Today I read a friend’s birth story and her thoughts on the whole process of giving birth (which she did only a week or so ago). As I read about her pondering why women would ever have a second baby, and why she would like to get an epidural next time, I laughed to myself because I wondered those same things 10 months ago.
Most of you probably heard the story about how when Hannah was born Josh asked, “When can we have another one?!?!” and I wondered, “Why would I want to go through all that again?!?!” Labor is intense, and it’s hard, but the great thing about it is, once it’s over, it’s over (well, it’s over if you didn’t have a c-section or a bad reaction to your anesthesia anyway, but even those things will only prolong recovery for a while) and you get a precious little one to enjoy for the rest of your life! After a few days, I remembered why I had wanted more children, and started joyfully anticipating our next blessing.
It did take me a while longer to finish processing how the birth went and to remember why I am so strongly in favor of natural childbirth. I’m not sure I’m really done analyzing it even now, but I’m hoping that the analysis will make for a more satisfying labor this time around. Labors are different, and intensely personal. Please know that I don’t want this post to become a rancorous catfight about natural childbirth vs. epidurals vs. elective c-sections. Seriously, I’m glad if you have personal convictions about those things, but so do I and I can assure you that you won’t change my mind, and I won’t try to change yours. 🙂
Anyway, as I started remembering all of the medical and personal reasons why I wanted a natural childbirth the first time around (and there are legitimate and real reasons I feel that way, I didn’t just do it for the heck of it), and as we considered some of the things going on in our prenatal care this time, yesterday we decided to switch care for this pregnancy to the Birth Center associated with Methodist Hospital. I’m impressed with the way the Birth Center is set up to support natural childbirth, and with how open the staff is to letting mothers make their own calls about things during labor. In other words, no one is going to make me push lying down this time. That was a huge sticking point with me last time, and I vowed I would never do it again. And I won’t. But it’s nice that I won’t have to fight with anyone about it at the Birth Center.
Today as I played with Miss Patootie I marveled at what a fun and hilarious little person she is, and how blessed we are to have her. It’s kind of amazing that all I had to do to get this remarkable gal was carry her around for a while and then be in labor for a few hours. Really, in the grand scheme of things, how could I NOT want to do that again?