Thursday, November 30, 2006

Labor and Delivery

After spending nine months anxiously anticipating the arrival of your little one when it comes down to that "It's time!" moment all those little fears just seem to leave you and all you can feel is the excitement of knowing that before long you'll have your baby in your arms. You feel even more excited when it has been nine and a half months instead of nine months. I spent the first hour of my contractions being in denial about weather it was actually real labor and not false labor because I was afraid to become too excited and then be sent away by the hospital.

I spent three hours at home postponing the trip to the hospital because I did not want to get sent home. My husband was a nervous wreck, as the contractions became stronger he seemed quite sure that we needed to take off to the hospital because for sure I was not going to make it in time. No matter how hard I tried to explain to him that labor takes many hours especially for a first time pregnancy he was convinced I was going to give birth right there in our house.

As I am sure you could have guessed we did make it to the hospital with plenty of time to spare. Actually we had a whole ten hours to spare. When we got there and I was admitted they sent me to go walking around for an hour. That is supposed to get your contractions coming stronger and faster. It kept me distracted for a little bit and by the time I was done I was starting to feel just a little on the awful side so when the nurse came in and asked me if I was ready for my epidural I told her to go ahead and get it ready. I have to say something about epidurals, I do not care what anyone says epidurals are the greatest thing that were ever created.

I actually was really scared to have the epidural done because I have a great fear of needles and the thought of a really long needle being stuck in my spine was more scary to me than the actual delivery part of the whole thing. Everyone says you can not feel it and this that and the other. I felt absolutely sure that they all had to be full of it but I am here to tell you this, you cannot feel a thing. It was over before I even thought they had done anything. After that everything just flew by, possibly because I went to sleep for a few hours. There is just something wonderful about being able to sleep through part of the giving birth process. Plus that helps give you the energy that you are going to need to push the baby out. This is not so easy to do even when you have had an epidural much less if you have been enduring awful pain for hours and hours. I have great respect for a woman that chooses to do it but at the same time I think that they are just a little on the crazy side.

While I was sleeping that gave me some pitossin to speed up my contractions. After I woke up everything just went like clock work. Before I knew it, it was time to push. It took me about an hour to finally get my son out. I felt no pain what so ever pushing him out and I can remember the whole thing with such clarity that I feel like I really did make the right choice.

My whole pregnancy everyone kept telling how small I was to be pregnant but let me tell you this. I had to have and episiotomy because his head was so big that it wouldn't come out on its own. My son weighed eight pounds and eleven ounces and he was 21 inches long. The size you are when you're pregnant does not necessarily reflect the size that your baby will be because everyone was sure that I would have a small baby, including me.

There is nothing like the moment when you first hear your baby cries out and you get to hold him in your arms. There is nothing more beautiful. You look down at him and you just know that without a doubt that the job of being a mother will most definitely being the greatest thing that you do in your life.

By Crystal Bowden

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