their assistance.
I love the Bradley book as well, take the class with a certified instructor if you can. Lamaze was useless. Ignore it, IMNSHO.
And good luck TTC!
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#48 of 56 Old 02-24-2002, 03:15 AM
 
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I'm currently pg and planning a homebirth! With my son, I had a hospital birth--an epidural, and before the epidural 2 shots of Demerol. Let me tell you, the demerol didn't do a darn thing! The epidural was great AT FIRST! I was lucky and didn't have any problems pushing, he came out just fine. BUT, due to the epidural, I was given cathers twice (couldn't get up to pee) which was very uncomfortable after the epi wore off. Also, I couldn't stand or walk for quite a while, and in general felt "creepy". The demerol, which didn't do anything for the pain, did make me feel very "out of it". And I have suffered from horrible back pain since the epidural (it does say in the paper you sign that chronic back pain is a side effect). It was severe for a year after, and pretty bad until my son was 6! Since then, it comes and goes.....now that I'm pregnant, it's pretty bad. So, for me, the epi was great pain relief for about 2 hours, and then it's been years of suffering! Not worth it!

"Have faith in yourself and in the direction you have chosen." Ralph Marston

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#49 of 56 Old 02-24-2002, 04:08 AM
 
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All I can give you is a purely emotional response. Giving birth to my daughter was the most sacred thing I have ever done in my life. I felt whole and strong and powerful. It was like some of the wildest stories in Spiritual Midwifery at times. I was so aware of everything that was happening within me and felt so deeply connected to all other birthing women thru all time. I felt an amazing communion with my baby and my husband. When she was born she looked right at me like she knew me. I would not have traded a moment of it if it were 10 times as uncomfortable. It's just worth it, in ways that you cannot measure or show in studies.
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#50 of 56 Old 02-24-2002, 09:54 AM
 
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I've never had an epidural, but I took Nubain during my first labor. It does take the edge off, but I prefer birthing w/out drugs. Yes, there is pain, but you can handle it. It seemed to me that my pain tolerance increased as my contractions got stronger. The brain produces endorphins, your body's own pain relief system. My fourth labor was my most difficult--I was in labor for nearly 20 hours, I was exhausted and in terrible pain, but it never occurred to me to ask for pain meds. I found that sitting in a hot shower is a wonderful way to deal with the pain. During my third labor, I was stuck at 3 cms for hours and hours (I was at home for most of that time--I showed up at the hospital and went back home when I found out I was only 3 cms) Any way, I went into the shower and went into this almost trancelike state. It was very powerful and wonderful. In one hour, I went from 3 cms to 7.
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#51 of 56 Old 02-24-2002, 01:05 PM
 
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jbcjmom said..
Some got epidurals because they got them the first time and they were scared to try it with out, and some went natural the second time and found it to be much easier than they expected.

This was me until my fifth birth and yes with each labors it went quicker than the last. Good thing we are only four minutes away from hospital. Dh thinks I'll go quick with this baby.

As far as dental caries in your son. You may want to look and see if anyone else in family had dental caries as a young child. I can't say that breastmilk wouldn't caused this but I KNOW formula does- so many artificial ingredients in formula (yuck!) With a bottle, when the child stops sucking, the formula still runs out into mouth. Where breastfeeding, when the child stops nursing at the breast there is no more milk coming out. What may be pooling in the mouth could be saliva and acids from the stomach. This COULD cause dental cavities. Anyone know this for sure? If there are any concerns maybe wiping baby's mouth out with a soft cloth would help. I'm just popping out ideas for I've not had this experience with my children.

As for epidurals use and sleepy babies. I do believe they cause breastfeeding problems and sleepiness in baby, especially for first time moms and also medical personnel interventions and pushing for moms to rest and let baby go to nursery when the mom and baby should room in and get to to know one another and breastfeed often and have skin to skin contact.

Goodluck and keep in touch. As you can see we are a great bunch of women and mothers
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#52 of 56 Old 02-25-2002, 01:40 PM
 
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I stayed home and didn't even have a tylenol before or after. Did it hurt? Well, yes, but you're in SUCH a different place mentally at the time. I do remember thinking, wow, if I were at the hosp. I'd let them stick whatever they want in my back. But, that part was over SO soon and I am so happy for myself and for my son that we used no drugs.

You CAN do it. REally prepare yourself mentally and physically for it. Do all those hundreds of kegels and squats, etc.
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#53 of 56 Old 02-26-2002, 12:36 AM
 
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also--another perk....the possible orgasmic release at the end where you bond w/(hopefully!!) baby and dad!! a good time NOT to let some big dr. hero save the day. I had this orgasm feeling w/baby one but not two. Labor one was much harder so maybe this had something to do w/ it.

another reason....you are imprinting a wonderful start for babe....you *don't* need drugs or escape when things get tough. THey have done studies that medicated births are more likely to produce children w/substance abuse problems....wish I could remember where I saw this....
anyway...i echo what some of the other woman said, if there had been drugs at either of our 2 homebirths, you BET I woulda taken them....you're too vulnerable to resist the "drug pushers". BUT I am soooo glad that I wasn't offered drugs. What an awesome, sacred experience!!!! seeing those two little babies come out, alert and peaceful! and both times, I felt GREAT afterwards.
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#54 of 56 Old 02-26-2002, 07:42 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ceinwyn
I've had two unmedicated births. One was a home water birth! excellent! would never do it any other way! Lucid babes, lucid mamma!
A great post in a sea of great posts!

As soon as my DW got into the water, much of the pain was removed. The second time rounf I made sure the tub was ready as early as possible to give the greatest "low pain time".

Our babies knew who we were as soon as they came out, looked at us, and took in the world.

No drugs = no dugged out new-borns.

I truely believe that water helps take out much of the pain.

The "how to" and the benifits of water-birth discussion thread might bring more information on water births generlly.

hope this helps

a

The anti-Ezzo king
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#55 of 56 Old 02-26-2002, 11:45 AM
 
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Giving birth to my daughter was the most sacred thing I have ever done in my life. I felt whole and strong and powerful.
kama'aina mama- what a wonderful way to put it! After Eli's birth my self-esteem skyrocketed. I think natural birth can make women feel so good about themselves, and really connect them to their baby.

Even now, when I am down or need a boost, I replay the birth in my mind. I am always amazed at how well I handled everything, how right everything felt, how powerfully feminine I felt. It bonded the three us in a way I would never have expected, and am so grateful for.
-jeanie
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#56 of 56 Old 02-26-2002, 04:24 PM
 
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Here are my two biggest hints for anyone having a hospital birth.

1.) Stay home for as long as possible. If you labor for as long as you possibly can at home, then there is a good chance that when you get to the hospital it will be too late, then you won't have that choice lingering in your mind. If you get to the hospital and are less that 5, I would go home if you don't live too far and it is your first. I was in the hospital for 1 hour 20 minutes before my first son was born, and exactly one hour before my second son was born. He would have been an unexpected home birth if I hadn't been positive for group B strep and supposed to be on antibiotics for four hours before delivery.

2.) Talk to your doctor and tell them to write it in big letters in your file at the office and at the hospital that YOU DO NOT WANT DRUGS OFFERED TO YOU!!! I was planning on getting the epidural with #1 but when we got there I was in transition (didn't know it) and was so focused on just getting through the contractions that I wasn't even thinking of pain relief. If the nurses don't keep coming in saying "Do you want something for the pain?" you will be much less likely to think you need it. That little statement can just kill all the resolve in the world.
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