My pregnancy was not exactly enjoyable (fatigue, nausea, vomiting well into the 2nd trimester), but baby and I were healthy. After some research and one traditional OB visit, I decided that a free-standing birth center would be the environment most compatible with my goals for childbirth. I hoped for very little intervention during my pregnancy, labor, and delivery. Apart from the fascinating and exciting anatomy scan at 21 weeks, my prenatal care and visits were uneventful – blood pressure and baby heartbeat checks, weigh-ins, and the standard tests.
I managed pregnancy thanks to prenatal yoga 2-3 times week and weekly chiropractor visits (Webster technique) – plus prenatal massages when I could swing it! With these practitioners, sessions with my wonderful doula, and the childbirth and breastfeeding education classes at the birth center, I felt mentally and physically prepared for labor and childbirth. There was no shortage of traumatic stories and worried words from friends who insisted an epidural was a necessity. Seeing as there was no way to control what would happen, I found it much more pleasant to focus on the path of manageable labor and an unmedicated, natural childbirth. I spent a lot of time visualizing what my body was going to be doing. I half-listened to hypnobirthing guides and fell asleep reading euphoric and pain-free birth stories. I crafted and protected my bubble of optimism. Continue reading