Becoming a parent will stir all emotions in you and can possibly make you feel the way you’ve never felt before: a mix of excitement, fear, and everything in between. From giving birth to becoming a first-time parent, navigating your way around this new role may be overwhelming.
We gathered some birth stories from crowdsourcing platform Reddit that will give you an idea of what it was like for some mums. Here, plot twists could be more common than you’d think. You may be scared or inspired, but know it’s a unique experience for every mum.
#1 She’s done it once, she can do it again
When giving birth for the second time, you at least have a sense of how it’s gonna be like. One mum, however, felt a little embarrassed to not know what to do or what’s happening to her despite being a second-time mother. She was usually a planner but even so, one can never be fully prepared. It started when she felt like her pelvic floor was about to collapse and her cramping got worse. Not knowing if it was real labour or not, they headed for the hospital. They had to wait for the doctor even though she knew her baby was about to come out. Imagine the agony! Her ordeal was worse than her first pregnancy but it doesn’t make her love her son any less.
Worry not as pregnancies aren’t exactly the same for everyone, even for you. The situation may not go as smoothly as the first time, so make sure to always check in with your doctor—and hope you’ll be blessed with an available room and doctor as you deliver your little one!
#2 Shift happens
What happens if what seems to be a normal pelvic girdle pain turns out to be caused by something else? At one point, mum thought she knew exactly what she’s going through and how to deal with it. But suddenly, her baby boy decided to shift position, making labour so much more complicated. Despite persevering through the contractions and eventually trying to push, a natural birth was no longer possible.
The dad, telling the story, admitted to not being able to witness what happened next as he let his wife’s sister, who has been very supportive throughout this eventful day, accompany her. Despite all the difficulties and the emergency C-section, the sight of a newborn makes everything worth it in the end.
#3 When you think it’s over but things suddenly get out of control
More than feeling scared, a lot of women going through pregnancy feel excited and positive about it. A mum even looked forward to experiencing labour and hoped for a natural birthing method. Upon discovering her baby was breech, however, she had to put safety first and opted for a C-section. Working in the medical field, she knew the danger of delivering breech babies vaginally and wouldn’t want to take the risk. Luckily, her C-section wasn’t that bad: the baby went out just fine and she lost very little blood. Or so she thought.
While the baby came out okay, mum experienced complications, almost to the brink of death! She started feeling dizzy, her heart rate was consistently high while her blood pressure continued to dip, which went on for hours. After her doctor ordered a complete blood count test, it was pretty obvious she was bleeding somewhere to discover that it was rectus sheath hematoma or bleeding between the abdominal muscles. After a surgery and four blood transfusions, she was on her way to recovery to finally be with her newborn.
#4 Expectation vs reality
This mum knew all about her family’s history of liver cholestasis so she was half-expecting it would affect her pregnancy. Doctors advise mums with the condition to have some bloodwork done after symptoms start to show. They are then induced on their 37th week so their babies don’t end up jaundiced. However, her pregnancy was uneventful aside from some food aversions and morning sickness. She thought she was one of the lucky few.
The symptoms came out later in her pregnancy, a rare feat. It started with itching and she was immediately scheduled for induction. Then as she was in labour, she went through something else: severe preeclampsia. Though told in quite a light-hearted manner, it has been a truly scary situation and thankfully, both baby and mum were healthy. That experience won’t stop her from having future pregnancies, and perhaps with lighter epidurals.
#5 It could get easier
Afraid that your pregnancy will take the best of you every time? For one woman, it fatefully got easier. Her first pregnancy wasn’t as easy as her second—but it sure had taught her more ways to deal with the difficulties. During her first pregnancy, she was induced in the hospital 10 days past her due date. It took her 12 hours before she gave birth to her firstborn. She also had to endure almost three hours of being stitched up.
Fast forward to her second pregnancy, she sure had an easier experience. She was induced 9 days past her due date. Soon enough, her waters broke and was getting strong contractions. And just a few pushes, her new son came out and she had fewer stitches this time. So, if you’re about to give birth again, stay positive and know that it can get easier. You may not know how each pregnancy will turn out, but you’ll get stronger every time.