It’s been six months since August was born and I finally feel like we are catching up with life. The last 6 months have been such an adjustment for our little family but I wouldn’t change any of it. It’s been 6 months since we had the scare of a lifetime with him being born at 35 weeks. We had no idea how little he was going to be, how functional his organs would be, we didn’t know how anything would be until he was born. Out of all those things that I couldn’t control, one thing did go according to plan- his birth. And I am so incredibly thankful that it did! It wasn’t in the ‘plan’ to have him early but I was able to have the natural birth I wanted and it was incredible.
People often ask me why I had a natural birth and why it’s something I’m passionate about. And, what it was like compared to my medicated birth. So here I am, dedicating and entire blog post to this!
7 reasons why I decided to have a natural birth:
1. Birth isn’t as scary as we think it is.
2. Our bodies are made to do amazing things.
3. Women who birth naturally are less likely to need interventions.
4. Natural births are often faster.
5. Women who birth naturally often have a faster and easier recovery.
6. Pain medications can have side effects on the mother and the baby.
7. It gives the mother more control.
When I was pregnant with our first child Chet, I had no idea what to expect of labor and delivery. I knew I wanted the drugs and to avoid pain as much as possible. I thought it was insane to go through childbirth without medication. My whole mindset was… if we have them, WHY NOT use them? To be honest, I was afraid of the unknown and of the pain that came with childbirth. So when Chet was born, I took all the interventions the hospital offered me. I was dilated to a 6 when we arrived to the hospital and if I would have gone natural, things probably would have escalated quickly. However, I asked for an epidural and that slowed things down tremendously. This resulted in the nurses giving me pitocin for the next 6-8 hours. How I felt after the epidural… that was something I had not even thought about. I just assumed you can get it and it’s amazing, and that’s all there is to it. And for some people, that may be their experience, but that wasn’t my experience.
Everything I experienced, I just thought all it was normal. This is just a part of birth- childbirth. It’s hard stuff. Every woman has to endure this. So I thought.
Contractions are not scary, they are what brings our babies one step closer to being in our arms.
When I realized that birth can be a positive and peaceful experience, all my fears went away.
When I went into labor with August, I still had fear- but it was a different kind of fear. I was not afraid of the birthing process. I was afraid that he was coming too early, that he would be sick, I was afraid of a nicu stay. I was not afraid to have my natural birth though!
You can read all about August’s birth story here. His labor and delivery were completely different from Chet’s. I did not receive an epidural or any pain medication. I labored in the bath, walked around freely, my husband applied counter pressure, I used essential oils and homeopathy, I listened to calming music, and I read my birth affirmations. I was free to move around. I wasn’t connected to an IV- in fact- I didn’t have an IV at all and I wasn’t even hooked up to a monitor because they came in to monitor me every 30 minutes. I didn’t need a catheter and I didn’t have any harsh side effects. I felt energized, excited, and empowered. I didn’t feel super uncomfortable and I loved being in control of my body.
Is natural childbirth painful and hard?
Is it worth it?
I won’t pretend contractions aren’t painful. They are. But they don’t last forever and our bodies are made to work through them. During labor and delivery I felt so intone with my body and so empowered. It was such a wonderful, spiritual experience. After the birth I felt so good. I didn’t tear. I could actually walk– what a great thing! I didn’t have any side effects. My recovery was amazing. Sure, you still experience the effects from your uterus shrinking back to size and all that jazz… but I felt amazing for just giving birth. And even my nurses commented on how well I was recovering.