Everyone has fantasies. It's part of being human to imagine better things than one has, or just imagine things working out the way you want them to. It's just natural, although I'm sure some people fantasize more than others, we all know men too well to not know that.
My mom, growing up as an orphan, fantasized about what having a mother would be like. She imagined a best friend relationship between mother and daughter. And because she had a mom until she was 7 she had memories of the good times. I stood no chance in hell of living up to her fantasies. Even if I wasn't a stubborn, independent American kid, I could never be her best friend. Most kids aren't and shouldn't be their parent's best friends. She didn't hold my brother to that standard so she and he had a better relationship. I knew I was a failure in her eyes, or at least a disappointment, from early on.
She now has a fantasy that her new living place will be the place she belongs. Already, however, she is disillusioned. Already she is complaining about the food, the move, the people. Whatever.
My current fantasy is about childbirth. After my hellish c-section I mourned a positive birthing situation. I thought I had missed my only chance to have such a thing, I was stuck with this horrible memory and no breast feeding to boot. But then I got knocked up again magically. Here's my chance. I have been cleared for a VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section) and so there's nothing to prevent a fresh new positive birthing experience.
But am I expecting too much? I am hoping to go all natural, but I will have restrictions. Because of the possibility of complications I am not allowed to labor at home at all. I will be monitored continuously, and if the kid doesn't come out by 42 weeks, its over, c-section is necessary, because they can't or wont stimulate labor for a VBAC. Too much risk of uterine rupture. (TMI I know, sorry.) So there is a possibility I wont get to do this my way. There will be some fighting I have to do to maintain control and keep the worriers at bay until I really need medical intervention, but I'm up for that.
But otherwise, if the kid comes on time, I'm free to do what I want. No meds? I'm crazy enough to hope for that. You hear all this positive about the euphoria of the natural hormones that get released when you do it without an epidural. And my last epidural was no walk in the park anyway, so I'd love to avoid that sucker. So I dream that I might be one of those strong people who can mentally tough it out through labor and find that dream like ending where you hold the baby in your arms and feel incredible and powerful and connected and so on and so forth. Am I fantasizing outside of the realm of possibility?
Am I setting myself up for disappointment? Maybe these stories of euphoria are from crazy ladies who do yoga and breathing exercises for a living and only eat organic whole raw foods and live green and compost in their back yards and raise worms in their garages and stuff? Do I stand a chance when I don't have a spare minute to even do the yoga part? And I am so not raising worms people. Don't care if I could save the world.
I haven't got my ego riding on not getting an epidural, but I've read it's better for the kid. I do have my ego riding on how tough I am though. I worry that I'll crack immediately under the pain. I worry that I'll break and then regret it later realizing I could have made it. I wish I could have some sort of birthing coach but that's a tough area. My hospital has banned doulas because they were interfering by giving medical advice. And I'm also insecure that once I get a birthing coach she may push me too hard to stay natural when I've decided I'm over it. How do I get one who is fine if I change my mind and chicken out? How do I get one that is allowed in by the hospital? Is it really necessary to have this person or can I just make my husband give me what I need?
It's not that I think the husband is incapable, but it's his first birth too. An experienced voice in the room who can tell me I'm doing well, where I am in the process, help me focus and reassure me that I'm making the right choices when faced by problems, seems like a good idea.
Anyway, I digress. I am most concerned that I'm setting myself up for disappointment again. The first few months of motherhood as a rule contain lots of "you're not perfect" moments already. I don't need to feel like my birthing process itself was a failure again. I want to give this kid the experience the first three didn't get. I want that good story. How do I keep my expectations grounded in reality rather than lost in fantasy? Anyone got a good book for me to read about that?