New born baby after childbirth

Am I ready for a natural birth?

In short the answer to this question is “No”. In fact having a natural birth or a vaginal birth (yes I said it) hasn’t even really crossed my mind. Although it should have done. But I am ready for a natural birth? In just 8 or 9 short weeks I could be experiencing just that, and do know what it scares me.

My daughter was born by emergency c-section after a failed induction, and I am fully expecting a c-section this time round as well. Which is why I am so unprepared for a natural birth which could happen. Currently my choice is to wait and see what happens, and see if I go into spontaneous labour. If that doesn’t happen I will have an elective c-section booked in for between 40 and 41 weeks.

I guess that I am so convinced I am going to have another c-section, that I’ve completely disregarded the thought about labour.

Having not done NCT or ante-natal classes this time round, I definitely need to familiarise myself with the signs of labour and the different stages, and be prepared for what to do. Even though this is my second baby I feel like I should be more prepared than I actually am.

I was reading Clemmie Hooper’s book; How to grow a baby and push it out, and this has made me aware that I have put no thought towards going into labour, and it has made me realise it is something that I am very unprepared for. So I started to familiarise myself with the different stages of labour.

Stages of labour

Firstly there are the early stages of labour that will take place at home. I need to bear in mind that I could have my daughter with me at the time, and I also need to think about childcare for her. The book has made me write a short list of things that I need to buy for this phase including a birthing ball and a TENS machine. Plus having a general calm state of mind and not panicking.

Next there’s the active phase of labour in hospital. This is the bit that I really need to think about. I keep thinking do I need to have a birth plan? I think I just need to have birth preferences instead. I know that I will be monitored throughout labour because of my previous c-section, which rules out a water birth or using the birth centre. I also know that I am not afraid or scared to have any drugs during labour, as I had them ALL with my first. So I’m not worried about having them again this time round, anything to help with the pain.

Then there’s the transition phase, something that scared me during my first. That never happened, but the thought of it still worries me.

So to help ease my mind I guess I need to get myself really clued up on spontaneous labour, and know exactly what to do, so I feel calm, and not feel like I am just winging it. I also need my husband to be on board, and make sure that he is also familiar with it. Just like me he’s had no NCT classes this time round too. I may also get my hypnobirthing book out and re-read that, anything to keep my mind in a happy place. Plus it may also help if I do end up going down the elective c-section route too.

I’ve still got a while to go yet, however I wanted to write this post for me, and also to help any second, third or fourth time mums out there who are feeling the same way. I can’t be the only one who is convinced that they are having a c-section and haven’t given any thought to a natural birth.

A c-section is not the easy option either

Lastly I just want to say that having a c-section is not an easy option. Although it will make delivering the baby easier. It is major surgery and has many risks. If an elective or even an emergency c-sections happens (always a possibility) I have no idea how I will cope with having a toddler to look after as well. I know that I will be asking for lots of help, and making sure that I have someone on hand to lift her, do the nursery runs, and generally look after her, as I know that for the first few weeks this will be a challenge for me.

Has anyone experienced the same thing, and if so how did you prepare yourself for labour?

I will let you know how I get on in 8 or 9 weeks time. Wish me luck!

Claire x

Am I ready for a natural birth


  • Catherine

    I enjoyed reading this, it was very honest. We’re currently expecting our third and while I’ve had two natural births, I’m never under any illusions that things will be the same each time. Preparing for anything to happen and trusting the medical staff with your baby is key but at the same time, it’s not good to dwell on it too much, I think worrying about it is worse. You sound like you have an open mind and if you stay relaxed and trust your own body, I’m sure you will be fine. Good luck! Xx

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