Friday, January 30, 2015

Thoughts on birth

I over-think things.   Jacob would probably say I "way" over-think things.  I love going on a solo walk and having time to just think.  I feel like I always come back with a better perspective and feel less stressed about whatever the topic is.

Luke's birth has been on my mind since well before I knew it would be Luke I was birthing :)  I love the anticipation of this event! I love that I can't know when it will be or how it will be. But I can certainly try to imagine all those aspects!

The reason I'm overthinking my third labor is because I've had two such drastically different labor experiences.  Jack's labor was incremental over 27 hours.  I gradually moved from cramps to spaced out contractions, to gradually increasing contractions, to intense contractions, to mind blowing contractions, to an out-of-my-mind period, to less than 30 minutes of pushing to BABY.

Naturally, this is what I had in mind throughout my pregnancy with Cora and what, on some level, I expected to experience again. The curve ball with her pregnancy was that I had a lot of contractions throughout my second and third trimester.  Added to this was that the day that my contractions seemed to be picking up was one day shy of 38 weeks.  It was hard for me to imagine that I was already in labor.  It seemed too good to be true; surely not yet!  On the night before her birth, I went to bed around 10:30 with contractions that were about every 9 minutes and not too intense.  I slept off and on.  I was able to sleep so figured I must not really be in labor.  Heartburn woke me up and I waited around to see if I was going to have a contraction.  I did have a strong one, so around 2:30, I thought, okay, this probably will be the day, but we are early yet.  I decided to get up and get ready and by 3:00, things had picked up significantly.  By about 3:15, there was no question things were moving quickly so we started racing around to get ready to leave.  By the time we'd dropped off Jack and gotten to the hospital, it was 4:05.  Once in the hospital room (4:15-4:20?), my water broke as I was being checked and it was discovered I was a full 10 cm dilated.  Cora was born at 4:38.

After hearing third-baby birth stories of several friends/acquaintances, it seems the trend is that things only speed up.  So I'm thinking it's more likely I'll have a repeat experience of my second birth rather than my first.  I know that baby's position will impact all of this, but my pregnancy this time has been similar to Cora's, just more intense: lots of contractions, pressure, a low baby, so I think that also points to a quicker labor.

Since I'll be "over-thinking" everything, I feel like it's unlikely I'll "miss" early labor signs this time.  My biggest worry is if the timing is similar to last time and I miss some of early labor because I'm asleep.  I plan to prepare for this by having bags packed early, not only for myself, but for the kids as well.  My mom is coming just short of 38 weeks, so we'll also make sure we have a back-up night time plan in the week before that as well.

I see labor as a challenge and as a chance to trust my body and a chance to rely on my faith.  I really fell apart in the last few hours of Jack's labor and I wanted to be more trusting the next time around.  I well remember that labor HURTS, but I also remember that there wasn't time to be overwhelmed during Cora's birth.  It was incredibly intense, but I was so focused on getting to the hospital that there wasn't time to dwell too much in the pain or to be scared. I learned a lot through both birth experiences and hopefully I'll be able to remember the most important things this time around!


ba said...

That brings back a whole lot of memories!

Ginger said...

Natural child birth is painful. Having had the 3 boys natural 29+ years ago, I would not have changed a thing. And they were all 8#s and bigger. After you see the miracle God sends you, you forget about all the pain. Best of luck w/ Baby Luke...