When did you realize you were really in labor?
Determining that I was actually in early labor was a bit tricky. I started having regular contractions early Friday morning about 10 minutes apart, 1 minute long. But they continued through Sunday night, varying between 5 and 12 minutes apart with a few hour long "breaks" where I was able to sleep uninterrupted.
What was the most challenging thing about going natural?
The hardest, most painful part for me to get through was some of the more intense contractions over Sunday (Mother's day ) before going in to the birth center.
What was the most helpful thing you did to prepare for childbirth?
Going through the Mama Natural birthing class and reading "Husband coached child birth" WITH my husband allowed us to prepare together and be on the same page. He was my awesome rock, the best birthing partner I could have asked for.
Besides that it was extremely helpful to have 1 family member visiting to help with all the little things well we were at home and in transition to the birthing center.
I think the most important thing I did through the entire labor process was to remember to relax as much as possible, specifically through contractions. Breathe!
What surprised you about your birth?
It surprised me a little bit that I did not have a specific transition point I could nail down. I never reached the point of having contractions 2 to 3 minutes apart for a solid hour as our midwife had indicated I probably would. What alerted me to the fact that I was in active labor was that I suddenly the urge to push with the contractions.
Paying attention to my breathing ( find the breathing technique that works for YOU ) and focusing on relaxing my body simple got me through most of my early labor contractions.
What pain relief strategies worked best?
Paying attention to my breathing ( find the breathing technique that works for YOU ) and focusing on relaxing my body simple got me through most of my early labor contractions. Some hot showers help some of the more intense contractions and gave me some relief when I needed a change.
Having my husband there was also beneficial.
What position did you end up delivering in?
I had a water birth and pushed for an hour and a half. I started in the reclined sitting position but made the most progress on my hands and knees. I ended up finishing the delivery back in the reclining chair position with my husband support me.
How did it feel to hold your baby for the first time?
It was wonderful but somewhat surreal to hold my baby for the first time. It was also extremely natural.
How did the Mama Natural Birth Class help you in your childbirth?
More than anything, the Mama natural birthing class gave my husband and I a good picture of what to expect, what to research further and what to discuss further. It helped us to feel very prepared regardless of where we ended up to give birth.