I was in labor for 30hrs without drugs…. Yes, I’m crazy! I figured many women before me went au natural, so how bad could it be? I love those celebrities who say “I did hypnobirthing and it was a very calm and peaceful birth.” Clearly they had DRUGS, because while my hypnobirthing cd’s also focused solely on my “happy place”, I learned that no amount of reading (books or celebrity interviews) or watching movies can prepare you for what your labor is going to be like. Example 1: WATER BREAKS (mine didn’t)! Example 2: People are screaming (I was the only one screaming) trying to get to the hospital in time.
That being said, my labor was similar to a sitcom in many ways…My water did not break (as I mentioned), but my contractions were 2-3mins apart so we made our way to the hospital. My doula said it would be GREAT to make me walk instead of dropping me off at the door. I’m thinking this baby is coming out on the sidewalk. I’m walking in downtown DC in the middle of the afternoon on the GW University campus trying to make my way to the hospital door (yep, I had a contraction at every ½ a block) while screaming and scaring every student that walked by, probably a good form of birth control, only to find out that I was only 1 cm dialated. Excuse ME?! Please check again! “Sorry you have to go home” said the midwife, “it could take hours”… little did I know that it would be 18 more hours because my baby was sideways and had to rotate.
The only problem is the troops had all been called – so my husband, mom, dad, sister, and doula all came over instead…and the mattress delivery guy who conveniently showed up to deliver our new mattress to the room I was practically giving birth in. I did every yoga pose and breathing exercise I knew, took a lot of showers and drank wine. Did you know you could drink wine while in labor? I’m pretty sure that my great grandmother must have had moonshine while delivering her 10 kids!!
Labor was truly a Marathon of strength, endurance, and positive thinking! It was the hardest workout ever, but I have discipline to thank for making it through! I ate really well and juiced throughout the whole pregnancy. I exercised, taught classes, walked the dog, and moved into our new home being 8 months pregnant. Believe me, there were definitely days when it was hard to do walking lunges and squats with my extra 30lb baby bump, but I made it work. I listened to my body and still did cardio, yoga, barre, strength training, and core work! In order to get my mommy tummy back quickly I engaged my core through balance exercises, stability ball moves, and side extensions. After the delivery, I was able to get right up and walk down the hall– even though I felt like I had just ran 2 marathons with a CrossFit competition followed by a hot yoga class.
Lest you think I am super-human and uber-disciplined, my first mommy request was a cheeseburger and milkshake PLEASE… along with my bottle of champange that was chilling in the nurses’ refrigerator. I mean come on— I must have burned 567,987 calories during the 30 hr delivery – I think I earned it. It’s all about moderation… right?!
What I’ve learned so far, and will devote much of my blogging entries to, is how motherhood presents new challenges every day and will show you that you are stronger than you know! Follow me on my journey of new-mommydom while attempting to stay fit and fabulous through sleepless nights and never ending piles of laundry!