What do I need for labor?
This is a multifaceted question. We have unpacked some of the emotional and spiritual needs of a woman in labor. There are some ladies who feel the NEED to have certain things at their labor. Technically the only things that are truly needed are really very simple. You need a well fueled and rested body, and you'll need your breasts for when the baby is here. The Lord created our body to do amazing things, one of them, is to create and give birth to a baby. He gave us hormones to help loosen our pelvises for labor, he created the contractions to open our body, getting it ready for the baby's arrival. Both of these things, automatically occur, you don't have to tell your body to start, and it will continue, whether or not you have given it permission to. I like to think about contractions like waves, constant, when labor starts, with breaks, but uncontrollable. If you're in the ocean they will be there no matter what, some are smaller, not as intense and others will knock you over! I am always so thankful for the breaks in between waves to pull my swimsuit up, straighten my sunglasses and steady myself before the next one. Unlike waves, with every contraction your body changes, praise the Lord He created them with breaks to center yourself before the next one. No one likes to be floundering in the ocean with constant waves crashing on top of you.
If our body knows what do to, why do we try to argue with it? Your period starts on it's own, and no matter how much you complain about it, it goes for as long as it wants to and ruins as many pairs of underwear as it pleases. It's called a cycle because that's what our body does, and we can usually trust it to be there, even if it's a little off sometimes, it'll pop up when it's ready! Especially if you decided to wear white pants. Your body knows when it's ready for your period, so, it knows when you're ready to give birth. You can do some things to make sure you're "on time", but ultimately, it's up to the Lord. I have heard of some instances where the mama didn't eat much during the pregnancy so she went in to what we would call "premature labor". Her body knew that if the baby was on the outside, he would probably get what he needed, so it made the executive decision to give birth "early". Personally, I was born 8 days "late" and came out with big ears and feet... apparently my mom's body thought I needed size 10 feet before I was 14 so I was kept in there a while longer. Joking aside, who knows what extra nutrients I received being in there 8 days longer, or what part of me was being perfected before I was born.
(I am not saying that every pre mature baby needed to come out early for any fault of the pregnant mom or any other reason, I just knew this to be true in this certain situation. I do not pretend to understand every single situation and circumstance)
Yes, there are lots of things you can have in your labor space to help, and I totally support, and suggest some of the things! However, don't put too much importance on physical "things", and most definitely don't tire yourself out trying to make labor happen. Trust your body, trust your midwife, listen to both, and get to know both. Having an understanding of how your body works and reacts to things is super important and having a good relationship with your midwife makes things go so much more smoothly. Ultimately, if you trust the Lord, and His timing, and are capable of placing your labor and pregnancy in His hands, then He will be the best form of comfort and peace that you will need, and a peaceful, joyful birth, is such a blessing.