My husband and I got married in 2015, we talked about having children in the future, we just wanted to wait a little bit. And we did. In 2016 we have been blessed without a first baby that went to Heaven too soon and unexpected. There is an article where I talk about that.
In February 2017 I got pregnant with our son. It was scary, I was frightened, I had all the reasons to be. But I was also beyond excited, I kept imagining how I will bring my baby to this world. Therefore, I always knew that I want to have a natural birth, I read a lot about it, I just wanted to do it the natural way. I also accept that sometimes it is not possible due to the baby’s position in the utero, or some complications that the mom or the baby might have.
I remember that when the time was getting closer I kept asking the doctor if “I can have a natural birth“. And I always heard “natural or vaginal? Because it is a difference“. Then he explained to me that an unmedicated (non-epidural) birth it’s a natural birth, if there’s epidural then it’s called a vaginal birth. I read about the side effects of the epidural and I really wanted to not have one, even though I had no idea what the pain will be like.
I need to mention that my son was considered a high-risk pregnancy. First, because pregnancy after a miscarriage it’s already being considered high risk in the beginning. Then, as the time flew by, they said he’s measuring behind, so all along I had a feeling that he might come early.
This whole time I kept educating myself and read on and on about pregnancy, birth, about life with a newborn, things to do and not to do as a first-time parent, but more about birth. I knew in my heart and in my mind that my body is designed for this, that I can have a vaginal/natural birth, but mostly, I had a strong faith in God that HE made me strong enough to do it.
At around 30 weeks they kept telling me that he might not be a full term baby, so seeing doctors every week was really not fun. But at least I got a ton of pictures of him and I got to see him a lot.
Fast forward at 35 weeks, one Tuesday morning, at 10 am, we had another checkup. My husband Kyle came with me as he did at ALL my appointments. They did an ultrasound, then the doctor walked in and said: “I think this little guy might come soon.” So we scheduled an induction for….that day. September 26th, 2017. I did not want an induction, I wasn’t happy about it, but I knew it was the best for him. I had my hospital bag ready for weeks, but the thought that we will hold our baby soon, was a shock to both of us, a dream coming true, a fear, my heart was on the floor and I had tears that ended up being in my throat, because my eyes were already full. My baby, my sweet love, how much I wanted to see you, and hold you, love you and smell your soft skin.
I want to mention that this is going to be very raw, very real and honest. That’s how it was for me and I think every mommy that wants to know WHAT TO EXPECT should know the reality.
We went home, but not before we stopped and got some Thai food. Of course! Hahahahaha!
I remember I got home and went to my bedroom and called my sweet mama, told her that my baby will be born soon. I started crying for real! So emotional! Had no idea what was going to expect me.
Got my husband’s hospital bag ready, I made him sandwiches, snacks, got everything ready for ALL OF US!!!
We went to the hospital with 183 bags, my husband asked me if I’m moving in or planning a trip after I give birth. LOL, 😀 I just had a plan in my head, and that were that I wanted to look IMPECCABLE the day I welcome to the world my first born son! Speaking of that, when we left the hospital I told my husband that we need to stop at ULTA and get myself a waterproof mascara, because, duh, I knew myself. If you don’t live in America and you don’t know, ULTA it’s like Sephora.
As soon as we got to the hospital, I changed into my hospital gown, looked at my hospital room and really felt like I wanna move in, I didn’t have a jetted tub at home but my bathroom had that. I mean, really?
Immediately my nurse took care of my veins and made sure I will be very well hydrated, cause all I could have was ice chips and a little bit of water. It was at 8 pm. The doctor came in and they tried to induce me with a Foley bulb. That’s a procedure where they insert a catheter into your cervix, one side of the catheter is deflated, and once inserted into your womb, the doctor inflates the balloon with a saline solution. This puts pressure on your cervix and starts dilation. I was in excruciating pain and I cried so much, then they stopped and decided to induce me in a different way with medication. I won’t mention the name for obvious reasons.
This way it worked. Right away! Around 9:30 pm I was already biting the pillow, I kept telling my husband that I have a pain in my…butt! I couldn’t sit in any position, I was literally dying. The nurse came in and she said: “try to rest“. Really? How? I fell pressure all over my body and I was simply shaking. My husband was my hero! 100% I would not have made this without him! Or maybe I would have. But he was amazing! I was feeling so thirsty and nauseas! I kept telling him “I can’t do this, I can’t, it’s so so painful.” Then a few minutes later I knew I have to throw up and he immediately gave me a trash can, he didn’t have time to get a special bag for that.
My contractions were so close and so strong that I didn’t even have time to breathe in between. The doctor came in and I asked him to check me. He said he doesn’t even think my cervix has opened. Well, he checked me and he said “oh, you’re already at ONE centimeter dilated.“
He also suggested trying to sleep because “it’s going to be a long night“.
Now, in my head was “how in the world I will live with this pain an entire night or God knows how long when I am, barely at ONE cm?”. He left; I started to crawl on the cold floor like a miserable, abandoned and hurt dog! I was crawling and crying! Then we tried the birthing ball, my husband was massaging my back, trying to relax me, but what can relax you when you’re in a pain that literally takes your breath away? I’ll tell you what. The BREATHING!!! That’s what helps! Did I tell you about my hero of a husband? We never took breathing classes, but he was there for me breathing with me as if he was about to push that baby out! He was amazing! Ok, I’ll stop talking about him, or else you will think that he had the baby!
I told the nurse that I want to get in the bathtub and try to ease the pain. You know, that jetted tub, that I don’t have in my house, but the hospital has it. Also, that night it seemed like everything that I needed, took forever to get it. The water was so cold and after probably 15 minutes of waiting it was only lukewarm water. I didn’t care at that point.
All I wanted was to find something, anything, that was going to help me. I was screaming and crying, I kept telling my husband “he’s coming out of me“. Then, I started accepting the pain and live with it. I was keeping my eyes closed, couldn’t look at anything, at nobody, I just had to embrace the pain and make it a part of me. a part of my being. I kept breathing, then my husband said “do you want some classical music?“, which is something that I enjoy listening, all the time, we both do, even my son was listening to it since he was in my womb.
I remember that nothing was ok, I didn’t like any music, I hated all of it. Again, I said “he is coming out”, and with every contraction, I felt like my whole body was shaking, literally shaking, so so so much. Again, going back to the accepting part, accepting what I’m going through, realizing the blessing all over my spirit, the blessing that I have to be able to do this, the blessing of being able to be a mother, the blessing and even the joy of being able to birth my child the way I have always dreamt!
NATURAL! Speaking of natural, I told my husband at some point with a couple of months before the labor, that if I ever want the epidural and he’s there, to stop me from getting it! I had my reasons! But I knew, I simply knew that the pain that the woman goes through childbirth is unbearable, but I knew that the human instinct is to ask for help, and I knew that with support and love I will make it through!
Well, at some point I said “I can’t do this anymore. I am dying, I need the epidural.” And my husband did what I asked him to do. He gave me love, support, he kissed me a lot, he said: “you can do this, I am right here, you are so strong, so beautiful, Adee, you are amazing, I am not going anywhere.” …BUT, YOU ARE NOT GETTING THE EPIDURAL! 🙂
I am telling you, mama’s and future mama’s, support, of any kind, it is a true blessing. If you can also keep your spirit strong and still be connected to your Creator, to pray and ask for help and guidance, that is even better.
Speaking of prayer, I was in the bathtub, trying to understand anything and hoping to hold my son soon, and I was praying, then I yelled at my husband “why are you not praying with me?“. He said, “I am“.
Then a little later, I had a contraction that made me feel like I am having triplets. I screamed so bad and my husband was trying to caress me, but I ended up biting his hand so bad, that the next time I opened my mouth, he put a towel in my mouth. Poor man. Poor me. 🙁
Soon enough, I opened my eyes, I looked at him, and I said: “He’s coming… he is really coming“. Now, I never birthed a baby before. But my instinct told me that it’s time. I knew that my precious baby is coming. Kyle yelled at the nurse a few times and she walked in desperate. I said, “he’s coming out of me“. She looked at me and she said: “Oh honey, it’s just the feeling“. I SCREAMED!!!!
I wanted her so much to believe me, I wanted her so much to not leave the room and leave me again in pain and mostly, as much as I wanted to keep him more inside me because I knew I will miss him inside my womb, I WAS so ready to hold my baby, to stop that pain!!!
Then desperately she said “let me check you” and she put her glove on and checked me. Suddenly, she was all white and said: “his head is out“.
I KNEW IT!!!!!!
I remember vaguely how I got out of the bathroom but I remember my husband holding my hand and having the doctor and the nurses around me. I knew that “this is it, he’s almost here“. I was in awe, I was in shock, so happy, so ready to experience the best thing in my life, and that was to birth, my beautiful baby!!! Remember, birth with no fear, feel the contraction, feel the pushing, feel the pain, because you’re bringing to the world a sweet soul, a baby with the sweetest breath, the joy of your whole existence!!!
I was ready to do whatever I had to do, I was ready to listen to my doctor and push!!! But, hey, my water never broke, so what do we do now? Well, let’s push that baby out and welcome him to the world just the way it is! And I pushed, I cried so much, I screamed even more, with every push and every screaming that was coming out of me, the pain was decreasing so much that it got to the point when I loved the pain! INCREDIBLE!!
YES, the contractions are the ones that hurt so bad, the end of the pushing to me was like an oasis, and then again feel the pain, accept it and release it out of your body! Monroe was in his sac, mostly out, and they poked the amniotic sac so he can come to his mommy’s chest! And he did, he cried like a little warrior, he came straight to my chest… On September 27th at 2:47 am I heard the strongest and the sweetest little voice of the one that stole my heart forever!
I am so emotional right now when I am writing this! THAT WAS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL DAY OF MY LIFE!!! Seeing my son coming out, feeling his soft skin, it felt like nothing that I have ever touched before. He was and he is so beautiful, so vulnerable, so pure, a SAINT, simply PERFECT! I was in pure awe, I felt so accomplished and strong, I felt exhausted but I felt like I conquered the world, I couldn’t believe that I DID THAT!!!!
After I birthed him, even though he was premature, he didn’t need any breathing help, anything, they measured him, they weighed him, and he came back to me for 30-40 more minutes while I pushed the placenta (which took forever; that was one of the reasons why he wasn’t getting enough nutrients, because there was a blockage) then they took him to the NICU, because that’s the policy of every hospital, for babies that are born premature.
My husband got to cut the umbilical cord and we did the delayed cord clamping, which is usually done 25 seconds to 5 minutes after giving birth. This procedure has a lot of benefits, one of them is that the iron in the blood increases the newborn’s iron storage, and that’s vital for healthy brain development. Another great thing with this procedure is that it decreases the risk of iron deficiency anemia. When babies come out of the womb, the extra blood at birth that comes from the mom and the placenta, helps the baby adjust to the outside world, easier and faster.
I encourage every mother out there to dare and pray for a natural birth! IT IS TRULY MAGICAL!!!! Have your husband/partner or anyone that you feel safe with near you, to hold your hand and to love on you, to cry with you, to kiss you and to breath with you! And remember, YOU CAN DO IT, YOUR BODY IS DESIGNED TO DO THIS!!!!!!
1. What does a labor contraction felt like to me?
Answer: I heard a lot of women saying that it feels like period cramps! That would be amazing, even though I had the worse period cramps before I became a mom, but it’s not even 1% close to that. To me, it felt like I was dying, and I am not trying to scare anyone, this is what it was for me. Contractions felt like my body was being crushed, destroyed as if I was being stabbed. Screaming (and my husband can confess) as if someone was cutting me alive or was crushing me. Also, another interesting feeling was that I didn’t care about anything anymore, I wasn’t embarrassed that I was crying, I just wanted the pain to end. But yeah, conclusion, to me, the pain has nothing to do with period pains!
(I refuse to believe that a woman is screaming bloody murder in Walmart because she’s on her period.)
2. Natural Labor vs. Induced Labor PAIN:
In natural labor that happens on its own, oxytocin helps your uterus to contract and your cervix to dilate. When the cervix stretches, naturally the brain releases endorphins thanks to the brain receptors.
In an induced labor, the brain does not receive any signals to release endorphins, and that’s why the pain is unbearable.
Natural labor: the pain happens gradually from 1-10
Induced labor: the pain starts immediately at a 10
3. You will never forget the pain. But you will always smile when you will remember it.
To me, every time I go to bed I remember that wild night. And that’s how I fall asleep. That pain is nothing that I felt or will feel ever again. Until my next baby. You never forget something like that, EVER, but it’s really worth it. It also reminds you as a woman how strong you really are and you really appreciate GOD’s gift that HE gave it to us, women!
4. BE ACTIVE. HYDRATE INSIDE AND OUTSIDE
Be active in your pregnancy, as much as possible. I was on my feet every day. Drink water. A LOT. Also, hydrate your skin. Coconut oil 2-3 times a day all over your body. Game changer.
So that’s it, mamas, that’s what my first birth experience was like. I would love to connect with you and share more personal details if you’re curious or interested, and would also love to hear your stories. Please leave your comments below for anything, except for the hate. Let’s just put that behind us and share only positive vibes and thoughts.
P.S- I never got to use that waterproof mascara that I got from ULTA. My labor started very fast and refreshing my makeup was the last thing that I thought of. Maybe the makeup around my eyes will explain how wild everything was. LOL. 😀
God, thank you for making me a mother!