It’s Labor Day and while I know the origins of this lovely September holiday are based in celebrating the contributions of the working people, when I hear labor, I always think childbirth.
In honor of that, I wanted to share my top five unexpected experiences with labor.
1. It lasts a long time. No. Really. I always heard horror stories of women in labor for two or three days, but didn’t believe. Until I went into labor with my oldest on a Wednesday morning and had him via emergency c section on a Thursday night. On Thursday morning, we finally turned off our cell phones and asked the nurses to hold our calls. We were tired of answering, “Is there a baby yet?” with “No.”
2. It doesn’t usually go according to plan. I had a seven page, color coded, numerically tabbed birth plan. It was gorgeous. And went completely out the window. I do know women who had their children according to their plans, but I think their memories might be fuzzy.
3. You don’t remember much. You’d think that the most important experience of your life would be branded on your memory. That each second would be etched into your brain. All I remember is a haze of people, pain, phone calls, pain, doctors, pains, meds, pain, bad hair, pain, and strawberry Jello.
4. Don’t eat the strawberry Jello.
5. Everyone told me that I’d fall in love the second I held my baby. They were all wrong. It took less than a second.
What were the most unexpected things during your labors? What advice would you give a first-time mom?