Off and on over the last six years I've heard people claim to have painless childbirths. Some attain it through hypnosis or other methods, some simply don't register their contractions as painful. I have to admit that I have a hard time believing people when they claim "painless childbirth." And even further than that, I don't know if I'd even want it myself.
The other night I was talking with my husband. We were on the subject of how this birth could go very quickly, and I told him I really hoped it wouldn't because I'd feel short-changed. I said, "I don't want it to be over quickly. At least give me a few hours." He looked at me sort of like I was insane. Why prolong the agony? no doubt he was thinking. But after a moment, his facial expression relaxed, and he said, "I guess I can see that." He's a hard-core running fanatic and marathon addict, so putting it through that lens, he acknowledged: "It's like why I would prefer to run a marathon than a 5K." Exactly. Some people see it as prolonging the agony, but for the one who chooses it willingly, it is simply magnifying and intensifying the satisfaction and euphoria.
Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not asking for an intense 24-hour labor. And I don't want to make it any more painful than it has to be. But "quick and painless" wouldn't be my ideal birth. Ecstatic and euphoric and beautiful... bring it on! But painless?
I just can't even comprehend it. I love giving birth! But I'm not going to lie to you. It hurt A LOT. But there's nothing like the relief and release that washes over you when that slippery little person emerges. I think that's how God and nature intended it--that it is your beautiful baby who brings you the gift of relief. Most women experience that glorious relief prematurely--as a gift from the anesthesiologist so many admit to wanting to kiss.
I've never given birth without pain, so I have no concept of what it would be like. Most of the women I know have given birth with epidurals. I wouldn't presume to claim that their births were any less miraculous and wonderful, but I just have no concept of what it would be like. As strange as it may sound, I don't really want to know what it would be like.
Am I totally insane? Thoughts?