A little while back at my local moms group, I was talking about how I couldn’t wait to go into labor and another mother remarked, “you just want to get it over with, huh?” The statement caught me off guard and I’m sure my face showed that. I wasn’t really sure how to respond, especially because this mother had just given birth herself a few weeks earlier and she had just been talking about how horrible her labor was.
You see, for me, I actually look forward to labor! No, I’m not crazy! I look at the process of giving birth the way I think runners look at running a marathon. While I’ve never run a marathon, I know that a lot of training goes into it, and I’m sure that while in the process of running that marathon, the runners are not comfortable, to say the least. In fact, I’m sure at times they are in pain.
Have you ever watched those Ironman competitions? Swimming, biking and then running. I look at that and think, “THAT is pure torture—why would anyone put themselves through that?!?” I think many women probably look at my desire to have an all-natural birth, at home, without medical intervention, as pure torture. But to me, labor is totally worth it and even exhilarating!
So why do people compete in marathons or Ironman competitions? I can only imagine that they do so for many of the same reasons I look forward to labor. It IS hard work, it’s not always comfortable, but the adrenaline rush you get at the end of it, the satisfaction you have when you’re done, the many emotions you go through throughout the process, THE BABY YOU GET AT THE END OF IT ALL, it’s like a high you only have the opportunity to experience literally a few times in your life. I look back at the labor and birth process with my children as some of the most awesome experiences of my life! I’ve loved every single one of my home births and look forward to our newest baby being born in a few months.