Our daughter, Beatrice Iona Vera, was born on Saturday January 17th at 8:02am weighing 8lbs 3oz and 21 inches in length. Healthy and beautiful!
Our birth story:
I had been having strong BH for 2 weeks and was walking around at 3cm dilated for a week before going into to active labour on Friday night.
On Friday I had a couple of contractions around 4-5pm along with more mucousy discharge and some bloody show. The show was more pink than red for the most part so I still wasn't convinced that this was the real deal.
By 7pm I noticed the contractions were about 15-20mins apart. We decided to go out for dinner with friends. At the restaurant the contrax would make me pause, grab my attention, but I could still talk through them. The were about 10mins apart by 9pm.
I got home and into the bath around 9:30pm thinking that if it was false labour then the contrax would disappear. They did not.
Contractions were regular from 10pm to 11:30pm about 5mins apart lasting 1min long. Felt like strong menstrual cramps.
Woke up DH at 11:30pm because I just couldn't get comfortable and needed a hot water bottle on my lower back. I got him to call the doula, who arrived at midnight. At that point contrax were 3mins apart and I couldn't talk through them.
Our midwives arrived at 1am, contractions were 2-3mins apart, it was impossible to find a comfortable position but mostly I was resting on my knees on the couch, facing the back of it.
They checked me and I was 6-7cm dilated. While they were checking me my waters broke - all over the couch! Luckily the waters were really clear and we have been able to clean it up and save the couch!
At that point I had the option of a home or hospital birth and chose hospital. The car ride was excruciating! I had about 5 contrax in the car and each was brutal.
Got the to hospital around 3am and they had filled a tub for me. The warm water was amazing. I was on my hands and knees in the water for the most part. I was having a lot of back labour because the baby was turned sunny side up. It was brutal because in between contractions I still had a lot of back pain. I went through transition in the tub. It was difficult mainly due to how close together the contrax were (it felt like I only had time to catch my breath) and because I didn't know how much longer I would have to put up with it.
At about 4:30am the midwives suggested sterile water injections in my lower back to take some of the pain away. I agreed and got out of the tub - and promptly vomited but it made me feel better.
I got on the bed and they did the sterile water injections which really hurt, like bee stings, but did give me some relief afterwards.
By about 5:15am I was getting the urge to push at the end of each contraction. The midwives encouraged me to push as much as I felt like - at that point I was fully dilated.
It was interesting because my contractions started to space out at that point, to about 5mins apart, and I felt no pain in between, like my body was resting up. I almost felt good, just tired. I remember that my eyes were closed for most of the transition and pushing stage because I didn't have the energy to keep them open. I sat on the birthing stool for quite awhile which felt great for pushing. I pushed for a really long time, almost 2 hours, because the baby's heading was turning and it took a lot of effort. I must admit that I did poop a little bit during this stage. It was less than I expected, kind of like how it is when you wipe yourself (sorry TMI) but I remember smelling it before the midwives cleaned me up.
For me the pushing stage was the hardest part. I was exhausted and felt like I was having no progress. 2 hours is a long time! It helped to put my finger inside to feel where the head was for motivation. The midwives also helped by putting their fingers inside and telling me to push into the pressure spot they were creating, so that I could direct my pushing energy more efficiently. At that point I was glad that I didn't have an epidural because it would have been hard to follow their directions.
Finally, with the help of the midwife, we were able to get the head to move under my sacrum and it crowned. What a crazy feeling - like literally a bowling ball coming out of me!
I panted a bit to slow down the crowning, I could feel a lot of burning and did get a 1st degree tear but nothing serious.
Her head emerged almost without me pushing at all, sort of eased itself out. Her shoulders were no problem in comparison. They placed her on my belly immediately and DH got to announce that it was a girl!
After that they gave me 2 stitches and I delivered the placenta (it was bigger than I expected!). She was born at 8am, so all in all it was about 10 hours of labour, much shorter than I had anticipated.
I have to say although the pain was immense at times it was also doable, for me. I kept thinking that it was going to get worse at some point, and I think that's what allowed me to keep going without drugs. I was open to getting an epidural the whole time and had no expectations, so I think it helped to have an open mind too.
DH was incredible but having a doula was truly amazing. I highly recommend it to anyone considering it.
We stayed one night in the hospital so that the staff could make sure I had the BF'ing down pat. We are now home and enjoying to get to know one another!
Best of luck to all the mums who are still waiting.
It is totally worth the wait - sleep now while you can!