Thoughts From the Fensende Discussion List

Subject: Water Alleviates Pain (Karil Daniels) writes

I've heard many women say that water labor and waterbirth greatly reduced their pain. I'd like to hear about your experiences with water and pain relief. Please share your stories.

Roxanne responds

Boy does it! Being a military family (read military hospitals), with high risk pregnancies, I've never been able to enjoy any of the "nonconventional" birth practices that I've seen in action at friends' births, but I have (somewhat jealously), watched. My best friend had me as her coach (pre my doula training). She had hit the wall, and was demanding meds!!! But (fortunately) the anesthesiologist was not immediately available, so we got her into a tub to wait. She had previously refused to even try the tub because of modesty.

[Note from Karil - There's nothing to prevent a modest mom from wearing a loose t-shirt or nightgown in the water!]

Well, let me tell you, she spent the next two hours in that tub! When the epidural was ready, she waved it away when he told her she'd have to get out of the tub!!! She stayed in the warm water until she was ready to push, and then very reluctantly got out to deliver that incredible baby.

I'm sure she would have delivered in the tub if the option of a water birth had been available to her. I remember her face before the tub, watching her struggle with self control was even painful for me. I will NEVER forget the look of relaxation between contractions once she got in that tub. She was truly remarkable!

I think the best thing about the water is the way it helped her focus. I'm sure I don't have to tell you how strong it made her feel to deliver that baby medication, (oh wait, lets not sugar coat it) - Drug Free.