Don't Stop Believin' by Olivia Newton-John

Don't Stop Believin' by Olivia Newton-John

Author:Olivia Newton-John
Language: eng
Format: epub
ISBN: 9781760144074
Publisher: Penguin Random House Australia

Just before Christmas in 1985, I felt several sharp, stabbing pains racing through my mid-section. It was much too early for the baby, who was due in February, so Matt raced me in to see my OB-GYN. It was one of those heart-stopping moments where you’re holding your breath for the news. My doctor informed me that it was possible that I could be having late-term miscarriage.

In that moment, I didn’t panic.

Miscarriage? I wouldn’t hear of it.

‘What can we do?’ I asked. The answer was that I would be put on complete bed rest now, which meant a few steps around the house a day and showering, but that was it for me for the next eight to ten weeks. Hopefully, it wouldn’t be that long until I gave birth.

That wasn’t meant to be.

A few weeks after the New Year in 1986, I was taking a shower and, while soaping up, my waters broke. It was a beautiful sunny day and I remember washing off and then going downstairs to calmly tell Matt that he was about to become a father. He held it together pretty well, although I know he was crazy nervous on our drive from Malibu to Cedars-Sinai Hospital.

It was still too soon for the baby to come into the world.

But someone didn’t want to wait any longer.

I still wanted to have a natural birth, but I wasn’t dilating. I was in labour for seventeen hours. It was such slow progress that the doctors were forced to give me a drug called Pitocin, a synthetic form of a hormone that your body processes naturally during labour. It sped up the contractions, and also helped me to relax because seventeen hours was a long time for both me and the baby to be in this kind of stress.

As labour progressed, I was exhausted, cranky as hell (every mother knows exactly what I mean), and facing a dreaded epidural, while Matt was completely hyper and filming away with a video camera. By this time, I wasn’t shy. If you told me I’d be lying there with my legs wide open, lights on me, a spotlight on my crotch and someone with a video camera shooting my every move . . . Well, by then, nothing embarrasses you anymore. The pain wipes away the shyness.

As we were about to hit hour eighteen, I accepted the offer of an epidural because the pain was pretty intense. I went numb immediately, and that part was heaven.

I had heard horror stories about epidurals and I didn’t want one. In fact, it terrified me more than childbirth. It would turn out that my fears were warranted in this case because the needle hit my spinal cord.

Funny how life works.

I believe sometimes fear is an invitation. If you spend a lot of energy fearing something, no matter how hard you try to avoid it there are times when you end up having to deal with it – at least that’s been true in my life.



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