Saturday, December 02, 2006


As it comes ever closer, I realize that I am really scared of childbirth. It's not the first time, obviously, but there are still so many things I could/do worry about.

1. The Pain - I don't remember the pain clearly from last time, only that I was smiling a lot through early labour. I arrived at the hospital at 8cm, though, so that may give some clue as to why. Or something.

2. Hospital Policies - What I do remember is not being able to find a comfortable position and not being allowed to move/sit up/get up, and having to keep a stupid monitor in place that wasn't really doing much of measuring anything due to my constant tossing and turning... This one makes me particularly nervous because I know it added to my discomfort. Why would I do something like that to myself intentionally by going back to the same hospital, you ask? Well, the birth was an overall good experience, and I had an excellent midwife who was part of the hospital staff. If not for her, I would still be trying to push.

3. Not Getting There On Time - We've moved since my daughter was born, and although we live closer to the hospital and now have our own car, what if we can't find someone to take her when it's time to go, and get held up? As I mentioned, I arrived at 8cm - so what if we're held up and don't get there on time. I know it's unlikely, as I was aware of the fact that we were going to need to go to the hospital before labour progressed to such a point and could have theoretically dropped off a child at any time during our two-hour walk before leaving for the hospital. But still, I worry.

4. All The People Who Offered to Watch Daughter are Not Available - Last Shabbat, virtually all our neighbours were away (we live in a new neighbourhood and only have 9 families living here - not all of which are that friendly with us), and we started to worry about what we would do in such a situation. I pointed out that we had friends in the main community, just a 15-minute walk away, who were around, and would have gladly taken her, but how we would get her there was still an issue.

5. It's Too Early - Last night, I had some major cramps and did not feel the baby move much, which made me worry. This concern is not so relevant, though because I am so close to being in the ninth month already, that too early is all in my head, I think.

6. What If Something Goes Wrong? - Every woman worries about this one, and that is why I have elected to give birth in a hospital and not at home where I would probably be more comfortable (see #2 above). There is no way to stop this worrying until after it's all over, except to know that I am making the best choice I can regarding where to give birth, and to pray. I'd better start praying.

7. What If I Need and Emergency C-Section? - I worry, but honestly, so what? I was just worried that then I would always be looking at a c/s, but I recently heard of someone who had a VBAC here in Israel, so hey, it CAN be done. (Incidentally, she also didn't make it to the hospital on time, but was in an ambulance, so better off than in our own car.)

I think that about covers it. To sum up, the fact that I don't remember the pain so much means that it's something that passes and then you can forget. Some women never do, but I did, so I guess it either wasn't so bad, or was very worth it. (?) I feel that at this stage the hospital is still the best place for me to give birth, and though it makes me nervous, it also allays my fears in other areas, so I will try to be as in control as I can while there, to make it as positive an experience as possible. Certain issues (daughter/getting there on time) should be decided on, but my feeling is that since we can't know in advance what the actual situation will be, we also can't plan for this aspect too much. We have a general idea of what we will do, and I think that is enough. Ironing out the "what if's" shouldn't be a big deal. And as to the technical/actual birth-related issues, well, in just over a month, I should be able to look back upon them and say "thank G-d it all went well..." I feel a bit better now, having listed the concerns in an organized way and gone through each. Just for myself. I do feel more in control and that's what matters.


At 8:54 AM, Blogger Elie said...

Wish I could offer words of advice, but I'm sure they would sound irrelevant coming from a male!
I hope everything goes well, and that you can soon look back on all your worries with a smile.

Good luck!

At 11:22 AM, Blogger thefifthdaughter said...

i think that the agony of the "what-if-something-goes-wrong" scenarios that torture us during pregnancy, have got to be part of Chava's punishment for the tree sin...

may everything go well and may your biggest worry be choosing a menu for a seudas mitzvah (either bris or kidush(whatever for a girl))...

At 11:01 AM, Blogger SS said...

Elie, thanks for being my most loyal reader... I'm sorry I haven't been commenting lately, but I'm just not commenting anywhere - I am trying to keep up with everyone, though.

Fifth Daughter, checked out your blog - why didn't you tell me it was you???? Thanks for your comments and your good wishes... Speak soon, k?


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