Next week I hit 28 weeks and start my last trimester. The reality that this baby that’s been my constant companion for the last 6 1/2 months will have to make it’s way out somehow really hits home the closer I get to December 1st. I have read, researched and talked to lots of moms who have all shared their own birth stories. I’ve heard all kinds, from “It was the worst experience of my life” to “It’s really not that bad!” Who to believe? I’ve decided not listen to anyone, I’ve stopped reading all the books and stopped researching the internet. As a first timer I have to be able to go into the experience of labor with a completely positive attitude or else I’ll spend my last three months of this pregnancy in complete fear and dread. Not only that, I truly believe that my experience is my own and that it is going to be whatever it’s going to be so why worry about it now.
The last decision I need to make is whether or not to include a doula in my birth. I was initially completely sold on the idea after talking to a couple friends who recently used doulas and had very positive experiences. However, after talking with both my husband and my closest friend Amy, I’m left a bit uncertain. Joe feels like a doula would be taking his role as my partner, coach and support system. Amy has three kids so is definitely a pro. She believes that the birthing experience is a very intimate time between you and your husband and that it’s more special when it’s just the two of you. Given that I’ve never been through this I honestly don’t know what I want or how I’ll feel the day of. Part of me likes the idea of having a doula, someone who has been through the process tons of times and can be there to not only support me but Joe as well. Plus, hospital nurses aren’t really there to give you emotional support, so a doula can be your advocate and cheerleader. However, when I picture the day, I really like the idea of it being just Joe and I in there, a bit lost and overwhelmed, but still figuring it all out together. Although you spend time with the doula prior to the birth, it does seem a bit odd to allow a virtual stranger into the room as you go through one of the most powerful and emotional experiences of your life. So, three months out, I’m still not sure what to do. I don’t have a master birth plan or idea of exactly what I want. But I suppose somehow it will come together and work out! Plus the final result will be something like this, it’s all got to be worth it!