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10 Things I Worried About Before Giving Birth That Didn't Matter At ALL During Labor

By Meredith Carroll |

Woman giving birth

Yeah, my clothes are my biggest concern right now. Oh, wait. No, no they're not.

Vanessa Minnillo, the wife of Nick Lachey (the former Mr. Jessica Simpson), is due to give birth any day now, and recently mused about how she’s trying to figure out what to wear during labor.

“I just found out I don’t have to wear a hospital gown during labor & delivery,” she Tweeted, according to People magazine. “I got very excited! Hmm, what to wear. #ItsTheLittleThings”

And all I could think when I read that was, “Ha.” Then, “Ha Ha.” And then, “Ha,” once more. Because after having gone through the birthing process twice, it’s so not the little things. It’s the very, very big things.

Here are the 10 things I worried about most before giving birth that I realized did not mattered AT ALL once I actually did it:

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Here's What to Worry About: Giving Birth. Everything Else? Meh.

My water breaking

I was utterly frozen with fear that my water would break at the most embarrassing possible moment. Like, in the middle of a business meeting, in the checkout line at the supermarket, while having sex with my husband (although, of course, who’s really having sex during the time in which they think they might be eligible for their water to break?).
As it turns out, when I was pregnant with my older daughter, my water broke at 2 in the morning when I was dead asleep and it took me four hours, three books, two calls to my obstetrician and, ultimately, a test in the hospital to determine that, yes, in fact, my water had broken and I hadn’t just peed the bed.
In retrospect, given that only something like 13 percent of pregnant women actually have their water break, it was a pretty silly thing about which to worry.

Photo credits: iStock

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About Meredith Carroll


Meredith Carroll

Meredith C. Carroll is an award-winning columnist and writer based in Aspen, Colorado. She can be found regularly on the Op-Ed page of The Denver Post. From 2005-2012 her other column, "Meredith Pro Tem" ran in several newspapers, as well as occasionally on The Huffington Post since 2009. Read more about her (or don’t, whatever) at her website. Read bio and latest posts → Read Meredith's latest posts →

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5 thoughts on “10 Things I Worried About Before Giving Birth That Didn't Matter At ALL During Labor

  1. karen says:

    I was only worried about how much it would hurt and you know what? It hurt more than I ever could have imagined. It hurt so bad that I just don’t remember anything else which is kind of a shame. They gave me an epidural and a spinal. My boyfriend came very close to passing out so he can’t give me any real details of the birth after they stuck that long needle in my back.

  2. Amanda says:

    I barely made it to the hospital … granted, its a 45 minute drive and after having to drop off our toddler and get gas, I’m sure it only took my husband 30 minutes to get there. the numbers break down like this … 5am, feeling crampy, have a bath, call the sitter and rouse Daddy. 6:20, they check me in the front desk. 6:30 officially have my feet in the stirrups. 6:37 and two pushes, out pops a shocked little man. So, that being said, giving birth on the side of the road if we have another child is a very real possibility. next time I’m just going to stay home.

  3. Jusa says:

    Humorous, but very realistic concerns. I was a regular play dough extruder. Oh well, what can you do? I couldn’t get up and go to the bathroom because I had a baby monitor in me. This question came up in Lamaze class, about whether the nurse would be grossed out. The teacher, herself a nurse, answered very tersely that any maternity nurse who couldn’t handle it shouldn’t be a nurse. That brings up the point that you’re not the first woman to give birth. Obstetricians and ob nurses do this for a living. They’ve seen it all. Everyday. Forget being embarrassed. Focus on your breathing.
    I loved my music. DH did not. For a while, I tried to listen to a relaxation tape, waves or something. He got fed up, ripped it out and made it very clear we would not be listening to that anymore. Whatever. (Who’s in labor here?) I had my moment, late in the delivery, when he was watching Alvin and the Chipmunks on tv. You do NOT want to listen to Alvin and the Chipmunks when you’re trying to pop a 9 lb watermelon out that little tiny birth canal. He claims I had him by the throat when I explained this to him. I don’t remember that. Maybe set some ground rules ahead of time on what will be playing in the room.
    I was terrified of having my water break on the train on my commute to work. I didn’t, but I stopped working earlier than I planned because hoisting myself up on that train was darned hard at the end. Stress can make you deliver early…
    Always remember, no matter how hard it is, it DOES eventually end and the reward is the greatest gift ever! The baby is all that anybody cares about in the end, not the farts or swearing or beaver shots.

  4. DeathMetalMommy says:

    Wow, now I feel like when I am in labor I am calm almost to the point of a coma lol. I only listened to music with my second child and that was 311 and In Flames, totally contrasting genres if you know them. I slept almost til time t push with my first and the third was spent waiting for contractions to get bad as my husband snoozed on the linoleum floor.

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