Warning: This is NOT a light and fluffy post
So, we started our childbirth classes last week. They meet for four weeks, two and a half hours each and you go over all the things you would think you need to know about- stages of dilation, stages of labor, pain meds, all the new baby stuff, monitoring, breathing, positions, care of the mom after, etc, etc. I've been a pretty non-plussed pregnant woman for the most part. Not much of this really phases me. The first time I had contractions (just Braxton Hicks!!), B thought I should call the midwife on call just to make sure I was okay, and I totally blew it off. I waited until the next day during clinic hours b/c I didn't want to disturb her at home (I take call and I know how it can be). Even though I had a few long ones and more than 6 in an hour (both of which are stuff you are supposed to call for), I knew I was feeling fine and not in labor, so I didn't call.
I always knew I wanted to have a midwife, and I wanted to have a relatively natural delivery. I am definitely not one who is going to walk into the ER knowing that within an hour I'll want an epidural. I've always been relatively open to having the baby drug free, and also aware that you never know what will happen, so you kind of have to take everything that comes at you. Really all I think about is that I want to deliver a healthy baby and will do whatever it takes to make that happen.
So, tonight we go to class and we're watching the second birthing video. Last week's- no biggie. I've seen the actual labor and birthing process twice (in nursing school), so I have a good idea of what happens. This week - HOLY CRAP. The video scared the living daylights out of me. I don't know if it's because it's so imminent and getting very, very real, or if it's because the one they showed tonight was more in "real" time (ie- it showed her starting her labor at 4 p.m. and working all the way through her actual delivery at about 2 in the a.m (and 10 hours isn't far from average)). Plus, she did this completely naturally, so you could see the pain in her face, in her body, in her hands. It was truly a wonderful video in that it was incredibly realistic, honest, and showed all the true aspects of labor and delivery. I wish I could do a better job of describing it to make you all realize how scary this was. I am FREAKED OUT. I have no idea how I am going to go through this process and make it out on the other end alive. I wish I could say that I realize that I am being overly dramatic, however, I left the class crying because I am now so scared about the delivery. I love this baby and want this baby, but I don't want it to come out of me. No way.
Have any of you delivered without an epidural? Can you PLEASE leave me a message so I can shoot you an email? Most of my friends have had c-sections or used an epidural, and while I'm not necessarily against them, I wasn't originally thinking that way, and if there is anyone else out there who went natural, I would love to know. Also, any words of encouragement (or telling me that I am completely crazy and need help!!) would be appreciated. I know that women have been doing this for thousands of years and do this all over the world without assistance from drugs, doctors, etc but that is rational thought, and right now this brain of mine is not being rational. It's just too terrified.
(Can I add that my mom is in Guatamala right now on a mission trip for two weeks, so I can't talk to her about this????? Why this of all weeks? Sometimes you just need to talk to your mom, you know?)