We’ve all seen the movies portraying the hysterical, screaming, crazylady who cusses out her partner and terrorizes the medical staff, andvowed not to be that girl. But… then our time comes.Whether you have a fast and intense all natural labor, a scheduledinduction, or a c-section, it doesn’t matter. No matter what methodyour baby chooses for it’s grand arrival into the world, it’s bound tobe intense, exciting, and pretty darn memorable for mom.
Throughout the entire duration of pregnancy, women’s bodies go throughcountless changes and freaky uncontrollable occurrences to gear themup for the big day. But let’s be honest, until you’ve experienced it,nothing can quite prepare you for all that happens come D-Day.So keeping it all together, saying calm, cool, and collected duringdelivery, that can be a challenge. It can be hard not to blurt outexactly what is on our mind during delivery.
We all have doubts,fears, and random annoyances that we may be tempted to spout off atthe mouth about while writhing uncomfortably in pain on display forall to see.But remember, you’ll likely see your doctor again. The nurses will beresponsible for taking care of you for the remainder of your stay. Youhave to live with your partner, shoot, you’ll probably need a ridehome.
You may not want to say EXACTLY what is on your mind… if you canhelp it.But don’t worry, if some not-so-nice- or R-Rated things slip out, wethink you’ll be given a Hall Pass.Here are a few thoughts you may manage to keep inside during delivery,if you’re lucky.
10 “Who am I Kidding? I Can’t Do This!”
As if bringing an actual living and breathing human into the world andbeing responsible for keeping it safe and healthy it’s entire lifeisn’t scary enough, first you have to deliver it! You may be trying toput on a brave face and keeping your concern, fears and doubts, toyourself during delivery.No matter how much research you’ve done, and honestly, no matter howmany babies you’ve already delivered, it’s totally normal to stillfeel a little freaked out come time to deliver.
A few thoughts you may have running through your head:“OMG it hurts too bad, I can’t handle anymore pain.”“I don’t think I’ll be able to push, I’m too exhausted.”“I’m too afraid to push.”“I don’t know how to push.”“Why am I such a wimp? Women have been doing this since the beginning of time.”
But listen, it’s totally normal to doubt yourself and to be a little afraid during delivery. Especially if it’s yourfirst time (though every delivery is different, it’s ok to be a littlenervous EVERY time).Here’s the thing, you CAN do it.
You WILL do it. You will deliverthat baby like a champ.
If you cry a couple tears along the way, ifyou doubt yourself, if your brain and body seem to shut down for amoment and refuse to do what is necessary to get that baby out, justknow it’s seriously going to be ok.Honestly, you may even feel a little better if you voice your concernsto the nurses and doctor. They are there to help you and while thismay be your first baby, it’s not their first rodeo.
And the bottom line is this, being 100% fearless and tough in deliverywithout shedding a single tear or having a single doubt doesn’t make amom any better than the rest of us who shed a couple tears in themidst of a little pre-pushing meltdown.
9 “Why is Everyone so Freaking CALM?”
So you come barreling like a bat our of you know where into labor and delivery, huffing and puffing, contracting every 2 minutes, totally sure that you must be crowning and your baby is going to fall out at
any given second… only to be greeted by hospital staff who act like they’ve got all the time in the world.
Once the nurse behind the front desk finishes typing whatever it is she’s typing (you decide she’s probably on Facebook) she slowly gets up and comes around to show you to your room, which is, of course, at the other end of the hall. She asks you to change into a gown and begins asking you for your personal information as she lackadaisically types on her computer.
What the heck?! Doesn’t she realize you are in LABOR here? Why aren’t they calling the doctor? Why aren’t they breaking down your bed and preparing you to push this baby out? Why is nobody else here? Why are there nurses in the hallway talking about what they had for dinner last night? Hello! We are having a baby here! But remember, while this may be your first time in labor and delivery, these nurses do this everyday.
They'll know when you're ready to push
They see women in the various stages oflabor countless times throughout their work week. They are trained torecognize the signs of the various stages of labor and can probablyguess just by how you are acting and holding yourself, how close youare.But, they could be wrong right? Shouldn’t they be checking you?!Sure some women go faster than others and some women handle labordifferently than the last lady to have a baby.
So if your nurses aresurprised to discover that you are indeed ready to push by the timethey finally check the situation, then you’re next challenge will bekeeping your “I told you so” to yourself.
8 “I Can’t Believe I Didn’t Shower and Shave!”
We all spend the end of our pregnancies expecting to go into labor. Some of us may even have big plans of treating ourselves to a day of pampering complete with a pedicure and wax job to get everything looking “presentable” for the big day. The rest of us hope to at least have time to shower and shave what we can reach before going in and laying it all on the table, so to speak.
But… things happen. For us control freaks out there, one of the most frustrating things about labor and delivery is the fact that we usually can’t control when and where stuff will hit the fan.
You have bigger things to think about
So while some women can get their day at the spa in on the day beforetheir due date and others can clean up and apply makeup the morningthey are scheduled to be induced or have a c-section, there are alwaysgoing to be those of us who just have to suck it up and go the way weare.Face it, if your water breaks while you are in the middle of a sweatyday at the zoo, or if you wake up to intense contractions 1 minuteapart, do you really need to shower?
Chances are it’s going to be thelast thing on your mind. So get your sweaty unshaven self, with yourchipped toenails and stinky armpits to the hospital.Don’t even bother worrying what the doctors and nurses think aboutyour un-waxed lady bits, they are only there to deliver your baby andtake care of you. And luckily your baby will never remember if yourlegs are a little prickly the first time you meet.
7 “Why is Everyone on my Nerves?”
Some labors seem like they last forever. It can be an exhausting, stressful, and nerve-wracking experience, for EVERYONE involved. While the mom is obviously the center of attention during labor and delivery and is expected to be anxious, uncomfortable, scared, excited, happy, sad, and every emotion in between, it’s a crazy emotional time for others too.
Partners, in particular, experience a whirlwind of emotions when watching the mother of their baby go through childbirth. They are excited and happy and anxious to meet their new baby. But they are also scared, possibly about being a parent for the first (or third) time, scared about what could go wrong, scared to see their partner in pain.
They may feel helpless. They want to do something to help but they don’t know what to do or how to go about asking. So instead they just glue themselves to your side, petting your hair and rubbing your shoulders, not knowing that the feel of their touch is quite possibly driving you insane! And your friends and family! Don’t they know that somebody will call or text when there is news to be shared.
It's not that he's useless, he's just nervous for you and the baby
How many more texts that say “No progress, WE’LL KEEP YOU POSTED” followed by angry red faced emoticons must you send out before they get the message?! If you aren’t a cheerful pleasant patient who oozes nothing but rainbows and butterflies throughout her entire delivery experience, nobody is going to hold it against you. It’s understandable that you might be irritable and most hospital staff is used to it.
If you don’t manage to keep all your thoughts to yourself and someone in your family get’s their feelings hurt, just tell them it wasn’t personal and to suck it up buttercup. Everyone will get over it when they see the beautiful baby you just brought into the world.
6 “Why Does it Seem Like I Know More Than My Nurses?”
The 9 months of pregnancy allows us a LOT of time to do our research. We read books, we follow blogs, we join online communities and chat on message boards. We fill our brains with what seems like everything there is to know about labor and delivery. Many of us go into our first delivery experience with a plethora of knowledge. Nothing could possibly surprise us.
And once we’ve done it once, clearly we are experts on the art of childbirth. Right? When we’ve been there and done this we tend to be more confident and think we know exactly what to expect. (Because every delivery is the same, oh wait…) So when a cute little nurse fresh out of college walks in, ready to “guide your through your delivery” it can be easy to want to question her experience and knowledge.
Your nurse has many women to look after on her shift. so if she doesn't seem helpful, it doesn't mean she's not helpful at all
It can be especially difficult to take advice and guidance from someone who has never given birth themselves. “How dare she pretend to understand how this feels?” You may think the nurses aren’t checking you often enough. That they should be calling the doctor sooner. Or that if they don’t call for your epidural NOW, there is no way you are going to get it in time.
These are normal thoughts, and in some cases you could be right. But rest assured that the hospital staff is there to help you and has your best interest in mind. A young inexperienced nurse who has yet to give
birth could very well be even more compassionate and attentive than the nurse who has been there and done that 4 times. And let’s not forget that many of the best doctors to have ever delivered babies are
males, they obviously haven’t delivered babies themselves either.
5 “Why Does it Feel Like I’m a Piece of Art on Display?”
Especially if you are at a teaching hospital, you may find that there are a LOT of people coming and going from your room during your delivery. You may be in the middle of pushing only to look up and think “Who are all these people?!”
It isn’t terribly uncommon for there to be multiple doctors, nurses, residents, and students to be present in the delivery room. After all, these people have to learn somewhere. Younger students typically
observe from afar, while students performing clinicals could be getting up close and personal with you during your delivery. Doctors, nurses, anesthesiologists, nurses aids, lactation consultants, and
any other medical staffer could all be training or teaching a new employee or student at any given time.
Nothing makes you feel more uncomfortable than being studied like an insect
This can easily cause the number of people in your delivery room to double, or even triple, rather quickly.
For some moms in labor, this is a non-issue. By this point you could care less who sees what as long as they get your baby out. You don’t care who checks your cervix or administers your epidural as long as
SOMEBODY does. If these people want to observe Wonder-Woman in action, who can blame them, right?
But others may be super uncomfortable at the thought of a roomful of total strangers studying their delivery. That’s ok too. Usually they will ask your permission before bringing the extra people in. So if you aren’t feeling “the more the merrier”, speak up. You won’t hurt anybody’s feelings.
4 “OMG What is Happening to the Woman Across the Hall?”
Having to hear another woman screaming her heart out in the throes of labor seems like cruel and unusual punishment for another mom who may be in the earlier stages of labor. Talk about terrifying!
How scary to just get in and get settled, ready to get the party started, only to have another woman’s screams wafting into your previously peaceful room! You’re probably thinking, “ Oh heck no! I do not want to do this anymore!” “What are they doing to that poor woman?” “Am I going to sound like that?” “Why isn’t anybody helping her?!”
Her screaming makes you nervous for your big event
But remember not every labor is the same. The woman across the hall might be going on day 3 of her all-natural drug free delivery. Or maybe she’s just very loud and vocal and screaming helps her get through the contractions. Maybe she’s convinced that the screams make her pushes more efficient. Whatever the case, that doesn’t mean you’re going to feel the same way when your labor kicks into high gear.
Shoot, if you have an epidural you may have to be told when you are having a contraction. Seriously! So relax, lay back down and get back into your relaxed state if you can. Or start working up your vocal cords to give that lady a run for her money, whatever floats your boat!
3 “I Just Pooped”
By all means, girlfriend, if you want to pretend to not notice if you happen to go number two or pass gas while pushing, then go for it! Just go about your business seemingly oblivious and forget it ever happened. Everyone else will too! It’s true what they say, that MANY women will poop a little while pushing and it’s totally normal and nothing to be embarrassed about. You use the EXACT same muscles to push a baby out that you use to poop.
So if you are pushing and straining those muscles, unless your belly is completely empty, pooping a bit is
pretty much inevitable. And most women won’t even know for sure if they do it or not, especially if they have an epidural. You know, they are a little preoccupied pushing a baby out of their vaginas, and all! But even if you do happen to notice a little extra going on down there, you don’t have to talk about it. Nobody down there is going to say a word about it.
Your doctor has seen this before, so don't worry if it happens to you
They will quietly clean you up and go about their business. Nobody will bring it up later. It won’t show up in your chart. It is absolutely a non-issue for everyone involved. And it can be for you too. IF you keep it to yourself! If you choose to announce the situation to everyone in the room, well that’s ok too. There’s no shame in childbirth!
2 “What if My Baby Isn’t Cute?”
Finally! It is time to push. And every contraction and each push is bringing you closer to finally meeting the little stranger that you have been growing inside your belly for the past 40 weeks. You’ve spent countless hours rubbing your belly, imagining what your little bundle of joy will look like. Will he have his daddy’s eyes? Will she have her mommy’s lips?
You’ve felt this little person moving inside you and while you have bonded with this person as much as you can while they are in your belly, it’s about to get real. The moment of truth is upon you and you might be having some last minute doubts like:
- “All newborns are a little ugly, what if I don’t think my baby is cute?”
- “What if I don’t feel an immediate connection with her?”
- “Do they really have to lay the baby on my chest before wiping him off?”
- “What if he pees on me? I’m not ready for that!”
- “What if I’m the only person who thinks she’s cute?”
You don't have to worry about this, you'll love your baby no matter what!
It’s ok to think these things, honestly it is! Your brain is pretty much going a mile a minute by this point in an effort to keep up with the rest of your body. So while these thoughts may seem a little irrational, and you may feel like a horrible person, rest assured that you are not.
Sure, these are some of the thoughts you will probably be glad that you kept to yourself, but just know that you are NOT the only mom who has them. And honestly, all babies are really so cute in their own
little red wrinkly way.
1 “Are They Really Going To Let Me Take This Baby Home With Me?”
All that preparing, planning, and researching seems to go out the window the moment your baby is born and you are suddenly a mother to a real life, tiny, helpless little human. You may question the competency of the hospital staff for willingly sending this baby home with you. You think you have no idea what you are doing. Deep breaths, momma! You’ve seriously got this. All new parents have doubts.
Just like any new job or new venture, the thought of parenthood can be super overwhelming at first. Especially when they hand you this little person you’ve created and say “Congratulations Mom.” It’s true that being a parent is a huge deal. There is nothing more important or a job more demanding than raising little people. Parenthood is exhausting, scary, daunting, stressful, nerve-wracking, and every other thing they say it is.
Only you know what's best for your family
You will change the way you do and they way you look at every single thing in your life. Everything will change. What was important before becomes light-years less important than your child and his or her health and happiness. But trust us when we tell you that it is all so worth it. You’ll have your moments of uncertainty. There will be plenty of times when you will wonder if you are doing right by your child.
But at the end of the day when you look into your baby’s beautiful little eyes and see them smile up at you before falling into a peaceful deep sleep, safe in your arms, you’ll know you’re doing it right. That baby is right where it’s meant to be, with you.