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So one of the more common questions I've been getting in recent weeks has been "Are you going to have a natural birth?"

When I say that yes, I'm planning to, the response has nearly invariably been "Whew! You're braver than I was!"

This boggles my brain a bit. I am absolutely terrified of the idea of NOT doing it naturally. I do not react well to situations where I am out of control or don't know what's going on. I'm very good at channeling pain if I am in a good mental place; but put me in a hospital, make me feel ignored or pathologized, tell me to put my feet up and not ask questions, and I become a weeping, quivering wimp. Why would I put myself in that kind of situation unless I absolutely had to?

(And, for disclaimer's sake: no, I'm not opposed to drugs or medical intervention should it become truly necessary, and I've quizzed my midwife on her procedures should that happen; but I also firmly believe intervention is not necessary nearly as often as most people think. I also know full well that my conscious self will not be 'in control' of the birth; but I will have the psychological illusion, at least, of being in control of my reaction to the process, and that will make a *very* large difference in my state of mind.)


Apr. 25th, 2006 10:22 pm (UTC)
I went through about 12 hours of drug-free, prolonged labor with my second boy. It was just enough to convince me that a) Yes, I could take the pain, and b) no, I really didn't like it. It was progressing very slowly, and I decided to take an epidural because I was just sick of stressing through pain every minute, and estimates were that I had several more hours to go, anyways. I then proceeded to take THE. BEST. NAP. of my entire life.

(I then ended up with a c-section many hours later, due to fetal distress during the actual birth, which, as shimmeringjemmy claims, could have been affected by the epidural, so take it as you may.)


firesea: self-portrait
Heather Keith Freeman
Fire Sea Studios

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