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#1 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 01:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We are planning our next baby. After watching BOBB, reading excerts from Henci Goer, and listening to me, DH is OK with home birth. The other option is the birth center.

The thing that I shamefacedly have to admit is twofold: I need to be well rested, and I don't deal with labor pain too well! With DD, born 11 months ago, I was only at like a 3 and the contractions were very, very painful... I ended up asking for pain meds because I couldn't sleep... first Nubain, and a "light" epidural.

A birth years ago, at age 19, was induced and I was writhing on the bed and screaming until I got Demerol. I cut myself a break on that one because I was a kid and knew nothing.

SO: Can I sleep through early labor, without strong IV meds?

And any of you who are self described wimps about abdominal pain, please tell me how you coped. I do plan on Hypnobabies & spending time in the tub/shower.

What I do NOT want is to transfer for exhaustion because prodromal labor has kept me up for a week.

Sorry for my soggy whinings. I really want to birth at home, but not unprepared.

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#2 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 03:02 AM
 
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I would highly recommend some type of non-medicated childbirth classes for you & your husband (Lamaze, Birthing From Within, etc.)

I don't like pain at all, but to me, childbirth without pain meds is a frame of mind. I know it won't be all roses & chocolate, but the surges/contractions are muscles working to help me push my baby out. THAT is an awesome job for them to do & thank goodness they help ME do it.

My other theory is that you only have to deal and work with one contraction/surge at a time. All the others go away when you are only focused on one.

Good luck with your decision! I haven't ever regretted having a home birth.

A doula who married a cop & became a mama to 3 boys: G 12/22/00, my rainbow baby B 2/2/07 and L 2/10/10 my CBA2V baby, waiting for my little caboose late February 2013 & always remembering my two angels 2006 & 2012.

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#3 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 08:34 AM
 
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I think you'll find Hypnobabies very helpful and empowering. It's all about programming your mind to have a more comfortable birthing experience. I'm not particuluarly great at dealing with pain, but I believe 100% in natural child birth and going to the hospital is a scary thought to me -- even with my last birth I remember thinking that I didn't think I could get through it but if the hospital was the only alternative, then I had to.

Our bodies are strong, but our minds are even stronger. I think you can prepare yourself for handling labor in your own way. I'm using hypnobabies this time just because I want a more comfortable birth and after several weeks using the program, I'm 98% convinced I'll get what I want (I still have a couple weeks to work on that last 2%).

Karen happily married mother of 3 great children (19, 6, 5), in my last semester for my Masters in Nutrition and started a six-month internship.
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#4 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 09:54 AM
 
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Were you upright and mobile when you asked for drugs at a 3? Or in a hospital bed? I promise you, being stuck in a hospital bed makes the pain WAY worse. Also, as far as sleeping during early/prodromal labor, my midwife reccomends a glass of wine and/or benedryl. Safer than narcotics, and should help you sleep for a few hours at least. Also, keep in mind with midwifery care you may not have such a long labor, as things like fetal positioning and such will be addressed.
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#5 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 11:25 AM
 
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I had to add, I slept through the PUSHING PHASE! then i woke up when he was born, lol! I woke up for every contraction, then fell asleep again. I was in the hospital, but i had no drugs in me(besides abx), and I was sitting up in the hospital bed(can't sleep standing up lol)

I'm a wimp, I admit it, lol. but, although i didn't have the $$ for hypnobabies, I was able to convince my self that birth was normal, natural, everything would be okay, contractions are not painful but rather interesting, that there was no way i would want some needle in my SPINE, that drugs are dangerous, and that I AM AMAZING ENOUGH TO GET THROUGH THIS, gotta finish what you start! I got this mainly from reading encouraging posts on natural birth boards.

In labor, I didn't stay in the bed until transition(i was soooooo tired, and I couldn't stand the feeling that DS was about to fall out of me!) but before that, i was walking around, sitting in the chairs, birth ball, jacuzzi tub.

I recommend learning about birth, how it works, why everything happens, and what the disadvantages to interventions are. I made it clear to everyone around me that i didn't want ANY medical intervention, but if I could go back and do it again, I would have spent a lot of time working on increasing my ability to stand up for myself, to be able to fight those things that bothered me, but were "necessary" (i.e. cervical checks, and abx(for GBS), as well as the GBS test, lol), and then I would have dealt with my inability to say "no" especially when i'm asked more than once. "what do you think about be breaking your water right now?" 30min later: "ok, how bout now?" "sure, fine..."
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#6 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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The tub is really, really important. Make sure you have one deep enough to cover your belly. It relaxes you and cuts the pain considerably. Also, you cannot underestimate the importance of a postive attitude. Instead of thinking of yourself as a wimp, think of yourself as a strong woman who has already birthed two babies. Your body has a great frame of reference for dealing with this. Labors do get easier, IMO. Just tell yourself that you have done this before and try to welcome the harder contractions as doing more work. You have to have a "bring it on" attitude. I have learned not to shrink inside myself to try and hide from the pain. You have to keep yourself together and remind yourself that the only way out of labor is to keep going. I repeated, "the only way out is through." It really helped. I also prayed my way through labor this time, which I think really helped. It was a great birth (my third). I like the Ina May Gaskin books and Birthing From Within for empowering and positive ways to look at birth. Also, check out this quote from Spiritual Midwifery, "If all your life you never do anything heavy, there's certain passages in life that are heavy. Having a baby, for instance, is one. If you be a total paddy-ass all your life they're going to have to knock you out when you have your kid, because you're going to be too chicken to have it. And if you do something that builds character ahead of time, you'll have enough character that you can have that kid and it will be a beautiful and spiritual experience for you." Also, "It is a miracle to be able to create more life force and there is no room for complaining." I like how they remind you to be thankful for your homebirth opportunities, be thankful for your midwives and your partner. Whenever you start feeling sorry for yourself you have to turn it around. I have found that this has helped me greatly in my regular life. I was always feeling sorry for myself and thinking of how things should be different, in all areas of my life. Correcting my thinking to a positive spin was great practice for doing it in labor, and labor was a great passage into a newer way of thinking about everything! Sending you positive labor vibes, from one former wimp to another!

homebirthing organic mama to three crazy boys very blessed!!
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#7 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 12:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I recommend learning about birth, how it works, why everything happens, and what the disadvantages to interventions are. I made it clear to everyone around me that i didn't want ANY medical intervention, but if I could go back and do it again, I would have spent a lot of time working on increasing my ability to stand up for myself, to be able to fight those things that bothered me, but were "necessary" (i.e. cervical checks, and abx(for GBS), as well as the GBS test, lol), and then I would have dealt with my inability to say "no" especially when i'm asked more than once. "what do you think about be breaking your water right now?" 30min later: "ok, how bout now?" "sure, fine..."
YEah.... that is what I have been doing for the past year, since DD was born.

This knowledge is why I want to birth at home.

What it is't helping me with is the uncomfortable idea that I am just going to cave and ask to go to the hospital.

Someone asked whether I was mobile when I was asking for drugs at a 3- yes, I was mobile, but I had taken castor oil on the advice of the OB... I hope castor oil made things more intense, because if those contractions are my normal early labor contractions, I am in trouble.

Fetal positioning is a good point. DD was an "unstable lie" for the last month of pregnancy, and they had been mentioning scheduling the C word b/c of that. I don't know what position she was in, although had she been posterior or otherwise bad I think they would have told me

Keep talking to me. I appreciate it.

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#8 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 12:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Sweetiemommy View Post
The tub is really, really important. Make sure you have one deep enough to cover your belly. It relaxes you and cuts the pain considerably. Also, you cannot underestimate the importance of a postive attitude. Instead of thinking of yourself as a wimp, think of yourself as a strong woman who has already birthed two babies. Your body has a great frame of reference for dealing with this. Labors do get easier, IMO. Just tell yourself that you have done this before and try to welcome the harder contractions as doing more work. You have to have a "bring it on" attitude. Sending you positive labor vibes, from one former wimp to another!
Thank you for this.

I know that the tub was very helpful at home, before we went to the hospital.

Has anyone stayed in there for most of active labor? I have read that you should not get in until you feel like you CANNOT take it any more, so that you feel the relief the most.

Bring it on attitude... will meditate on that.

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#9 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 12:31 PM
 
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Wimp who just homebirthed two weeks ago here.

My first labor was a prodromol one, where I got an epi (although thankfully no pitocin) after almost 36 hours of labor that was manageable, but I couldn't really eat or sleep and was just so tired when things kicked up a notch into active labor. I knew I wanted to HB this time (in part because of the lack of other acceptable options where I am now living) but I was really concerned about the pain.

I did hypnobabies, but I have to say that I was not able to use it much during my labor (I liked listening to the CDs and affirmations during my preg, and glad I did, but it did not help the pain go away during labor, unfortunately). What really got me through it was a good doula, a midwife I trusted, and feeling totally uninhibited since it was my own house. I yelled and cursed a lot, I moved around, I got in the shower, I vocalized my fears to those around me and got their reassurance. It REALLY helped not to have to travel anywhere, to have no one telling me what to do, and to take one contraction at a time. I also knew that pain relief was just not an option, and the only way out was through, and that was strangely reassuring.

It wasn't easy, and it did hurt, but it was the best thing I've ever done...I would not do it any other way in the future given a choice.
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#10 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 12:32 PM
 
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The big thing to remember, is that at home you will be free to move, stand, eat, bathe, shower, go outside, drink etc. however you need to deal with the pain. You can catch a nap on the couch, or sitting in a chair if that is more comfortable.
You will not be confined to bed, unable to roll because of the IV and monitors. You will not be in the hospital, with bright lights, and constant invasion of privacy.
As for them telling you whether or not your baby was posterior, a lot of OB's and L&D nurses don't seem to really think it's that important. It's definately possible that babe was poorly positioned. Add all the stressors inherent to the hospital process, and it's going to be miserable!
I won't go against any of the great pain management techniques mentioned, but I will add one more. Yogic breathing. I learned it by taking prenatal yoga (which is *great*), and used it to manage 2 very intense, fast births. Just look at your options. Take some classes, and decide what makes sense to you. You'll do fine.

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#11 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 02:54 PM
 
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I am a total wimp when it comes to pain. I HATE being in pain. So, my answer to that was to use water. With my middle child, I got into the water as soon as labor seemed really active (was probably around 4-5 cm) and I stayed until he was born. with my 3rd child, I got into the water within 30 minutes of active labor and stayed until transition and then it wasn't comfortable anymore (bathtub rather than birth pool and I am a fluffy mama). The water can be absolutely amazing.

Erika, mama to three beautiful kids (plus one gestating), and wife to one fantastic man.

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#12 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 03:55 PM
 
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Thanks so much for posting exactly what I am feeling. I am aiming for an HBAC in just a few weeks and I am a wimp as well. DH keeps asking me how I will handle the pain. Going to the hospital and getting an epidural is just not an option for me and I am making it clear to DH that if he even mentions that during labor he will be evicted from the birth.

I too induced myself with castor oil with my first birth and the pain was impossible to deal with. Then again I was on my back not moving from about 3 centimeters. My midwife this time around says that castor oil is her LAST RESORT for inducing because it does make contractions more intense.

My plan is to stay as active as possible during early labor and once it gets more intense I will be in a birthing pool/shower.

I only recently started thinking about doing hypnobabies but I think I may be too late - I am due on March 10th. Anyone know if I should even bother starting it at this point?
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#13 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 06:09 PM
 
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because if those contractions are my normal early labor contractions, I am in trouble.
This reminds me of what I thought when I was planning my 2nd birth - a homebirth (turned birth center birth due to lack of midwife avalibility, not making that mistake again).
Really, my 2nd birth seemed a lot easier to me - although more intense because it was 1/4 of the time that my 1st was. I think it was easier because I could remember how painful the first time around and I kept expecting it to go there... so I kept the attitude of "this gets A LOT worse... I can handle this part" but it never got as bad as I built it up to be so kept being able to handle it. I also knew what coping skills I had learned during my first birth that helped me (for me, it is humming very slowly in a low voice - I felt a little silly but it really helped calm me through the contractions).
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#14 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 06:17 PM
 
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My midwife has a 5 cm rule, don't get in the tub prior to that because it can slow things down, I think. I also thinking waiting brings greater relief. But I agree that if you don't use castor oil your contractions won't be so intense in the beginning. Mine are usually really manageable until somewhere around 5-6cm.

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#15 of 57 Old 01-26-2010, 07:23 PM
 
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Has anyone stayed in there for most of active labor? I have read that you should not get in until you feel like you CANNOT take it any more, so that you feel the relief the most.
I slept through early labor, showed up at the hospital at 7cm and got right in the tub. I wasn't in awful, but it definitely hurt. I was in there for about an hour, got out at 10cm, pushed for an hour and DD was born.

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#16 of 57 Old 01-27-2010, 01:50 AM
 
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I'm a huge wimp when it comes to pain. When I hit my threshold, I cry like a... well... baby.

during transition with my first, a hospital birth, moments before he was born, I begged for the epidural. I even signed for it, but he was literally born 5 minutes later.

At home with my last baby, I knew epidural wasn't even an option. I had done the hypnobabies homestudy, and found it to be extremely helpful (no, it didn't take away *all* my "pain" but is certainly helped with my mindset). During transition, I had moments where I thought "Holy crap, I am NEVER having another baby again" and "Wow, this is HARD work!" but those were the moments literally right before she was born.

I think if you enter the birthing experience without fear and trepidation, homebirth is substantially more comfortable.

Wifey to Hubby, Mama to Boy (2004) and Girl (2009). 
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#17 of 57 Old 01-27-2010, 02:28 AM
 
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Get yourself a doula who can help with massage and preparing yummy baths and meditations and affirmations that you are doing great all you need to do is 'get through that next contraction'.
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#18 of 57 Old 01-27-2010, 05:05 AM
 
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Has anyone stayed in there for most of active labor? I have read that you should not get in until you feel like you CANNOT take it any more, so that you feel the relief the most.
For my first (hospital birth) I was handling contractions just fine when I was admitted to the hospital at 5cm. The nurse suggested the tub and I got in. The warm water felt wonderful and I made excellent progress. The whole time I was in the tub I felt relaxed and calm. Once I got to 9cm (in a very short time. I think 1.5 hours) the OB made the nurses kick me out of the tub. I wish I'd stayed in. Won't go into details, but could have done without hospital policy and that OB in particular.

For Dd2 (home) when my midwives arrived at my house I'd been laboring on the toilet for the past three hours. I'd been holding off on the tub until it got "worse". I started pushing on the toilet and one of my MWs asked if she could check me. She said I was almost fully dilated. I mumbled something like "I know" and waddled back to the toilet. They suggested I get into the tub. Once in the tub, the water didn't help with the pain at all. (No surprise there, I was already pushing) But it was nice to be upright and more boyant this time, so the water wasn't totally useless.

I guess it worked out better for me to get in earlier rather than later.

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#19 of 57 Old 01-27-2010, 05:22 AM
 
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#20 of 57 Old 01-27-2010, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Get yourself a doula who can help with massage and preparing yummy baths and meditations and affirmations that you are doing great all you need to do is 'get through that next contraction'.
The doula is a subject I think about daily.

Since I'll already by paying very likely out of pocket for the HBMW, not completely certain I can get a doula as well...

Really thrilled with all the responses to this thread. I can't be the only woman who looked at the evidence, realized the hospital was more harm than good, but is still deeply indoctrinated with the notion of birth as agony, KWIM?

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#21 of 57 Old 01-28-2010, 01:10 AM
 
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I had a hospital birth with my DS in 2008 in which I was begging for the epi at 3cm due to being induced for ruptured membranes, no labor and being GBS+ and the pain was unbearable!

FF to 2 weeks ago, and we welcomed a gigantic 9lb6oz baby girl into our home and hearts quite effortlessly with the help of Hypnobabies! I won`t lie and say I had a pain free labor but Hypnobabies helped me to relax through most of active labor and by the time transition hit and I was begging to be taken to the hospital my baby girl was born in 15 minutes.

I don`t tolerate pain very well either but something about giving birth was different than other pain. Being at home, in my bathtub, having my doula rub my feet etc. really made a difference and I believe that allowed my body to do what it was made to do - give birth

I wish you the best of luck, but I assure you - you can do it!
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#22 of 57 Old 01-28-2010, 09:54 PM
 
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I recently had my third child at home after two births in a hospital, with heavy epidurals. My first two I always told myself I was such a wimp that I couldn't handle the pain. I think what kept me from doing a homebirth sooner was my anxiety about the pain. My attitude the third time around was totally different! It took some research and soul searching to convince myself that I COULD do this.
My homebirth experience was absolutely magical. We bought a pool for $35 at YourWaterBirth.com. Don't spend any more on a fancy pool, because the 'kiddie' pool worked wonderfully. The water made my contractions SO much easier to handle. When I stepped out of the water I was practically screaming with each contraction, but in the water I was able to breathe through them. The water is also so helpful in preventing perineal tears.
Before hand I watched homebirth videos on YouTube, I read stories on here, and asked lots of questions.
I gush my birth story to anyone who will listen becaues it was so amazing, empowering, beautiful,... I could go on and on!
You will not regret your choice to do a homebirth! You CAN do it!
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#23 of 57 Old 01-28-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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I would like to recommend two very good books to get you in the mindset of birthing naturally. They will really help you see the POWER of your body and that is was designed to birth on its own, and they will help you not worry about the hard part!!!

Natural Birth the Bradley Way by Susan McCutcheon.

Ina May's Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin

I never did Hypnobabies but I'm sure it would be good too. I also second the doula recommendation.

Lisa, proud Army wife to DH and stay-at-home-mama to Alex (4), Cassidy (2), and brand spankin' new Bridgette.
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#24 of 57 Old 01-29-2010, 04:25 PM
 
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Well, I haven't given birth yet, so this is coming from a complete lack of experience . . . but I found it helpful to watch BoBB and realize that many women, including one home birth midwife, did reach that point of thinking, "I can't do this. Get me to a hospital. I want an epidural afterall." My DH even stopped the dvd at one point and said, "you realize this could be like that time we moved from California to New Orleans and at a gas station in the middle of Texas you put your head down on the hood of the Uhaul and cried and said it had all been a terrible mistake and you didn't want to do it afterall?" Well, yes, it might be like that, but somehow knowing ahead of time that I will likely hit that point seems like it will make that point a little easier to manage. At least then I might be able to think, "Oh yeah, this is that point where I think I can't do it -- but I really can." DH has strict instructions when I reach that point to remind me that I am strong and can handle this.

I also may be paying for the HBMW out of pocket, so I know what you mean about not being able to pay for a doula on top of that, but fortunately my midwife will use part of the fee to hire an assistant -- either a doula or another midwife, so there will be someone else there to help.

"She has spread of late into a goodly bulk." Shakespeare, The Winter's Tale 2.1.20-21
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#25 of 57 Old 01-29-2010, 04:42 PM
 
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I think you should pat yourself on the back and not call yourself a wimp. You are wise to think this aspect through. In my state, there were 44 homebirths and 191 maternal transfers. So clearly this is an important issue when looking to birth outside a hospital.

I would focus on learning about and preparing for various non-allopathic pain relievers:

~massage, get DH trained in something or get a book so he can follow it in case he's nervous

~arnica...get the pill and cream form...plenty of it

~consider some herbs at the inhishands website for emotional distress such as Bach's Remedy and Transition Ease

~build some rice socks and have a safe heater/oven available

~invest in a tub or pool

~get some rags ready so they can be heated and used

~if worried about prodromal labor, make sure your birth assistant knows specific methods (such as water shots) to help

~study particular positions and learn the advantages of them for particular pain

~ as a last resort to prevent transfer, consider having OTC painkillers available

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#26 of 57 Old 01-30-2010, 08:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think you should pat yourself on the back and not call yourself a wimp. You are wise to think this aspect through. In my state, there were 44 homebirths and 191 maternal transfers. So clearly this is an important issue when looking to birth outside a hospital.

I would focus on learning about and preparing for various non-allopathic pain relievers:

~massage, get DH trained in something or get a book so he can follow it in case he's nervous

~arnica...get the pill and cream form...plenty of it

~consider some herbs at the inhishands website for emotional distress such as Bach's Remedy and Transition Ease

~build some rice socks and have a safe heater/oven available

~invest in a tub or pool

~get some rags ready so they can be heated and used

~if worried about prodromal labor, make sure your birth assistant knows specific methods (such as water shots) to help

~study particular positions and learn the advantages of them for particular pain

~ as a last resort to prevent transfer, consider having OTC painkillers available
This is a great list. It is very helpful to have a number of things to "check off."

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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#27 of 57 Old 01-30-2010, 08:49 AM
 
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#28 of 57 Old 04-05-2010, 06:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by jeminijad View Post
The doula is a subject I think about daily.

Since I'll already by paying very likely out of pocket for the HBMW, not completely certain I can get a doula as well...
I found that there are doulas-in-training in my area, and they will doula for me at a free or greatly reduced rate. Doulas have to attend a birth or two before they can get their certification. I contacted my local doula group, and the organizer put me in touch with three doulas who responded to her post to the group. Now I just have to call them and set up some interviews.

Perhaps this could be an option for you? I had no idea that a person might be able to find a free doula.
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#29 of 57 Old 04-05-2010, 10:15 PM
 
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I think you'll find Hypnobabies very helpful and empowering. It's all about programming your mind to have a more comfortable birthing experience. I'm not particuluarly great at dealing with pain, but I believe 100% in natural child birth and going to the hospital is a scary thought to me -- even with my last birth I remember thinking that I didn't think I could get through it but if the hospital was the only alternative, then I had to.

Our bodies are strong, but our minds are even stronger. I think you can prepare yourself for handling labor in your own way. I'm using hypnobabies this time just because I want a more comfortable birth and after several weeks using the program, I'm 98% convinced I'll get what I want (I still have a couple weeks to work on that last 2%).
Yep to all of that.

2.2006 * DS 12.24.2006 * Newbie due 5.19.2010 * planning our first
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#30 of 57 Old 04-05-2010, 11:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by DirtRoadMama View Post
I found that there are doulas-in-training in my area, and they will doula for me at a free or greatly reduced rate. Doulas have to attend a birth or two before they can get their certification. I contacted my local doula group, and the organizer put me in touch with three doulas who responded to her post to the group. Now I just have to call them and set up some interviews.

Perhaps this could be an option for you? I had no idea that a person might be able to find a free doula.
I'll be looking into doulas in training, for sure.

Thanks for bumping this thread back up.

Mother to R- 2/09, & C- 5/11

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