There’s only so much you can prepare for when it comes to labour, and because every birth is different, it’s impossible to really know what lies ahead. When I was pregnant, I did everything I could in the lead-up to my big day. Like many others, I went to my antenatal classes and learned about the stages of labour, the different types of pain management and what an episiotomy was all about. I wrote a birth plan and read up on what to expect when my waters broke. I thought I was clued up and knew what was coming.
But while a lot of things happened during my first labour that I had been forewarned about, there were plenty of things that took me by surprise, despite my careful preparations.
1. Never has leakage been this exciting
It was around 3am when my waters broke, and the feeling of warm liquid gushing from my nether regions is up there with one of the most exciting moments of my life. Never had so much meaning and anticipation been behind vaginal leakage. I remember giggling with excitement while I wrapped a towel around my bottom half, thinking that there I was wetting myself uncontrollably and I couldn’t have been happier. Here we go! Bring on the contractions! I thought, somewhat naively.