Birth Stories

Reading Books About Labor And Birth Is One Of The Best Things Katherine Did During Her Natural Car Birth

  • When did you realize you were really in labor?

    I woke up around 4 AM feeling like I needed to go to the bathroom. Well, that didn’t happen, but I instead began to feel extremely nauseous, like I was going to throw up and had diarrhea, all at once. Then the contractions started. I was in denial until a few hours later, then realized this was the real deal. What caught me off guard was that my water didn’t break!

  • What was the most challenging thing about going natural?

    The most challenging thing wasn’t the birth itself, but the voices and responses whenever I mentioned that I was planning for a natural birth! Don’t let others opinion get to you- decide to go natural, and just go do it!

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  • What was the most helpful thing you did to prepare for childbirth?

    I did so many things to prepare for birth, but not many knew since I kept it to myself and prepared mentally and spiritually throughout. One of the best things I did was read books about labor and birth. Holy Labor by Aubrey G Smith was a beautiful, faith-based book I cling to. The Unassisted Baby by Anita Evenson was extremely practical, to the point, and tells you all the things you need to know about preparing for natural childbirth and doing it yourself if need be. Turns out, I needed that helpful “emergency childbirth” kind of info!! Reading and learning about the natural process of childbirth, others stories, and watching birth videos and documentaries really benefited me!

  • What surprised you about your birth?

    The most surprising thing about his birth was how quick and efficient it was- seriously! I was in denial that it was real labor because my water didn’t break with the contractions I was having. But I was calm and collected throughout it all- laboring completely on my own in a quiet house on the early pre-dawn hours before the House woke up. How I kept my composure and just let the contractions and birth process happen on its own- it was incredible. This was my second birth but first natural birth, and I really didn’t know what to expect, but by mentally preparing myself and educating myself about natural childbirth throughout my pregnancy, I really did keep calm! So calm that I didn’t even wake my husband and son up while in labor! (My husband woke up and saw I was in labor, then we woke my son up and left from there). It all happened so fast- seriously- less than 5 hours total!

  • It felt incredible- immediately the “pain” from birth was gone, it was an instant release once he crowned and came out, and I was just full of so much indescribable joy.
  • What pain relief strategies worked best?

    Breathing! I was pacing my breaths, breathing in deep, in and out, intentionally focusing on my breathing and composure during labor, especially early on. Before the house woke up I also heated up rice heating pads I made and used them on my lower back, which felt incredible!! I walked around the house squatting, walking back and forth, holding the hot pad to my back, focusing on my breathing. That really helped. I also took a quick hot shower, before we got in the car. Labor in the car is a different story, and all I could really do for pain relief was to turn around facing the seat and squatting, moaning with the contractions which surprisingly helped me (maybe just mentally), and still focusing on my breathing.

  • What position did you end up delivering in?

    So this is where the story gets fun! We were in the car, about 40 minutes into our 60 minute drive to our destination, when I felt baby crowning! The ring of fire was so intense and real and raw and he was coming. In the car. My husband pulled over into a Brookshires parking lot and as soon as he parked, Baby was here. I already had the seatbelt off and was squatting in the front passenger seat, facing the back seat. Really- a squat is the best way to give birth! It was incredible, truly!

  • How did it feel to hold your baby for the first time?

    It was incredible. He was here.. in the car, yes he was born in the car, but he was here!!! I was a little distracted by trying to hold him with the cord still pulsing, waiting on the placenta which didn’t come until 40 minutes later, but I managed to hold him in the front seat and was in awe. He was so cute and a little chunky and very frosty with vernix, I immediately thought to keep rubbing that good stuff in and hold him close to me, skin to skin. It was an incredible moment, also because I did it all, completely by myself, in the car, squatting and exclaiming as he was born! It felt incredible- immediately the “pain” from birth was gone, it was an instant release once he crowned and came out, and I was just full of so much indescribable joy. I felt amazing, like I could run a marathon and all I wanted to do was get into a cleaned seat (the car got messy as he was born, of course) and stare at him all day!

  • What advice can you give to other mamas who want to go natural?

    My best advice: go for it, and be all in! Don’t let anyone try to talk you out of it, no matter who they are. Trust that God made your body to birth your baby, and prepare well for it. Believe that you can do it, study birth, read birth stories, prepare for birth, pray for your birth and your baby. Go to the chiropractor and get adjusted weekly the last month, at least. Take red raspberry leaf tea daily, eat 6 dates a day during the last 6 weeks, watch all the birth videos and documentaries you can, join a natural babies birth group with other mamas due the same season or month you are (I am in an incredible FB due date group!) and find that mama friend or friends you can talk to and ask all the questions and commiserate with on your natural pregnancy and birth journey. We spend so much time preparing for baby once he is born, but we need to focus on preparing for birth itself and postpartum for mama, too. If you want to go natural, do it, and get yourself some support and resources, too.

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