Let's Talk Epidurals.

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Joined: 04/27/09
Posts: 251
Let's Talk Epidurals.

Hi Ladies! I just got my BFP and am expecting my second monkey in January!

Looking for opinions here. I've always been very pro-epidural, with DD I didn't even give it a second thought. I wasn't about to be a hero - I hate being in pain and I wanted DRUGS. No question.

Unfortunately, it didn't really work out...the anesthetist didn't make it to my room until I was already 10 cm dialated and contractions were every 60 seconds. She gave me the epi anyway, but in hind sight I wish she hadn't. She botched it b/c I kept contracting while she was putting it in, and it didn't do a thing for the pain b/c it was too late. And I had back pain for months, and now 3 years later my toes still randomly go numb.

So I'm thinking that I might try to go au natural for this one. I survived one natural birth...how hard can a second one be, right??? :rolleyes:

My labour with DD was 5 hours....sounds manageable....I think....what if this next one lasts 35 hours?? I think I might become homicidal at that point.

Thoughts??

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

Well, having made it through a 24 hour natural labor myself, I'd say go for it! No, it isn't fun, but the benefits are enormous, and you already know you can do it. I don't think it's likely that your 2nd would be dramatically longer than your first unless there is some issue--generally they tend to go shorter, actually.

And thanks for giving me yet another reason to think that epidurals are WAY SCARIER than childbirth Smile

Oh, and congratulations!

kridda_88's picture
Joined: 01/28/08
Posts: 1798

When you plan for a natural birth it makes the world of a difference in pain and also pain management. I got an Epi with my first and it only half worked. I chose to have my second natural and planed and prepared myself and it was so nice to have techniques to use that calmed me down.

Generally your second birth is faster, or about the same as your first. Not always but generally.

If you are really interested in doing it natural you should make the choice now, make sure that you have an OB or care provider that is on board with you, and get researching some methods. I used Hypnobirthing but there are so many others out there. The most common and popular being Hypnobabies, which is different than hypnobirthing.

Good luck! It's nice to see another January mom over here!

ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707

Yes the pain can be bad but manageable BUT think of the post delievery benefits! The recovery is so much easier! There are also benefits to the baby as well!

shiregirl's picture
Joined: 09/23/10
Posts: 390

I think you should try to plan for a natural childbirth, and do some things ahead of time to give yourself a chance of success. Someone mentioned hynobabies. I don't have any experience with that, but I did a lot of relaxation practice beforehand, and it really, really helped me in labor. I wasn't trying to be a hero, I felt it was medically the best choice for us to try natural childbirth, but I felt amazing and such a HIGH after I pushed her out. So my intention wasn't to be "super mom" or something, but I sure felt that way after it was all over. It was a defining moment in my life, actually. I'm sure that's true for all sorts of women in all sorts of birth experiences, with drugs, or not. But I loved my birth, and am going for it again here shortly. I'd actually be pretty scared to get the epi, and it would take me being a hero to have the courage to go in to have that done! Lol People always say, wow you were brave to have a homebirth, and my reply is always "actually, it was mostly about being scared to go into the hospital if I didn't have to!" Smile

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

I think there is no harm in at least preparing for a natural birth. There is a lot you can do to make it easier--doing preparation that will teach you coping tools, finding a supportive provider, staying mobile during labor, hiring a doula, etc. You will probably find that if you prepare for a natural birth, you'll find it much easier. Maybe think of the epidural as "plan B" in case you do have a 35 hour labor (which is *highly* unlikely, with a 5 hour 1st labor--most who have a fast labor with their first have fast labors always, unless the baby is in an unusual position).

For you, being new to natural birth, I would recommend the book "Your Best Birth" by Ricky Lake and Abby Epstein.

Joined: 10/26/10
Posts: 29

I will say right now that no way would i go with out my epidural... i had it with both my boys and i would have never made it with out it... i have a very low low tolerance for that intense pain... but if i had to do it i could but i would ask for i.v. painkillers to at least take the edge off... which is always an option you just have to ask for them... i will be honest when i had my first before i got my epidural i had 3 i.v. shots of pain meds and then when i started pushing they uped my epidural meds to the max cause it hurt so frekin bad... and then when he came out the figured out why.... his head was 36 cm... and he was stuck in the birth canal for 2+ hours... my doc said because of his huge head is why i was asking for more pain meds... and with my 2nd after they gave me my epidural i fell asleep and when it was time to push one of the nurses had to stand by my head and wake me up and keep me away the 10 seconds she wanted me to push each time... as soon as she said 10 i was back asleep... i hadnt slept in 24+ hours i couldnt get comfy lol.... and i might add that with my first he was 10 days late and they tried to induce me 4 times and on the 4th time they gave me every inducing med made and busted my water and it still took 3.5 hours for contractions to start... and then my 2nd came on his own 10 days early lol... and if i am prego right now (10 DPO) i will have another epidural but thats just me

tanismom's picture
Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 717

I would say, Nicole, that one of the main things that determines pain in any situation is what you're expecting. How is it that some people donate blood "for the fun of it" and others need to be sedated just to have a blood test? Their veins aren't weaker and their pain sensors no less functional. But one person trusts that the experience will not be painful and that the result (i.e. donating blood) is a worthwhile endeavor whereas the other has been conditioned to fear needles and to perceive the tiniest pinprick as painful.

It is very much perception. Think of how you talk to your child when you want to treat a scrape or help them with some other hurt. You appeal to their ability to control their pain sensation. We do not lose that ability as we age.

I am sure that throughout this pregnancy you will find the information that will help you make the best decision for you and your baby. Good luck, momma!

There another important point that hasn't been made yet. The "pain" of labor is not like dental pain or a broken bone as it is often compared to. It is muscle pain. Like charlie horse. If you were training for the marathon and you wanted to finish, how would you work with the pain in those last miles? Would you drink more, stretch, slow down, move differently, massage your legs, apply moist heat packs - or would you get an epidural to numb the pain? I promise you, if you do that latter you will not finish the marathon, unless you have someone to push you in a wheel chair! Uterine contractions are muscle contractions and they are relieved in that same way as any muscle pain.

Just some thoughts to help you on your journey.

mommys's picture
Joined: 05/08/06
Posts: 6264

Welcome, Nicole. Of course, most of us are pretty pro-natural birth so this is a good place to get lots of advice and support for this. I think if you plan for a natural birth, it is a little easier than what you went through. You won't glide through it without pain just by planning ahead, but you will be prepared and won't be trying to deal with a non-usful epi afterwards. Plus, you've experienced some of the negatives of epi's, and those can go on and make it all unworth the pain-free couple of hours (assuming you got it earlier and it worked next time).

mandi04's picture
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

I agree with everyone else in that it's probably better you prepare for a natural birth so you have some 'coping' techniques because labor is labor and there will likely be a time when you don't think you can do it anymore...that's usually transition and I can tell you I've gotten to that point with each of my kids. With my first I got an epidural, but it was either too late to really take effect or it didn't take any effect and like you I ended up with side effects of it, back pain and headaches for me. With how fast my labor was (3 hours after my water broke) I just didn't think it was 'worth it'. My second labor was about half the time and again there was a point I didn't think I could do it. For some perspective, I was checked at 11pm and was 'only' 6cm and within the next 10-15min it got bad and I asked for pain relief....my DD2 was born at 11:27pm, it went FAST. My son was a longer labor but again it was completely manageable until the last 10-20min. So for me, I just don't even feel like it makes any sense to get the epidural because for it to have any effect on the most uncomfortable part of labor I'd have to ask for it while I'm still comfortable which just doesn't make any sense, it comes to less than 30min of being uncomfortable or hours of being stuck in bed.

Joined: 11/29/06
Posts: 1316

I can't say what you should or shouldn't do. But for myself, I can't wait to have a baby without an epidural. I hated the fact that I couldn't walk (even though I slept through the last hour or two of labour before pushing). I still have a numb spot on my leg from the epi. I would have liked to push in a squat and not flat on my back.

For me there is no question I will labour without the epi and use other methods of pain management (#1 being a great birth team! Support is SO SO SO important)

Joined: 04/27/09
Posts: 251

thanks for all the great advice, ladies!! you've all given me some good food for thought.

here's the thing: if i could pre-order my labour in advance and specify that it was absolutely not to last longer than 5 hours, i could totally do a natural birth. i mean, there would hardly be a need for the epi...i'd check in, get the ugly hospital gown on, give a couple of good shoves and that would be all she wrote.

ahhh...wouldn't that be nice???

all kidding aside, i really am leaning towards a natural birth. i think that those of you who suggested preparing in advance for the pain are right - with DD I was not prepared at all for the pain b/c i was so counting on the drugs. but if i know that i won't be getting drugged, then i can go into this thing ready to deal with the pain.

Joined: 10/26/10
Posts: 29

after i had my epi i was up and walking around about an hour after if not sooner... and i have never had any long lasting side effects... and as long as i had some one there beside me and i felt like i could support myself i could be on all 4's or on the ball of in the bath... pretty much whatever i wanted besides squatting and that was because of how big i was.... and the epi really kicked in pretty well when i started hard labor and the upped my dose but they still let me be on all 4's i guess its just the doc you get

Joined: 09/29/09
Posts: 1346

i think i must have had the worlds BEST epidural!

my plan was to try a natural birth, but to be open to an epidural if needed. I had been told be so many people that once you get through transition and are able to push you will get relief from the pain. my labor was tough, i vomited with every single contraction. i have never felt pain like that. i made it through transition and finally got to push, but i was in agony. at that point i lost control mentally. i really thought after transition and being able to push there would be a light at the end of the tunnel. when no relief came i think i panicked. the pain was unbelievable.

i had a 12 hour labor and had an epi for the last hour and im so glad i did. i could walk with my epi, i had no trouble squatting, supporting myself, or moving my legs. i felt every contraction, just not the pain. i couldn't pee, so i did get straight cathed, but i really didn't care. i had three tears and im so glad i was numb and didnt have to feel that, or getting sewn back up. i was out of bed right away. i felt like a million bucks. i guess everyone is different, but my epidural experience was wonderful!

Joined: 03/06/09
Posts: 1054

I think "planning" a natural childbirth is one of the best things anyone can do. Learning pain management techniques can be valuable no matter what your epi plans are. As you well know, they aren't fool proof and don't always provide 100% relief to everyone. I know so many women who go into labor thinking that they will get an epi at 4 cm and never feel anything again. They are completely unprepared when they do indeed feel some of the intensity and have no idea how to cope.
Anyway, it sounds like if you prepared yourself for it, you could have a wonderful NCB experience. Going as long as you feel you can without an epidural is beneficial to you and baby. Like others said, doing some research can definitely help you decide what is best for you.
Good luck making the decision!

emommyof2's picture
Joined: 09/26/10
Posts: 310

I've experienced a wide variety in childbirths as far as just how very different each one was. With my first I had an OP baby, lots of tearing and really hard pushing phase... but even then only lasting 6 1/2 hours, so no epi there... I figured if I can survive that who needs one right? With my second, it was induced so the contraction I got (lol) was really bad, but in under ten minutes even if I had wanted one it soooo wasn't happening. With the third however, it was like night and day to my other births! First she came a month early, my water broke on its own which was a shocker... AND her arm got pinned between head and cervix, thus a need to move her and I was pushed into the epidural out of fear of needing a c-section.

Here is where my personal opinion sets in... I would say (for me) that I would rather do ANYTHING than go through an epidural again. First it took forever and wasn't exactly a pain free procedure in itself. Second, I had a rare side effect where I have a sort of amnesia from the point where it kicked in to the point where it wore off... I have vague (very vague) memories of what happened, I know I had a baby... mostly because she's now four and asking for a snack Blum 3 But I have a very type A personality and the loss of control over my own body, and second to that my memories does NOT sit well with me. That being said, I would never council someone to go against what they want and NOT have an epidural if they've got their heart set on it... but it is VERY possible to get through a birth without one, and in the end (at least in my opinion) the benefits of natural childbirth outweigh a few hours of relief from a pain we're supposed to have.

I've heard women say "You wouldn't get a cavity filled without freezing why have a baby..." Well the truth is... we're supposed to have babies, not cavities Blum 3 The "pain" (which varies from woman to woman) is an important part of the birth process, and when we are left to experience it and handle it in a calm and natural way it works to help move things along. Our bodies naturally give out 'pain relief' in the form of hormones and these both help with the birth and get you through the rough spots. Many things can go wrong in childbirth, but no one has ever died from the pain of it... just saying.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4104

"cayxcee" wrote:

I will say right now that no way would i go with out my epidural... i had it with both my boys and i would have never made it with out it... i have a very low low tolerance for that intense pain... but if i had to do it i could but i would ask for i.v. painkillers to at least take the edge off... which is always an option you just have to ask for them... i will be honest when i had my first before i got my epidural i had 3 i.v. shots of pain meds and then when i started pushing they uped my epidural meds to the max cause it hurt so frekin bad... and then when he came out the figured out why.... his head was 36 cm... and he was stuck in the birth canal for 2+ hours... my doc said because of his huge head is why i was asking for more pain meds... and with my 2nd after they gave me my epidural i fell asleep and when it was time to push one of the nurses had to stand by my head and wake me up and keep me away the 10 seconds she wanted me to push each time... as soon as she said 10 i was back asleep... i hadnt slept in 24+ hours i couldnt get comfy lol.... and i might add that with my first he was 10 days late and they tried to induce me 4 times and on the 4th time they gave me every inducing med made and busted my water and it still took 3.5 hours for contractions to start... and then my 2nd came on his own 10 days early lol... and if i am prego right now (10 DPO) i will have another epidural but thats just me

Why are you here? :confused: Did you not see that this is the Birthing Naturally board? We don't really care how great you think epidurals are. The women here are trying to avoid them.

And I'm sorry your doctor was so impressed with a 36cm head size, but that's less than 50%ile for boys. Perhaps if you hadn't had your wonderful epidural, that very average head wouldn't have been so much trouble for you to push out?

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4104

"SlackerMom" wrote:

thanks for all the great advice, ladies!! you've all given me some good food for thought.

here's the thing: if i could pre-order my labour in advance and specify that it was absolutely not to last longer than 5 hours, i could totally do a natural birth. i mean, there would hardly be a need for the epi...i'd check in, get the ugly hospital gown on, give a couple of good shoves and that would be all she wrote.

ahhh...wouldn't that be nice???

all kidding aside, i really am leaning towards a natural birth. i think that those of you who suggested preparing in advance for the pain are right - with DD I was not prepared at all for the pain b/c i was so counting on the drugs. but if i know that i won't be getting drugged, then i can go into this thing ready to deal with the pain.

Actually, many moms find the shorter labors to be the hardest, a longer labor might be less intense because the same amount of work is spread out a bit more, kwim?

You might want to try something like Hypnobabies and/or getting a pool to labor in water. There really doesn't have to be "pain" as part of birth. My labor with Weston was three days, and most women cringe at the thought of "enduring" something like that, but it was completely manageable until I had to transfer to the hospital for Pitocin. I got an epidural because I was exhausted, it had been very long, very hard work, and I was very uncomfortable at times, but I wasn't in any pain before then. Transition had been very intense, but it was almost more emotional than physical, in terms of sensations, because physically I was so relaxed and letting my body do what it needed. Granted, I didn't actually get to push my baby out (stubborn cervical lip plus a 10'10" baby) so perhaps my perception would be different if I did. Wink But I found pushing for the hours that I did before going to the hospital, finally being able to do something to help the process, to be very satisfying. Again, hard work, certainly not comfortable, but not pain. A lot of it is being prepared emotionally, being supported by a loving group of people, being in a safe place emotionally, and having a good mix of "coping method" tools. Good luck to you!

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

I was also thinking that if you're thinking of a long labor with the same intensity that you experienced with your 5 hour labor, that doesn't really happen. In a short labor, your body is doing the same amout of work in a shorter time, so it is more intense--stronger contractions with less space between them. A long labor will usually start with weaker contractions far apart and gradually build up. With more time between contractions, you have more time to relax, and with the gradual build up in intensity, your body has more time to release higher levels of endorphins. Plus, as you said, you weren't prepared last time, so your ability to cope, no matter the length of labor, may be much different if you are more prepared.

P.S. I love Hypnobabies, and I would guess that it might be a good method for you to look into.

DitherDither's picture
Joined: 04/16/09
Posts: 152

If you read my intro thread, you'll know I wouldn't be able to recommend a short labor....after my first pitocin-induced birth, the contractions from my second short labor weren't really too bad, but it all hit too quick. Contractions started off at 4 minutes apart, then quickly moved to two minutes, and never let up.

You've got some great advice here -- especially about being prepared and about rethinking the 'pain' of labor. I highly recommend Ina May's Guide to Childbirth. Her techniques for working with your labor, not against it, really, really helped me. During DD's labor, I was on the birthing ball, visualizing a flower opening up, and blowing raspberry / horse lips like a crazy woman! Also, what has always helped me is going into it knowing you WILL have the birth you want and that you CAN do it. I know this isn't great advice for everyone, as some people prefer to think in terms of leaving options open, but for me, telling myself that I CAN, not I might, makes a big difference mentally.

tink9702's picture
Joined: 09/28/08
Posts: 2977

"DitherDither" wrote:

I know this isn't great advice for everyone, as some people prefer to think in terms of leaving options open, but for me, telling myself that I CAN, not I might, makes a big difference mentally.

I agree with this statement for me personally. Telling myself that I was going to have a natural birth allowed me to relax and actually have a natural birth experience with both my kids. I was aware that may not happen, but I just focused on having the experience I wanted. I didn't ignore that something may happen to change my plan, but I didn't do lots of "what if" scenarios, just a general if it's not working we'll reassess type of idea. This helped me to stay focused on my goal of a NCB. Like PP said though, this only works for certain women....

I also recommend doing lots of reading and am a big fan of Hypnobabies. I used Hypnobabies with both of my children. A friend of mine did Bradley Method with baby #1 and Hypnobabies with baby #2. From her perspective, she recommends Bradley Method if your partner (DH, SO, mother etc.) is extreemely calm and levelheaded. Her DH freaked out a bit and she was left trying to hold it together. With her 2nd, she had prepared with Hypnobabies and really was able to focus herself internally.

Good luck making your decision. I'm sure you will choose the right one for yourself! Smile

Joined: 04/27/09
Posts: 251

"Spacers" wrote:

Why are you here? :confused: Did you not see that this is the Birthing Naturally board? We don't really care how great you think epidurals are. The women here are trying to avoid them.

Actually, the topic for this thread is "Let's Talk Epidurals", and invited opinions from those of us who have gone with and without them.

I can't speak for everyone else on this board, but I for one, DO in fact care about other women's experiences with both epidurals and without, including those who have had positive experiences with them.

Cayxcee, thank you for your input - I appreciate hearing what you have to say, even if others don't.

TyrantOfTheWeek's picture
Joined: 12/26/05
Posts: 1147

There is no 'try' when it comes to a natural birth. When you plan to run a marathon, you don't say 'I will try to just run as far as I can and see what happens' right? You have to mentally prepare and research and what not. Same with a natural birth. It is physical but it is also very psychological and spiritual.

Here is a great entry on this very subject:
http://www.birthresourcenetwork.org/blog/94-why-you-shouldnt-try-to-have-an-unmedicated-birth

Of course, like anything in life, you should have a plan b kinda shoved in the back of your mind. Like in case of a medically legit induction, or c/s.

Joined: 09/29/09
Posts: 1346

"SlackerMom" wrote:

Cayxcee, thank you for your input - I appreciate hearing what you have to say, even if others don't.

i agree! its great to hear other women's stories. you really need to know what the choices are, and the best way is to learn from other people's experiences. Its like on the breastfeeding board, i think we all learn and grow from the women who share their stories about not being able to breastfeed. i don't think this is any different.

Cayxcee, thanks for sharing your story! i'm sure it will help other people in their decision making process.

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

FTR, I had a good epidural experience with my first birth. With the exhaustion I had and being on pitocin, I really think I couldn't have had a good birth without it. I didn't like that it felt like machines had taken over my birth or that I really had no choice but to push in the bed, but it was necessary in the situation. I have also had a really good all-natural hospital birth experience, so I do see both sides. I prefered the natural birth, but not everyone is me. I also think it is wise that even if you think you will get an epidural, to go in with tools for coping with labor that you can do on your own, instead of having to rely completely on medication that someone else has to give you.

Starflyr's picture
Joined: 10/20/07
Posts: 428

ITA with the above poster.

I was prepared for NCB with my son - had a lodge and everything, but let myself be scared into induction at 40 weeks due to GDM.

I did the cervidil and pit without pain meds for 19 hours before I caved and got the epi (yeah, I was induced with an unfavorable cervix and made it all the way to 3 after 19 hours).

the first one... worked great for about 30 minutes then kinked.

The 2nd one... left loads of hot spots and was better on the left than the right.

The 3rd one.... same as the second one with the sides switched.

By the time the c/s came around, the anesthesiologist just left the medcart in my room b/c he'd been in so many times and it STILL wasnt working.

He then upped my epidural to a spinal, which did a better job...

but I STILL FELT my c-section. All the incisions, the stitches, etc. It seriously sucked it bigtime. It didnt HURT very much, but I sure wasnt NUMB.

I guess if the first one hadnt kinked, I might have a better attitude towards them, but even *if* you cave and get one, there's NO guarantee that it will WORK. ANd you'd BETTER have those coping mechanisms in place b/c if you dont, you'll end up tensing up, stalling your labor and having a c-section, more than likely. Then if you get pregnant again, you face the same issue PLUS the challenges of a VBAC.

elizamommy's picture
Joined: 04/07/10
Posts: 84

Epis don't work in 10-15% of women. I was one. It did not take on my right side. I felt everything and it was excrutiating and it took longer than it should have because I still could not move much. Plus, the epi made me all tingly and that was a horrible feeling. I am pretty sure I tore more and I am positive I broke my tailbone because of the epi. It also made nursing harder and recovery longer and I had major backpain for weeks. It sucked!

So, with #2, I went 100% natural, out of the hospital, with a midwife. Baby came hard and fast and everything went much, much better! Natural childbirth is the best!! Yahoo

Hey, OP, I think your baby is due in 2012? Not 2011. Wink

Mom2ThreeKiddos's picture
Joined: 09/15/09
Posts: 1380

"DitherDither" wrote:

If you read my intro thread, you'll know I wouldn't be able to recommend a short labor....after my first pitocin-induced birth, the contractions from my second short labor weren't really too bad, but it all hit too quick. Contractions started off at 4 minutes apart, then quickly moved to two minutes, and never let up.

You've got some great advice here -- especially about being prepared and about rethinking the 'pain' of labor. I highly recommend Ina May's Guide to Childbirth. Her techniques for working with your labor, not against it, really, really helped me. During DD's labor, I was on the birthing ball, visualizing a flower opening up, and blowing raspberry / horse lips like a crazy woman! Also, what has always helped me is going into it knowing you WILL have the birth you want and that you CAN do it. I know this isn't great advice for everyone, as some people prefer to think in terms of leaving options open, but for me, telling myself that I CAN, not I might, makes a big difference mentally.

I totally 100% agree with this. IMO you shouldn't "try" for a natural birth you should embrace it 100% and know it will happen. Your mind is an amazing thing and you will lead your body where you want it to go. Good luck!

Oh and I 2nd Hypnobabies Wink

Winky_the_HouseElf's picture
Joined: 02/10/02
Posts: 292

I had an epidural with my first. It worked very well and I felt nothing from 4cm until a couple hours after the birth. However, I chose not to get epidurals with my last four. I used hypnosis instead (I love Hypnobabies). I felt more in control with my hypnosis births and was more comfortable with all but one of them (3 hours long with complications). I would consider having an epidural again in certain situations, but for normal birth I prefer to use Hypnobabies, water, movement, vocalizing, massage, etc.

Preparation and education demystify the scary unknown of natural childbirth. That helps a lot. Smile

Chimmy's picture
Joined: 08/03/01
Posts: 2776

"Winky_the_HouseElf" wrote:

I had an epidural with my first. It worked very well and I felt nothing from 4cm until a couple hours after the birth. However, I chose not to get epidurals with my last four. I used hypnosis instead (I love Hypnobabies). I felt more in control with my hypnosis births and was more comfortable with all but one of them (3 hours long with complications). I would consider having an epidural again in certain situations, but for normal birth I prefer to use Hypnobabies, water, movement, vocalizing, massage, etc.

Preparation and education demystify the scary unknown of natural childbirth. That helps a lot. Smile

Yep. This.

I've had two epidurals, the first was a horrible pointless experience (they poked me over 6 times all over my spine, awful awful) I then delivered 30 minutes later. The 2nd experience went perfectly, it was an easy quick birth that left me with two happy, healthy baby boys. I am now preparing for my 2nd homebirth & 4th natural (Hypnobabies) birth & like Laura for a normal birth I prefer to use my own home, Hypnobabies, water & movement - my births are very comfortable & enjoyable when I do this.

mujul79's picture
Joined: 01/22/05
Posts: 1843

Ok heres my 2 cents.

For my first I had gone to midwifery school I was a DOULA and I had been to so many other births and had a DOULA at mine that I fiugred I could go natural and I was not going to even expect anything else.

Well my mom died 16 days before I went into labor. I did not go into labor because my body was ready I went into labor because my water broke at 39 weeks from an infection at Midnight Monday night. And because I was so excited that it was "time" I stayed up all night and thought about every movment. It endded up that 18 hours passed and I was only at 4cm. Then sometime around midnight the next night I was begging for IV pain meds I was just so tired and wanted to sleep. BAD thing for me. I then could not stay on top of the pain it was like I would sleep and at the peak of a contraction wake up scream and go back to sleep (or that's what my family said) what I recall is ONR LONG never endding contraction. And it stayed that way until I got to 10cm. I was just so tired at that point to push, I pushed for 3 hours and we tried the vacuum and he endded up being my c-section baby (he was a forhead presantation). Well I had to get an epi for that and when the dr put it in he went to far and hit my spin and I got an electrical shock that went to my toes and I jummped and begged him to take it out and I had no pain relife at all any place out. AS soon as he took it out my feeling in that leg came back with I got another shock feeling. The redid it and everything seemed "normal" well as normal as not feeling anything from your nipples down and being at 35 hours of what was planing to be a natural labor and now having a c-cection can be. But the worst part was after the birth. I had no feeling for 5 hours after and then a spinal headache for months (and I still get them at times) from the bad epi.

2nd birth I was planing a VBAC and was so afrade to have another long labor. She was breech and I even looked into a breech delivery. She came at 41 weeks faceing the right way in 3 hours!! OMG that was way to fast it was so painful and my body was in shock I had a baby in my arms before my brain figured out what was going on. We arived at the hospital at 10cm and me yelling at people that she was crowing and not one nurse belived me until they checked me. She was born less then 30 min after i got a room, oh and your mind is so powerful, at the 20 min pushing mark she I kept having flash backs to Peter's 3 hours of pushing and then this OB walked in and not my midwife to deliver and I said to myself "now you have to do this". She had told me when I saw her only a few weeks before in the office that she dose not support VBAC's and hates being and OB for one when the women has not had an epi so she can't just tell them to do a c-section!!!

My 3rd I was not sure what to expect but he was almost the same as my 2nd, 4 hours start to finish VBAC with 15 min of piushing. And with an aswesome midwife that never put me on the bed, she let me keep the room lights off (we had sunshine) and after his head was out she said "OK I'm done, grab your baby" and put my hands under his airmpits and I was the one to pull him to my chest

Have had all that I pray for something inbetween I think 6-10 hours would be the perfect lenght, not so long that your to tired to push but not so short that your in shock. Also Bill is in the army 3 hours away and I want him to have time to make it to the delivery. But I am planing on pain free and he is not sure what to do with that as all his babies (he has 5 with his x, where inductions and epi vaginal births) they just showed up on the said date and got the meds. They won't induce me because I am a VBAC. LOL he keeps trying to "pin point" when I'll go and just take vacation at that time. Good luck I keep telling him and LOL.

elizamommy's picture
Joined: 04/07/10
Posts: 84

"SlackerMom" wrote:

Hi Ladies! I just got my BFP and am expecting my second monkey in January!

Looking for opinions here. I've always been very pro-epidural, with DD I didn't even give it a second thought. I wasn't about to be a hero - I hate being in pain and I wanted DRUGS. No question.

Unfortunately, it didn't really work out...the anesthetist didn't make it to my room until I was already 10 cm dialated and contractions were every 60 seconds. She gave me the epi anyway, but in hind sight I wish she hadn't. She botched it b/c I kept contracting while she was putting it in, and it didn't do a thing for the pain b/c it was too late. And I had back pain for months, and now 3 years later my toes still randomly go numb.

So I'm thinking that I might try to go au natural for this one. I survived one natural birth...how hard can a second one be, right??? :rolleyes:

My labour with DD was 5 hours....sounds manageable....I think....what if this next one lasts 35 hours?? I think I might become homicidal at that point.

Thoughts??

I have not read all the responses but here is mine.

I had an epi and was induced for baby #1. The epi did not fully work. That is the case for 10-15% of women. It wears off in areas, is patchy, or just wears off fully. THAT SUCKS! There is really nothing worse than being partially paralyzed on one side so you cannot get up and move around but you can feel your tailbone breaking on your other side. Really, I cannot say it enough. IT SUCKS! And I had all the side effects you can name. Back pain, headaches, poor nursing, did not bond quickly with dd. Awful.

So, for baby #2, I wanted to be as far away from a hospital as possible because I knew I might cave and demand pain relief. I wanted to try it without. I had the world's best midwife, her office was in a home with a bedroom she decorated just for homebirthing away from home. I read everything about how pitocin and epidurals slow down labor and make it harder, blah, blah, blah. [I am sure you have read all this, too]

So, #2 came along and from the time I woke up having contractions, she was born 5 hours later. I pushed for about 15 mins. I was super motivated by that pain to GET THE BABY OUT! LOL! Pain is a great motivator!

So, there. You can do it!

mommys's picture
Joined: 05/08/06
Posts: 6264

Nicole,

You seem to be worried a lot about your second labor being longer, but that just is not the normal case. Once labor has really started, 2nd and later labors tend to be the same or shorter. I'd honestly plan for that since chances are you will have another quick, intense labor.

In my case, I had a 9-hr labor with #1. That was literally from first contraction to time of birth. Active labor was really less than 5 hours though (2cm to birth). My midwives expect shorter this time and I've already been advised to not really labor at home. (In my case, #1 was OP, so #2 should definately be shorter if this one is facing correctly.)

I would think you would be in the same position and should expect another quick birth. I'd tell you to plan for that Wink

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
Posts: 5454

If you had a fairly easy time with baby #1 I say just for for it! Typically subsequent babies come quicker than first babies, because your body has already been there, done that. Labor generally only lasts 5-7 hours (but remember, EVERY labor and delivery is different). Honestly though, you can't really make the true decision until you're actually in labor (IMHO). I'm so sorry that you went through hell with your last epi. I had natural childbirth with my first, and it was such hell that I swore I would never go through that again, so I got an epi with #2 and #3, and luckily mine worked just as they should, and I was able to enjoy laboring and delivering without the screaming and crazyness. Good luck with whatever you decide!