Are there birthing options in Spain?

As I grow bigger and my due date gets ever closer, I’ve started considering the different birth options available to me. How do I want to dar a luz (literally to give the light, a lovely Spanish expression to describe bringing a baby into the world.)
 
Where I live, in Huesca, there are basically two choices, epidural or no epidural. Our hospital doesn’t have a birthing pool , gas and air doesn’t seem to be widely used in Spain, and, with the exception of a few brave, radical women, home births haven’t taken off.
 
As for the idea of a birthing plan I’d probably be laughed out of the hospital if I turned up and presented a paper saying that I wanted ambient music, aromatherapy incense and dabbing with natural sponges during the first stage of labour.
 
My first two births were both with epidural and really can’t complain. They were relatively fast, without complications and I remember laughing and joking with the midwife and anaesthetist, and apologising for getting them up in the middle of the night.  
There was no screaming, panting or pain and with just a couple of pushes the babies were out.
From what I’d read about birth and seen on the telley I almost felt like I’d cheated.
 
But I can’t help thinking there must be a reason why epidurals are not encouraged in the UK. Although if they’re so terrible, why are they given as course here in Spain ?
 
Then the other day my hairdresser, who tells me she has a very high pain threshold, mentioned that she had opted not to have an epidural and that when her son was born the midwife commented how espabilada (alert) he was.
 
So maybe that’s the difference. Maybe the epidural makes the baby drowsy.
But there must also be a huge risk involved in putting a needle into the mother’s spine, a risk which I really hadn’t considered before.
 
I’ve still got a few months left and I’m hoping to see the light before it's time to bring my baby into the light.

Tags: 
baby
birth
epidural
options

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