Why New Mom Mandy Moore Felt Like She Was On Acid During Childbirth

Mandy Moore shared everything there is to know about her birth experience, including why it felt like she was on acid and why she was "crying" as she listened to her and her husband's favorite songs.

By Lindsay Weinberg Mar 12, 2021 2:58 AMTags
Watch: Mandy Moore Gives Birth to Baby No. 1!

We all know love is a drug, but Mandy Moore says giving birth is like taking acid. 

The This is Us star is opening up about her groovy birth experience after welcoming her first son, August Harrison Goldsmith, into the world, as she announced on Feb. 23

She used the funky metaphor to summarize the experience on the Informed Pregnancy Podcast, saying, "It's like you're on this trip. You're on this like acid trip or something. Like, I was in my own head, doing my own thing. I could hear people—I could hear suggestions and sometimes agree with them." 

Mama Mandy continued, "Ultimately, it was such an insular experience, which sounds silly that I guess I didn't really imagine it. I felt like it was going to be somewhat more participatory with other people, that I would see their faces and be awake and alert and like, listen to their suggestions." 

She said her eyes were closed during the birth process, "and I was on my own. It was my own narrative, my own story." 

Mandy Moore and Taylor Goldsmith's Cutest Pictures

Mandy, 36, said she went into the experience "super prepared," as she had taken classes on breathing techniques. "All of that just went out the window. For me, it was just all about instinct," the singer explained. 


After she had August in her arms, Mandy recalled, "You are completely smothered in just that feeling of, I have never felt higher, I have never felt this kind of love. It was like the world stopped again and you're not aware of anything else going on." She calls Gus "the greatest gift in the world."

So, despite the exhausting experience, Mandy is down for baby No. 2. She even recalls that, while the nurse was cleaning the baby and her, "I remember sitting there going like, 'I can't wait to do this again.' Probably mental." 

The A Walk to Remember star added, "I have said to my husband [Taylor Goldsmith] so many times… I'm like, ‘I can't wait to do it again.' As harrowing as the journey was, I miss it. I'm sad that I don't get to relive it or do it again or something. It's a hard feeling to describe. "

What made August's arrival so special? Well, as Mandy recalled, her journey began the day before her due date, when her midwife did a membrane sweep.

"I was bracing for it to be super painful and it wasn't," Mandy shared. "I was so anxious to meet him. I was like, 'OK what can I do to make this baby to come on out?'"

Mandy Moore/nstagram

However, the actress wasn't anticipating that she would end up going into labor that night. "This was a Friday and fully expected, like, my husband and I were like, 'OK, we're making big plans for Saturday. We're going to go to like pick up sandwiches from this place, we're gonna have a fun sort of last hurrah,' thinking the baby would be on his way somewhat eminently." 

They ate their dinner on Friday and headed to bed around 7 p.m.

"I'm all snuggled up in bed. We're watching re-runs of The Office. And I'm like, ‘Hm I feel a little crampy,'" Mandy revealed. "And my husband sort of got wide-eyed and I was like, ‘No no no no no, don't like jump to any conclusions.'" She'd had "crazy" Braxton Hicks contractions for weeks and didn't expect this to be the real deal. 

He started timing her contractions on an app and asked their doula and midwife to come over. Mandy said she started her deep breathing in bed. 

"The next thing I knew, it was a couple hours later," she said. "You just lose all track of time. And then I was like full-blown into like early labor I guess, but it was starting to ramp up." 

Mandy Moore/Instagram

Her midwife recommended taking a glass of wine and a couple Benadryl and then getting into the bath with her husband Taylor to "chill out." 

As Mandy recalled, "My husband got a glass of wine. We started the bathtub up. I think we were in the bath for like five minutes. I didn't do the Benadryl. I was like, I don't want to feel weird. What if this is really starting now? I don't want to be out of it. I want to be in my right mind. I think I took like a sip of wine." 

After a few minutes in the tub, she got back into bed.

They turned on their birth playlist, which she and Taylor had thought a lot about beforehand. "Music played a very, very pivotal role like initially," the star shared. "I started crying because, and I'm going to cry now, it was music that we like fell in love to, so there was a Dire Straits song, there was a Blue Nile song."

She reflected, "I'm such a weepy hormonal person right now. Everything makes me cry. It was these just really tangibly beautiful memories of us, as an early couple, falling in love and it was like, ‘Oh my god.' I was so caught up in the moment of like, ‘Wow that was the beginning of our story and now here we are like almost six years later. It's really wild to be here.'"

At 3 a.m., she was told it was time to go to the hospital. She had originally planned for an unmedicated home birth but later changed to a hospital birth with a midwife present, which was a "huge priority for me." 

Danny Moloshok/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

From there, the Emmy nominee described a really "awful" ride to hospital, which was about 40 minutes away on bumpy roads. Her team made her a little bed in the back of Taylor's car: "I was writhing around in pain." 

On the way there, she decided her plan to stay unmedicated was going out the window. She told her hubby, "Taylor, I'm getting an epidural. I don't want you to be mad at me but that's what's happening when we get to the hospital."

They got settled around 4 a.m. in her room, but it took six more hours to get her dilated from 6 cm to 10 cm. Mandy said, "Labor was intense, it was grueling, it was harrowing." (Her platelet levels ended up being too low to get an epidural).

The actress pushed for three hours until a doctor came in with a vacuum-like device and in one push, the baby was born.

They named him August, because that was the month they found out they were having a baby boy.

She described how all the "bada--" stuff her body is capable of "blows my mind."

To hear more about her birthing experience, listen to the podcast here.