how did you feel immediately after birth - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 01:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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A conversation with a friend today made me think about this. I distinctly remember feeling this way and telling everyone how I felt. I'm not sure if all of these are normal. So I'd like to know how you felt immediately after your first unmedicated, vaginal birth.

MY LIST OF FEELINGS:
-first and foremost, extreme PRIDE
-the pain(for lack of a better word) was INTENSE
-I felt incredibly SORRY FOR MYSELF at what I had just endured(this surprised me)
-But at the same time was SO THANKFUL for such a great birth experience
-the aftermath: my vagina felt like, what I would imagine it to feel like if I had just been raped by a whole football team!
-I just knew that I would NEVER AGAIN put myself through that!

I'm over all of that now. Thankfully we forget what it feels like to give birth. I'm planning another in June and at this point I would like a few more. But I'm wondering how I'm going to feel after the next one.

What's on your list? (and it'd be great to note the length of your labor, it might make a difference, mine was fast and intense)
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#2 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 01:23 AM
 
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I had a hard 48 hour labour.

First I felt amazing, I couldn't stop asking everyone if they couldnt believe how beautiful my daughter was, thanking everyone, apologizing for being rude in transition, etc.

I remember saying I would never do that again, why do that, I wouldn't die of something painful like cancer with no pain meds, why do this? (I feel differently now, but that's what I thought at the time).

Then, I was hemmorhaging and feared I would die (it wasn't a big hemmorhage at all, but I knew someone who died this way, and I was paranoid about it). I asked the midwife if I was going to die, and she said no, but I wondered if I could believe her or if they were all just trying to keep me calm. I felt weak and shaky and I begged the midwife to ensure my daughter's father knew how to take care of her should something happen to me.

Then the bleeding slowed, and eventually everyone left and it was just me and my daughter. I had an IV in my hand coz they couldn't find another vein for some reason, and it hurt and made nursing difficult.

I remember standing at the nurse's desk with my newborn in my one hand and the IV, and the back of my gown was open and someone's husband was horrified behind me. I was so out of it I didn't care.

I remember walking the halls and staring at my daughter and feeling joy like I have never known. I felt like I took 10 hits of E. It was amazing.
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#3 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 01:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, that's what was missing. I didn't get that immediate "love at first sight" connection with my daughter. I don't know why. It took a few weeks before I REALLY felt like I loved her. Isn't that horrible. I can't imagine it now, she is my world and I can't believe how in love I am with her. I hope it's different this time.

I've read that it's a very delicate hormonal time immediately after birth and that the baby shouldn't be given to you if you're not ready, you should reach out for the baby or pick it up when ready. Something to that effect. I do remember being given the baby and I really didn't want to hold her yet. Weird. I would have never imagined that.
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#4 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nora'sMommy View Post
I've read that it's a very delicate hormonal time immediately after birth and that the baby shouldn't be given to you if you're not ready, you should reach out for the baby or pick it up when ready. Something to that effect. I do remember being given the baby and I really didn't want to hold her yet. Weird. I would have never imagined that.
I had a C-section, but I wanted to comment on this. My son was taken away briefly at birth because they thought he might have aspirated meconium. They wheeled me back into my room and the epidural started wearing off and the pain was incredible. I remember begging them, "Please don't bring me my baby until you give me something for the pain. I don't want to be hurting like this when I hold him for the first time." Maybe that sounds bad, but it's how I felt, and I'm glad they listened to me so that I was feeling OK when I first held him.

I don't think we really bonded for about six weeks. I don't know if that's related to my birth experience or not. I think it's mostly about me, and the fact that I don't bond well to creatures who don't communicate with me (like pets). I didn't really feel a connection to him in the early newborn stage - but once he started smiling and me and watching me come into the room ...
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#5 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:19 AM
 
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After my first (a c-section), I don't really remember much of anything. Just delirium, pain, and dissapointment. It's sad that I really don't remember anything about the baby during my hospital stay. My most vivid memories are of being in excruciating pain.

After my VBAC though...
I remember a huge surge of disbelief, astonishment, and pride all at the same time. You know, that... "I did it!! Wait, there's no way this is really hapenning!" type of feeling.
The exhaustion of my 35 hour labor (48 hours awake) dissappeared in that moment for some reason.
I was a little on the nervous side because DS wouldn't latch on for about 10 minutes.
Then I remember feeling a little shaky and weak.
But overall I was just overwhelmed with adrenaline and joy.
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#6 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:23 AM
 
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I felt great. I was so incredibly happy, and even though I had a long labor (34 hours) I turned to DP 20 minutes after it was over and said, "we can do that again, right?" And he agreed.
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#7 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:29 AM
 
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First birth (hospital/interventions galore)--thank God that's over and we're alive. Complete shock and disassociation/disappointment

Second (home waterbirth)---OMG--that was the most amazing thing I've ever done! When can I do this again? Sheer euphoria

Third (home waterbirth--malpresentation)---OMG---that was the hardest thing I've ever done! I'd rather not do this again any time soon Thrilled and exhausted!

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#8 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:31 AM
 
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Physically, After #1 you could of driven over me in a Mack truck and I would not of flinched. My labor made me feel very strong. Emotionally, I was in so much love dd I am crying even thinking about it.

#2 Physiclly, I wanted a beer and had one. Emotionally, I wondered who this little guy was and if I was going to figure him out. I loved him immediatly and deeply but questioned myself about knowing how to care for him and dd.
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#9 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:42 AM
 
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I had two "hands off" midwife attended births in the hospital, no interventions at all.

I felt the new mother high and so proud of myself. I was literally floating and gushing verbally and so happy. Only a little sore and so happy.
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#10 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 04:33 AM
 
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Hospital birth. Vaginal, but with some complications. No pain-relief. Oxytocin at the end.

How did I feel as soon as she was out? Horrible, physically, mentally, emotionally. To add insult to injury, I had a large second degree tear. When it was repaired, the local only took on one side. I didn't feel proud. I felt defeated. I felt weak. I felt drained. I felt nothing that could be described as good. I think the best way to describe my mental state was that of a caged animal that had been beaten one too many times. Hides shaking in the corner afraid of the slightest breeze as it might mean it would get beat again. Looking at my daughter did nothing to take away any bit of the Hell I had just gone through. I was relieved when they took her away at all turns. So, horrible.
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#11 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 06:00 AM
 
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Tired.
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#12 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 07:57 AM
 
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I felt incredibly proud of myself, and relieved it was over. I kept saying, "I did it! I did it! She's so beautiful!" I rode that birth high for a good couple of weeks.

But shortly after the birth I started feeling the afterpains, which were veeeeeeery bad -- each contraction lasted 2-3 agonizing minutes, and felt worse than the labor. I started to feel tired and shaky and wanted to eat and drink and be out of pain. My baby wanted to nursenursenursenursenursenurse, which was good for her, but caused even more pain for me. I remember wishing everyone could just be quiet for a little while (including her) so I could go to sleep and wake up not in pain and not feeling shaky. After a couple of hours, I gave her to her dad, and she screamed and screamed and screamed -- she wanting nothing but nursing. I felt really frustrated at not being able to meet both of our needs simultaneously. I *really* didn't want to nurse anymore. I *really* wanted to sleep and eat. But I *really* didn't want her to cry, either.

I then started feeling weepy. Sad that the pregnancy was all over, that this part of my journey was finished.

See, these are the parts that you never read about in the books or hear people discuss. It's all, "You'll fall in love with your baby, you'll think she's so fantastic, you won't remember the pain," but it's really not that way for everyone.
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#13 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 09:43 AM
 
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i remember feeling great after a 30 hour labor with horrible back pain... it was all over! i was also amazed that i had actually had him at home. i just loved the "normal" feeling after it all--like "hey everyone, let's have some dinner and hang out!"

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#14 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 11:34 AM
 
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Euphoric :
Proud
Beaming
Energetic
Talkative
Woozy when standing :
Excited
Amazed :
Shocked - when #3 was a girl
Loved
Stunned - my labor with #4 was 45 minutes
Hungry
Blessed :
Thankful
I also felt very close to my MW and DH

Keri

 Keri wife and Mama to  Cory 17,  Brendan 15,  Kerianne 8,  Avery 7,  Lilia 3
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#15 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 11:42 AM
 
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I had a 36 hour labor with a c-section

I felt so, so, so very happy. Tired. Ecstatic. Totally in love. I couldn't stop looking at the baby, kissing on him, showing him off to everyone. "Look at how beautiful he is!" I think I held him in my arms the entire 36 hour hospital stay.

I couldn't believe that I had grown such a fabulous little boy with my body. I was so very proud.

My dh (bless his heart!) had read Birthing from Within during my pregnancy, and I suppose that he really, really read the c-section chapter, because he made sure to tell me over and over that I had given birth to a beautiful baby. Because, yeah, a cesarean isn't a normal birth, but it's a birth nonetheless. I was full of love for my dh, too, in a way that I couldn't have imagined feeling.

I had really good pain relief after my surgery, though, so I think that made a difference. And, after not such good pain relief in labor, I had such a feeling of relief.

Now, 5 days later, I was a hormonal, weepy mess. But, the first 48 hours were pretty good! LOL
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#16 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 11:49 AM
 
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With my twins: relieved, happy, excited, thrilled, proud, tired, wide awake! They had Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome and the pregnancy was just full of drama, so it wasn't until they were born and physically healthy (albeit small) that I felt I could finally exhale and sleep easily. I remember saying, "I could TOTALLY do this again!"

With my dd: I really felt out of it. I felt the ring of fire and it was burning. I felt tired. It was totally not as blissful as the boys' birth. I didn't feel that bonded for quite some time. I mean, I loved her, I was happy to have her, but I didn't feel as much ecstasy as I did after my boys were born.

Now I'm pregnant with #4 and I'm hoping for a home waterbirth.

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#17 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 11:56 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BetsyS View Post
I had a 36 hour labor with a c-section

I felt so, so, so very happy. Tired. Ecstatic. Totally in love. I couldn't stop looking at the baby, kissing on him, showing him off to everyone. "Look at how beautiful he is!" I think I held him in my arms the entire 36 hour hospital stay.

I couldn't believe that I had grown such a fabulous little boy with my body. I was so very proud.

My dh (bless his heart!) had read Birthing from Within during my pregnancy, and I suppose that he really, really read the c-section chapter, because he made sure to tell me over and over that I had given birth to a beautiful baby. Because, yeah, a cesarean isn't a normal birth, but it's a birth nonetheless. I was full of love for my dh, too, in a way that I couldn't have imagined feeling.

I had really good pain relief after my surgery, though, so I think that made a difference. And, after not such good pain relief in labor, I had such a feeling of relief.

Now, 5 days later, I was a hormonal, weepy mess. But, the first 48 hours were pretty good! LOL
ok, so i'm a little bit pregnant, but reading this incredible little story i just erupted into a volcano of tears. what a beautiful family you and your dh created when you gave birth, mama.
thank you to all the mamas who have shared their less than euphoric feelings. i was pretty much on cloud 9 after dd's birth and it really helps me to remember how lucky i was, and that i might feel differently come summer.
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#18 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 12:16 PM
 
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I had an 18 hour labor at the Farm, breech ds, no interventions.

I think one of my first thoughts, after ds started crying and I knew he was fine, was, "Oh, thank goodness that's over, now I can lie down!" My labor wasn't too bad, but I think I pushed for four hours, and every time I lay down through a contraction I would throw up. So I was really happy to be able to lie down and not push! Even now, when I'm overtired or not feeling good, I'll sometimes think, "Well, at least I can lie down, it's not like I'm in labor."

Later on, after ds had nursed and I got my little 2nd-degree tear stitched up, I suddenly felt great, like I could go hiking! Then I walked across the room and felt so weak that I had to rest before I could get back to bed.

As for bonding with the baby, I didn't have a huge amount of emotion... but I'm just not a very emotional person. I did think he was pretty awesome, but I didn't mind letting his dad hold him so I could rest a bit.

I guess it's different for everyone.

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#19 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 12:20 PM
 
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After my first birth (hospital, induced, epidural, 27 hours) I only remember thinking:
"It's over! It's over!"
I was thrilled.

After my second birth (home water birth) I remember feeling very proud of myself and very content.

After my third birth (home water uc) I remember thinking:
"I will never do that again."
It was a long exhausting labor.
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#20 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 12:28 PM
 
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I was very disappointed that I had to go c-section. I knew it was possible, even likely. I had a feeling baby wasn't head down! I never once got a kick in the ribs.

After he was "born", I couldn't take my eyes off of him. So much adrenaline, I couldn't sleep for days. I was thrilled. I kept staring at him. It was like 100 Christmases wrapped in one.

When I got home, I cried cause I was no longer pregnant. The mystery was over!

I'd look over at the baby and think, "Woah, how'd you get in here?! Only two of us live here."



I remember thinking I'd never co-sleep. A baby belongs in a crib, right?

Nah. From the moment he was brought to me, he's never left my sight.

(well, minus 2 short babysitting stints by the MIL and FIL)!
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#21 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 12:47 PM
 
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My memories of this are fuzzy (no drugs but I'd been in excruciating agony for over 7 hrs prior to dd's birth, and my memory of the end of the birth is kind of hazy), but this is what memory I have of it:

Exhausted. Relief.

Want baby. Want baby.

(baby handed to me)

Wonderful.

Euphoric.

(baby taken away)

Where's baby? Where's baby?

Pain.

Uncomfortable. (until placenta/clots delivered)

Pain. PAIN. (stitches) PAIN! Where's baby? WHERE'S BABY?!?!?

Finally I got my baby back after the doctor was done stitching me. She was only across the room, but it was horrible to not be holding her. I was almost crying, and not from the pain of being stitched up (which was awful all on its own, but had nothing to do with why I was almost crying).

Then once we were together again it was for the rest of the night. I just held her, and gazed at her amazed at how beautiful she was. The nurse gave me something for the pain (a pill, not sure what) and I just spent the whole night awake, staring at my beautiful baby girl.

Next time, I don't even want my baby across the room. I want him/her right next to me where I can see and touch him/her the whole time, even if I need stitches or something. It was awful to miss anything, and to be separated at all.

Julia
dd 10 mos
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#22 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 01:40 PM
 
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Absolute ephoria.
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#23 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 01:57 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nora'sMommy View Post
So I'd like to know how you felt immediately after your first unmedicated, vaginal birth.
My first unmedicated, vaginal birth was for my second child. Homebirth, accidental UC. I was in active labor from roughly noon to 2:30, but labor was so manageable that I didn't call my midwife until it was far too late (she was over an hour away). So, active labor was fabulous, I was in transition from roughly 2:30 to 2:45 (I didn't realize this was transition, I thought I was finally in active labor and woo-boy, was I in for a rough haul), DD was born in 2 pushes and caught by me before 3:00.

My first thought was "I want to do this again!" I was euphoric. So proud of myself, so certain I could do anything. My midwife didn't arrive for another hour, so I spent the first hour of DD's life sitting on my bathroom floor with DH, nursing DD and having no interruptions to our initial bonding. It was amazing, so much so that even though we thought DD would be our last child, and I really am not good at being pregnant, we're expecting baby #3
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#24 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:15 PM
 
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I felt PAIN, the afterpain was awful and the placenta took ages. And relief, the worst was over. And then surprise because she was such a chomper sized baby!
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#25 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:26 PM
 
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I've had two mw attended home water births.

After my first, I felt ecstatic, elated, fabulous, physically light and like I was on top of the world! I hopped out of the tub and into the shower while baby was being dried, dressed and weighed and then I had the best bowl of potato soup on the planet and then settled into bed with my new daughter. I felt like I could climb Everest in one push with no O2. This birth was everything that I dreamed it could be and more. I was ready to have another immediately!

After my second, I felt relieved, ecstatic, fabulous and TIRED. He was born at 3:19 a.m. and though my labor with him was only about 8 hours, it was harder than my first for some reason and I didn't cope with the surges quite as well.

I did have excrutiating after-pains after both births. IMO, they were way worse than labor, but obviously, I survived and plan on doing it all over again in about 10 weeks.
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#26 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 02:54 PM
 
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With my first, a C-section due to transverse presentation, failure to descend, the cord wrapped around his neck three times, and a partridge in a pear tree: Total, overwhelming joy. I just cried and cried from happiness when I heard him cry and saw his face for the first time. I was floating on cloud 9 for like the next several hours. It was truly amazing.

With my second, a hospital VBAC: Mostly just, "Holy crap, so that's how it is supposed to work!" I had similar feelings of joy, this time mixed with more tiredness (I'd had lengthy prodromal labor). Mostly I just felt satisfied in a job well done, if that makes sense.
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#27 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 03:09 PM
 
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i had toxaemia and spent a whole week in hosp. before birth. :i had to refuse the C-sec, induction (AROM, pit, whatever), Mg sulphate, everything IV every single day, so i was tired, couldn't sleep and was really exhausted.: the 7th night i started to feel regular contractions...from that moment on i was in 7th heaven!!! i was so thankful, i was crying happy tears between contractions...the best pain relief in the word: being thankful for being in labor finally! after birth: i felt that i am frickin' Superwoman!!!

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#28 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 03:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by georgia View Post
First birth (hospital/interventions galore)--thank God that's over and we're alive. Complete shock and disassociation/disappointment

Second (home waterbirth)---OMG--that was the most amazing thing I've ever done! When can I do this again? Sheer euphoria
Exactly how I felt.

Right after my first birth I declared that any woman who did that twice was clearly insane.

When I as asked immediately after my home waterbirth how I felt my response was, "I want to do that again!". It was wonderful! :
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#29 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 03:18 PM
 
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With the first, it's a bit blurry, I think I was really scared I was unqualified to take care of this little baby. But I remember looking at my hands minutes after she was born and saying: " My hands! They're back to normal! " They had been uncomfortably swollen for a couple months.

With the second, I felt such a high! I was high for 3 weeks after. I couldn't believe how easy it had felt. I also remember how all the physical pain from pregnancy was gone. I could lie down and not be in pain, instantly. It was amazing! I was so in love too!
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#30 of 49 Old 01-31-2007, 03:24 PM
 
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DS: 9 hour labor, unmedicated hospital birth. I didn't listen to my body and pushed when they told me I was fully dilated and could push. My body wasn't ready and I exhausted myself pushing, even though it was only 45 minutes. After he was born they put him on my stomach for about 30 sec and then whisked him away to be weighed, measured and eye gooped even though I had said I wanted to delay that and nurse him first. I felt really disoriented and overwhelmed, they stitched me up for 45 minutes and after that was done I got to hold him again. I was hungry and very tired.

DD's birth: homebirth, 2 hour labor (woke up when I was just about in transition), less than 10 minutes of pushing. After she was born she didn't leave my stomach for 2-3 hours, except when I got up to pee. I felt like we were in this warm, hormonal mother-baby cocoon, separated from the rest of the world. She nursed for a long time, passed meconium all over me twice, then after a few hours we weighed and measured her. Then she fell asleep. I was so energized! DH was exhausted and napped on the couch until DS woke up a little later around 6 am. I called my parents and grandmother on the east coast and talked to them for a while. DH made me a huge breakfast which I wolfed down, then I wrote down my birth story and emailed it to friends and updated my blog. I was way too energized to sleep until about 11 am, she was born just before 3 am.

Chaotic uc.jpg homeschool.gif mama to 5 plus a bonus one on the way.  stork-suprise.gif

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