Labour *should* be happening any day now – I’ve been counting down the days for the entirety of the final trimester, and you’d think I was gearing up for Christmas at the rate I’ve wanted this to come round. Reality is now beginning to hit though, and whilst I’ve hated pregnancy, and I’m ready to meet little Baby J – I am not ready for labour. I suppose you probably never are ‘ready’ as such, but I’ve now read what must be close to hundreds of birth stories, I’ve googled every possible outcome, and I’ve watched many a labour video on youtube (only the nice, edited, not gruesome, vlog style ones – even I can’t bring myself to face One Born Every Minute until after delivery) and if anything I feel worse off than I did before. My labour fears may be erratic, but they are definitely there.
1. What If It Lasts for 37 hours?
I don’t know where I plucked 37 specifically from, I’m sure 36 would be just as bad, but either way you get the idea. What happens if I’m in labour for days?! I’ve heard a few stories of multiple day long labours, and I honestly don’t know how I’d cope with an extended labour that shows no sign of ending. I’ve currently been giving myself a pep talk based wholly around the idea that labour is only temporary and will be worth it for the end result – I’m not sure how peppy that talk will be after a day and a half with no sign of letting up though…
2. What If I Can’t Have An Epidural?
I’ve not looked into the actual time scales, because chances are I’ll just get myself hyped up and more worried than I have to be, but I know that after dilating past a certain point, you can be too late to get an epidural. At this point, I don’t even know if I want one, actually that’s a lie, at this point I want everything they are taking – but the thought of no longer having the option is terrifying. I’d hate to be told that I was no longer viable for one, and have the choice taken from me. Chances are, if I’m in a place where there saying I’m too far gone and I can’t have one, then I didn’t need one in the first place and it’ll all be over soon – it’s just all down to the thought of someone else making that choice for me.
3. What If He’s Not Ok?
Finding out so late into my pregnancy meant that I didn’t get to take Folic Acid, I was still drinking alcohol (not excessively, but still), I was drinking excessive coffee, I probably wasn’t eating enough, and vitamins were non-existent in my system. Because of how late we were, we were not able to get any of the screening tests that accompany a normal pregnancy also, so any irregularities won’t have been picked up. It goes without saying love is unconditional, and I’m sure he will be perfectly healthy, but I still worry that he won’t be completely healthy when he’s born, as a result of not taking care of my body, and therefore him, in the first and second trimesters.
Even the word gives me the shivers. Actually, it’s probably more the word than the actual process of using them that is a fear. I’m firmly of the anything to get him out safely mindset, so I won’t say no to any intervention needed, but the mere thought of forceps puts me off. I know a lot of babies are delivered healthily this way, and they are probably not nearly as bad as they seem, but I can’t help but dread the thought of them.
5. Tearing In Two
Tears are a part of labour I’ve already accepted – I’m under no false illusion that I’ll most likely tear and I’m ok with that, the minute we start mentioning third/fourth degree, this way, that way, every way tears my heart drops. These only happen in 4% or so of mums, but I just can’t help but think I’ll be part of that 4%. An Episiotomy is terrifying as well – I’d been completely fine, until I read a post about the reality of recovery from one (I currently have baby brain and can’t remember which blog it was on, but if I do remember i’ll link!), and now it’s well and truly on my list of fears.
6. Losing My Labour Partner
This is a completely justified fear – anyone who knows Jordan personally will know he has absolutely no gag reflex and anything remotely gruesome will probably see him bring up the contents of his stomach. I can’t imagine he will be any legitimate use as a labour partner, and I may just ask him to stand outside, just so he doesn’t piss me off. If he’s not sick, and he doesn’t faint, then chances are he’ll simply never let me forget the time I poo’d myself during labour, so to be honest, I think it’s a winning choice. Sorry Jordan.
As I said, they are probably slightly irrational, but I think everyone has their own set of slightly ridiculous labour fears. No doubt when labour actually decides to kick off these things will be the last thing on my mind, but in the run up, when I’m literally days away, they seem to be all that’s playing on it. What were your labour fears? Anything more ridiculous than mine?….