So you’ve planned to have a natural unmedicated birth. You’ve written your birth plan with your partner and doula. You’ve told all of your friends and family that you plan to go “all natural” (even though many of them grumbled that you should just get the epidural, why would you want to feel that pain?!). You are so excited for the big day that you just can’t stand it!

The anticipation grows stronger as the big day approaches (whenever that is anyway)!

Wait, what’s this?! Could this be it? You feel crampy, a little under the weather, but motivated to get the house ready for your new little bundle of joy. You call your doula and ask her if this is it. She suggests you keep yourself busy; bake some cookies for the hospital staff, take a relaxing bath, go get a massage or pedicure, pamper yourself for the last time before you become a new mother (or welcome your next baby).

Time goes by (it may be a few hours, it may be a few days) and the “cramps” are getting stronger, longer, and closer together. You call your doula again and you both decide it is time for her to join you where you are.

It’s time to go to the hospital.

You arrive at the hospital and your labor slows, picks up, and stalls again. It seems like a never ending battle to the finish line that is somewhere off in the horizon; you just can’t see it yet. You think to yourself, when will this end. Your doula is there for you with every step, every contraction, and every breath. You hear her in your ear whisper “breath, you’re doing great”. It’s comforting and encouraging, but you’re beginning to become exhausted.

Something’s gotta give!

It’s been hours and you just can’t go on anymore. You’ve tried everything; walking, squatting, hip squeezes, cat/cows, side lying, sitting on the toilet, dancing…nothing is working! You decide that it’s time for some help. You tell your doula that you’re ready to use your code word; you look into her eyes and she feels it too. She gives you a reassuring nod and you tell the nurse “I’d like to get an epidural”.

This wasn’t a part of the plan.

Let me be perfectly clear here; YOU DID NOT FAIL! Your body did not fail, your baby did not fail. You were aware and educated enough to understand that this was what your body needed at this moment to continue on with your labor and hopefully avoid a cesarean section.

After what felt like an eternity, you finally got to welcome that precious new bundle of joy into your arms. You look at your baby with tears in your eyes, you look up at your partner and share a special moment, a special bond. You both feel these intense amazing feelings of love that you never knew existed.

It was all worth it in the end and you wouldn’t change a thing! You are amazing and you brought that beautiful baby into this world with your own body. Feel proud Mama and own this moment, this labor, this birth. You deserve it!

Did you plan to go natural and end up with an epidural? How did that make you feel? Tell me in the comments below.