My birth story – Coping with the unexpected and giving a natural birth to my son
During my first pregnancy, I wasn’t as nervous about birth as I was during my second time.
I felt prepared for the birth although I didn’t really know what to expect.
I took pregnancy yoga classes, visited the hospital to see the labor rooms, participated with my husband in 3 prenatal classes in which we got information about the stages of labor and prepared ourselves to the birth.
Both births were natural, with no epidural.
Why did I decide to go natural?
Well, my pregnancy yoga instructor, who was a young mom herself, deeply believed in delivering the natural way.
She said that once you interrupt your labor with any medical induction method, in most cases it will lead to another medical induction and to more medical interventions. Therefore, using epidural might lead to a longer delivery duration, since you are lying on your back without any movement and not helping your baby to go down the cervical canal. Then, you might need to get Pitocin, a medication that induces labor by increasing the contractions, get Striping or involve other medical techniques that induce labor.
The problem with these medical ways to induce labor is that they interfere with the natural development of the birth stages during labor, and this is the reason for the need of using more and more medical interventions.
My yoga instructor’s birth theory did sound very convincing to me, SoI decided to go for it and try the natural way to give birth. This means, to try to avoid using epidural and then hopefully the rest of the medical induction methods.
It is important to note that I had a healthy pregnancy and I didn’t have any complications or health problems during my pregnancy, therefore I was able to go for the natural birth.
Moreover, I decided that if the labor pains will be too painful and unbearable, I will not stop myself from using epidural.
Well, my first birth was pretty successful.
I delivered my first son naturally, didn’t use any medical inductions. It took me 5 hours to give that birth, including the very first moment I started to feel the labor contractions. The baby’s weight was 8224 pounds. My yoga instructor’s natural birth theory worked! The labor developed fast and after 5 hours of giving birth, I was holding my little bundle of joy!
So, what made me be so worried and nervous about my second birth?
I think the fact that I experienced the first birth made me nervous. Knowing that my body is going to feel this kind of horrible pain and deal with childbirth again, made me feel uncomfortable. And the fact that I felt less prepared because I didn’t participate in any yoga or other prenatal classes during my second pregnancy, made me feel even worse.
All these circumstances together made me feel less prepared and more worried about the upcoming birth.
What was I worried about during my second pregnancy?
I had so many questions on which I didn’t have any answers…
What should we do with our first son when the labor starts – Will grandma arrive fast enough to babysit my older son if I want my husband to be with me during the birth?
Usually, the second birth is developing faster than the first birth – how fast will it be, and will I get to the hospital on time? On the other hand, I don’t want to come too early to the hospital/ birth canter.
Should I go for a natural birth again or take epidural this time?
Will I have vaginal tearing again?
Will I have hemorrhoids again after delivering?
Will the stretch marks disappear after delivering? I didn’t have stretch marks on my first pregnancy…
What will be the weight of the baby? Will he weigh more than my first son?
What about losing weight after pregnancy? My pregnancy weight is higher this time.
When will I deliver? I’m feeling tired of carrying this huge baby bump, feeling ready to give birth, when will it finally happen? My first baby was born on the 40th week + 6 days.
Will I feel depression and anxiety after the birth?
How will I manage to take care of two babies now that I know that being a mom is hard?
I didn’t have all these worries on my mind during the first pregnancy for 3 reasons:
- I didn’t know what to expect and what is like being a mom.
- I didn’t have kids yet and I was young and naive.
- I haven’t experienced birth yet.
MY SECOND BIRTH STORY
So, what was my second birth like and how I delivered my 9 pounds baby boy in less than 3 hours?
Well, it might sound funny or strange but although it was my second birth, I wasn’t quite sure if the contractions that I had were the real thing and the birth was about to start or were they just the Braxton Hicks contractions.
Today I know that these contractions were the Braxton Hicks.
On delivery day, I woke up at 7 am. It was the 40th week + 4 days of my pregnancy. I had a few contractions during the day and around 10 pm I started to feel strong and more painful contractions. I felt like the pain is coming from my lower back into the low front of my belly.
We called grandma and asked her to come as quickly as possible!
While we were waiting for her to arrive, I followed my contractions – counted the minutes between each contraction and their duration too.
I had a painful contraction every 5-10 minutes, and then I understood that this is it! These were no Braxton Hicks, these were real birth contractions and I’M IN LABOR!!!
10:45 pm she arrived, and we were on our way to the birth center.
15 minutes later, at 11 pm, we arrived!
The contractions were pretty painful at that point. I checked in and the midwife nurse examined my cervix for dilation in order to know at what stage of birth was I. At that point it was 5 cm open already. The next step was to go birth room and monitor my baby’s bit hearts and contractions.
While I was connected to the monitor, the midwife nurse asked me a few questions about my past pregnancies and my health condition which was good since I wasn’t having a high-risk pregnancy or so. She also asked me if I want to get epidural, which was very confusing since I wasn’t quite sure what to do.
During my first birth, I didn’t take epidural, since I was ready to have a natural birth. You can find more information about how to prepare for natural childbirth here.
But this time I was scared! And tired, since I woke up at 7 AM in the morning. All I wanted to do is to go to sleep, take a rest and not dealing with that labor now. There was no one that was leading me through that birth – the midwife was busy with other things and my husband forgot all the preparation we did during my first pregnancy, which was more than 2 years ago!
I felt that I just needed someone to tell me what to do when to breath, massage my back and to help me cope with that labor.
“NO! I don’t want an epidural”, I said to the midwife nurse. As I thought to myself, if I managed to deliver naturally my first son, I can do it again! Or at least give it a try… in the worst-case scenario, I would have an emergency c-section.
For the next 30 minutes, the contractions had become stronger and more painful, and I was working on my breathing (like I practiced during the pregnancy yoga classes), focusing on inhaling and exhaling each time I had a contraction.
Meantime, my dear husband was sending text messages to his friends that we are at the birth center and the baby is coming. But of course, after I shouted at him that is was not the right time, he started massaging my lower back 😊
Then suddenly the midwife nurse came back to my birth room and asked me: “Do you want to move to the special natural birthing room?”
The special natural birthing room is a room where you can give a natural birth while using different equipment and accessories which are especially suited to a woman in natural birth. This special equipment includes a small water pool for a water birth, special birth balls, and chairs, thick rubber mat, wide bed, rebozo, tens machine for labor, laughing gas that can help to relieve the pain and more.
But the greatest benefit of that special natural birthing room is that you get a privet midwife service that specializes in natural births and she is there to help you cope with the birth during the whole process.
This were great news for me! I cared less about the equipment since I had already 7 cm dilation of the cervix, but what I was really interested in, at that point, is the help of that midwife in giving that birth.
So, around 12 am I moved to the natural birthing room, ready to meet my midwife! Jacky was her name, an adorable English woman in her 50s. She was like my guarding angel and I was ready to do anything she will tell me to make this baby out!
From that point, everything went fast!
I remember that I was walking around the room, breathing deeply on every contraction that I had while moving my hips in circles to help the baby go down. After 15 minutes I started to feel tired of standing and walking and I lay down the first time during that birth on the wide birth bed that was in the room.
Jacky the midwife checked my cervix’s dilation, which was 8-9 at that point and manually broke my water. A few minutes later she checked me again and asked me if I was ready to deliver.
I was so tired, but I wanted to get the baby out so badly and not feeling these terrible pains anymore!
I said YES and I was ready to push!!!
I think this pushing step took like 10 minutes, in which I felt the greatest pains I ever had in my life and finally the baby was out!!!
The greatest relief I ever felt was at these moments after that birth!
I couldn’t believe it was over! I couldn’t believe he was finally born.
That moment when you see your newborn baby the first time is unforgettable!
It’s a magical moment that is filling you with love and happiness as a new mom to your new baby.
A few minutes after the baby birth, the placenta is coming out too. The midwife must check that it came out in one piece, in order to avoid a retained placenta, a rare complication that occurs when a portion of the placenta is left inside the uterus, a condition that can lead to infection.
My baby was born, and I was extremely excited!
His weight was 9 pounds and it took me 2:45 hours to give that birth, meaning we both broke a record of the highest baby’s weight and the shortest birth time in our small family!
Click here to read more information about what happens to a newborn in his first 24 hours after birth and when should you take a newborn for the first time out in public.
Enjoy and love your newborn baby!