I have my heart set on a home birth for baby number two, I picture myself in my dining room; floating about in my hired birthing pool with scented candles burning, lights low, some wildly inappropriate documentary on the tv (Stacey Dooley – any investigations in to drug gangs coming up by any chance?) and a big glass of blackcurrant squash with a straw on hand. I have this image in my mind and it’s the only thing that is stopping me from having a full on breakdown when I think about giving birth again. I know labour very rarely goes according to plan, and that absolutely anything can happen or go wrong at any given moment, but this peaceful scene (apart from the drug gang documentary obviously) is what I’m clinging to in order to stay sane in the run up to impending labour.
My first labour was quite straight forward on paper, but in real time and 3D it was appalling, without going in to the details I was really shaken up by it. It lasted almost 4 whole days – something I hadn’t expected after hearing from several female family members that ‘we tend to deliver quickly in this family!’ I think i could have coped well with it all had it not been such a long and drawn out length of time, contracting every 3 minutes for four whole days without sleep and food is enough to drive anyone mad. And I certainly went mad. I remained mad for a good few months afterwards, and it is this that I fear more than anything. I cannot afford to go mental this time round, I have a little baby girl who needs me and another one on the way, and I’d like to be fully present and sane for her arrival and first few weeks.
I look back on it and it’s all a blur, I think my mind has fuzzed it up for my own good, but I know it was bad, and the thought of returning back to the hospital and one of those rooms fills me with dread. I have booked my birthing pool, I have towels aplenty and candles ready for action. All I can do now is hope hope hope everything goes smoothly and I am permitted a home birth, and that it is considerably quicker this time round.
Everyone always says that every birth is different. Im hoping to make this one as different as possible, and a huge part of that is having it at home where I feel safe and secure surrounded by the people I love. Fingers crossed my vision becomes a reality – only a few more weeks to go!