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It Happens Every Day


Alice C. Bateman

A young woman learns that she is about to have a baby. She and the childís father are overjoyed with the news! It happens every day, but when it becomes personal, it can be the most wonderful news in the world!

Because it happens all the time, and has throughout the ages of man, you would think that we as a people would know every single detail of this wondrous state, but we donít! I learned things in my sixth and seventh pregnancies that I didnít know before. For one thing, I learned that the shape our body takes on has nothing whatsoever to do with the sex of the baby inside.

Youíll have everyone telling you that since youíre carrying in a certain way, it must be one sex or the other. I can tell you after carrying seven that either sex can look exactly the same when you examine your belly in the mirror. I was so convinced by the shape of my body that my sixth baby was a girl that I called him Maggie throughout my pregnancy. Imagine my surprise when it turned out to be Matthew!

Iím sure youíve read books and seen movies where the pregnant heroine experiences one labor pain and is immediately taken to the hospital to give birth. Another popular myth. You can have intermittent and ongoing labor pains for at least two weeks prior to actual delivery. I finally learned while experiencing this yet again with Matthew, tired by now of running to the hospital expecting to give birth and being sent home when the pains stopped, that these contractions are simply our bodyís way of preparing for the onset of true labor.

Finally, I learned that the one and only way to tell if you are in actual about-to-give-birth labor is to time the pains. Sounds incredibly simple, and if we all knew this, weíd save ourselves many unnecessary trips to the hospital. When and if the contractions become regularly spaced, probably about twenty minutes apart at first, then is the time to take them seriously.

You donít have to rush to the hospital as soon as youíve determined that they are regular. Especially with a first child, labor can be long. With my first, my doctor examined me at two oíclock in the afternoon and found that my cervix was beginning to dilate. Pains began in the evening {this is the only one I did not have Ďfalseí labor with}, I went to the hospital around 11:00 p.m., and she was born at 11:17 a.m.

When your pains are about ten minutes apart, call your doctor and tell him to meet you at the hospital. Donít worry about what time of day or night it may be, just phone him. Doctors who deliver babies are used to having their sleep or their Christmas dinner interrupted, and he or she  be there when or shortly after you arrive.

If the intervals between pains become shorter very quickly, that means the baby is coming fast, and RUSH to the hospital. No cop in the world will give you a speeding ticket under these circumstances, heíll more likely escort you to the hospital.

And, if youíre one of the ones who has just learned that you are about to create and bring forth a new human, CONGRATULATIONS and I hope and pray all goes well for you! There really is nothing in this world that can compare to the feeling of having a new life growing under your heart, or bringing that life forth from your own body and seeing that tiny face for the first time.

Even if itís your seventh child. ***SMILE***

Love, and all the best, Alice.

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