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Melissa Joan Hart Rethinks Her Natural Birth Decision

10/01/2008 at 06:00 PM ET
David Livingston/Getty

After experiencing "a lot of medical intervention" during the birth of her first son, Mason Walter, now 2 ½, when Melissa Joan Hart became pregnant with her second child, she was determined to try a more natural approach. While the 32-year-old actress — who "labored at home for nine hours" before heading to the hospital — agrees that being aware of all of the pain without any drugs does make "you want to get [the baby] out as soon as possible, so you really work," she admits that, looking back, she might have done things a little differently. "I told my mom and my husband, don’t let me have [the drugs]. I kinda regret that one," says Melissa. Although the Sabrina the Teenage Witch star considered the drug-free birthing experience tough, she was pleased with her speedy recovery.

"The healing was so much faster. I didn’t have to get the drugs out of my system and was moving around a lot more."

With the delivery pain behind her, Melissa and her husband, Course of Nature‘s Mark Wilkerson, are giving all of their attention to their boys, Mason and Braydon ‘Brady’ Hart, 6 months. Sharing that their sons are "just starting to relate to each other," and make a perfect match — "[Brady] loves to laugh at his big brother and his brother loves to make him laugh" — Melissa, who hit the gym four weeks after Brady’s birth, goes on to reveal her weightloss secret!

"What I did was make sure no Sprinkles cupcakes [were] in the house, no candy. I got used to the no sugar so I was like ok, ‘no starches.’ I slowly started to get myself back on track and get my willpower built up."

Source: Us Weekly

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Showing 8 comments

Dana on

I so agree! I had an epidural with my first. I did not have a good birthing experience and had some complications. My second came so quickly that I did not have time for an epidural, so she was born au naturale. We are currently trying for number 3. I am back and forth over how I want to deliver. I loved the quickness of the second birth and how quickly I recovered, but hated the intense pain. I felt that I missed out on getting to experience the labor.

crimpe on

It’s great she was able to experience both, and come to her own conclusions. I have four kids, so four different birth experiences. Two were natural, two were, uh, “unnatural” (?) and I would take the epidural any day. Funny, I found that I rebounded faster with the epidural births quicker than the others. Whatever one’s views, it just seems that every woman’s body is different and people respond differently. It’s all about the end result!

SY on

I had a major epidural w/my first, they were just about to do a c-section and I pushed like crazy for only a half hour (even though I couldn’t feel anything from my waist down). With my second I had pitocin and his heart rate was going down so they didn’t want to risk any meds with him. I pushed for ten minutes and he was out. I did recover quicker with the second, but not sure if it’s because I didn’t have as many stitches or because I didn’t have any drugs or because I had a two year old at home wanting attention. Either way, I done, so at least I’ve had both experiences and thankful I didn’t have to experience the c-section.

momtotwo on

I had Pitocin, then an epidural with my first, pushed for 20 minutes. Natural birth, no pitocin, no drugs, with my second, pushed for 8 minutes. Recovery was SO much better with the natural birth. Plus the contractions I felt at 10cm with my second were what I felt at 4cm with my first. Goes to show you that sometimes letting nature take its course is the way to go. I’m doing natural for my third, no doubt about it. It was so nice to actually feel what was going on, instead of being numb. I felt so great as soon as he was out. With my first, I had to wait for the medicine to wear off, then couldn’t walk for a while, then felt sluggish for a while. And my baby was definitely groggier with the epidural (my reason for going natural with #2). But it’s so great she was able to experience both!

Liz on

I had an epidural both times because of irregular contractions and pitocin was necessary to keep labor consistent. I labored long with both children. With my first, I got the epidural right away. With my 2nd, I hoped that delaying the epidural would speed things along. I still had 11 hours of labor. LOL I had sutures both times because I had to have an episiotomy. My 2nd child’s head was 15 inches!!! LOL Anyway, while I definitely respect everyone’s individual choices to labor and deliver as they want, I was walking around the entire first day with both children. With my 2nd, he was in a mid-level nursery his entire first night and I walked down there every 3 hours to check on him and then back to my room to pump because he couldn’t eat yet. So I just wanted to throw out there what it’s like to not go “natural.” :)

Jennifer on

I had an epidural with my first, as I had pitocin after I wasn’t having very good contractions about 12 hours after my water had broken and ended up with back labor. My labor with pushing was about 15 hours. I had originally wanted to go drug-free. With my second two births, I went drug-free and they were 3 and 3.5 hour labors respectively. In my case, I much prefered to have the drug-free births. However, if I had a longer labor like I did with my first, or wasn’t able to get the baby to turn if I had back labor, I would definitely consider an epidural, but with shorter labors, I would do natural again in a heartbeat.

Tammy on

Great boys names.

brooke on

Her boys are so cute and have such nice names. I think she will get pregnant again in 2009

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