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Precipitous Labor: An Editorial

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Pregnancy related image Photo: Getty Images

I used to be terrified of childbirth and actually burst into tears when I discovered I was pregnant with my first child because I realized I would have to give birth. Due to suffering with vulvodynia the medical staff advised me to have an epidural so after my daughter was born I still didn’t really know what birth felt like.

After a forced episiotomy and complications that ensued, I didn’t want another hospital birth but was told I had to because of the vulvodynia. With my second daughter I had another epidural and the third, a TENS machine that I later found out wasn’t working because they hadn't realized the pads had come off my back!

So childbirth didn’t really get my vote of approval and when I found out I was expecting my fourth child, I was dreading the whole experience. Through her birth, I discovered that childbirth is not always painful and doesn’t have to take hours, either.

On the day of her birth I took my older daughter to toddler group and then I stopped at a sandwich shop to buy lunch. After I had eaten the sandwich, I started to feel nauseas and mistakenly thought my food must have been "off". I mentioned this to my husband who told me to sleep it off and said it was normal for a nearly 9-month pregnant woman to feel bad. He went to a DIY store to buy shelving units and I did as he suggested and fell asleep for two hours.

When I woke up at 4 p.m. I needed to go to the toilet urgently so I went and sat there waiting, but nothing happened. I also noticed I was spotting slightly. I was irritated. First I felt sick, then I was constipated and now I was bleeding!

I phoned my husband, who was still shopping, and told him about my symptoms. He said it was probably because the doctor had examined me the day before and was not at all gentle. He said she was probably "too rough" and that would account for the spotting. I accepted this as a likely possibility and wasn’t worried about the baby because she was moving and active.

I went downstairs and had two mild contractions, no worse than period pain, so I called him back again and told him that we might be having a baby.

Add a Comment7 Comments

Well, my 9 year old says she will have home births if she has kids as she hates hospitals and needles and she was there, sleeping in the next room when her brother was born and she woke up and came in, in her PJ's and got to cuddle the baby when he was only a few minutes old. She's also breast fed for years and watched me feed her brother and always frowns at the formula milk adverts on TV and says the mothers shouldn't be doing that. So sweet. There's hope for my grandchildren then!

September 4, 2011 - 3:06pm

Thanks, that's really nice of you! My little girl that was born in 25 minutes is now 9 years old and I still enjoy telling people how she was delivered quicker than a pizza :) She now has a 4 year old brother who was born not quite as quick but still painless. I will post your blog to facebook etc.

September 4, 2011 - 1:06pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Joanna Karpasea-Jones)

Thanks Joanna. Greatly appreciated! You'll be able to educate all of your children on the wonders and sometimes complications, of childbirth!


September 4, 2011 - 2:40pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hi again Joanna. I've written my post in which I've included part of your article and the link to the rest of it (it's quite long, that's why I chose to add the link for the "rest of the story").

Here's the link to the post: http://letstalkpregnancy.com/childbirth-options-and-education.html

Hope it meets with your approval.


September 4, 2011 - 12:09pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Joanna Karpasea-Jones)

Thanks so much! I'll let you know when I've done it and give you the link so you can have a boo!


September 3, 2011 - 7:58pm
EmpowHER Guest

What an incredible story and journey you've had. And the advice you have for women who will soon face labor is great too. I'll be sharing some of this on my blog: http://www.letstalkpregnancy.com if that's OK with you. I may link to your story so others can read it in full. I'd like your permission first though. I look forward to hearing from you.


September 3, 2011 - 4:36pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.



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