My “Labor Day” : {5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Going Into Labor}

As Labor Day approached I could have written about fun American themed parties, but I honestly didn’t really plan anything so it would be a lie- haha! Sometimes 3 day weekends/holidays aren’t always about cute Pinterest-y parties, but just about being with those you love and relaxing! As for me I am relaxing with my hubby and baby girl. The last few weeks every time I thought “Labor Day is approaching” all I kept thinking about was my “labor” experience when I had my first baby a little over 6 months ago. I am not going to go into all the details of it (yet), but I thought I would share the 5 things I wish I knew before my “Labor Day” that NO ONE told me….maybe it can help someone out someday.

5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Going into Labor:

1. Water Breaking Lies: This was the biggest misconception by far! In all the movies/TV shows I have seen when someone’s water breaks it happens in one “splash” and then it is done. BUT in real life the fluid from your water breaking can come out for hours!….Yes hours! (6 in my case). Talk about embarrassing when you think it has officially broken, only to be standing in the hospital in your third change of clothes and it just keeps coming out as you check-in.

2. Eat Before (if you have time): Once you are checked into the hospital they don’t let you eat anything. So my advice is to grab something to eat on the way because the next opportunity to eat could be hours or in my case 2 days away! Now of course if the baby is crowning or your contractions are super close together then skip this. But if there is time….eat something! I literally would have had enough time to shower, get dolled up, and eat if I wasn’t so panicked.

3. Overpack: I googled “hospital packing lists” months prior to giving birth and then decided to compile my own because none of them had all the things I wanted. I had this idea in my mind of wanting a magical, peaceful birthing experience so I packed everything I would need for that (iPod speakers, magazines, massage lotion)….well the one thing I didn’t pack was more than 3 days worth of clothes for my husband! We ended up being in the hospital 5 days and I was not wanting my husband to leave so he had to wear the same clothes over and over! So overpack!

4. You wait for Doctors: For the entirety of your labor you will only see the doctor on rare occasions…mostly when it is time to push….but besides that, it is you and the nurses. So when I was ready to push it happened to be around 6am and my dr. wouldn’t be there until 7am. So they made me wait….literally with a baby like hanging out of me. She walked in, told me to push, and that was it….my baby was born. Seems like a pretty sweet gig for a dr. if you ask me.

5. “Your Birthing Plan” may get thrown out the window: Like I said above, I had this idea of what my birthing experience would be like: what I would wear, how I would handle contractions, what music would be playing, etc. I wanted to bring my baby into the world naturally, with no pain meds, and in a peaceful environment. What I never realized was that sometimes the baby has a different plan and medically sometimes things need to be done in the best interest of the baby (and mom). I wanted to be cute….FORGET THAT! I did not want an epidural….But it ended up saving me from having a C-Section. I thought I would be able to handle contractions….But I didn’t think I would need to be induced and Pitocin causes violent contractions. The list can go on and on.

There are so many things we don’t know and can’t expect when it comes to giving birth so just be informed, be as prepared as you can, and then be open to whatever is best for you and your baby.

Happy “Labor Day” to all the moms out there and good luck on your Labor Day!

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#Teamjohnston {Serving those you love}

Almost two years ago I started a new job that had me waking up earlier and commuting longer than any job I previously had.  After a few weeks of this I became somewhat unbearable at home.  I was cranky from lack of sleep and complaining constantly to my husband about the traffic and that I never had enough time to get ready anymore.  This crankiness resulted in crying… yes, I had a diva moment.  My calm husband just held me, told me how great I was for working so hard to help provide for the family, and said he wished I didn’t have to work.  But of course like most, I do have to work.

The next morning I woke up before the sun (as usual) and started to get ready.   A few minutes later my husband came into the bathroom and said, “What can I do to help you get ready?”  He had set his alarm to get up a little after me to help get me ready and even though I thought it was just too much, in desperation I rattled off a long list. Over the months when running late I would list off requests like: make my breakfast, start my coffee, warm up the car, lay out my outfit and pack my lunch.  There were even days I was running so late he would hold the blow dryer to my hair while I applied makeup, or put my boots on my feet while I brushed my hair.  (I know what you are thinking…I should be planning ahead, getting up earlier- I’m spoiled…ALL TRUE).

After weeks of this, there was a morning where he forgot to set his alarm and get up with me.  I didn’t wake him because I thought he deserved a morning to sleep in.  But as I pulled away from our house and began to drive down the street I saw him running after me.  I stopped and said, “What are you doing!? Go back to bed!”   But to my surprise he was upset with me.  He couldn’t believe I hadn’t woken him and reprimanded me for not doing so.  When I asked him what the big deal was he responded, “Care, we’re a team.  You do so much for us, this is something I can do for you, and I want to serve you in this way.    I know it’s stressful for you and I want to make it easier for you”  (Yes, this made me love him even more). Before I drove away he kissed me and said, “Team Johnston.”

Since then on when we do something that is hard, serve each other, compromise, or even do fun stuff, we look at each other and say “Team Johnston!”  It has come to be something we cherish, pride ourselves in, and are thankful for.

Of course you must know this took place before I was in my prime and a mommy and I have since grown out of the phase of needing help in the mornings and needing so much time to get ready….. And thank God for that!

What are some sacrifices you and your loved ones make for each other that you are thankful for?

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