How I had a 10lb 12oz baby – VBAC, Induction, No Epidural! *Part Two*

If you read *Part One* of Daniel’s birth story, I’m sure you’re wondering how I did it!

There are so many factors that I believe helped me get my VBAC even with my giant baby. Any and all of these can help you prepare for your next birth too!


I have to start with education. I wish someone would have told me how much there is to learn about birth. And the more you learn, the better the chance at a great delivery. Don’t just blindly trust your doctors, be informed too. I learned SO much from Bridget Teyler and her Built to Birth course, as well as Susan White and her childbirth education. I’d highly recommend them both!


Another thing that I did during pregnancy was see a chiropractor that specialized in prenatal care. For me that was Lynnette Hendrickson at Hendrickson Chiropractic in Newton. She had me feeling great clear up through 40 weeks! She’s had extensive training on prenatal chiropractic care. Including how to ease issues like round ligament pain (which I always have bad in pregnancy) and sciatica. As well as opening your pelvis up to allow baby to get into a good position for labor. I firmly believe she was a huge factor in how baby was able to come down like he was supposed to!


Everyone says “walk walk walk” for exercise your whole pregnancy and it’ll help you in labor too. I love going on walks, but for some reason when I’m pregnant my hips get all out of wack when I walk. We would walk one time and I would be MISERABLE for days after. I used to just accept it as part of pregnancy, you’ll be uncomfortable because you’re pregnant right? Well I was tired of it, so I looked for an alternative way to exercice and tried swimming! I would get a pool noodle and kick down and back in the lap pool at the YMCA. I never felt that pelvic discomfort and pain again. You can find different pregnancy water workout ideas on YouTube.

Positions During Pregnancy and Labor

From following Bridget Teyler on Instagram, I learned a ton about baby’s positioning and what all factors into it. Sitting all slouched back on the couch is bad (baby sinks back to follow your spine and ends up sunny side up). Sitting on an exercise ball in the 3rd trimester can help baby get into a great position. I’ll talk about labor positions when I get to epidurals!

Support Team

I had a doula with this birth and I’d recommend that all day too! Just having someone there as knowledgeable as my friend Erin (insert endless doula credentials and experience here) was so comforting. She rubbed my back the entire time so I could squeeze Michael’s hands through each contraction, then was just the best cheerleader through pushing. And I know if any issues came up or plans needed to change, I could count on her advice on how to proceed. Also, I have the best hubby in the world. He was totally supportive of me attempting a VBAC and was an amazing, comforting presence while I labored.

No Epidural

I firmly believe the reason my first birth didn’t progress was because I got an epidural. You simply can’t move into proper labor positions for baby laying down. I have since learned that hospitals are supposed to turn you on your sides. They can give you a peanut ball, etc to try to help with positioning. My first hospital did not, I just laid there and didn’t know any better.

So with this VBAC I was determined not to get stuck on that bed, which meant no epidural. I just knew if I was going to get this (potentially) giant baby out, I was going to need to be able to move. I had to try different positions to get him to come down. 

The only pain management I used was a Pudendal Block; numbing shots you can get *down there* when you’re pushing. I do believe that possibly helped ease the “ring of fire” they talk about, because that wasn’t too terrible. The painful part for me was the stretching and tearing due to his size. I’m sure that would have been even worse if I hadn’t gotten the Pudendal Block.

With all that said, I have absolutely nothing against others who have gotten epidurals or are planning on getting one. You do you! I just wanted to share why they didn’t work for me. I do believe they can contribute to issues resulting in c-sections, so do your research! 

Breathing techniques

So how did I get through crazy Pitocin contractions with no epidural? Not going to lie, it was insane. But I believe a huge factor was breathing techniques! I learned these from the Built to Birth YouTube videos and practiced a lot before labor. The cleansing breaths before each contraction, not holding your breath during, and vocalizing in low tons all worked wonders for me! Can’t say it was pain free by any means, but I closed my eyes and breathed like crazy through each one. And it got me through!

Positions for Pushing 

The last tip I have comes from pushing positions! I’d read about when you lay on your back to push (like most hospitals encourage) it curves your tailbone up. This makes it get in the way of labor and pushing. So I knew I didn’t want to be on my back. I tried hands and knees for a little bit, but I was too exhausted from that insane transition. So my doula suggested side laying, and that’s how I pushed for the rest of the time. And it worked! I still tore really bad (because he was giant) but man, we got him out! I still can’t believe it. 

If you’re expecting or want more children, I hope you learned something here from my experience, and I encourage you to research and learn even more! I felt so much more empowered this time, and was able to have a successful VBAC thanks to the combination of all these factors. I’m so thankful for this experience, and look forward to my next birth in May 2024! 

Click here to see more of my newborn portfolio!

Sara Nuzum is a newborn and family photographer in Newton, Kansas. She is a full-service studio where she guides clients through print orders resulting in beautiful portraits for them to cherish forever.

Similar Posts