Like PPs said, do your research and make an educated decision beforehand, but keep an open mind about it. Your body will surprise you, both with how painful L&D can be, and also with how well it will deal with the pain.
Personally, I opted for no epi for either of my kids' births. With my DD, I was in labor for 18 hours. My labor stalled at 6cm for 7 hours, which was absolute torture mentally. All that pain and nothing to show for it. They broke my water and my DD came within 2 hours. Once I got to the pushing point, the pain was bearable again. It still hurt, but pushing through it somehow helped. This time around with my DS, my labor was only 11 hours; and only 3 of those were hard labor. I noticed my pain increased exponentially after they broke my water (and to be honest, I was wishing for anything to numb the pain and wondering why on Earth I opted to go drug-free again) but DS arrived within 10 minutes. No time for them to get me anything, let alone for it to take effect! In hindsight, with both births, by the time I got to the point where I was done and wanted something, it was pointless to try. I was already to the finish line and just had to push. That being said, I'm still not sure what I'll do next time around if we decide to go for it again.
I have to say it was nice to be fully alert and aware and able to move immediately following the birth. I felt more like myself.
Whatever you decide, just remember what's best for someone else might not be what's best for you, so don't let anyone scare you into doing what they want you to do. I had to deal with that from various family members and friends. Luckily, my DH, the L&D nurses, and my doc were all very supportive.
This is baby number two for us, so we've got the Big Four.
I must have read a million consumer reviews, fretted over a thousand tiny details, and changed my mind several dozen times. Now I look back and laugh a bit at how neurotic I was about it all
The crib was easy: Non-toxic finish, fixed sides, sturdy, at least two mattress heights, and properly-spaced slats. If you're not stopping after one kid, don't bother with the convertible cribs. Once you convert to the toddler bed, they don't recommend converting back to a crib. The crib mattress is what took me an eternity to decide on. Coil counts? Foam vs traditional? Organic? Cloth cover vs vinyl? We went with a NaturePedic in the end. Love it! Most important feature: make sure the mattress is snug in the crib. Take your crib measurements with you when you mattress shop. They're all sized slightly different.
Stroller: After wrestling with my sister-in-law's hand-me-down four-wheeled contraption, we opted for a three-wheeled convertible jogger. Baby Trend. Much easier to maneuver, though you might want to keep a bike pump and patch kit handy.
Car Seat: This was the worst of the bunch; and it was also the only one my husband ever really had an opinion on. After researching safety standards and crash test specs and everything else I could think of, we decided to make sure we got a seat that had been side-impact tested and passed. There are several good seats out there, but we opted for a Chicco KeyFit 30. We loved having a seat we could pull out of the car when our daughter fell asleep on a drive. We also felt safer with a dedicated infant seat over a larger, convertible one. Also, we knew we'd use it again for our next child. It fits nicely in our sub-compact car, too.
High Chair: We just used one of the strap-to-a-kitchen-chair types. Honestly, if it's got a sturdy buckle system and props your little one up for feedings, you're set. The one-handed tray removal feature is nice to have. I think ours is a Fisher-Price, if you're curious.
One last item: the changing table. I didn't use one, or even miss having one, until I started cloth diapering with my daughter a few months ago. With all the little extras that go with cloth diapering, it's nice to have a centralized spot for everything.
And the novel is over!!!
DD is 18 months, DS is overdue!! EDD 29 July 2012View Thread
Our little girl finally decided to make her appearance! She was born Thursday, 25 February. 8 lbs flat and 21" long.
Contractions woke me up at 3am on Thursday, but I wasn't sure if it was time, or if it was just a bad bout of "false labor." DH and I walked and killed time until about 9:30am, then decided to head to the hossy. I was admitted right away - 6cm already! Unfortunately, things slowed to a crawl after that. I was barely at 7cm by 4pm so they decided to break my water to try and move things along before resorting to Pitocin. By 5:30pm, I was trying not to push with my stronger contrax, so they checked again and lo and behold, 10cm! An hour later, my baby girl was finally here!
Best of luck to all of you still waiting on your LOs' debuts! Thank you for all your support over the last 9 months.View Thread