Considering an epidural? Have to go the C-section route? Induction being scheduled? Are you hesitant because the rumor mill says none of those count because it’s not “natural” childbirth?
Well, the only way your baby isn’t coming naturally is if you give birth through your ear canal.
So, tell all those people to suck it.
I have no idea if I’ll get an epidural or not this time around. I’ve been fortunate enough in the past to deliver both my kids in the time it takes for the NFL to finish a single game. However, every pregnancy is different, and even I don’t know if this labor and delivery will take the same amount of time as the Seven Years War—which was actually nine years long.
I didn’t opt out of an epidural with my previous pregnancies because I wanted to be the William Wallace of child birthers. I opted out because I was hemming and hawing out of indecisiveness—I’ve also hemmed and hawed my way about getting a tattoo for years. By the time I was ready to opt in for an epidural, and I was, my choices were: opt out.
With only 30 minutes left in the game there wasn’t any point in getting an epidural, especially since just paging Dr. Feelgood would take 40 minutes. I would’ve basically gotten prepped and ready to get my epidural right after I delivered the baby. Just in time to eat my chocolate cake and bask in the glow of my newborn’s presence without the use or sensation of my entire lower body.
As a veteran child birther, I simply don’t understand the argument over natural childbirth versus the other white meat. Does it really matter? Most often, inductions and C-section routes are for a reason. Not all babies are eager to leave their cozy hidey-holes. Some need a little coaxing, and some simply need help. Sometimes it’s an emergency.
As far as pain medication goes, just because you choose to not be in pain for 48 hours doesn’t make you any less of a mother or a woman. Likewise, being “stoic” and enduring the pain doesn’t make you any more of a mother or a woman. You don’t get a merit badge for delivering vaginally. I asked.
Your decisions in pregnancy are the first decisions you will make as a parent. You’ll decide what you think is best and how you feel things need to be. Sadly, as a parent you will face many opinions and criticisms on how you “should” raise your child. But, you’ll raise your child the way that works for you and your child. So, when the time comes to deliver your baby, remember you’re the one in this boat, not anyone else. You should choose what works best for you and your baby.
Because in the end, that’s all that really matters: you and your baby.
And chocolate cake, of course.