16 May 2011

Practice makes crazy

Back on Baby 1, I did my Bradley labor relaxation exercises faithfully for months in advance. I have to admit (despite my animosity toward Bradley) that when the big day came, for as long as anything could be helpful, they helped.

On subsequent babies, I did them somewhat less faithfully, but I at least gave some old college tries.

This time I'm powerful inclined to skip the whole stupid project. Point 1: I've gotten into an indisputable pattern of bypassing nearly the entire part of the labor experience for which they are helpful and going directly to the "I cannot do this I'm going to die" part. Point 2: on that first baby, I didn't know what I was getting into, so I was able to really relax. Every time since then when I've tried to relax like I mean it, I just end up thinking about what all this relaxation is for and I end up freaking out. Also, Dr. Robert A. Bradley, that weird arm position is totally uncomfortable and I've never used it in labor no matter how much I've practiced it. It really worked for you, though, huh? Is that another idea you got from the piggies on your farm?

I'm really wondering if I'd do better just to keep making every effort to act like none of this is going to happen and think about it as little as possible. At this point in my life, thinking about labor profiteth absolutely nothing and no one. :P

13 comments:

Emily Cook said...

It really worked for you, though, huh? Is that another idea you got from the piggies on your farm?


LOL exactly how I feel about Bradley. I tried it with two babies too :)

Then I switched to a "pray and fear and stay distracted" kind of preparation before the others, and a lovely epidural during the event.

Sue said...

I had my babies 29 and 32 years ago - I did Lamaze. It's so long ago it's hard to remember if it helped. I gave birth during the "natural no drugs" era. I remember a lot of pain! But I also remember the joy at the end.

Where Lamaze REALLY helped me was about 18 years ago when I landed in the hospital with a nasty gall bladder attack. Lamaze helped me to be able to stand it till they could get me hooked up on morphine! The nurse seemed impressed that I was doing that.

Gauntlets said...

Lamaze DOES help with gallbladder attacks. It does not help with labor.

I think the only thing that helps with labor is getting it over with. Like, whatever your politics, whatever your levels of flexibility, whatever your deeply held beliefs in the power of the uterus to liberate mankind from the possibility of nuclear fallout, labor is going to be all up-in-your-face hard work and pain. So, just get it over the best you can, and then it's done.

I know, this sentiment is truly brilliant. I think everyone here owes me a dozen cookies for having shared it.

Bikermom said...

Drink water, walk, pee, close eyes through contractions while walking and hanging onto someone.....sing your favorite part of the liturgy in your head till *it* is over with....repeat till you look at doctor/whoever and say.....this baby is on its way. They look at you in disbelief, *check*, look surprised, voila' baby.

Melrose said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Melrose said...

Oh, by the way, I agree Rebekah. No amount of meditation, standing on my head, mooing like a cow, or belly dancing has been able to keep my labors from being the terrible thing they are. Method #4: survive.

Rebekah said...

Emily, there was a time when I thought I'd be cheating myself as a person if I didn't cash in on the life experience of a natural childbirth, a chance less than half the human race gets. But what about the life experience of an epidural? You gonna pass that up, self?

Sue, I imagine the joy will have more staying power in my memory when the agony memory is no longer getting refreshed every couple of years. :P

Gauntlets, hard work? Have you been hanging out with that Bradley creep again?

In general, I'm feeling like a real square still having a gallbladder.

Sue said...

Rebekah, yes, the distance of 29 years has definitely dimmed that memory. And of course there is 100% no chance it will ever happen to me again! One of the big things I do remember besides unmedicated pain is getting sent to the hospital for an induction because my water broke, and the doctor not knowing the baby was breach. The nurse figured it out at 6 cm. They decided to do a c-section but the baby came so fast there was no time. And then the head got stuck. Fortunately there was not enough oxygen going to the brain for me to think this was a problem or I would have freaked. They got him out, then I passed out. Came to, dreaming I had been pregnant! That baby is now the father of my 7 mo. old 1st grandchild. I remember there was a lot of pain, but like you said, time has dimmed that. Good luck and God's blessings to you all!

Rebekah said...

Sue, I thought that only happened on Friends! :D

Sue said...

Funny! Well, they say truth is stranger than fiction!

Elizabeth said...

I've decided that Bradly, Lamaze, and anyone else (including the labor and delivery nurses I had with my 1st) who comes up with "the way" to have a baby is completely delusional. This next time, I've decided I'm going to do what I want to do and what feels right to me. For example, Bikermom, I totally was closing my eyes and all focused on nice things like liturgy through contractions until my bright nurse told me to keep my eyes open and focused on a certain point. Ha, like that helped. At least if I choose to do what I want, the only person I can blame is myself. :)

Emommy said...

LOVE Gauntlet's "the only way to deal with labor is getting it over with." I was able to be relaxed, too, during delivery 1, and in delivery 2, I just yelled. Then a nurse brightly said, "Try not to yell. You'll hurt your vocal chords." Because that's what I was so worried about. This time I'm trying not to think about it and simultaneously praying that God gets me and baby (and my husband) through it roughly healthily.

Melissa said...

Thank God for doctors and medicine. Epidurals do not necessarily delineate the hard work (especially when your offspring is nearly 10 lbs).

I don't know who this Bradley guy is. Nor did I even try lamaze. Either my uuber confidence or inexperienced stupidity thinking "Billions of women have done this, I'll wing it" got me through. Along with the help of one particularly fantastic nurse.