Need encouragement, please!

I didn't have a C-section with my first, but I also didn't have the natural birth that I wanted. In RCW's list of interventions, I made it through pitocin/monitoring/stuck in bed/epidural. Anyway, with my second child's birth (which was natural/unmedicated), I think the things that helped were being confident in my birth plan (which I know you are) and most importantly being confident in my birth team. I really trusted that my midwife wouldn't recommend something that was unnecessary. I delivered at a birth center where the nurses had the same goal I did. I hired a doula (whom I probably didn't even need). And my husband was also fabulous for support.

When things got really tough and I felt I couldn't do it anymore (without drugs or at all), I kept reminding myself "This is what I wanted". And remembering how I felt when I "failed"* to have a natural birth the first time. I knew how awful I would feel if despite all my preparation, I "failed" again, and that really helped me through it.

*I put "failed" in quotes because I'm not saying it's a failure to not have a natural birth, it's just how I felt about it.
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The contractions at the end of labor are not any more painful than the contractions at the beginning of active labor. They are closer together. They are more intense. But they are not more painful. If you can get through contractions at 4 centimeters, you can get through contractions at 10 centimeters. Really. Just take them one at a time.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
And, you are far more tired by the time you get to 10 cms.

In my case the only medical intervention I had was an epidural, and I wanted that because I was tired of vomitting/dry heaving after every contraction. I wound up with a c-section after DS's hearbeat went down and I spiked a fever.

nynaeve77 - I am confident you will be able to have the birth you want with this little one. It looks like you are getting lots of really great advice from the mommas on here.
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The contractions at the end of labor are not any more painful than the contractions at the beginning of active labor. They are closer together. They are more intense. But they are not more painful. If you can get through contractions at 4 centimeters, you can get through contractions at 10 centimeters. Really. Just take them one at a time.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
And, you are far more tired by the time you get to 10 cms.

In my case the only medical intervention I had was an epidural, and I wanted that because I was tired of vomitting/dry heaving after every contraction. I wound up with a c-section after DS's hearbeat went down and I spiked a fever.
Originally Posted by curly_keltie

Epidurals require IV fluids and continuous fetal monitoring, which generally requires bedrest. So it's really difficult to avoid interventions once you agree to the epidural. If you want the epidural, you have to accept everything else. Nearly all women with an epidural on board also get augmented with pitocin, because epidurals cause contractions to space out and get less intense. The staff just piggybacks the pitocin onto the IV, you wouldn't even know it was there if they didn't tell you.

And, epidurals are well known to cause fetal heartrate decelerations (because they cause maternal low blood pressure and fetal heartrate responds to that) and epidurals also cause maternal fever.
I haven't experienced VBAC, but I LOVED natural birth and you can totally do it!!!!! Everyone has given good advice and I know it is different for everyone, but for me, it was intense and tiring, but not particularly painful (way less worse than cramps or a migraine) and I also experienced contractions getting closer together, but not much more painful, and I was in labour about 24 hours and pushed almost 4 and I made it without drugs.

I think I started pushing way too early though, so my advice would be wait until you HAVE to push.

Women have done this forever so you absolutely can - and think of the prize at the end!
Do you know the gender?

Thinking of natural birth makes me REALLY want to do it again - I can't wait to be pregnant again and get my chance! - so how bad can it be?

Good luck sweetie!
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I haven't experienced VBAC, but I LOVED natural birth and you can totally do it!!!!! Everyone has given good advice and I know it is different for everyone, but for me, it was intense and tiring, but not particularly painful (way less worse than cramps or a migraine) and I also experienced contractions getting closer together, but not much more painful, and I was in labour about 24 hours and pushed almost 4 and I made it without drugs.

I think I started pushing way too early though, so my advice would be wait until you HAVE to push.

Women have done this forever so you absolutely can - and think of the prize at the end!
Do you know the gender?

Thinking of natural birth makes me REALLY want to do it again - I can't wait to be pregnant again and get my chance! - so how bad can it be?

Good luck sweetie!
Originally Posted by Amneris
Yup! We're having a boy this time. I'm really getting excited to meet him.
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You can do it. I did it without any type of meds. It is unbearable pain but it does not last that long.
The contractions at the end of labor are not any more painful than the contractions at the beginning of active labor. They are closer together. They are more intense. But they are not more painful. If you can get through contractions at 4 centimeters, you can get through contractions at 10 centimeters. Really. Just take them one at a time.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
And, you are far more tired by the time you get to 10 cms.

In my case the only medical intervention I had was an epidural, and I wanted that because I was tired of vomitting/dry heaving after every contraction. I wound up with a c-section after DS's hearbeat went down and I spiked a fever.
Originally Posted by curly_keltie

Epidurals require IV fluids and continuous fetal monitoring, which generally requires bedrest. So it's really difficult to avoid interventions once you agree to the epidural. If you want the epidural, you have to accept everything else. Nearly all women with an epidural on board also get augmented with pitocin, because epidurals cause contractions to space out and get less intense. The staff just piggybacks the pitocin onto the IV, you wouldn't even know it was there if they didn't tell you.

And, epidurals are well known to cause fetal heartrate decelerations (because they cause maternal low blood pressure and fetal heartrate responds to that) and epidurals also cause maternal fever.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
I remember one delivery I was at, as soon as the mom called for an epidural, the nurse went and brought in a bag of Pitocin. That's how common it is to need Pit with an epidural. I think there may also be this mindset that if the mom can't feel her contractions, why not push them up a notch with the Pit, just to get things moving faster. People in hospitals don't like to just wait around and let nature take its course--they are trained to DO something. I think that's one of the reasons it's so hard to have an intervention-free birth in a hospital.

Nynaeve, this isn't meant to be discouraging. I think knowing about the common pitfalls that derail natural childbirth plans can help you avoid such pitfalls.

I've had both of my babies at home and talked about labor and the birth stories here. You should be able to find it under webjockeyguide or just webjockey. I forget which.

What really made it possible for me was having a good support system. Husband, midwife, midwife's assistant etc etc really helped me believe that I could do it. Well that and a glass o wine at the end.
hello.world.
Here's a story to encourage you. I saw my chiropractor today. She had a VBAC 6 weeks ago. She woke up at 12:30am with contractions 3 minutes apart. Got to the hospital a little after 2, pretty much crowning. Pushed out a 9lb baby girl 20 minutes later. And she is TINY. She said her doc was anti-vbac, said it probably wouldn't work, she would have to get all this extra monitoring, yadda yadda. She never even got an iv or any monitoring.
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I'm planning to stay home for as long as I can (until the contractions are about 3 minutes apart), unless I feel like something is majorly wrong. I want to spend as little time in the hospital for labor as possible.
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Here's a story to encourage you. I saw my chiropractor today. She had a VBAC 6 weeks ago. She woke up at 12:30am with contractions 3 minutes apart. Got to the hospital a little after 2, pretty much crowning. Pushed out a 9lb baby girl 20 minutes later. And she is TINY. She said her doc was anti-vbac, said it probably wouldn't work, she would have to get all this extra monitoring, yadda yadda. She never even got an iv or any monitoring.
Originally Posted by geeky
Great story

*Sends maximum encouragement to nynaeve!*

You can doooo eeeet! Your body knows what it's doing. I'm sure that at times during the labor you'll say to yourself "What the hell was I thinking?! I can't do this!" But you WILL, because you CAN.

Frankly, I am jealous because you can avoid the out of control spiral that is epidural - pitocin - stressed or non-progressing baby - "emergency" c-section. I have wanted a natural birth with a midwife ever since I saw The Business of Being Born. But it just so happened that I have twins in my belly, so midwives won't accept me and of course my doctor and the medical establishment relegates me to the OR because twin pregnancies are "high risk." (Granted, often there really ARE high risks associated with multiples, but if there aren't any real complications, I don't see why a natural birth should be automatically out of the question.) I can do vaginal, but it will have to be with drugs, because if after #1 comes out, #2 has problems, he will have to be c-sectioned.

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That's very disheartening about a twin pregnancy! So for someone like me whose platelets are too low to get an epidural, I would probably have to just have a scheduled c-section?

Sorry to derail the thread!

Nynaeve, I think your plan to stay home as long as possible is definitely the way to go! That's what I did. Connor was born about 5 hours after I got to the hospital (after I was sent home the first time ) and for Oliver, 1.5 hours.
That's very disheartening about a twin pregnancy! So for someone like me whose platelets are too low to get an epidural, I would probably have to just have a scheduled c-section?

Sorry to derail the thread!

Nynaeve, I think your plan to stay home as long as possible is definitely the way to go! That's what I did. Connor was born about 5 hours after I got to the hospital (after I was sent home the first time ) and for Oliver, 1.5 hours.
Originally Posted by sarah42
That's cool, Sarah! I just don't want to be hanging out at the hospital all day. Hospitals are boring. At home, I have all my books and my DVR.
"Maybe Lucy's right. Of all the Charlie Browns in the world, you're the Charlie Browniest."--Linus, A Charlie Brown Christmas
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*Sends maximum encouragement to nynaeve!*

You can doooo eeeet! Your body knows what it's doing. I'm sure that at times during the labor you'll say to yourself "What the hell was I thinking?! I can't do this!" But you WILL, because you CAN.

Frankly, I am jealous because you can avoid the out of control spiral that is epidural - pitocin - stressed or non-progressing baby - "emergency" c-section. I have wanted a natural birth with a midwife ever since I saw The Business of Being Born. But it just so happened that I have twins in my belly, so midwives won't accept me and of course my doctor and the medical establishment relegates me to the OR because twin pregnancies are "high risk." (Granted, often there really ARE high risks associated with multiples, but if there aren't any real complications, I don't see why a natural birth should be automatically out of the question.) I can do vaginal, but it will have to be with drugs, because if after #1 comes out, #2 has problems, he will have to be c-sectioned.
Originally Posted by ShanaVilloria

That's BS. Find a new caregiver. There are midwives out there who will accept twins. You can just-say-no to drugs. Really. They can't make you. It's still your body.
*Sends maximum encouragement to nynaeve!*

You can doooo eeeet! Your body knows what it's doing. I'm sure that at times during the labor you'll say to yourself "What the hell was I thinking?! I can't do this!" But you WILL, because you CAN.

Frankly, I am jealous because you can avoid the out of control spiral that is epidural - pitocin - stressed or non-progressing baby - "emergency" c-section. I have wanted a natural birth with a midwife ever since I saw The Business of Being Born. But it just so happened that I have twins in my belly, so midwives won't accept me and of course my doctor and the medical establishment relegates me to the OR because twin pregnancies are "high risk." (Granted, often there really ARE high risks associated with multiples, but if there aren't any real complications, I don't see why a natural birth should be automatically out of the question.) I can do vaginal, but it will have to be with drugs, because if after #1 comes out, #2 has problems, he will have to be c-sectioned.
Originally Posted by ShanaVilloria

That's BS. Find a new caregiver. There are midwives out there who will accept twins. You can just-say-no to drugs. Really. They can't make you. It's still your body.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
ITA. I would also look for a new care provider. Anyone who tells you (in your 2nd trimester no less!) that you "have to" have an epidural is not practicing responsible, evidence-based medicine and that means I would not want to put my life and my babies' lives in their hands.

You can absolutely have a natural birth with twins! If that is what you want, go for it. Stand up for yourself and work to have the birth that you want.

*Sends maximum encouragement to nynaeve!*

You can doooo eeeet! Your body knows what it's doing. I'm sure that at times during the labor you'll say to yourself "What the hell was I thinking?! I can't do this!" But you WILL, because you CAN.

Frankly, I am jealous because you can avoid the out of control spiral that is epidural - pitocin - stressed or non-progressing baby - "emergency" c-section. I have wanted a natural birth with a midwife ever since I saw The Business of Being Born. But it just so happened that I have twins in my belly, so midwives won't accept me and of course my doctor and the medical establishment relegates me to the OR because twin pregnancies are "high risk." (Granted, often there really ARE high risks associated with multiples, but if there aren't any real complications, I don't see why a natural birth should be automatically out of the question.) I can do vaginal, but it will have to be with drugs, because if after #1 comes out, #2 has problems, he will have to be c-sectioned.
Originally Posted by ShanaVilloria

That's BS. Find a new caregiver. There are midwives out there who will accept twins. You can just-say-no to drugs. Really. They can't make you. It's still your body.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
Yes, it's true. I there was a woman on a mommy board I used to belong to (we were in the Oct 2005 due date group) and she had her twins naturally.
YOU CAN DO IT!

I am a huge, huge wuss when it comes to pain...my Ollie was born after 44 hours of labor (24 hours in the hospital after I freaked when I had a slow leak) - I had the works...iv, pit, epidural, confined to bed, posterior baby...pushed for 2 1/2 freaking hours before he came out (but not before tearing me a new one...literally )...I was traumatized, and convinced my body had no clue what it was doing when it came to labor...I never had decent or patterned contractions on my own that 1s time...

Myles, on the other hand, was as different as could be! I was convinced to do things differently this time, as I had read a LOT more and was determined to wait as long as possible to go to the hospital...keep in mind, I had serious doubts about my body's ability to go i nto labor on it's own, and was convinced I would have to be induced when I was overdue...

that said, my 2nd labor ended up being 2 1/2 hours from start to finish...at a very respectable 39 weeks - I was in total denial, so we almost didn't make it to the hospital in time! from checking in at the ER desk to him being born was a mere 24 mins...and that was WITH breathing through about 2 sets of contractions, waiting for my OB to get there! His head wasn't even cone-shaped, he came so fast We didn't even have time to park the car - security had to do it for us! And we didn't have our camera - M's first pictures were when he was 10 mins old!

I won't lie - it was super, super intense...and I probably would have given my right arm to get some pain relief when I was in transition...but there was no time, and he was here less than 10 mins later
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wow--i just wanted to say thank you for this amazing thread. i'm 25 weeks, coming up with a birth plan, and considering changing from an OB practice that works with a hospital to a midwife/birthing center. i too have wondered if i have the pain tolerance to have a natural birth. these stories are really inspiring! i'm going to copy this so i can keep it and also show it to my husband, who's my birth partner.

thanks for sharing--we have such awesome curlies on this board!
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You can do it! Good luck!!

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