A woman I’ve known since my youth group years is having her second baby today. It made me think about my labor with Isaac, and how I really haven’t just sat down and remembered it.
My water broke around 8pm on March 9th. We had just gotten home from staying at my aunt’s house, because out power was out from a snow storm. I started feeling contractions around 8:30, and I remember just sitting on the sofa (on a bunch of towels, because amniotic fluid,) trying to be as relaxed as possible.
Back in college, a group of us went to our friend’s house for a visitor’s weekend. Her mom gave birth to a -lot- of kids, and while talking to her about it, she said the best thing to do it be relaxed. It helps the baby come out more easily. I’ve kept that tucked away in my mind ever since.
We left for the hospital around 2am, and while we were getting ready, I remember getting hit with a wave of guilt about having a second baby. Thinking that I was somehow rejecting my daughter by having another person to need my attention, care, and love. I had many nights rocking her to sleep, and ending up in tears from thinking about how much I loved her, and not knowing if I could really love another baby the same way. (Spoiler alert, I do.)
When we got to the hospital, I remember feeling like I was in a movie – sitting in the intake room, trying to fill out a form, and answer questions, while feeling intense waves of pain. I remember getting to my room, feeling silly about wearing a hospital gown (vanity, vanity.)
During my first labor with Lucy, my midwives made me move around as much as possible. Walking, squatting, kneeling, you name it. My favorite thing was just soaking in the warm bath, and letting my body do it’s thing, but NoOoOoOo, gotta move move move. Well, not the case with my second labor. We tried walking around once, I hated it, and decided I was staying in bed. The idea of doing what we did last time just was a huge, stressful turn off to me, so I decided – it’s my labor. I’m gonna do what I want.
And I did. I stayed in bed, I breathed deeply (sometimes VERY deeply, when the pain was really bad,) and fell asleep between contractions. Every once in a while Tim would rub my back, or mom would ask if I needed anything, and there just came a point where I didn’t want anyone to touch me, talk to me, I just wanted to be left alone. I don’t really like using the word zen, but that’s really what it was like, It wasn’t peaceful, really, because pain, and it wasn’t blissful, because pain, but it was very zen. Very cool, calm, collected. And that’s how I labored. In my own little world, letting contractions come and go as they pleased. I did get pitocin, but it wasn’t as bad as I remembered it from Lucy.
The only times I ever felt really stressed out was when they had to lower my head, and check my cervix. That was the worst.
When he started coming, he started coming. I pushed for about five minutes. My OB was awesome. He had a gross job, let’s be real.
Overall, my experience at Lawrence General was amazing. They let me do my own thing, they didn’t bother me more than they had to, and honestly, it was a better experience than Exeter, and Exeter was great.
I hate to brag, but I’m going to – I’m two for two with labors/births that impressed my doctors and nurses. Plus size natural birth for the win!