If childbirth is like a marathon, I’ll be a happy middle of the packer.
Ever since I found out I was expecting, people have been telling me that I will have no problem at all with the whole experience. After all, I am a runner…surely I have beat myself up more than this and have dealt with more pain than this, right? I have powered through sore muscles, shin splints, Achilles tendinitis, headaches, backaches, frigid/rainy runs, and 20+ milers…all for FUN…so popping out a baby should be nothing…right?
Sorry, kids, this Mama Bear is just NOT buying it. All you running mamas and husbands to running mamas out there MUST be pulling my leg. Have you SEEN those childbirth videos? Have you SEEN the way those women clamor and scream and sweat!? Have you heard their guttoral growls of pain!? You can’t tell me this is “manageable pain.” I just do not believe it.
While I briefly (and by “briefly” I mean all of 3.7 seconds) considered an all-natural birth, I can now quite confidently say that this is NOT an option for me. I. AM. A. NINNY. However, after talking with my doctor, doing my own research, and talking with other recent running mamas, I have decided that complete and total epidural is not the option for me either.
Thankfully, there are now “walking epidurals” or what I like to call, “dial-a-number pain meds.” Basically, you get to pick your strength, on a level from 1 to 10, and that’s the amount of medication they give you. HALLELUJAH! Options! While I would love think myself tough enough to handle birthing my child the au naturale way, I just don’t think I’m woman enough for all that. After all, the good Lord gave us drugs, so why not use them?
After all the miserable injuries I have experienced in my years of running and training, you cannot possibly expect me to believe that these were all worse than pushing a watermelon through my lady parts. I am not saying those injuries did not toughen me up a little, but for now, this girl will stick with (some) drugs. I know I am probably making WAY too much out of this, but they way I figure is this…if I imagine this process as being the most awful, terrible pain that I have ever experienced and it is not that way, then I will be pleasantly surprised. However, if I go into this thinking it will feel like a nagging ankle sprain and it feels like the Marianas Trench busting wide open, I am going to be TICKED! Better to be pleasantly surprised than terribly disappointed!
Did you or your significant other go all natural during childbirth or do you recommend some pain management? Please share your story (as long as it is not a total horror story).