We’re on baby watch! 39 weeks pregnant this week and I thought I would share with you what’s consumed my thoughts these past few days. I have been thinking a lot about my birth plan.
We all want to have a successful, relatively pleasant birthing experience. I won’t say painless, because I think that just goes with the territory. You may say, well, not if you have an epidural, but I am not so sure I want one.
Look, I don’t know what I am about to experience and I am scared, but my research has found that sometimes, the after effects of an epidural can be worse than that short time of pain of labour.
Epidurals can lengthen your labour, as you are numb, so you’ll not always know when to push, unless directed appropriately by the nurses/ doctor/midwives. Research has also shown that especially first time moms once they have an epidural are more likely to have a C-section. (I really really don’t want to be sliced open).
Just speaking to other new moms, some are still suffering with back pain and discomfort due to epidurals. So, with all that, I am wary about an epidural, however, not knowing whether I could cope with the pain of childbirth – I won’t rule it out completely, but ideally would like to avoid it as far as possible.
Then, with natural birth, there is the thought of the episiotomy. (eek!) An episiotomy is a surgical cut in the muscular area between the vagina and the anus (the area called the perineum) made just before delivery to enlarge your vaginal opening. Not as big a cut as a c-section, but nonetheless not entirely pleasant to think about either. Apparently far better than letting your vagina ‘tear’ on its own (yikes! mommy, I’m scared!). This will require salt baths three times a day for a couple weeks after birth. (If only you could see my face typing this right now – it’s the look of fear!)
Needless to say, I suffered from bad insomnia one night just scaring myself stupid reading about all of the above.
One mom of two I spoke to, who had natural births did not sugar coat things, and said, ‘look, it’ll hurt, but our bodies were made for this, just push through the pain, it’s all worth it in the end and you recover so much quicker with an all natural birth.’
So ladies, that’s the plan, I have spoken to my doctor at length about this and will see him again this week for another check-up, we are going for all natural, but we’ll see how things play out on the day. It is so important to have a doctor on board with your birthing plan, one that’ll not pressure you into anything that you are not comfortable with but will make their lives easier i.e a C-section. My doctor is totally supportive of my birthing plan. All we can do is hope for the best and prepare as much as we can. I continue to exercise, and do my squats, preparing my body and my pelvic floor for labour however long it may be.
I must add, that I am one of four kids. My mom has always said I have always been her most independent child, I could not wait to cut those apron strings, but at this point in my life I could not want my mom more! I look forward to her staying with me for a month to help me in those initial weeks of motherhood. Who better right? She has done this four times, so she is kinda a pro!
I know this experience will change me forever and I guess I need to stay focused on the ‘prize’ – holding my beautiful healthy baby boy in my hands.
Photography: Hemisha Bhana
Happy Healthy Fabulous
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