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???
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.
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
Oh, and congratulations!
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!
DS1-7/18/08, DS2-2/23/10, DS3 1/18/12
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!"
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.
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
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.
~Ayelet & Yoram
NJ, USA to Israel 12/29/08
Rambling on at http://milkandhoneymomma.blogspot.com
facebook and twitterID: ayeletschwell
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).
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.