The reality of a natural childbirth

Linda and her husband were beyond excited when they found out they were pregnant. As they got farther along, Linda became deeply aware of what her body was doing and decided in her second trimester that she wanted a natural childbirth.

“Pregnancy was a really wonderful and interesting experience,” she said. “I got very involved with prenatal yoga, and I learned so much about pregnancy and about infancy and motherhood from my yoga experience.”

To prepare for labor, Linda used a yoga technique called Sat Nam. In Sat Nam, you close your eyes and focus on what’s called your third eye point, which is the point between and above your two eyes. With “Sat,” you breathe in, and with “Nam” you breathe out. It’s intended to take your focus off of everything else and in turn help you to not think about the pain.

“By doing the Sat Nam breathing, I realized, ‘Wow, I can do this,’” Linda said. “I took that attitude with me into the delivery room to get through my contractions, and it worked.”

Although friends and family were shocked at their decision to go natural, Linda and her husband were looking forward to it. Their original ob/gyn wasn’t supportive of their decision, so far along in her pregnancy, Linda sought out a new doctor. She looked for one that relied on midwives first and had a hospital at the ready should anything go terribly wrong. Even late in her pregnancy she was able to find the right doctor to accept her as a patient, and that made settling into a natural birth much easier.

Linda’s water broke at four in the morning, and after that, she said things got incredibly intense. She went from being two centimeters dilated to her son, Zachary, being born in two hours.

Linda said the doctors and nurses were astounded at how quickly the delivery was, and Linda was amazed at how alert her newborn baby boy, Zachary, was. When they laid him on her belly, he squirmed his tiny little body right up to her breast, following his instincts that weren’t dulled from medication.

“Being able to have a natural child birth was the most amazing, beautiful, wonderful experience I could have ever imagined,” Linda said. “While it certainly wasn’t easy, it was worth it. I was so aware of what was going on with him and in my body, and he came out healthy and alert. We were able to start bonding immediately. It was incredible.”

If you’re thinking of going the natural route, BabyCenter has answers to all your questions, including the most popular, “How bad will it hurt?” Also, take a look at these helpful resources:

MORE TIPS & TOOLS

Talk It Over
Visit the forums at NaturalChildbirth.org to discuss birth plans, find midwives or doulas, and even learn a few of the yoga moves Linda used in her delivery.

The Bump Project
A hilarious blog about baby bumps, bump fashion and the celebrities who race to lose their baby weight at ungodly speeds.

Making Plans
Baby on the way and no where to turn? Not if you’ve got a Planned Parenthood in your community. Find information, support and prenatal care (even if you’re uninsured) no matter what your decision.

Just a Little Pregnant
Julie talks about infertility, in vitro and proud parenthood in this amusing, inspiring online journal.

Childbirth: Go natural or get drugged?

Usually as soon as the doctor tells you you’re pregnant, something in your gut wells up and screams “I’M GOING NATURAL” or “GIVE ME DRUGS!”

We like to think of that as your first bout of motherly instinct.

With doulas and midwives gaining popularity and credibility and women like Ricki Lake making documentaries on the business of childbirth, it’s tough to know which way to go.

Capessa has brought in the experts — real moms who have given birth — to see what worked for them and why. Hopefully hearing how other women did it will make listening to your gut a little easier.

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Mission Impossible
Give up on being mother of the year (they think you already are) and relish in your perfect flaws at Imperfect Parent.

Productive Parenting
From infants to young adults and everything tween, Parenting.org offers tips and advice to help your child be all you wish you could have been and all she is capable of.

A Lactation Education
Get news, product information, how-to videos and a hearty laugh from the women of Breastfeeding.com.