My feelings about labor during my second pregnancy were vastly different from the way I felt about it during my first pregnancy. When I was pregnant the first time around, with Ari, labor was an abstract concept. I knew it would be painful, but I hadn’t experienced what that truly meant.

I was scared of labor this time around, with Samara, because I knew how painful labor could be and I was planning on a home birth. I wanted the home birth badly, but I was also petrified of natural childbirth; how much it would hurt and the possibility that I would feel out of control.

When I made the decision to transfer back to my old OB and have my labor induced in the hospital, after being in early labor for a week, I allowed my mind and my body to relax. Once I made up my mind about the induction, my body took over and I went into labor on my own. I didn’t need to be induced!

After my water broke, I had absolutely no control over what was happening to my body and I was scared out of my mind.

My acupuncturist told me that when he saw his wife in active labor, her eyes looked different. It was as if her mind wasn’t present, her body was running the show.

This is how I felt when I was in labor. I never experienced active labor with Ari. This was a totally new feeling.

My body had taken over and all I could do was go along for the ride. In life, I hate roller coasters, they make me feel out of control. This labor was a real life roller coaster and Samara was operating the controls.

She forced me to face my fear, to confront natural childbirth. I know what it is to have a baby naturally now, and my daughter is the one who forced me to face my fear. Perhaps this is a part of her role in life, to help others face their fears.

What did you childbirth teach you about yourself?