No, You Don’t Forget the Pain

A personal note from another mom today, sharing her birthing experience, reminded me how much mine was all about realizing the limits of my physical capabilities, and being willing to trust—both in the Lord, and in higher science.

In the months leading up to my son’s birth, I prepared as best I could, because I wanted it all-natural. It just seemed the “right” thing to do. And who doesn’t want to do it right? I studied websites, read books, talked to people, attended classes, requested a water birth, and did everything I knew was possible.

But then, it wasn’t just a few hours or a day of labor. Mine is the birth story you shouldn’t hear if you are about to go into labor. It wasn’t pretty at all, except pretty painful.

Even if I had the best medical system in Germany, the best doctors, the best health care, an emergency C-Section was still needed after two whole days, and yes, please, I was so ready to just have them cut me open and yank it out.

(Nowadays, whenever I want to get mad at my husband for little things, I remember how he stayed by my side in the operating room, and how he still stayed married to me after seeing me in that disgusting, sorry, ugly state…and I love him all over again.)

My lesson here, was that you can—and should—plan well, but when the time comes, the best preparation you can do is mentally being ready to expect whatever may happen. Know that if, and when you have to go through something that was not planned, like an emergency, be ready. Doctors are there for a reason. Medically trained staff and nurses are there to assist you, so let them. Don’t fight it, and don’t feel disappointed.

It’s not true that you forget the pain of labor when you see your child, I can tell you that.

And what actually follows are sleepless nights, endless diaper changes, and very cranky new parents.

But when, a little later, your child starts to smile, and laugh, and talk, and walk, and hug you, and call you “mama”, and do all those little-person things…that’s the moment you remember the pain you went through, and are glad you did.

So be happy that soon you will have your new life to love, and it will love you back with so much more. More love that you thought you were capable of holding in your heart, will be yours for a lifetime, and nothing can ever take that good feeling away.

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