Giving birth to a baby is like nothing I have ever experienced before. I have heard many horror stories about mothers giving birth which would freak out any pregnant woman. Well lucky for you, I had a positive experience. It might not have been all sunshine and rainbows, but overall it was good. Let me start by saying that being pregnant sucked, so by the time I gave birth to my son, and I was over it. Being nine months pregnant in the middle of summer was no picnic. I was hot, uncomfortable, and miserable. So when my water broke, I was ready to meet my son, who gave me the worst heartburn for most of my pregnancy.
I learned that everyone’s experience with giving birth is different. I am sure that many pregnant women spent hours talking to other moms and googled to their heart’s content, but I ignored all of it. I didn’t want to hear the stories because I did not want their bad experiences to influence my birthing experience. I didn’t even do Lamaze classes because I knew they would give me all the details, and I didn’t want to know.
Going Into Labor
I worked until a week before my due date, but my little guy had other plans. That Sunday me and my husband went to the grocery store to pick up what we needed to get me through that week. I was looking forward to relaxing and sleeping all week. I was also excited because that was the week we would get an estimated weight of the baby. Well, pump the breaks because when we started heading or the car felt a woosh of water, which I thought was pee, stopped me dead in my tracks. I shrugged it off. I was nine months pregnant and hot as fuck, and it happened all the time when I sneezed. It was just part of being pregnant.
We stopped at the deli at my insistence to get cold cuts before heading home. If you’re wondering, the cold cuts were not for me. They were for my husband. I know the rules of no cured meats while pregnant, which by the way, sucked. Once home, I rushed to the bathroom because that woosh feeling happened again. Let me tell you that when your water breaks, it is nothing like what you see in the movies. It was my first time having a baby, so I had no clue what was going on. I called my mom into the bathroom, and she asked very calmly if I packed a bag for the hospital. I said, “no.” It was on my to-do list for the next day.
My mom suggested I take a shower and wait to see if the woosh happened again. Trying not to panic, I took a long hot shower, and by the time I got out, dinner was ready. I made sure the hospital bag my mom packed “just in case” had what I needed and then went and ate. I ate two cheeseburgers and fries before I felt another woosh. Yup glad I put a pad on because that was a big one. I felt the panic set in and told them, “I think I need to go to the hospital.” The look on my husband’s face was priceless.
I sat in the back seat silently, freaking out. I was adamant that it couldn’t be my water breaking because it was like a dam broke in all the movies I ever saw with women water breaking. FYI… I was wrong. We all joked on the way to the hospital, talking about the quickest routes so we could get to the hospital quickly when I finally did go into labor.
We arrived at the hospital around nine, and after a tedious check-in, I finally got checked out. Guess what? All those little whooshes that kept happening was my water breaking. Yup, I was in labor and had no idea until they told me. After being put into a room, a very mean nurse came in and jammed an IV in my hand, which was the most painful part of the whole thing. I had no intentions of trying to give birth without drugs. The whole “I want to feel everything” that mothers do was not for me.
I mean, who wants to sit there and be in excruciating pain for hours and hours only to push a watermelon out of a grape. No, thank you! I happily opted for the drugs. To all you mama’s out there who did it without epidural, you mamas are warriors. I have no idea how or why you did it, but as I said, everyone is different. The thought of giving birth in agonizing pain and feeling everything completely freaked me out.
At first, the pain was no big deal. The doctor actually on staff that night had to induce the contractions after a few hours of me sitting there twiddling my thumbs. That shit kicked in faster than I was prepared for. My husband had to keep coming and going because there was no service in the delivery room, but my mom stayed with me.
I have no idea what time it was but it was late when I all of a sudden wished I took some Lamaze classes because the contractions were getting intense. My husband was there fascinated with the machine that was measuring the contractions. Getting excited every time the damn line went up. Yeah killing him crossed my mind more than once. After a few more big ones I threw in the towel and demanded the epidural. I was in the process of giving birth and the man was fascinated with the damn machine. All I can say to that is “men”.
The nurse came in and said it was too early. My husband shook his head and smirked at this man because he knew what was about to happen. I sat up and very calmly said “I am sorry if that sounded like a request because it wasn’t. Now get on the phone with my doctor and tell him I want the epidural now” It would be another hour before my request was granted.
The Anesthesiologist and nurses that came in to give me the epidural were very nice and worked with me through contractions to get me set up. They do kick everyone out of the room when they do this. I thought that was a myth, but I never looked behind me so I never saw the needle. Once I was hooked up I laid back down feeling relief and numb.
I thought I was drifting off to sleep, but I was on the verge of passing out. All of a sudden every machine in the room was beeping like crazy and alarms started going off. A frenzy of doctors and nurses flew into the room and made my husband move out of the way. The panic that rushed through me gave me a surge of adrenaline because I knew that my son’s heart rate dropped suddenly. They moved me around to get his heart rate back up. I am not sure the exact time because the sheer fear that took over had me going into a complete panic attack.
One of the nurses must have seen the fear in my eyes because she quickly started yelling at the rest of them. “The mother, the mother calm her down” They explained that after an epidural sometimes the baby’s heartbeat drops because my blood pressure goes down. They all left after my son’s heartbeat became regular. My adrenaline was still pumping to the point I was shaking. My husband sat beside me and calmed me down.
Time to push! Giving Birth To My Love
I must have finally fallen asleep because I woke up around 9 in the morning. This was taking forever I have been in labor since the night before and this kid was still in me. I was glad I ate before going to the hospital because when you’re in labor you can’t eat anything. Stupid rule, but I get it your body is going through enough, and adding digesting food to the mix is probably not a good idea. There is also the whole pooping thing that every woman worries about when pushing a baby out.
After a few more hours I felt like I had to go to the number two so I asked my husband to get the nurse. He asked me why and I told him I had to go to the bathroom. He said you have a catheter as if that is enough. I rolled my eyes at him since discussing taking a dump was not something I like to announce. I looked at him again and emphasized that I had to go to the bathroom and again he just looked at me. Finally out of frustration I caved and told him I had to go number two.
The nurse came in and said she would be right back. After a few minutes, she came back in with the doctor who checked how many centimeters dilated I was. He looked up and said you don’t have to go to the bathroom you are 10 centimeters dilated. Great show time just as the epidural was starting to wear off. I stared at him it was around 11:00 in the morning and he told me I had two options. I could push for the next 2 hours or I could wait 2 hours and then push.
I decided to wait the two hours especially after hearing some poor woman scream cry and moan for well over an hour the night before. I did not want to go through that. About 45 minutes later the pressure in my lower regions went from annoying to downright I want to push and I want to push now. My husband called the nurse again probably out of fear I would kill him where he stood if he didn’t. This pleasant god-sent woman came back in all smiles and gently rubbed my shoulder while checking my vitals on the screen. She assured me it was all going to be OK and left again.
I sat there and glared at my husband and quietly started to push out of instinct I guess. I was in pain and my body was screaming at me to push. The nurse came back in with the doctor and I got caught pushing. “Oh no, you don’t. No pushing” he said as the nurse chuckled. The doctor topped off the epidural and the pressure disappeared. With a sigh of relief, I laid back and took a deep breath. “That should do it I will see you soon,” he said before walking out of the room. I thanked the nurse as she shot me a wink. The nurse was the one who told him to top it off. As I said the morning nurse was a god-sent.
Around 12:30 the doctor and nurse came back in and said it was time my mom left to wait in the waiting room. We were watching the food network I think because Bobbie Flay was grilling away. All I could think was finally I have carried you for nine months and I was finally going to get to hold him. The nurse calmly explained to me exactly what was going to happen after I gave birth so I was wouldn’t panic when they took him over to a station to check him out.
He was early and they just wanted to make sure he was all good before putting him in my arms. It finally set in that I was going to be a mother nothing else mattered to me except this little human I was about to push out. Taking a few deep breaths and silently prayed he would be ok as the doctor took over prepping me. The doctor said “you are ready we are going to do this in 3 big pushes. You are going to push for 30 seconds and rest for 15 seconds” I nodded my head as my husband took my hand.
The first push I pushed as hard as I could and let out a little scream while doing it not because I was in pain, but because that is what I thought I was supposed to do. LOL… “If you’re screaming you’re not pushing,” the doctor said and he was kind of right. After 30 seconds he told me to stop and looked up at the TV and started talking to us about Bobbie Flay and grilling. We forgot to turn the TV off, but it gave us something to talk about. I did my second push and we went back to talking about the show.
It was time for the third and final push. Taking a deep breath I pushed with everything I had “the head is out, come on one more big push”. My husband the champ that he is watched as our son’s head popped out. I was shocked he didn’t pass out. The doctor told my husband to help me sit up even further so I can see my son be born. I wasn’t expecting that, but it was one of the greatest experiences of my life.
After he was out the nurse scooped him up as my husband cut the umbilical cord. I heard him cry for the first time and I burst into tears. I was crying so hard the doctor got nervous thinking I was in pain, but my husband knew that the teas I was crying were tears of joy. When they got my little guy all cleaned up my husband carried him over to me and placed my son on my chest.
He was perfect in every way the full head of hair he was sporting explained the crazy heartburn I had my entire pregnancy. That unconditional love that every mother talks about is true because I loved him without even knowing him. He is my son, my heart, my life, my why. From the moment he came into this world I discovered a new kind of love a love that a mother has for her child.
It took me 6 months to get pregnant with my son. I always wanted kids so being blessed with one of my own was truly one of the greatest things that happened to me. I wasn’t scared of the giving birth part of it. What scared me was trying to be the best mother I could be while pursuing my career and dreams. I didn’t listen to what other people were saying when they shared their birthing experiences. Because that was their experience and everyone’s story is different.
My experience overall while giving birth was a positive one because at the end of it I had a beautiful baby boy. What women need to realize is that giving birth is the easy part. Raising them to be good people is the hard part. It is a journey that I am blessed to be on.