30 May 2009

D Day

Today is the day that we've been planning around for the last 8 months, so of course with only a quoted chance of 5% of anything happening today, nothing has happened.

I've been having twinges all day but as far as I can tell the twinges are just that, nothing greater but I'm saying that with hindsight as well, I'm typing this rather than Simon twittering from the delivery suite. I've been rereading the advice and tips on labour. I think that the most annoying piece of advice that almost all the books and magazines give is that "you'll know when you are in labour."


Does a small but perfectly formed marching band suddenly appear playing "Congratulations" in the style of an American High School Pep Band? When does a Braxton Hicks contraction stop being intense and starts being a proper true labour contraction? Saying that you'll know not giving advice as far as I am concerned. It's like birth plans - what position do you want to use? which drugs do you want? How do you want your birth partner to massage you? How do I know I've never done this before and have absolutely no concept of how I am going to react to the pain. I completed my birth plan today it's basically a list of what I would prefer in a vague order of preference but I'm thinking that birth plans are basically a plot to make new mothers feel bad because they didn't get the birth they wanted. The delivery suite had a long list of reasons of why the birthing pool wouldn't be available, or why you won't be able to get that desperately needed epidural. And that's before medical issues are taken into account.

Oh I know I am having a bit of a rant, it's just that I feel a bit cross with it all, I just don't like the not knowing when it's all going to happen or the lack of control. My sister in law had to have a Cesarean because of underlying medical issues, she knew for at least two months when the baby was going to be born. I like that sort of knowing in advance even if I don't particularly envy her the c-section.


  1. Have never met you, stumbled across your blog through a link on Jame's blog. (Never met him either, but I've been reading his blog awhile.) But anyway, I have a 3-year old and I remember something that helped me from the birthing class. They said to know if contractions are real or Braxton-Hicks, take a bath. If B-H, they will go away. If they're real labor contractions, you'll keep having them in the bath.

    Also, I was naive I guess but I didn't realize a that the water doesn't always break! They had to break mine after a certain point a few hours before the baby was born.

    Anyway, best of luck to you! :)

  2. Sometimes it's immediately apparent, sometimes not - I never had any Braxton-Hicks contractions in 3 pregnancies so, although my labours started quite gently, I knew that was what they were.

    What one sees on TV dramas is quite unrealistic. One doesn't suddenly double up, gasping as labour strikes. It may take a few hours before you're sure - and even when you are, it may well be that you'll carry on having gentle contractions for quite some time and you can just potter around the house as normal, or maybe, since you aren't getting a birthing pool at the hospital, you might like a long soak in the bath. You will, believe me, know when it's time to go to hospital.

    Even if you want an epidural, if you want not to have a Caesarean, leave it as long as possible because the more medical intervention you get, the more likely to are to need one. Remember, each contraction you have brings your baby's birth closer - thinking of them as a positive benefit helped me. You can and will cope, and once you're holding your baby, you won't care.

    I know just what you mean about the lack of control, but just smile and give your baby that power. He's in charge for now (and for the rest of your life, but that's another story...).

    Good luck, sweetie xx