Writing About Labor – A Guest Post by Chrys Fey
I’ve never been through labor, and what I knew about it from my sister wasn’t enough to write about it convincingly in Frozen Crimes. The closest experience I had was from an episode with endometriosis and an ovarian cyst that made me believe the pain I felt was close to a contraction. I had to lay down on my side on the couch, because it was too painful to sit, and I seethed between my teeth as tears flowed, but even that wasn’t all I needed to know, so I did what any good writer would do…I Googled it.
I researched what contractions feel like, what happens to the uterus during contractions, and the stages of labor. I learned a lot and put all of that in my story, from reddish-brown discharge at the beginning of the process to even a mention of what is called “the bloody show,” which I don’t actually write about.
Still, I needed to know the facts. I had to know what Beth would be experiencing (in the middle of a blizzard!) and the time limit Donovan would be contending with before the baby came.
While writing Beth’s labor in Frozen Crimes I researched these questions:
– Can you hear your water break? (You can…it’s a popping sound.)
– When does a woman go to the hospital when she’s in labor? (Usually when contractions are 2-3 minutes apart.)
– How long and frequent are contractions in the beginning? (About 65 seconds long and ten minutes apart. Gradually, they become longer and more frequent.)
– How long after 10 centimeters dilated is the baby born? (Two or more hours.)
– How do nurses and doctors measure the cervix? (With the width of their fingers.)
– What items would you need for a home birth?
Her eyelids grew heavy and lowered. Sleep pulled her back under. A few hours later, though, the same jab of pain returned. She inhaled sharply and held her breath. Her uterus felt as though it had transformed into a balled fist. Throbbing pain dominated her entire abdomen and back, and a tremendous pressure radiated along her pelvis. She seethed between her teeth. Her heart beat erratically, and sweat dampened her scalp.
No, no, no. Panic rushed through her, flooding her body. This can’t be happening. I can’t be going into labor. It’s a month too soon.
She knew very well that early labor was an unwanted possibility and that false alarms happened all the time. Please let it be a false alarm. Please. I can’t have this baby now. Not now.
It took her a long time to fall back asleep, and when she finally did, another contraction pried her awake. She couldn’t deny it anymore; she was in full-blown labor.
This was their worst nightmare come true. She peeked at Donovan on the other side of the couch, but she didn’t want to wake him. Maybe she could fend off the labor long enough for them to get freed. Some women could be in labor for days, and hers had only begun. There was no reason for her to raise the alarm so soon, especially when they had no way of getting to the hospital. So, she’d grit her teeth and bear it. For as long as she could.
When disasters strike around every corner, is it possible to have a happily-ever-after?
BLURB: Beth and Donovan are expecting their first child. Life couldn’t get any better…until a stalker makes his presence known. This person sends disturbing messages and unsettling items, but it isn’t long before his menacing goes too far.
Hoping for a peaceful Christmas, Donovan takes Beth to Michigan. Days into their trip, a winter storm named Nemesis moves in with the goal of burying the state. Snowdrifts surround their house, and the temperature drops below freezing.
Except, the storm isn’t the only nemesis they must face. Everyone’s lives are at stake—especially that of their unborn child. Will they survive, or will they become a frozen crime?
BUY LINKS: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iTunes
***HUGE DISASTER CRIMES GIVEAWAY***
Prizes: 4 eBooks (Disaster Crimes 1-4: Hurricane Crimes, Seismic Crimes, Tsunami Crimes, Flaming Crimes) + Girl Boss Magnets (4), Inflatable Cup Holder (1), Adventure Fuel To-Go Cups (2), Anchor Fashion Scarf (1), Mermaid Nail Clippers (2), Citrus and Sea Salt Scented Candle (1), Snowflake Handmade Bookmark (1), Insulated Cooler Bag (1)
Number of Winners: One
Giveaway Ends: October 30, 2020 12:00am Eastern Standard Time
***FREE EXCLUSIVE EBOOK***
To get the exclusive prequel to the Disaster Crimes series, sign up for Chrys’ newsletter. By signing up, you agree to receive Chrys Fey’s newsletter. After you confirm subscription, you will receive an email (so check your inbox and spam folder) with directions on where to snag your eBook copy of THE CRIME BEFORE THE STORM.
Click here to sign up and get The Crime Before the Storm FREE!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Chrys Fey is author of the Disaster Crimes Series, a unique concept that blends disasters, crimes, and romance. She runs the Insecure Writer’s Support Group Book Club on Goodreads and edits for Dancing Lemur Press. https://www.chrysfey.com
11 responses to “Writing About Labor – A Guest Post by Chrys Fey”
Labor for my son lasted HOURS. The hardest part for my daughter was going from 3cm to 7cm during 1 contraction…after that delivery was a breeze.
Good luck and God’s blessings with your book
Yes, the entire process of labor can last a VERY long time. And wow. That was one powerful (and no doubt tough and painful) contraction.
Thank you, Pam!
Thank you so much for having me on your blog, Alicia! I am so happy to be here. 🙂
Very interesting what ou learned, Chris. I enjoyed your excerpt. I never heard my water break but both times, I was asleep.
Not everyone may hear it, but many women have. I stumbled across a chat about it. 🙂
Nice article and gripping excerpt! Best wishes on your release!
Thank you, M.J.!
Interesting post! I’ve never gone through labor but I was with my daughter during hers (she’s adopted). She was determined to have natural childbirth, but after several hours, she submitted to the epidural and decided she might want to have a second child, lol! She eventually had a c-section for both number one and number two babies.
Women who do natural childbirth are warriors. Of course, women who go through ANY childbirth, even C-sections, are warriors! ❤ (Women are warriors in general. lol)
Thanks for commenting, Alina!
Your series sounds awesome. I was in labor with my son for three and a half days. That was a lot of fun, let me tell you!
Wow. Three and a half days. That is incredible. The stages of labor (and contractions) can last a very long time, and it’s different for every woman. Truly amazing.
Thank you! And thanks for commenting!