My pregnancy had been what I would say an adventure. It was a great and beautiful experience. I loved every moment of it and if I had to go through it again, I would. My son is truly a blessing to me and I am thankful for him every single day of my life.
Hearing my baby’s first heartbeat and feeling the first fluttering kicks was such an overwhelming feeling; a feeling of strong bond of love and attachment I felt between my child and I. I loved waking up to my son’s kicks. Even though I enjoyed feeling his kicks (it always assured me he was ok in there), there were times I was annoyed especially when trying to sleep.
To be honest I dreaded labor. I remember feeling an overwhelming fear for labor and delivery that thinking about it got me anxious. I heard many women telling stories of painful, long hours of labor that even an epidural didn’t numb the pain entirely. But in the other hand, I really wanted to go through labor without an epidural, without any interference. An all-natural labor, somewhat.
The last few weeks of my pregnancy was kind of nerve-racking and anticipating. I remember getting ultrasounds every week. My amniotic fluids were very low. This got me feeling even more anxious than I already was. I started to drink even more water to help my fluids number go up.
On Sunday morning, May 22nd of 2016, I remember waking up with a dull ache in my lower back and abdomen. It was more of a menstrual pain. Although it was a bit painful and annoying, it was manageable. I just knew my son was almost done baking since my due date was the next day. I remember feeling nauseated and crampy. So, I decided to take a hot bath to relieve my cramps since I heard this helps. It did help quite a bit. I also had an ultrasound done at that day to see if my amniotic fluids numbers went up cause if not I would have been induced that day. Thankfully, the numbers did go up.
Around 12 am, I started feeling more tired and crampy. That’s when I felt a wave of contractions tightening for a couple of minutes then loosening. I wasn’t sure if I was in labor or not since this was my first pregnancy. It was every 15 minutes I felt this pain. I tried to take a nap since I didn’t sleep well the night before but I couldn’t. Then at 1 am, I felt a heavy pressure in my lower abdomen. I felt the contractions become stronger. I had an urge to use the bathroom. My body was “cleaning” and “emptying” itself out for my son’s arrival. My contractions were coming every 5 minutes and lasting for a minute. It was more of intense menstrual cramps. Then I knew I was in early labor. My husband insisted to go to the hospital but I didn’t want to. I was able to tolerate the pain. I knew the nurses will tie me in bed and not let me walk around.
I kept telling him, “I’m fine, let’s just wait for another hour then we’ll go.”
The whole hour I was huffing and puffing but controlling my breathing, trying to relax. I found that this technique, inhaling slowly through my nose then exhaling through my mouth, was incredibly helpful. No really! I also walked around the house.
An hour later, 2 am, I decided to go to the hospital. My contractions were getting even much stronger.
I was hooked on an IV and a heart monitor. The contractions kept intensifying but I refused for an epidural. I endured the pain and kept telling myself, “I am almost there, no need for an epidural.” I was grateful for my loving mother and husband. The whole time they kept massaging my lower back, as I felt the most pain there. Their massage was in great help. It helped ease my pain a bit.
Two hours of grunting, it was time to push. I felt so happy for this moment because my son was almost here. I thought, “well, a few minutes and I can finally meet my precious baby.” I thought this was the “easy” part. Hahaha, think again. Pushing was much harder and exhausting than my labor. It was very difficult to push. I thought my son was never coming out. I pushed and pushed until my face turned red, until my eyes felt like they were going to pop out any time.
Finally, I pushed one last time and the cries of my son were to be heard. A feeling of relief rushed over me. I couldn’t believe that this little boy came out of me! I was amazed and glorified for the capability of my body. The feeling of exhaustion and pain has been forgotten. All feelings of anxiety, stress, fear, and hungry were also forgotten. It was as if an angel had descended in my room. Sounds so cheesy but if I had to describe my son, I’d call him an angel; ‘cause he did make me feel so much glorified. I just wanted to hold my son tightly and never let him go. This was the day I became a mother, May 23rd 2016. The day I promised to love him unconditionally. The day I was very fortunate and grateful for.
Fortunately, my labor wasn’t long or excruciating. It was about 4 hours and delivery an hour. From my experience, I learned that every labor is different and unique. If someone tells you their experience of labor, don’t assume yours will be the same. Some labors are long and painful and some are manageable. Like the saying goes no two stories are the same. This is true, especially for labor.