Advice for surviving labour

Sarah W Baby Belly

Well-Known Member
Jun 14, 2005
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My advice for surviving this labour thing.

Stay as calm as you can possibly manage. If you can crack a joke here and there, it really helps your spirit.

Take music that reminds you of something good. I took our wedding CD and when the contractions hit me I was probably thinking about walking down the aisle or having my photos taken or something in a sunny day in spring. Great for distraction! Music that reminds you of a summer holiday you had once would also be good

Trust your birth partner and midwives. They will get you through it.

Get on the gas and air. And if it doesn't work for you in the first few puffs. Keep perservering. It is absolutely amazing stuff.

And most important for me was staying upright. At the point of arriving at the hospital, I had done most of my zillions of contractions standing up and they were painful but manageable. But when I was asked to lay down on the bed so they could check how dilated I was, I couldn't believe how much more painful things became! I would say three times more uncomfortable. So even if you feel like laying down and feeling sorry for yourself, its best to keep that gravity thing going.

Also if you can't face food. Eat glucose tablets and drink lots of water. After being awake for several days,I think the glucose tablets really helped to give me enough energy.

Hope this helps.

If I think of anything else that got me through I'll let you know. :D
Hi Sarah

Thanks for the tips, it's great reading stuff like this to help prepare. Please do post anything else you thing of!

Do you mind me asking how long your stages of labour were?

Your little Samuel looks so cute in the photos you must be so proud

40 wks
My pre-labour lasted a couple of days unfortunately. My body seemed to know what it was doing but kept forgetting.

Once it realised what it was doing i had 13 hours of established labour which included 2 hours of pushing, which was my least favourite part.

But i think the fact that i had been in labour for what seemed like weeks, and i was probably just too exausted to do a decent push, which is why they decided to get me out of the nice warm birthing pool and onto the stool to give me that bit of extra gravity and ooomph.

the birthing stool part lasted about five minutes.

If somebody asks you if you want to look in a mirror when pushing say yes. you would not believe the extra courage and determination it gives you.
Cheers Sarah hopefullly I can use some of them tips next time and not get a non-stop intense labour like mine with Damien :shock:
Tips - if you get one of these labours, have G&A asap lol! I couldn't walk as the contractions were too close together consistently right from the word 'go', but changing position on the bed really helps to ease some tension. Oh and don't lie on your back - the pain triples.

Hope you and the family are well Sarah x
I'd definitely agree with the not leaning back part. My best position was kneeling on a pillow on the floor whilst biting the side of the bed. I also went through a stage of leaning on the window sill with my forehead against the window. Very cooling :D
I delivered Brody on the bed but facing backwards, kneeling over a bean bag... it was a really comfortable postition, I'm glad I found it!
thanks for that! it's impossible to imagine what it will be like yet, and to be honest i think i'm trying to push these thoughts away lol

when did you guys get the urge to push? i heard some women don't get it at all :?
Brilliant advice Sarah!!

Can I add a few things too!! Sorry, Doula hat creeping on again!!

* Smile or laugh, this relaxes you helping the labour.
* Relax your shoulders, have a concious think about your shoulders, are you tensing them up?
* Don't frown - for the same reasons.
* Keep your bladder empty.
* Stay mobile and upright, if you have to lay down lay on your left hand side.
* Visualisation is very powerful, imagine your cervix opening with each contraction then visulaise your baby coming down the birth canal with every push, have clear pictures in your head of your baby moving it's way into the world.
* When you start crying that you can't go on or that you want a c-section or epidural it normally means you are in transition and nearly there, just bear with it!!

I am sure there is loads more I could think of but kids need feeding!!
Lots of love
Great advice Sarah

If I may add another one, try to control your breathing and remain calm with deep breaths in and out throughout the labour, this will keep you relaxed and provide a natural pain relief during contractions.
Deep breathing is also nice for the baby!!

Every time you take a big breath in and fill your lungs it's like giving the baby a big hug as it gets a little less room!!

Nice thought I think!!
Oh here's another.... push like you are doing a poo :oops: :oops:

Very strange sensation....
Hi All,

Sorry for butting in here but i've been wondering for a while now if some women wee while giving birth, I know lots poo(sorry!) this is the one part that terrifies me (i'm sure it'll all go out the window when the time comes & I won't even notice, but i'm so scared of embarrassing myself! silly I know).

Thanks for sharing the tips, its going to help I think.

Well, I think 'urge to push' is misleading. It made me think that I'd make a conscious decision like "Hmm, I think I'll push now" but in fact it felt more like my top half was being pulled in the opposite direction to my bottom half and I was told I was pushing without realising it. I don't know if everyone's the same though.

Re: weeing, I was sooo worried about weeing and pooing myself but did neither. I can assure you, however, that I would not have cared or even noticed. It's a bit like worrying if your lipstick looks ok as you're being run over by a bus :lol:

Reading this back I hope I haven't made childbirth sound too scarey. I actually really enjoyed it and found breathing and visulalisation really helped me keep a grip on things. I wanted to do it again as soon as it was over and I love reliving the whole experience.
nicki poohing myself was my worst fear when i gave birth to my son and it did happen but was only a tiny bit and i didnt give a dam at the time as my son arrived only a few minutes later and i forgot all about it get a bit embarrassed about it now but its not really something you have any control over and only the ppl in the room will know and if you have a good midwife which i did only she and you will know my mum and ex hubby were there with me and neither of them knew so dont worry about it hun xxxxxxx
I kept weeing :oops: . I kept telling them I wanted a wee but there was no way I was waiting for them to bring me a bedpan or even attempt wandering off to the loo! :shock:

I only got funny about it at one point and told them I was going to do a wee and they said it's okie it's just your waters going still not wee. Bless them - I gave up caring after that though when I realised they wern't gonna admit to me I was weeing!! If yu need to go you need to go! Midwives aren't gonna care.

That bit about worrying about your lipstick whilst being run over by a bus is so true! :lol:

I almost pissed myself laughing when I read that, which is a bit of a worry when my pelvic floor hasn't really come back yet :shock: :lol:
Thanks for that Sarah

I have copied and pasted what you have written and going to read that over and over again!!!! - I am getting very scared of labour and the dreams (well, nightmares) have already started.

Reading about your birth really did make me feel better - Thanks again.

Hope all is going well with Samuel

L x
Great advice Sarah......wish you had posted it a bit earlier LOL!!!
My OH kept reminding me of particular times when i had been 'strong' which helped, I didnt remain calm unfortunatly, i am covered in self harm marks, bruises etc. I kept saying to OH how rubbish i was doing, but know now that i did really well!!
Sarah W Baby Belly said:
If somebody asks you if you want to look in a mirror when pushing say yes. you would not believe the extra courage and determination it gives you.

I think if I had seen it in a mirror I would have stopped pushing for fear of seeing myself tear
Take all the drugs they offer you ;) that helped with my 20 hour labour in hospital, after the two days of on off labour at home (I thought I had a bad tummy for two days and it was labour - what a prat) !

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