If you didn’t know already I did a thing and had a Baby. It’s 5 weeks to the day that I had this little chunk so it’s about time I told you all how he came into the world.
Wednesday 27th June Approximately 1:45am
Oh shit my waters broke, I think? I was 37 weeks and 1 day. Miraculously I was actually on the toilet when my waters broke. It wasn’t the dramatic moment like you see in films and tv. It was so undramatic in fact that I wasn’t even sure if it was my waters or whether I just hadn’t had a wee in a very long time. After having had a similar moment 2 months before I knew the routine to find out for definite if it was my waters or not. Pop on a maternity pad and if you soak through that then yeah your waters have broken. 3 maternity pads later and I was on the phone to the labour ward in a panic in the downstairs bathroom so I didn’t wake Gavin. I had to wait for a midwife to call me back and it felt like forever that I was sat on the toilet in the downstairs bathroom just constantly leaking fluid. At 2:35am the midwife called me back, 15 minutes after I had left a message and asked a few questions to check everything was ok. I hadn’t actually felt any baby movements all evening so they offered for me to come in and be monitored just to check baby was ok. It was then it was time to wake Gavin. In my most calm voice (not very calm at all) I explained that I needed him to drive me to the hospital. I think he thought I was joking at first but once I told him my waters had broken and I’d already phoned the hospital he was up and ready to go. The midwife suggested to bring a bag for hospital just in case I needed to stay in so I manically threw a load of things into a small suitcase and we were in the car on the way to hospital at 3am.
I absolutely hate hospitals so I was not looking forward to whatever was about to be unleashed on me once I walked through those doors. When we arrived I was taken to a bay and hooked up to a monitor to check the baby’s heart rate and they also hooked me up to another monitor to see if I was having any contractions. On the way into the hospital I had started getting the odd contraction but nothing that made me think labour was imminent. I was monitored for an hour and even though I wasn’t really feeling any movement baby’s heart rate was fine. One of the midwives then offered to check my cervix and gave me a sweep and I genuinely thought she was fisting me! Christ she went for it! Annoyingly my cervix was closed and my mild contractions had tapered off so we were sent home to see how things progressed. I was also booked in for an induction the following day as my waters had broken and the risk of infection meant they couldn’t leave it any longer than that. I had planned to have a hospital water birth after following Siobhan Miller’s Hypnobirthing course so the thought of having to be induced and confined to a bed for the birth really upset me. This is not what I planned at all!
We got home from hospital at 5am and I made Gavin go back to bed. I was too awake by this point and was really worried about what was to come. I spent the next 3 hours bouncing on my birth ball to try and get the contractions going but I clambered into bed at 8am completely exhausted.
Wednesday 27th June 1pm
Feeling a bit more refreshed after some sleep it was back on the birthing ball and doing everything to get that Oxytocin flowing to bring on labour. We watched Disney’s Coco on the sofa, we went for a walk to Sainsburys to pick up some yummy hospital snacks and we just talked about how everything was about to change. I was having mild contractions on and off but they just weren’t building up to anything and kept tapering off. At 4:40pm I sobbed my heart out on the sofa to Gavin worried at the thought of being induced. Everything I’d read said how induction was more painful. My pain threshold is bloody terrible so the thought of being in even more pain than a natural birth made me terrified. I’m also not good with hospitals or needles full stop so to have a much more medicated birth was so far from my ideal situation I just didn’t know how to cope with it. The rest of the evening is a bit of a haze and we headed up to bed around 9pm. I continued to bounce on my birthing ball until 2am but admitted defeat that nothing was happening and surrendered to the fact that I would be having an induced birth the next day. I needed sleep.
Thursday 28th June 7am
I woke up a hysterical mess. I cried and cried and cried some more. I was not ready for this. My induction was booked for 8am so at 7:40 we made the journey to the hospital. We were actually late getting there and I remember panicking that we were going to have a row. When we arrived at 10 past 8 there wasn’t really a big rush for anything, we were shown to a waiting room and we sat there for what felt like forever before a midwife came to see us. There was a bit of waiting around and at 9am I was taken up to the labour ward and to the room I was going to be giving birth in. I met my midwife Kim who I explained my fear of needles to and gave her a run down of my horrific pregnancy. Kim was very sympathetic and said she would do her best to make sure I had the least intervention possible.
The part I was dreading was looming and that was having an IV line put into my hand. I’m bad enough visiting people in hospital and just seeing the line coming out makes me feel sick so I was an absolute wimp having this put into my hand. I hated having the IV line in and it fucking well hurt too.
At 10:30am I had a check and sweep to see if any of my contractions the day before had done anything but I was told my cervix was still closed. This sweep was way more comfortable than the one I had the day before! Instead of diving straight in with the Syntocinon (The artificial form of Oxytocin that kick starts labour) my midwife spoke with a consultant and they decided that to give me more time I would be able to have a pessary first to see if that would start things.
The pessary was put in at 11am and then it was just a waiting game.
At 12pm the food came around and although I still had morning sickness I managed to stuff my face with lasagne and peas, I knew I was going to need the energy as I hadn’t really eaten properly for a few days. (Yep thanks for that all pregnancy long sickness!)
Around 1pm things started to happen, I was finally having real contractions and boy did they start with a bang. I really wanted to use the breathing techniques I learnt from Siobhan’s Hypnobirthing course and they helped for the first hour or two but the intensity of the contractions built so quickly I was puffing on the gas and air like there was no tomorrow! I was having 5 contractions in 10 minutes and lasting a minute and baby started to show some slight signs of distress so the midwife went to call a consultant to check everything over. The consultant was happy with everything but wanted me to have some fluids as I was showing signs of dehydration.
At 4pm the intensity of the contractions was seriously ramping up and I was making the most attractive mooing sounds. At this point I was convinced I had to be at least 6-7cm dilated and Kim my midwife seemed pretty certain of it too so offered to check me. When she told me I was just about 1cm dilated I was crushed and burst into hysterics. All sorts of thoughts started rushing through my mind, if I was only 1cm and I was already in so much pain how the heck was I going to make it to 10cm? It was at this point that Kim suggested I seriously considered some pain relief. She suggested an epidural. I wanted to avoid an epidural at all costs because of my fear of needles but by this point I was now screaming in pain and started losing the plot. When the anesthetist came to do the epidural I felt like I was having an outer body experience as I just went completely limp and felt the world spinning around me. I could hear people talking to me and telling me to sit up straight but I just couldn’t control my body. It took both Gavin and the midwife to prop me up just so the epidural could be done properly. Once the epidural was in and working all the pain was gone almost instantly. I even had a 20 minute power nap! In hindsight the epidural was actually the best decision for me as what came next took everyone by surprise!
Within an hour and a half of having the epidural I was starting to feel pain again. I felt like someone was pushing on my pubic bone and I started using the gas and air again to take the edge off. The midwife went to get the anesthetist as she thought something could be wrong with the epidural and that maybe it had moved out of place.
In the next 30 minutes at 6:30pm I started screaming. There was a bit of panic in the room as nobody could understand why I was in so much pain with an epidural. Kim asked if I felt like I was pushing and I said that I wasn’t but lo and behold my body was pushing and this baby was coming! I had gone from barely even 1cm dilated to 10cm and pushing in the space of 2 and a half hours.
The next 40 minutes were a bit of a blur of screaming, pushing and the ring of fire. I remember I kept looking up at the clock which was on the wall directly in front of me and I kept saying to myself that this baby would be out before half past 7. At 7:12pm baby was born and after a few good back slaps he cried and was placed onto my chest. I burst into tears and cried for a good 10 minutes in shock at what had happened and that he was here and he was real. I was a mum!
28.06.18. 19:12. 6lb 3oz.