Please feel free to leave a comment or post your natural birth story!
I had two very different birth experiences. I wanted a natural birth with both. However, I was induced with my first. The story (epidural, episiotomy, vacuum extraction) is not unusual for many women. And I was okay with it, too, until I had my second son naturally. Still in a hospital, still with a doctor, but the whole experience was different. Actually less pain than the first time, much less fear, and more powerful pushing than I ever could have mustered with an epidural.
That was six months ago. My son was born with Down Syndrome and a hole in his heart that required open-heart surgery when he was four months old. My sister-in-law (who had en epi with her first and a section with her second…NOT an all-natural proponent) said recently, “Pitocin and the hard labor contractions of induction were so hard on Caleb’s heart; what would have happened if you’d done it the same way with James?” That question sent chills down my spine. I probably would have lost my sweet baby boy at birth, and never known why.
In case you’re really interested in the comparison between the two births, you can read the accounts on my blog. Feel free to contact me there with any questions or clarification.
I had decided that I wanted to do all I could to try for a natural birth. My mother in law had all her 8 children but one with an epidural and swore by them and my own mother had all 4 of her children naturally (I was born in a midwife center and was her easiest birth). So… I had two very differing opinions. So I got to work. I studied books about pain medications and the effects they have on mother and baby and decided that if I would need it I would do an epidural. Then I trained to go naturally. I did the Bradley Method (with a bit of music therapy). I wanted to take a Bradley class but there were none offered in my area so I read a book and practiced the techniques daily. When I went into labor my hubby and I knew just what to do. (In the Bradley Method the husband is the coach although you can use anyone as long as they help you practice.) I went to two baby showers that day. Baby was born that evening, healthy and alert. I felt like labor was quick and I felt so proud of myself. I felt a burst of pride and confidence that was amazing. I had done it!
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