Journey to 37 something weeks Part 2: The Medical Side

It has been said by many that there is no greater pain than Jesus’ suffering or for us women — CHILDBIRTH.

Well if you are wondering how did we end up experiencing labor pains, let me take you back in the days of Adam and Eve.

On John MacArthur’s book: Twelve Extraordinary Women, I felt God’s wrath when He learned Eve’s disobedience:

Genesis 3:13
And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”
The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”

So God decided to punish us:

Genesis 3:16
To the woman He said:
“I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception;
In pain you shall bring forth children;
Your desire shall be for your husband,
And he shall rule over you.”

Yes, I was imagining God’s voice as I read this chapter in the book. Kinda shook me from where I was sitting. If Eve didn’t disobey God, would we have a simpler birthing experience?

As a kid I did not have a good track record in handling pain. My mom would sometimes compare me to an open wound for even the slightest touch can bring me to tears. Doubtful of myself, I never thought I could handle childbirth, well, because I kind of cheated. Too afraid of what might happen I didn’t have second thoughts on getting pain medications also know as anesthesia on my first baby.

The most common anesthesia hospitals give you is what they call Epidural injected in our spine’s epidural space. Although this is the safest drug they can give you it also has some disadvantage like: maternal hypotension, slows and weakens contractions, increases possibility for forceps delivery and headache.

Convincing myself to not have any medication this time (the last time I will be bearing a child), I have sought my doctor’s opinion. At first I really wanted to do water birth but that might just cost us a hundred thousand or more, I figured to do the natural, unmedicated, husband-coached method.

To tell you frankly I would flip off sometimes imagining the pain I will go through. I felt like I will punish myself when I could just ask for drugs and be high on it. But then this book saved me, given by my husband’s uncle and aunt five years ago. Elisabeth Corcoran wrote about her experiences as a wife and mom to two kids. She said in one chapter that she has no tolerance for pain at all but then they did Bradley method and boy she did not expect that her body was capable of such pain and she felt empowerment. All of a sudden I had this feeling of excitement and perseverance that if she did it, I can too!

So here I am emotionally and spiritually ready for what could happen, I excitingly told my doctor of my plans. She is very supportive and assured me I am a good candidate for a lamaze technique since I gave birth with no complications on my first one.

One advice I can give to pregnant ladies out there and those who are trying, choosing a smart doctor who has your best interest is important BUT being as smart as your doctor is much more needed nowadays.

It has been told that the rate of Cesarean Deliveries in the Philippines is tragically increasing. Some doctors just wanted to cut you and get their pay. Information on childbirth is pretty much everywhere now. Please make sure you read up tons of books or do the easiest possible way — GOOGLE IT before you talk to your doctor.

Another important factor is that you must be comfortable with your choices. How do you want to experience childbirth? Even if you did your research and all but you think some of the methods are not for you, you will not succeed. Bearing a child and raising them is the toughest job. As they say it is a job without pay but is definitely PRICELESS. Childbirth is also a mother-baby-father team. Everyone must cooperate.

Husband’s or a birth partner’s role is very important. Women tend to go crazy for 9 months and that is very much acceptable and normal. We need someone who can still love us despite the mood swings and hot flashes.

I understand that women gives birth differently. Not all has the same amount of pain or scenario. Some might have medical conditions. For first time moms it is really hard to tell whether you’ll have a Normal Spontaneous Delivery (NSD) or Cesarean Section Delivery (CSD). At the end of the day all you can do is PRAY that both you and the baby will be healthy.

It also helps to attend childbirth class which my husband and I did and will graduate this week (Yay!). The class will help you become aware on what’s going on in your body and will equip you with all the knowledge that you need about childbirth. Will write about our experience soon!

I’m on my 36th week as I write this and all I can say is that I am emotionally, spiritually, physically and mentally ready for childbirth. I believe that pain is all in the mind. If there’s fear, there is pain. All my life I’ve never felt this ready. Waiting for the perfect time did me good.

As I close this 2-part blog of mine, I will leave you with my Birth Plan. The purpose of a birth plan is for your doctor and chosen hospital know how you wanted to experience childbirth. If you prepare one, most likely you will get what you wanted. Remember that it is YOUR BODY that will suffer and YOUR MONEY that will be wasted if you do not think things carefully. Hope this serves as an inspiration to all!

NOTE: This birth plan was inspired by our notes in our birthing class and of Rica Peralejo’s and was approved by my doctor.

Patient: Nouelle Anne P. Sanchez
Doctor: Dr. Teresa Diana Bongala
Due Date: May 25, 2014
Support Person: Michael Ryann B. Sanchez

Thank you for considering all my wishes to have a natural, unmedicated, husband-coached childbirth.


• I would like to walk to labor and delivery unless I have heavy bleeding please place me in a wheelchair
• I prefer mini-shave on perineum
• Bowels emptied spontaneously
• My husband will be present throughout labor and delivery
• For certain people to be allowed to document my labor (Giving my husband license to give consent regarding names)
• Freedom to walk and change positions as desired
• I would like to have a spontaneous labor
• If my doctor allows, I would like to drink minimal fluid or eat small amount of food
• Vaginal exams by my doctor when requested or for medical reasons
• Fetal heart monitor to be attached
• I would like to do relaxation, emotional support, massage and breathing techniques during labor
• IV at 6cm dilation

Anesthesia/Pain Medication

• Please do not offer pain medication. I would like to have a standard epidural only upon


• Choice of position and freedom to move
• I would like to follow my urge to push
• Allow for longer 2nd stage and position variations to help progress
• Birth in labor bed/birth chair/beanbag
• Freedom to choose birth position whichever will be comfortable for me
• I would like to touch baby’s head as it crowns
• No catheterization
• Perineal support with warm washcloth; naturally slow down pushing to allow perineum to stretch
• As much as possible follow previous episiotomy
• Local anesthesia for the episiotomy is definitely welcome.
• Spontaneous delivery


• This is not an option for me unless totally and absolutely necessary, my doctor will discuss the method to my husband
• I would like my husband to be with me at all times if requires a cesarean delivery
• I would like to have immediate contact with my baby if she is in good health, and have her latch on to me and breastfeed if possible.
• I would prefer a bikini cut for the C-section.


• Wait to see if baby can handle own mucus
• Care done on mother’s abdomen. Baby or blanket over them
• Cutting of the cord will be done by the father
• Have all newborn procedures done in the room and delayed until after feeding
• Evaluation of uterus before using uterine stimulant routinely
• Unless required for health reasons, I do not wish to be separated from my baby
• If my baby must be taken from me to receive medical treatment, my husband will
accompany my baby at all times
• Allow mother to move around and nurse baby


• Our baby to be roomed in with us as stated in our package
• Delay administration of eye drops/ointment up to 2 hours. Please do not use silver nitrate.
• I would like to breastfeed my baby and have him/her latch immediately. Please do not use bottles or give glucose/plain water
• No circumcision
• If possible, early discharge from hospital


• Lights well lit in birthing room during labor
• To bring my focal point
• To bring our own camera/s to take photos during labor and birth.
• Husband and wife together at all times, and the few names we’ll give consent to within time of labor
• I would like my husband to be able to stay and sleep in my room

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