Because I knew what to expect a little better, the second pregnancy and labor went so much quicker than the first! The first labor experience at the clinic out in town was amazing, so we decided to have the second baby there as well (Since we’re currently no longer stationed in Okinawa, we joke that we can’t have any more children unless we fly back to be at the same clinic.).
My husband and I decided to have a baby when we moved to Okinawa. As a nutritionist, personal trainer, and holistic health advocate, I believe in the power of the human body to achieve amazing feats as long as the body is nourished in mind, body, and spirit. My husband and I think similarly and we both knew we wanted an all-natural pregnancy and birth.
I spent the week leading up to my husband's patrol doing everything and anything to get labor started with my second daughter. During the birth of my first daughter he had stood by my side, supporting me in the most strong, empathetic and surprisingly calm manner. I was terrified to watch him leave without first getting hold our newest addition. Unfortunately, our time ran out and he had to return to sea.
Why is the 4th trimester rarely talked about? Nobody had any length of discussion with me regarding what it would be like after my child was earth-side. I was as prepared as I could be for pregnancy and birth, but the months after birth is what shocked me most of all. Undoubtedly, my 4th trimester was my hardest. Maybe it was because I had a long labor. 51 hrs with a hospital transfer and a few hours of pushing. The painful months of not being able to sit comfortably, breastfeeding challenges, and the lack of support I felt were main contributors to recovery, no doubt. I wish now that someone had spoken to me about postpartum depression and the many ways it manifests itself.