Well, here's where I eat my words.
Those of you who love birth stories will probably be disappointed. Those of you who hate them can probably tolerate this blog. I'll leave out details of body parts I'd rather you not think about, and I won't judge you for whatever birth you have.
I don't think there was even a question that I would have an epidural. I hate pain. I am dramatic. I was terrified of childbirth.
Somewhere around six months pregnant, I decided, pretty much overnight, that I wanted an absolutely natural, drug-free birth. I also decided I was probably out of my mind and wondered if I would be able to do it.
Then I thought of several things:
- I am a redhead, and it is statistically proven (no joke) that redheads have at least a 20% higher pain tolerance than other breeds.
- I know a lot of women who've gone natural, and I'm sure I'm at least as strong as they are
- Pain meds never really work on me anyway (I always require more at the dentist and 3 ibuprofen is a joke to me.)
- I hate taking them.
- Active labour isn't actually very long. I've dealt with migraines that lasted three days and made me want to beat my head against a wall. Average first-time labours are twelve hours. I can handle twelve hours of pain. Don't think it's even close to compare a migraine to active labour? Well, then your migraines aren't very bad. (Fightin' words, I know...)
Check back later this week to see how it went, if you like that sort of thing.
*** Comment from reader: "As a doula, I have to chime in - you can give birth legally wherever and however you want. It's not illegal to have a water birth in Louisville. But it is illegal for certain healthcare providers to attend those births, which is one of the great reasons we need more evidence-based maternity care! Can't wait to read the follow up."
Comment from Brigid -- You are totally right, and this makes is what makes it so bad, in my opinion -- that you can't legally have a certified midwife (or even an OB) attend a water birth. So you can have a water birth at home (i know a few who have had an illegal midwife), but that yields all kinds of other ethical questions. I should have been more specific in the blog:)