Sunday, August 14, 2011

Early Labor To Do List

Labor. Just the sound of the word sounds like work to me. While having a baby is labor intensive (pun intended!), for some there are hours of prodromal (early and light) labor. For me, my labors always started with hours of light contractions that I could easily function around. My philosophy has always been to stay engaged with what you were doing before labor started as long as you can. There will come a point when your body will no longer allow you to be distracted. But in the meant time, find a labor project to keep the mind busy while the body gets things going.

Here is a partial list of some of my early labor activities with my six babies:

  • shopping (with my first baby, early contractions started while birthday shopping for family members at the mall).
  • walking around the block with my kids 
  • playing in the back yard with my kids
  • cooking
  • taking my daughter to the DMV for her license (funny story!)
  • shopping for nursing bras
  • grocery run for last minute items
  • scrubbing the floor
  • making the labor bed
  • fixing last minute snacks to hold the kids over
  • laundry
  • reading with my kids
  • picnic in the backyard
  • crocheting
  • watching movies (on tv)
  • pelvic rocks
  • scrubbing the bathtub
  • out for Mexican food
  • eating
  • making red raspberry leaf tea
  • drinking water, juices, herbal teas with honey
  • napping
  • cuddling
  • making love
  • relaxing in our pool
Remember, these were all things I COULD do.
The conditions must be favorable to continue such activities, such as:

  • bag of water intact
  • contractions light and infrequent
  • always with another adult (my husband accompanied me on the walks, and grocery shopping)
  • no alarming signs such as heavy bleeding or fever
For me, there was plenty of real life to keep me busy in early labor. Of course, if my life hadn't been so full, I could have worked on a baby blanket or scrap booked our latest vacation. And  of course, the active work such as scrubbing the floor and walking actually help labor along.

Then there  are the women who head straight into active labor with no smooth climb up the mountain. They do not have time to think about a labor project. They already have one!

For those of  you who had long early labor, what activities did you do?

1 comment:

  1. Movies, music, reading--I wanted to be entertained! I also snapped photos and such.