Why Labor Naturally?

I remember when I was pregnant with my first. The end was drawing near and that prompted people to ask the question of whether I would be laboring naturally or if I wanted medication. It was something I thought a lot about and did quite a bit of research on. I knew I wanted to do it naturally but telling people that often got me laughed at. “Yeah, most women say that but then end up screaming for an epidural! Good luck with that!” It wasn’t nice to hear. I even got some of that from my doctor and his nurse. Apparently natural labor doesn’t happen that often.

It wasn’t a decision I made lightly, as I stated before I researched it. I love to research and find answers to probing questions. I also don’t like surprises so I wanted to know all about labor and delivery. Every aspect of it. I read many stories by women that did it natural and many that used the epidural and some that had done it both ways. I also read a book entitled Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way: Revised Edition by Susan McCutcheon. I have talked a lot about this book in previous posts. It is the one thing that really helped me.

Yes, I did deliver naturally and I got to tell everyone that I survived. It was fun rubbing it in the faces of people who said I couldn’t. That’s mean of me I know but if someone wants to do a natural birth they really could use encouragement and not a sarcastic tone.

The next question I got asked is why? Why would I want to feel the pain of childbirth if I had an option to go without? Well I am happy to tell you!

Keep in mind this is my own opinion. I don’t think anything less of women who have opted for the epidural. I know many strong capable women who have had it! It is just not the path I wanted to take for me and my baby.

First off I don’t like drugs. I have to have a major headache for me to even think about taking a simple pain killer. What I don’t like about them is they mask a problem. I have a headache for some reason and usually its because I haven’t had enough water or I am in need of some fresh air.

Although the epidural cant be compared to simple pain killers it does numb pain and can cause other issues in the process. I understand it effects people differently but to my understanding once you get the epidural you are no longer free to move around. You are numb from the tummy down and as a result a catheter is put in place.

I would hate not having control of my body. If I couldn’t simply get up and walk around it would scare me. One woman who opted for the epidural said whenever she had to get checked or in position to push the nurses had to move her legs around. That resulted in a very uncomfortable experience she said. I can see why. I don’t want to be so numb that I cant move my legs! Maybe that is just a bad experience with the epidural but I could also have one like that. Who’s to say how it will go?

The side effects the epidural its self scares me. It can cause major headaches and fevers which leads to more medications. There are of course more severe side effects, the worst leaving you paralyzed. And even though they say the drug doesn’t harm baby it can effect how baby reacts when he/she is delivered. Many women who experienced natural and medicated births said they noticed their baby was more alert when it was naturally done.

Going through a natural birth the first time went really well for me. I did have a little medication put through my I.V. that lasted a couple hours. It helped me catch up on some Zzz’s before the hard contractions kicked in. I think it was called Demerol. I can’t be 100% positive about that. It was three years ago.

Going into labor then I had no idea what to expect. However this time, I think I can say I am more nervous just because I know what will happen and how it will feel. To get through it I keep reminding myself of these simple yet important facts.

  • When baby comes out its over. No more pain. Just recovery (Yes recovery can still mean a little pain but nothing like labor itself).
  • I can walk around through contractions and this time I want to try the birthing ball.
  • This being my second delivery it will go by faster.
  • I want to be able to feel when to push. I don’t want to be told when or how to do it.
  • Baby will be born alert and healthy.
  • Chances of a cesarean birth greatly decrees when done naturally.

I also keep reminding myself to stay calm. I did this once I can do it again. Its a natural every day occurrence. My body was built to handle this. Its just muscles contracting and the pain will only last for a little while.

Labor really is a small part of the whole pregnancy process. Its not a bad part either. Sure it isn’t easy but once its over and you realized that you survived it can be really empowering. Its a time in your life you will never forget. You will look back to it with a smile not with resentment or fear. That’s the day your baby was born! The day you dreaded but ended up surviving.

I am as mentally and physically prepared as can be. I hope baby Eli makes and entrance into this world soon! There are a lot of people excited and ready to meet him!

Induce Me?

I had my 40 week doctors appointment yesterday. I am actually 40 weeks plus 5 days, but who’s counting? It went the same as my last three appointments. I’m 50% effaced and only 1 cm dilated. Even with the contractions that have been growing stronger and at times waking me up at night, nothing has changed. I am almost in tears after each visit to the office.

The nurses look shocked to see me yesterday. That doesn’t help my nerves. I don’t know what baby Eli is waiting for but he has until next Friday (exactly one week) or I will be induced. The good news is my favorite doctor comes back from vacation on Monday (hes going to be shocked to see me too) so at least I will have him to deliver, if I make it to Monday that is.

Here is what next week looks like for me. Call in Monday, if I haven’t had baby, to schedule an appointment that day with my returning doctor. Tuesday I go in to have a NST test. That stands for non-stress test. They check baby’s heart beat and a few other things. I really don’t know what the test entails only that they strap a couple belts on me for about 20 minutes to monitor baby. Friday I will be induced.

The good news is next week I will for sure be holding our brand new baby boy and the bad news is I may have to wait a week and be induced.

After hearing all this news and feeling a little blue I decided I needed to do a little more shopping. Yeah, this overdue baby is reeking havoc on our checking account. Last week was postpartum clothes shopping at Old Navy, this week was a couple more stores.

I went shopping at Bed Bath & Beyond for my friends wedding shower coming up and I ran into these cute fluffy pink zebra print slippers! Ahh! I had to have a pair! The only down side to them is there are have grippies on the bottom. No sliding across the floor for me. I also needed a pair of tweezers. I decided to stick with the color pink 😉 I like pink! Nothing like new slippers and perfectly plucked eyebrows to make me feel like a new woman!

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I also picked up a new purse… I have been searching for months and I finally found one at Target.

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It feels like swede and totally matches my boots! I was excited!

Next I went to a baby store and finally found a baby sleepsack! I have been looking for one of these because its so snugly and warm! It was %50 off too, I had to get it! The little vest is for Christmas time. I need to find one for big brother Danny now to match!

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The shopping did make me feel a little better but all-in-all I am still nervous to get induced. It was not something I thought would need to happen and now that its being talked about, well it just has me surprised.

Why is this happening with my second baby when my first was so easy? What is it that makes a body know when to start labor? I have been asking myself as well as others these questions. There are no answers and its pretty frustrating.

I know I still have a week to go and I could very easily go into labor on my own in that time. I have been waiting so long now that I want to mentally prepare in case I do need to be induced.

I am tired of my weekly doctor visits and having my cervix checked every single time is just not fun. I have a toddler that is 3 and 1/2. I know he will not remember my appointments but I still feel a little self conscious having him in there when I get checked. Usually I will find a babysitter but that is just one more thing to try and work out.

The prospect of being induced Friday isn’t so bad. I am looking forward to the next stage of life to begin. We have been waiting so long and even though I don’t want to be induced, I am ready if that is what it takes to get baby out of my tummy and into my arms.

Due Date

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Well our babies due date is here and guess what?! NO BABY! I thought for sure I wouldn’t make it to this date. I was early with my first and the doctors say your second usually comes earlier than that. I put way to much hope in that statement.

Of course it doesn’t help that I am an impatient person. My husband says I am the most impatient person he knows. Its really not that bad. He says he hopes this trait of mine isn’t passed down to our children. Sad news is my first born son is already showing signs of it. I think its only fair. I have to deal with my son having many of my husbands traits.

Back to me not having this baby yet… I have been through so many different emotions the past few weeks. I have been, sad, excited, board, restless and anxious. Feeling anxious was the worst. I could hardly sleep, I would wake up in the mornings feeling depressed that nothing happened and that id have to suffer another day of wishing and hoping id start to feel contractions. Any second now… nope… okay… how bout now… okay… now! That was my day. It doesn’t help that people constantly text me asking if it’s time. Everyone was and is as anxious for me to have this baby as me and my husband are.

To get out of this nasty funk I had to stop focusing on when baby would come and start living for the day. So what did I do? I spent a little money… I’m desperate. Spending the hours at home constantly on repeat was obviously not working. One simple invite from my sister to go shopping was all I needed. Old Navy here we come!

It was a fun morning. I actually ended up buying a few baggy shirts for after baby is born just so I don’t have to feel stuck in my husbands clothes for the postpartum months ahead. My husbands clothes are what I have been living in the last couple months. I wear his sweats, T-shirts and his sweaters. I will change into my maternity clothes if I go out but they are constricting and when the pants stretch up and over my belly it gets a little itchy. I am one for comfort right now. I cant wait, mind you, to wear my own clothes again. Of course I don’t like the baggy homely look that I sport at the moment but its one of the only ways I can feel really, truly comfortable. If you make fun of me you have obviously never been pregnant. So hold your comments until you have experienced a nine (actually 10) month pregnancy.

Another item I treated myself to was Bio-Oil. This oil is said to help minimize scars, stretch marks, even skin ton, help with aging and dehydrated skin. This stuff, used by celebrities, is said to be a miracle oil. I didn’t do anything special after my first son was born. I really don’t have bad stretch marks but with this possibly being our last child and the fact that I am a little older now, I really want to take good care of my body and skin! I will be doing follow up posts on the Bio-oil. Hopefully it will help to shrink the marks. I know the stretch marks will never completely disappear but if it can shrink them, I’ll take it! And if it helps to give younger youthful looking skin, its only another reason to try it. This product is not expensive either. I have read many reviews and the women using it say the 2 oz bottle lasts a long time. Again, I will let you know how it works for me. I may even be brave enough to take some close up before and after photos. Maybe…

After all the new items I bought I re-packed the hospital bag with my new clothes. Even though it adds to the excitement of getting baby out, it also makes me feel a little more prepared. I don’t know what else I can do to stay calm and busy. I’ll just take it one day at a time all the while continuing to pray for patience, peace and a smooth delivery. I need to stay calm knowing that Gods timing is the time I want. It wont be much longer. Soon I will be able to call my husband (if he isn’t with me) and tell him its time. Soon I will be kissing precious baby cheeks and sharing with others that baby Eli is finally here!

Week 39

Here I sit, on my red exercise ball, bouncing and writing to you hoping my water will break and I’ll finally get to call my husband and say “ITS TIME.” I think he is as anxious for that phone call as I am to give it. I have been on this exercise ball a lot in the last few weeks. Not only to try and get baby out but because its more comfortable than even our most comfortable couch! The softer the surface, the more uncomfortable. Hard to believe I know, but there you have it.

I really wanted baby out a week ago. My doctor, who I love and delivered my first son, went on vacation at end of that week. I was praying and hoping to have this baby by then, but to no avail. He said I could wait a week past my due date and he’d be back! He actually said that with enthusiasm and a smile. I just sat there, looking more tired than normal with bags under my eyes and said “thanks, but I really don’t want to wait that long.” Then gave a little halfhearted smile of my own…

I will share with you what I’ve tried to get contractions going. I ate fresh pineapple, which ripens and softens the cervix, and did the exercise ball. Nothing. I have been on long walks and even jogged a little. Nothing. I even tried the castor oil and orange juice method. Nothing. Well nothing but a cleaned out colon and sore bum… It did cause a few contractions here and there but nothing lasted. It only got my hopes up to think it would work.

Tomorrow is Halloween and if that was to be his birthday I can honestly say I would be okay with it. He would have some pretty awesome birthday parties if that was the case. Sadly I have no way of knowing when it will be. I am tired, sore and done trying anything to get baby out. Obviously he will come when he is good and ready. Ill just sit and bounce on my exercise ball until the times comes… I only hope and pray it will be soon.

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It All Started With A Walk.

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The other morning I woke up in a complete slump. I was so caught up in feeling pregnant, tired, sore and I was (and still am) sick of waiting for little baby to arrive! It was a rough morning to say the least. There wasn’t much I wanted to do yet I felt like I needed to do something! Anything to get out of the horrible mood I was in.

Whenever moods like this arise it always makes me feel better to get out of the house and focus on other things. Even driving down to the coffee shop and soaking up the happy mood from the barista or watching a couple holding hands walking down main street. Getting my mind off me and on to other things always helps.

My son was desperately wanting to go for a walk so I finally gave in and thought “what the heck! It sure cant hurt.” So off we went! Almost immediately my mood began to change. Passing all the beautiful autumn decorated houses and seeing the trees with their bright colors of orange, yellow and red made me smile. What a beautiful day!

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To beautiful to waist mopping about! Life continues on no matter my mood and I want to enjoy everyday I am blessed with. In hailing the smells of wood burning stoves and drying leaves was so refreshing! I began think of other ways to stay positive and productive when we arrived home. I opened up the garage to sweep it out and then decided id better vacuum out my car for when we bring baby home. There are always crumbs of fishy crackers on, under and around Danny’s car seat. It felt great to have a clean garage and car!

Next was cleaning out the fridge and figuring out what to have for dinner! Dinner these days are on my list of things I wish I could skip. I got it figured out though and the day ended a lot better than it started. Thanks to a little walk around the neighborhood and the beauty of fall!