What's interesting is, when I posted this, I had NO INTENTION of delivering without medication. (Although it says "1 year ago," I probably posted it in March or April 2010.)
When DS was born (June 2008), my doctor was in a c/s, and wasn't available for me to push. I just laid there and waited for close to an hour after reaching 10 cm. I could tell there was pressure, but it didn't hurt since I had an epidural. By the time my doctor got into the room, he was about a knuckle's distance away from crowning. One push delivered his head, the second the rest of his body, and we were done. It was VERY easy.
That was the good part. The bad part was that, since I couldn't feel anything, I had no idea that his slow progress was damaging the capillaries in my vaginal wall. I was in a lot of pain that night and for weeks afterwards...it wasn't until 2 weeks postpartum, though, that a nurse practitioner discovered that I had a grapefruit-sized hematoma in my vaginal wall, pressing both into my vagina and on my bladder, causing intense burning and pain every time I peed.
I think that if I'd been able to feel what was going on, I would have known something was happening and I could have changed positions to accommodate him and kept the damage from happening. But, on the flip side, without an epidural, I probably couldn't have gone that long without pushing, and the nurse might have ended up catching our little guy!
I didn't do this when I birthed my third baby, the one I was pregnant with when I posted this tip. I went through my labor with her without medication, and started pushing too soon. I'm fortunate in that I don't tend to push too long - even though I was pushing too soon, it was still only 30 minutes of pushing - but it was, at the time, arguably the worst 30 minutes of my life (or the 20-25 minutes until she was ACTUALLY ready for me to push her out, at least - once my body kicked in and I was working with it, it was not hard at all, and she came pretty quickly).
I really wouldn't recommend it pushing before your body is ready. Having experienced both (during my labor with #3), it is amazing what a difference it makes once you're working with your body.
If you're birthing with an epidural, I would think that what Beth experienced would be best - having them back off on the epidural so you can feel enough to move around, because I think the ability to feel a little bit of what is going on and move around some would have helped me avoid the damage I had after DS was born.View Thread