Being Daddy – The Timing of Labor

If you’re like me, you enjoy your sleep. So does my wife. And we knew that once we had our baby, sleep would be at a premium. So when my wife was asked about her expectations for the delivery process at her baby shower, she half-jokingly reported that she was hoping labor would begin shortly after she woke up in the morning and showered, she would make it to the hospital by mid morning, have the baby in the afternoon, and go home that evening.

Okay, now that you’ve stopped laughing, you need to know that the first part of this fantasy actually came true. I awoke one morning ready to go to work, when my wife reported to me that she was in labor, and had been for a couple of hours.

How convenient!

This, by the way, was the last bit of “convenience” experienced that day. After twenty one hours of labor, which included a couple of epidurals that wore off, our little girl arrived at 1:00 in the morning the next day. After recovery, watching her get her first bath, doing some feeding, making phone calls, and just looking at her in amazement for awhile, we settled down to sleep at about 8:00 am. Not quite what we envisioned. And good luck getting any sleep on that first day, because someone was busting in our room about every twenty minutes to administer tests to either my wife or our daughter. The photographer at the hospital even came in trying to make an appointment for later that morning (I think not).

Anyway, the point is, once labor comes, there’s a good chance your days of good sleep and convenience are likely over for awhile. But like so many people said to me beforehand, it’s all worth it.

Check out these books in our collection dealing with labor, written with Dads and partners in mind:

The Birth Partner Handbook: Everything You Need To Know For a Healthy, Positive Birth Experience by Carl Jones

The Birth Partner: A Complete Guide to Childbirth For Dads, Doulas, and Other Labor Companions by Penny Simkin

I'm the Red Carpet Librarian and work to bring lifelong support services to the Topeka and Shawnee County area through outreach and programming. I also am a sports enthusiast, work closely with the library's sports collection, and provide programming to engage the community's sports fans.