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Any tips for getting through labour?

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secretspirit | 12:27 Wed 11th May 2005 | Parenting
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My baby's due in 2 weeks and I'm thinking about the labour now (eek). I have a huge bag packed but is there anything I might not have thought of that you found indispensible to take with you or any tips for distracting yourself from the pain!!!!! Many thanks.

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Tens machine?

A soft squidgy ball to squeeze instead of your husband's/partner's arms - ouch!

I wish you good luck secretspirit - let's know the name of your new baby daughter/son. -x-

P.S. When you talk of the pain side of child birth - believe me, as soon as the nurse puts that little bundle of joy into your arms - the pain melts away!

My wife is due in 6 days and I have assured her half an aspirin about 30 minutes before the baby comes will be sufficient...

Good luck to you & your wife too ck1 - let's know how it goes.

Oh - hope the half of Aspirin works too.

LOL - to be honest I found I didn't use half the stuff I took into hospital with me but you never can be too careful. Assume you have nappies, baby vests and clothes, etc. - all the stuff for baby as well as you.

You may want to take a hand-held mirror to see your baby's head coming out - the thought of this utterly repulsed me and afterwards I really wish I had done. It would have been a truly magical moment.

I agree with Smudge entirely - once that baby is in your arms you totally forget about the pain. I won't lie - it does bl**dy hurt - but maybe not as much as you think it might - and its certainly worth it.

Good luck and let us know how you go!

Good luck to you secretspirit  when your day arrives, and to you and your wife too ck1. Do let us nosey bunch know how it all goes! xxx

I had mine just 19mnths ago...still fairly fresh in the memory.  The pain wasn't as bad as I thought, really it wasn't.  And it's a positive pain, as no other pain you experience in life will be for such a worthwhile cause - at the end of it all you get the best present ever, your new baby!!!  I tried to relax and enjoy my baby arriving,  put faith in the medical staff and focus on the job at hand.  What I did find really helped was having the radio on in the labour suite.  My fiancee and I laughed and chatted about the music...I remember quite clearly stating that "No baby of mine will be born to the sound fo Justin Timberlake!"...much to the midwife's amusement.  But we chatted about the songs, (memories and people they evoked), and it really helped me relax between contractions as well as providing a distraction from the pain of one too.  Tell you what you should take.....something for hubby to eat!  I wasn't hungry, tho I did nibble on a few raisins for energy, but my poor fella was famished (we went in before lunch and Jnr didn't arrive till 9pm) yet not wanting to leave my side to get food.  A few bags of crisps, sandwiches, some fruit etc for him would have been ideal, as well as a drink.  Next time we're going to take a flask of tea!!!

All the very best, you'll do just brilliantly I'm sure. xxx

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the labor and birth will be the most painfull thing you can feel. you feel it in your arse though. the best advice i can give is when they say push you bear down and push! as for things to bring try, pads, diapers, panties, going home outfit for you and baby. mabey your own pillow. i wish you all the luck in the world!
I was extremely nervous about giving birth - but it was all over with in 25mins - still had my jumper on - so don't worry too much.  You may not have time for anything. Good luck and congrats.

Mrs Bangkok meditated during her 36 hour labour.  Possibly a little late to change religion though.  A TENS machine helped my sister.  Make sure your partner is thoroughly briefed not to be a prat.  A couple of good books may help - somtimes things seem imminent but then get put on hold and it's a bit boring.  Big L shaped pillow never goes amiss. 

If you have not already done so, discuss with the hospital what medication you are prepared to accept.  You may demand anything, and an epidural can be regretted (or be the perfect solution).  However, in the middle of labour your views may change and your partner should know what to insist on, or refuse.

Best of luck. 

My 1st labour - 15 years ago was easy peasy & was only 4 hours !!!! *smug*

I used a TENS machine, nothing else, and can honestly say that the "pain" was more uncomfortable than actually painful .... certainly, I'd had much worse pain in my life such as when I hurt my back and ongoing Irritable Bowel spasms which hurt much more !

Admittedly, my 2nd labour - 19 months ago was, unfortunately very painful .... and there was me thinking subsequent ones were supposed to get easier ....and 21 hours long.

My advice would be to try and get as much rest as you can leading up to labour day .... IMO being tired definitely affects your pain threshold.

I also packed a big bag but personally found that when it came to it the CD player, magazines etc. were forgotten as I had to use all my concentration on the matter in hand. What I did find useful though was a very large flask of icy cold mineral water which I could take drinks/sips from throughout the process.

Obvious things spring to mind here, comfortable underwear for after,  a (nice) water spray for your face which will cool you down.  My last child was born 2 days after christmas (4 years ago) and it snowed so I could watch the world from the window which was lovely and took my mind off the pain.  Good Luck!!
shaz- you've brought back happy memories. Both our daughters were born in March & the first time round it was thick snow outside, but it was so cosy & warm in the ward - snuggled up with new baby!

My baby was born 5 months ago and through my labour i swore i wouldnt do it again, but the pain is worth every second when your baby is handed to you, i already want another one!!!! I would say to take lavender oil for afterwards to put in the bath and make sure you take maternity clothes to wear home after, might be a while before you get back in your old jeans..... oh, and dont forget a camera to take the first pic's of your little bundle of joy. Wish you lots of luck, im sure you will be fine. :o) 

Smudge it was cosy! However they wanted me to go home at 10.30pm a few hours after  (it was my 3rd baby) and the snow was thick and icy.  I said no of course! What on earth were they thinking??
As if he heard me! my last baby has just come down stairs for a very rare night time cuddle (it is 11.05pm) he smells all sweaty and cosy and looks all sleepy in his Thomas pjs.  Awwww I love him (and the other two girls).  Well worth the 9 months and the labour I'd say!
Most of the things you'll take probably won't get used but little things like a hair bobble, pair of socks(Toes do get cold it labour!) and a camera can prove invaluable when your little one arrives. The best advice is to stay at home as long as possible, eat little and often to keep your energy levels up and mobilise gently ( warm baths and paracetamol are a must). There is a saying that if you think you are in labour then you'r probably not, when labour does establish you will know the difference. Above all be flexable. Its good to have a birthplan but labour is unpredictable so keep your options open and go with the flow. Good luck and enjoy your baby. Its hard work but unbelivably worthwhile, speaking as a mum and a midwife it can't be that bad as most women come back for more, including myself!.
Question Author
Thanks a lot for all the replies, I'm feeling more confident having read them and got some ideas. ight now this little girl is testing how far my ribs can be pushed without breaking so I'm keen for her to come out ASAP one way or another! I'll let you know how it goes...

the pain is not near as bad as the horror stories you will hear. i have a wonderful 2 year old bundle of joy and i was scared to death, i was only a size 2 and i was absolutely huge before i delivered and i just knew that i was having an extremely large baby, well, i did but i tell you that once its over all that pain is gone it is not like any other pain you will ever have. others pains will linger on and this on will not, once you see the baby all  you can do is be histerical that you actually created something like that. i would do my labor pains over 10 times if i had to, to get my baby... 

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