Sunday, August 14, 2016

What To Expect When Giving Birth: How Painful Is Labor REALLY?

During my pregnancy I had a lot of anxiety about what the pain of labor would feel like. I tried to convince myself that childbirth wasn't that big of a deal because it was totally normal and natural. I would think to myself, "It can't be that bad... right? I mean, I know a lot of really wimpy, frail, tiny women (who probably have very tiny vaginas) who've popped out MULTIPLE kids! I should be able to do it no problem... right???"

Well... let me tell you how wrong I was.

If you thought losing your virginity hurt like a bastard just wait till your vagina becomes a full-fledged Baby Cannon!

Every mother has their own special tale of that miraculous, awe inspiring, life experience of giving birth to their precious child 

OR what I like to refer to as: 

"My 28 Hour Journey Through The Ninth Ring of Hell"

Yes, that's right... 28 hours from start to finish. A word to the wise, don't wait till you're 8 cm dilated to get your epidural, because by then, it doesn't really work very well :(  Learned that one the hard way. And YES, the rumors are true! Labor feels like you are POOPING OUT A BOWLING BALL.

I remember all of the horrific tales of labor that other women would share with me (some of these stories were gruesome to say the least) and I would privately think to myself, "Well... you've always been a bit of a wuss" or "She must be exaggerating." How could something so "natural", and "common place" be so awful? I basically feel like I was 'duped'. Big time! None of these 'labor horror stories' even came close to the mind blowing, excruciating pain of the actual experience. 

I don't know how to put this except that words cannot do the pain justice.

The human capacity for language, and all forms of communication as we know it on planet Earth, cannot adequately express or convey the pain of pushing a baby out of your Lady Flower. 

The pain scale rating of "10/10" has a whole new meaning for me. I will never again say my menstrual cramps are a 7/10, not even a 5/10! The only 10/10 for pain that has ever happened to me was when a human being was exiting out of my Old Kipper. My worst menstrual cramps will now be, and remain forever, at the most, a 3/10.

The human brain however, is a wonderful organ! It has this sophisticated, hard wired coping mechanism of 'blocking out' or 'dulling the edges' of past painful experiences. Naturally with time, the sharp, cutting, vivid memory of pain gets fuzzy and dulls a bit.

Ladies, don't be fooled! It's a trick! 

The first words out of my mouth after giving birth were directed to my husband, "You're getting a vasectomy next week!"... quickly followed by, "I'm never doing this again!".

It's amazing how just a little thing like 'sex' can end with such a beautiful, chaotic symphony of vaginal destruction.

But all joking aside... it really was the most painfully horrific thing that's ever happened to me in my life.

My 'Mom Friends' are now trying to convince me that the second baby is much easier... YA, RIGHT! If it IS easier, it's only because my postpartum vagina is now extra 'roomy'. Hahahaha Just kidding! It 'bounces' back to it's original size... sort of... Ah, who am I kidding? My vagina's HUGE.  My vagina is so big that if it were named after a movie it would be 'Interstellar' starring Matthew McConaughey! Except in this version of the film Matthew would never make his way home.

Now a year later, I feel myself subtly sliding into the cozy, warm 'oblivion section' of my brain (the best place to be!) that says to me, "Awe... it wasn't that bad. You could do that again."  Ya right brain! Nice try! That's just the hormone Oxytocin (mixed with Vodka) and with our silly, little basic human instinct to keep our 'blood line' going for future generations... no biggy.

Honestly though...

When I think about the wonderment of labor,  
I have come to the conclusion that it must be the mixture of the two extremes; 
"the worst pain ever" tied in with "the best thing that's ever happened" 
that makes it all so worthwhile and exciting.

**Disclaimer: I love my baby and I would easily do it all over again in a heartbeat for her... she's the most precious thing to me. 

I'm curious about everyone's personal stories. What was your birth experience like?


  1. Hey girl,

    This post made me chuckle; there were some really funny parts. I'm glad you were able to find the humour in the painful experience.

    My experiences were much more pleasant and I have three beautiful birth stories to share. My third labour was pain-free - the only time it really hurt was right when she was coming out. I've written my birth stories on notes on Facebook; I'll post them below. Perhaps reading them might give you a different perspective and convince you that just maybe, the second one might be easier :)

    Katia's Birth Story (first baby):

    Giovanni's Birth Story (2nd baby):

    Maya's Birth Story (3rd baby):

  2. Thank you for your feedback Mariana! I look forward to checking out your birth stories! :)