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Natural childbirth should give you some street cred... (#natural childbirth)

Motherhood has reinforced my admiration for mothers, including my own. I know that women have been raising children for centuries, but my God, it is hard work! And let’s not discuss how babies are born.

Childbirth is a bitch! Of course I had heard that it was hard before I experienced myself. However, I truly had no idea what it would be like until it was my time.

My mother had three children without medication. Before I had my baby she failed to share one critical piece of information. It is VERY, VERY hard!

Quite frankly, had I known that natural child birth would test my strength and resolve so much, I may have opted for general anesthesia—forget the epidural. Hell, I may have turned back if I could have.

Each contraction overwhelmed me. I had expected pelvic pressure, but my expectations were misguided. The pain felt like I had had been hit all over my body repeatedly with a two by four with nails sticking out of it. And just when the pain was beginning to wear off I would get hit again—harder!

Even though I chose natural childbirth I had no idea that I could endure that kind of pain. I chose natural childbirth was because I was terrified. I was afraid of the having an epidural. The thought of having a needle inserted into my back, the pain of the injection, and the potential complications were enough to make me want to see if I could hire someone to have the baby for me! I was unable to use narcotics because they make me vomit. And I was afraid that my baby would be born all drugged up and develop a taste for drugs early. OK, not all of my fears were rational…

Even though my desire for a natural childbirth grew out of fear, I soon learned that it made me sound kind of badass. So, I stopped thinking about me as a wimp and started thinking of me as an Amazon. I planned to conquer childbirth with a single bound and get a great blog entry as an added bonus.

Then I talked myself into it, as only I can do. Like Richard Pryor and Michael Jackson, I began to believe I was “b-a-d”! Naively, I believed that my marathon training had prepared me for childbirth. I believed that my prenatal yoga had given me thighs of steel and an impenetrable will. I thought that the breathing techniques that I learned in Lamaze would help me stay centered. I also believed that my relationship with Andre would calmly reassure me when the going got tough. I looked forward to my labor and looked forward to having a brave tale to tell.

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