Preparing For Natural Childbirth

Hey, hey! I hope y’all had a lovely 4th of July yesterday. We had a nice, relaxing day and then enjoyed our church picnic and fireworks display last night. It was fun!

My 4th of July baby bump!

Yesterday, I hit 38 weeks. Wow. It seems like this pregnancy has flown by and in another way it seems to have taken a long time. I am so thankful that this pregnancy has been much easier than the last. I’m not thrilled with my “big momma” weight gain of 55 lbs, but I’m convinced now that this is how my body does pregnancy. Last time, I ate junk and didn’t take good care of myself and this time, I have eaten very healthfully and taken really good care of myself and still have the same results. Boo! But this just means that I get to lose it all and take y’all along for the ride! :)

I’m both excited and terrified about giving birth, which I think is pretty normal, right? I have been “preparing” for this time since the beginning of pregnancy, but I’m doing a few specific things now to {hopefully} help things go along more smoothly than they did for Ridley’s birth. Obviously, every birth is different and I’m also preparing to roll with the punches of whatever comes along.

These tips are merely what I’m doing and shouldn’t be taken as medical advice. Always consult your care provider for your own personalized plan!

Tips To Help Prepare For Natural Childbirth

Chlorophyll

I’ve been taking liquid chlorophyll since about 20 weeks. I just squirt it in some water and down it every morning. It tastes a bit minty, so not too bad at all. Chlorophyll is a cell builder and a blood builder as well as being great for the immune system. Just to be extra cautious, I’m taking one tablespoon a day to build up my blood before birth.

Evening Primrose Oil

I’ve been taking Evening Primrose Oil for about a week. It is known to help prepare the cervix for labor. I wouldn’t start it any earlier than 37-38 weeks just to be on the safe side. I’m supplementing with soft gels internally {at both ends…ahem.} I know that EPO can induce labor in some women, so be sure to consult with your care provider before you begin taking it.

5-W

This product is designed to begin taking five weeks before your due date. It strengthens and tones the uterus for labor and delivery. My midwife recommends it for her patients and my sister has had success with it as well. She’s had three babies in 2.5 years. Seriously! There are ingredients in it that “could” induce labor for some women so check with your care provider before beginning this product.

Mental Preparation

In the last few weeks, I’ve been reading Birthing From Within. It is an excellent book. Right now, I’m concentrating on embracing pain and understanding it’s purpose. My hubs and I took Bradley birthing classes prior to Ridley’s birth. I’m convinced that I owe surviving through 40 hours of horrendous back labor to those classes.

Preparing for this experience mentally is probably one of the biggest challenges. Fear, anxiety and a plethora of other emotions can definitely get in the way of being mentally ready.

Spiritual Preparation

Last, but not least, I’m praying my little heart out. I’m relying big time on the strength that I know God will give me for every moment of labor and delivery. I’m meditating on Bible verses and songs to help keep me grounded spiritually.

I’m not looking for a “magic pill” to make labor and delivery a cake walk, but whatever I can do to prepare my body, soul and mind can only help…not hinder. I just wanted to clarify that for y’all. :)

Have you had a natural childbirth experience? Did you do anything to prepare your soul, mind and body?

XO

*****

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Comments

  1. Myra! good for you! I totally gained about fifty lbs with each pregnancy. You’re in my prayers!
    ashley @ the handmade home´s last blog post ..building a handmade hideaway : the roof {how to build a treehouse}

  2. I am praying for you, Myra!! I had natural birth’s with both of my son’s, and it was wonderful! I had my first son at a birth center, and my second son last month at a hospital. (I was considered high risk because of my bp issues). My nurse was a God send. She was a midwife back in the Ukraine, and she was SO helpful and encouraging.
    Tara´s last blog post ..The Newborn Session from H-E Double L

  3. Chlorophyll is amazing stuff. It really helped me out with beating anemia (which made me terribly lethargic and unable to stand up for more than about 10 minutes at a time) both during pregnancy and after delivery. Don’t quit taking it once the baby comes! :) Praying for you!
    Diana´s last blog post ..Fat Quarter Grocery Bag Holder

  4. Well I had one natural childbirth because I got to the hospital ten minutes before baby girl burst upon the scene. My labor at home was not that bad and I did not realize how far it had progressed until I felt like I had to push!! WE raced to the hospital and I had barely gotten into the labor and delivery room and my water broke…sped to delivery room and by the time hubs got to the floor after the paperwork downstairs, baby was here and bawling her head off under the heat lamps.( And I hate to admit this but I am a nurse) This was my second child and the labor was very different than the first…much easier. Out of my three birthing experiences, this was really the easiest!! Best wishes as you prepare for the maternal marathon!!(That is how I have always thought of childbirth…a marathon for the Mama…toward the end you think you just cannot do it but somehow you do!! And the elation once it is over with is a high that no one but a mom can understand!).

  5. I HIGHLY recommend the jacuzzi tub, if available. This helped relax me so much that things went quickly. Best wishes!

  6. Myra, I’ll be praying for you over the next few days as you prepare to welcome your little one to the big world. My babies were each “surprise” deliveries, being 6 wks, 3 wks & 4 wks ahead of their due dates! The first one was truly early, #’s 2 & 3 may have been miscalculated due dates. But, no matter, the result was that I went into each delivery somewhat mentally “unprepared.” And yet, I managed to achieve my goal of drug-free deliveries. For baby #1 (true preemie) I had not even had time to take my birthing classes! Yikes. Thank the Lord (and I’m sure it was His provision) I had read every thing I could find at the time (mid-70′s) and had nurses who gave me some quick natural childbirth training. I say this to encourage you that even without preparation, you can manage your birth experience to your satisfaction and well-being.

    Don’t forget to breathe! You – and especially your baby – need oxygen. Relax every minute you can between contractions. As you well know, labor is work. Come to the experience as well-rested as you can be. I found it helpful to remind myself that any pain, discomfort, fatigue, etc I felt was short-term & wouldn’t last forever.

    It is fabulous how young moms-to-be these days have more choices and options. I wish I had had the opportunity to make a birth plan! It’s such a good thing to have a “roadmap” for your experience, while also being prepared for surprises around the bend, as it were.
    Without such a plan, you could say I had an “I can get through this one thing” or “this one moment” approach, but was ready to change the route if necessary. It’s a technique I still use when any aspect of life gets a little rugged.

    God bless you, sweet girl, with His loving care. May he bring you and your precious baby through the wonderful experience of birth in the best of health. Can’t wait to hear the happy news of his arrival.

    Suzanne
    Suzanne´s last blog post ..Then and Now

  7. Roll with the punches, stay positive, move a lot…most of all trust in your body that it knows what to do. Try not to overthink it walking into it…this will be a different experience. It sounds like you are well prepared, and extremely tough (40 hours, holy COW!) I’ve given birth unmedicated twice…it was much faster the second time. Oh, and only push when you feel like you HAVE to…preserve your lady parts! Good luck!! We’re all cheering for you!
    Danielle´s last blog post ..Crafting A.D.D.

  8. Myra,

    Thank you for the information. I’m expecting my first baby in mid August and I’m also hoping to go natural. I’m currently putting together a list of christian worship songs to help with my labor and I would love to know what songs have been helping you and are on your list.

    Thank you so much and you’ll be in my prayers-

  9. After birthing a 9.5 lb boy, my second 8.10 just slid out…you are more prepared and knowledgeable and so ready for that precious baby from God…He will take of you and your family! Bless!

  10. Estelle Krol says:

    Don’t worry, relax and trust in youself and all the love that is surrounding you…

    Praying for you

    Estelle

  11. Hi Myra,

    I had all 3 of my boys naturally, no drugs at all. I was very lucky with my first and last sons because I was not in labor for long. The first was 2 1/2 hours and the last was maybe 4 hours tops, but my middle son, oh boy, he was my 15 hour labor. I did not take anything to prepare my body but with my first, I did take a massage based lamaze class. We learned so many techniques for releasing natural endorphins and by the time I had my last, I think I used most of them. Each labor was so different from the one before it, but one thing was always the same, I went into transition and I wanted an epidural, especially when I was crowning. That was the only time that I asked for one and each time they told me no, imagine that! With my second and last sons, I used the mantra, “Pain is good, pain means it is almost over.” I also would tell myself, “Mind over matter, I can do this.” The last one worked until the last few centimeters, then I said to heck with this! “Pull my hair sarge and do it now!” Pulling hair gently releases incredible happy hormones. making labor more bearable. While I was preparing for labor, I walked and I swam. I was on bed rest for most of my pregnancy with the last two but as soon as my doc said it was safe for me to walk, I was out there walking for miles each day. It helped so much; both with my actual labor and also with my stress about the labor before hand. I was lucky enough to only have to push for no more than 11 minutes with each baby. Some of that was the exercise and some was just my body, in other words it won’t be that way for everyone. I am so glad that I did it all natural for all of my babies because after each nurse that took care of my babies said that they were the most alert in the nursery. It is rare to see someone go through without an epidural these days. However, I must say, if an epidural is necessary for you as you go through it, don’t feel bad or guilty or anything else, because had my labor with my last baby gone any longer, I was going to get the darn epidural! It is hard, excruciating and tiring to have a baby! You should get through it in whichever way is the best way for you. :o) Good luck with your upcoming labor!
    Oh, by the way, I learned something new with my last baby, they have bed bars for squatting once your water has broken. I don’t know if you mentioned what setting you were going to birth in, but if it is a hospital setting, ask for one. Don’t ever lie down flat on your back, it makes it so much worse! I had my last baby in a squatting position because that was what my body told me to do. I am glad that I listened! :o)
    Carmen B´s last blog post ..Summer Fun: A Treasure Hunt!

  12. Christy says:

    Love all the comments…plus yours, Myra. Clearly you’ve got a lot of natural birth followers. And I’m another of them. :) Six kids. All natural. One was even breech.

    And I’ll tell you no two deliveries are the same, just as no two children are. Not even close.

    I second the “Get thee to a jacuzzi” comment by Leah. Used one to labor in with #1. (Thought the idea of actually birthing in it was the most ’70s thing I’d ever heard of!) Then moved around to having #3 and #5 IN the water. #3 was the most beautiful, calm birth I ever experienced…for me and for my son. So, even though it sounds funky as heck, I too say look into water birth. SO much easier on the body (mom’s). So much calmer a transition for baby.

    Peace. Blessings. Lots of love to you in these last couple weeks (no matter what they end up looking like!)

    Christy

  13. Myra, I know you’ll do just fine. Both my boys were born via natural childbirth. The second labor and delivery was sooo much easier and quicker. It seems #1 paved the way for the second one. Relax and go with the flow. A woman’s body has been built to deliver babies. Trust in its ability to birth. xxxooo
    Brittany (aka Pretty Handy Girl)´s last blog post ..Rustic Wooden Caddy with a Branch Handle

  14. Myra, I love reading your blog! I’ve been meaning to tell you that I just had my third son on July 4th. I didn’t intend to have him without any drugs but I went so fast I didn’t have time for them. (I had my second son without drugs also but I was pretty adament I wanted them this time. God clearly had other plans!) I read Birthing from Within as you had recommended and I thought it helped me a lot. So I just wanted to say “Thanks”! I hope your labor and delivery goes wonderfully and as quick as mine! This delivery was also my second vbac and I’m pretty proud of that too!

  15. Dear Myra, Thank you for sharing your pregnancy experiences on your blog. I’m expecting my first baby in October. I’m praying a lot that the Lord will give me the mental and physical strength to have a ‘good’ labour. I live in the UK so the pattern of healthcare is somewhat different to what you are experiencing, but I’ve still got a lot of encouragement from your blog. I hope your pregnancy ends really well!

  16. Congrats! Sounds like you are “doing” all the great stuff! All of my labors were natural, very diverse – with some complications – like two being 6 weeks early, but God gave me Scripture to memorize and each child had their own Scripture which I was able to recite – either verbally or mentally during childbirth – and breathe! What a blessing to have God bring me through – especially the one that was 12 hours of transition as he kept crawling back up my spine! I would do it all over in a heartbeat – my last baby is 17 :( – God’s best to you!

  17. Ashlee Wortham-Ferguson says:

    Hi. I am currently 13 weeks pregnant and very excited. I too want to take the path of natural child birth. I am torn between having my baby in a hospital versus a birthing center. My husband and I have not toured hospitals and birthing centers yet, but I am very open to all the options that I have. I too am a Christian and have been praying you little heart out as well. I have been reading everything that comes to me regarding pregnancy, delivery, and parenting. We are so excite. It’s my husband’s 4th and my 1st. God is good. Now the million dollar question: is it a boy or girl? We shall see sometime next month :-) Thanks for sharing your story about your delivery with your son. I’m going to purchase the book “Birthing from Within” and see where that takes me. Thanks again Myra

    ~Ashlee

  18. It’s hard to come by knowledgeable people on this topic, however, you seem like you know what you’re talking about!

    Thanks
    website´s last blog post ..website

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