My Thoughts on Labor, Round Two

27 week selfie

I have a confession to make. I am terrified of giving birth to my second child. 

There is a bold, confident innocence the first time around. People will tell you all about the pain, the long labor, the unknowns that might occur. You might be warned about shaking limbs postpartum and how scared you will be to use the bathroom again. Doctors may even equate the pain to that of losing a limb. Your friends will likely try to cushion the trauma by focusing on the inevitable joy of holding your child. Girlfriends will knowingly smile at you as you explain the classes you've taken and the books you've read. Because the thing is, they know and you are only guessing.

For round two, I am no longer guessing. I know how painful each contraction can be. I know the consistent pain of back labor and the tearing trauma of delivery. Now, I am the one who knows and I'm not doing a very good job of glossing over the pain in anticipation of the joy.

Don't get me wrong. I am thankful. I have had two healthy pregnancies with no complications. I experienced a rather short, straightforward labor with August. I chose to birth him in a giant birthing tub and it was everything I hoped for. The midwives were supportive, the labor progressed nicely, the tub jets alleviated all sorts of discomforts. I am thankful for my birth experience. But birth is traumatic.

Within three months' time, I will be in labor again with my second child. I am pulling out Scripture and focusing on the things that I know to be true:
  1. My body was created to give birth (Psalm 139:13)
  2. Fear is not from the Lord (Psalm 118:6)
  3. My strength comes from the Lord (Isaiah 41:10)
  4. My rest is found in the Lord (Matthew 11:28)
  5. This baby is a gift from the Lord (Psalm 127:3)
A few days after drafting this post and letting it sit with me, I have so much peace of mind. Vocalization is clearly important to my mental processes. It's easy to pressure myself into false- positive thought patterns the second time around. This is foolish and I need to admit my anxiety so I can combat it with God's word.

If you think of it in the coming months, please pray peace over my thoughts and attitudes regarding pregnancy, labor and delivery. Thank you.

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