I was under no illusions when I was pregnant with my first baby. I knew what kind of labour and birth I wanted but I had heard so many stories where it was just not meant to be. Unplanned forceps, C sections, prolonged labours and issues like the baby pooping in labour. Like many ladies, I wanted a natural birth, with minimal pain killers and if possible, in the water.
It’s kind of like asking for the moon on a stick really isn’t it? We have no idea what will happen. Will you dilate properly? Will cope with the pain? Will the baby need help to be delivered? Who knows? Let’s go into labour and play the lottery.
I was very lucky. It worked out that I had water births for both of my babies. It hurt like hell and I enjoyed my gas and air but both girls were delivered in water, which was exactly how I wanted it to be. I may not look very happy here on this picture (pushing was on its way but I was comfy).
I’d recommend a water birth to any mother to be, if it was possible and this is why:
– It was so relaxing. Both times the minute my body hit the warm water, I relaxed. The pain of course was still bad but I felt more in control.
– You can be as naked as you want. I kept my bikini top on both times but it was nice to be free of clothes and also quite fresh feeling in the water. It can get really hot!!
– It felt very non invasive. The midwife of course was checking my girls’ heart rates but that was it. I was just kind of left to go for it and for my first, my husband delivered her and for my second, I did!
– You still have the freedom to get in lots of positions to give birth. I actually ended up on my back which surprised me but it was the most comfortable. I could have squatted or been on all fours.
– If you poop it is easy to sieve away! I didn’t with my first but did a little with my second. Oh the joys!
– The baby stays really chilled out. I found both times with the girls they didn’t really cry until their little bodies got cold after they were born. I also find it fascinating how they don’t take their first breath until they are out of the water! Amazing! Especially as both girls were stuck for a bit after their heads were born.
– I know it shouldn’t matter but it is nice to have a baby come out all clean. They get a nice dunk in the water and all the blood gets washed out, leaving only some of the nice vernix on their skin.
– It was lovely to sit in the warm water for a little while after the birth. You can have that skin to skin contact and just chill for a little.
Birth is such a personal experience for all ladies and although I didn’t really have a firm birth plan, I had a good idea of what I wanted and I was lucky.
If you are planning your birth, consider a water birth if possible. It was the best thing I have done both times!