I realized that with the so many motherhood articles I have written, I have not actually written about my birthing experiences.
I have given birth to four children and the experience is so different each time despite the same diet, the same routine, the same environment and prenatal care. I am blessed to be able to afford good medical care before and after childbirth so, I guess, I am luckier than so many Filipino women who are located in far-flung areas that medical care is hard to get.
It should be a wonder to us why women still continue getting pregnant despite the pain. Giving birth is painful for most women. But it's what can be called a good pain.
When a woman is in labor, she goes through an emotional and physical rollercoaster. The onset of contractions between moments of nothing, the impending childbirth, the nervous husband (sometimes). Some women holler in pain, some cry, some curse their husbands. For the prim and proper that I am (most of thetime), I breathe in and breathe out as what my favorite pregnancy book, What to Expect when Expecting, says. I prefer not to make a scandal even when the contractions are so painful you think your head's going to break.
The experience is the same for all my kids while I am in labor. The childbirth varied for each one of them. For my eldest, I was under painkillers and pushed for about 10 minutes. My ssecond was in a hurry to come out my doctor didn't have enough time to put me under drugs. He was barely wearing any surgical attire. My third was born with an epidural. Sure was good for me, no pain at all. My fourth was where all the unfelt pain carried over. Felt each and every whatever you want to call it. Yep, my Marcus was the encore all right.
For me, the anticipation is worse than the pain itself. While in labor for my fourth child, I was so nervous and scared I was shaking while the nurses prep me. But it gets easier as soon as the baby is out. As I said, it is good, sweet pain.
I cannot speak for women who become critical at childbirth. It must be very stressful.
So for women to have more than one child is a show of strength. Being pregnant and carrying 50 lbs more for four months or so is tiring by itself.
Giving birth should be a woman's pride. We are even allowed to put in our resumes in the form of "married with four kids".