My Two Births: Scheduled vs Not

My husband kept telling me, “Don’t be a hero.”
— Jess Bedsole
Contributor Jess' two very different births! 

Contributor Jess' two very different births! 

My first baby I was positive I wouldn’t need an epidural. I knew I had the pain tolerance. I knew I was a warrior. I knew I could do it. 

And then labor happened. 

I had prodromal labor for two days before I went into “real” labor…but my prodromal labor was two days of 90 second long contractions that were two minutes apart. 

After a few hours of what I thought was “real” labor we went to the hospital and learned I wasn’t making cervical change. Prodromal. Crap. The second time they kept me because I had an abruption. I won’t go into details, but it got gnarly. 

I ended up delivering a gorgeous baby after 36 total hours of misery. About 30 hours into it, I begged for the epidural. I was in so much pain I was hallucinating. I truly believed my beloved childhood horse was in the room with us (hilarious now, then…totally confusing)

My second baby was scheduled. Around 20 weeks I started having contractions from as little as walking down the driveway, so we worried he would arrive too early. By 37 weeks I was beyond miserable and I asked my midwife if we could induce. She let me schedule it for 39w4d. 

Want to know how that went down? My husband and I dropped our toddler off for a sleepover at Grandma’s. We went out to a delicious dinner together and laughed nervously about how much our lives were about to change. We excitedly drove to the hospital, following the speed limit. 

I slept in a hospital bed. In the morning they pumped the meds and by 4:15 in the afternoon we had another gorgeous baby boy. I laid in that bed for 20 hours, painlessly. Around 3:15 in the afternoon I started feeling my baby move to transition and knew go-time was coming. 

I experienced 36 hours of discomfort the first time and one hour of discomfort the second. 

Granted, my deliveries were much different. My first baby descended smoothly and with grace. I pushed for 35 adrenaline-filled minutes (some of the most thrilling of my life) and there he was. 

My second ricocheted all the way down through my hips like a pin ball and I had to power-push him out in under 5 minutes. 

I am proud of my experience with my first baby having done as much as I did on my own. My husband kept telling me, “Don’t be a hero.” That phrase helped as I went into my second pregnancy and planned the birth. 

In the end, I had two beautiful baby boys. How they got here doesn’t really matter but since pregnant women can’t seem to think about anything but what labor and delivery will be like, I thought this post would be a good one. 

The most important thing is health of baby and mama. For me, mentally I couldn’t do another labor like my first. Having it scheduled was a weight lifted. The experience was completely different and exactly what I needed in that chapter of my life.

How do you feel about scheduled labors? It isn't for everyone but it worked out beautifully for Jess. We would love to hear your thoughts.