…from a first time mum who googled, researched and asked everyone everything about the process. By no means an expert but just some advice for any other first time moms!
- When everyone says you will ‘just know’ when you are having contractions, they are not wrong! My mum said they will stop you in your tracks and you won’t be able to carrying on doing what you were doing. My contractions started as period type aches in my lower back. They got stronger and stronger as the time passed and they definitely stopped me in my tracks by the time I got to the hospital. Before going into labour I would think ‘oh could that be one’ at every slight niggle I felt, but when I started feeling those aches I just knew I didn’t even question it! My labour was back to back (baby was facing upwards), this meant that my contractions were more in my back than anywhere else and where extremely painful towards the end.
- When your waters break you will also just know! There were so many times in the last weeks that I had a lot of discharge and thought that might be my waters. When they did eventually break it was obvious it was not just discharge and the water kept coming. I changed my underwear and trousers and within 20 minutes I had to change again, the water was constantly trickling out!
- The pain – I always asked everyone how much does it really hurt, but I think there is only one way to know the answer to this question and that it by experiencing it for yourself because everybody handles pain differently. The one thing I would say though, is that the after pain is MUCH worse than any pain you experience during labour. The constant ache, sting, throbbing and pain down below after the adrenaline has worn off is REALLY bad! This is much worse if you had any kind of tear which is quite common. Just be prepared for this. When you get up and walk for the first time the next day it might just feel like your insides are going to fall out (don’t worry they won’t actually fall out)
- There is nothing your partner can do! This may not be true for everyone, but the honest truth is that your partner cannot do anything and really for most of it you wouldn’t know if they were there or not. The main part that I found super helpful for hubby to be there for was the pushing and the actually birth. The whole time leading up to that part of labour, I just squeezed his hand while he nodded off in the chair in-between giving me moral support, which made little difference while I was focused on managing the pain of contractions.
- ‘Did I just poo’ – this is what I said to hubby in-between pushing. You will most definitely poo at some point, you may or may not realise that you have done because the midwives are great and just clean it up, but you will definitely do it! To be completely honest at this point in labour you have had your water constantly dribbling out of you, you are walking around half naked and have had at least 2 people’s hands inside of you that you really do not care about pooing while pushing.
These are my top 5 truth’s.
Do you guys have any you would add?