Natural, medication-free labor
second birth story
Once you’ve gone through your own birth story once before and know how labor feels, it’s hard not to be a bit nervous as the second one approaches. (Check out my First Birth Story Post).
When I was pregnant with my first baby, my husband and I decided that we would try to go through the labor without any medications. Although it was not easy, and I asked for the epidural during it, I ended up not getting it. My baby boy naturally without any medication. I remember the day after he was born, a few of my friends asked me if I’d do it naturally again. I was like, “No Way!” But… When I became pregnant again, I started reading about the typical differences between the first and second labors. Everything seemed to be saying that the second labor is often much easier and more predictable than the first. So eventually, I set my mind to doing it naturally again. I was definitely nervous though.
Most of this pregnancy was pretty smooth. Of course, I had a little toddler – I got pregnant with my second baby when my first was 9 months old – so that was a big added challenge. Throughout the second half of my pregnancy, I was consistently concerned with the size of my baby girl. I felt like my baby bump was too small but was constantly reassured that it was within normal. Eventually, when I was about 35 weeks pregnant, I expressed my concern about the baby’s size again. Finally, I was allowed to book a sizing ultrasound. The result came back saying that the baby was expected to be born just over 7 pounds, so I just let this worry go.
My due date was on a Sunday. Starting from the evening before, I was feeling some light contractions that were irregular but persistent. By the time I woke up Sunday morning, I was pretty sure she would come that day. My husband called his parents to watch our son and we went out for a walk at our local mall. The contractions kept coming but were pretty light.
By the afternoon, we had gone to our local Chuck E. Cheese, a children’s arcade, to play some games and get our minds off the contractions for a bit. Still, the contractions were not strong enough for me to trust that I was really in labor. We went home around 6pm and that’s when they started getting a bit more intense. I couldn’t sit through them. I had to be up and walking but could still talk through them. At around 7:30pm, they were about 30 minutes apart so my husband and I went to Walmart to walk around. We weren’t in there long before the contractions started coming every 15 minutes. By 8:30, they were 5 minutes apart. We called the midwife from Walmart and were advised to meet at the hospital.
We arrived at the hospital just past 9pm and although the contractions were regular, they weren’t half as painful as I remember them being during my first labor. It might be because first labors are generally more intense and it could also be that I had back labor for my first one. But I really anticipated that when my water would break, that’s when it would get insane.
The midwife broke my water at like 11pm and, still, I just kept asking her, “when will it get worse than this?” It didn’t really get too much worse but the type of pain changes right when the baby gets low enough to signal the body to start pushing. All of a sudden, the contraction pains shift from being in the lower abdomen to the bum. That pressure is pretty intense but I think I felt maybe two or three contractions like that. I got on my back to push and 10 minutes later, she was born – before midnight, on her due date. Her birth weight was only 5 pounds and 11 ounces and all I could say was, “I told you all she was tiny.” But she thrived, thankfully, and the next day we took her home to meet her older brother and officially join the team.
Check out my first birth story and comment below to let me know how my stories were similar or different from your birth story. What did you learn from each one of your labors that helped you with any others you had?