Birth Stories

Walking epidural

Did anyone have a "walking epidural?" How'd it go?

Re: Walking epidural

  • Yep: awesome. I really wanted to be able to move around (I labored until 7 cm walking, standing up, leaning on things and people) and was concerned that if I stuck in bed, I wouldn't progress as quickly: it was one of the primary reasons that I seriously, seriously considered foregoing the epi. I'm also very, very glad that I prepared as though I would not be using pain meds...I think it made everything easier b/c even if you ultimately get an epi, you may want to wait until you've got a few cm under your belt (I know I did) and even if you do decide to get one, you may still have to wait for a time (did that, too) and I was glad that I knew I could manage w/o if I needed to.

    Before she placed the epi, the anesthesiologist asked if I had any questions. When I asked if she thought I'd be able to walk afterward and said, "Well yes, of course you can," as though there's any other way to do an epi. I'm not exactly sure why 'walking' epis are as common in the US, but it was heavenly. I walked, didn't need a cath (I emptied my bladder myself just before he was born) and was able to walk from L&D to postpartum on my own. It was great. I hadn't slept for almost 36 hours by the time I went into labor and while I progressed quickly, it was taking all of my energy reserves to stay on top of the contractions. Not knowing how much longer it would be (turns out it was only another 2 1/2 hours after getting the epi) I was terrified that I would be too depleted to push when it came time and made the conscious choice to have the epi b/c of the circumstances and I have no regrets, though I had seriously, seriously considered going pain med free (which I'm also glad I considered: I think being open to using as few interventions as possible it improved my overall experience b/c I felt prepared and like I was making a rational choice, even though ultimately, the epi was there when I needed it.)

     

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