I know I haven't posted a lot but I did love reading all the birth stories while I was waiting for this little one and found them a great help. She was born on the 16th and will be a week old tonight. I thought I'd post my story here too in case it helps someone else...so here goes:
It was happening again, except this time it was worse, I was actually just going to stay pregnant forever! I was 11 days overdue and as far as we could tell there was no sign of a baby showing up any time soon
After finally settling our terrible two’s son in bed, over an hour past his usual bed time, we finally collapsed ourselves and faced yet another night of leafy greens for dinner, as we had every other night for the last 6 weeks thanks to our midwife’s recommendation of following a raw food diet. Chewing on our yummy lettuce leaves we decided that the following morning I was going to go on my hands and knees and beg my midwife to agree to try and “induce” using castor oil and orange juice. I know, it’s unpleasant, but compared to an eternity of leafy greens and pregnancy it seemed like a pretty good option!
Happy that our decision had been made we decided to have a little bit of passion, even though experience showed us it would at best be a pleasant way to say good night, but at worst could end up with a whole night of glorious Braxton hicks, strong enough to keep me awake but sadly not strong enough to actually be labour. I decided it was worth the risk and I’d sleep when I was dead.
Fast forward to bedtime, we finally turned off the light some time before 11pm and I lay there trying to sleep with my back aching. I was just about to doze off when Monster Munch aka Seth woke up crying. I got up and checked the clock, 11:30pm, and went to deal with it…it didn’t go well but when he finally settled I decided to go get a hot water bottle to soothe my back. I climbed back in bed and started breathing through some of the braxton hicks, as I normally did as practise for the big day.
Clearly my huffing and puffing was getting too loud because Daryn eventually asked if I was ok. I felt like I had on previous nights so glumly said I was probably going to be awake all night again. After a bit of back and forth we decided I may as well get into the bath now to try get the contractions to ease up so I could get some sleep.
I set off, book in hand and told Daryn to stay in bed as there was no point in both of us having a bad night’s rest. Once in the bath though I couldn’t seem to focus on my book and Daryn soon came trudging through talking about how my contractions seemed to have sped up from 5 minutes to 3 minutes apart since I got in the bath and how he thought he should call the midwife. I brushed him off, the contractions still felt the same as my Braxton hicks, surely if they were real 3 minute apart contractions they would feel different?
But then in the next moment I realised I was really having to concentrate and breathe through the contractions, no wonder I couldn’t read, I just didn’t seem to have enough time before the pesky contractions were interrupting Edwards and Bella’s burgeoning romance, it was most annoying. Suddenly I didn’t want to be in the bath any more, so I agreed to let Daryn call Andrea, our fabulous doula, hoping she’d tell him to get a grip and we could all get out the bathroom and just go to sleep.
As usual my luck was out, and she said she was on her way over and suggested he call Sharon, our fairy midwife. Sharon asked him to go farming, her term for checking my cervix, and so he asked me to get out the bath so he could do that. I got out gladly and lay down on the bed, but as my head hit the pillow I realised he was being completely insane, there was no way I could lie on my back through a contraction, and there wasn’t nearly enough time between them for Daryn to check me. To his credit he did give it a try but I was out of there before he could say Jack Rabbit.
At this point I actually realised that if the Monster were to wake again I might not be able to handle it, so I told Daryn if he was calling Sharon out he may as well get his parents to come fetch Seth too.
I then started doing stuff, but I wasn’t really being very productive, it felt like I didn’t have enough time between contractions to even move from room to room, never mind do things. Daryn later told me that when I got out the bath my contractions were actually coming every 2 minutes. I somehow managed to get some clothes on myself, plugged in the ipod and started playing celebration music, threw some washing in the tumble dryer (don’t ask, it seemed important at the time) and started building my altar. Oh and I managed to bolt to our room when the IL's showed up, the though of them watching me though a contraction was too mortifying for me, so Daryn brough Seth to the room to say goodbye and he was such a little superstar, I got a big simle, kiss and love and then he went off happily.
At this point I was starting to feel like a sissy, I was having to get down on all fours for every contraction and was moaning through them already. This was only the start of labour, how was I going to manage if I still had another 12 or more hours to go? Luckily Andrea arrived them and it distracted me a bit, she asked some questions about if I needed the loo and bloody show etc. I told her I did need the loo but I hadn’t had a show so she didn’t have to worry. On the toilet I noticed a bloody show and told her, but of course dismissed everything we’d learnt about it being a sign of transition because I was obviously only in early labour
I was still trying to do things but not getting anywhere at this point, Andrea eventually asked if I would mind if she lit the candles on my altar, I graciously gave her the honour. She had been rubbing my lower back through contractions and it actually helped loads, so I can recommend that to anyone in labour.
I suddenly felt really nauseous and told Daryn and Andrea I needed to throw up, they got the bucket to me just in time. And as I was busy Sharon walked in all chirpy and said she took it I wouldn’t be making my appointment with her later that morning. She then got me onto a mattress that was ready on the floor so she could check what was happening. She told me the head was right there and I needed to have a feel. It was amazing, I could feel the hair on the baby’s head!
She then checked if the baby was ok, and after a quick search for the heart gave me a quick but serious talking to. She said the baby was stuck and wasn’t very happy so I needed to reassure the baby and I needed to push as hard as I could. Strangely I felt very calm and with the next contraction I started pushing, Daryn was in front of me, helping me to keep my eyes open and get through each. My first few attempts must have been quite useless because they kept telling me not to push in my face but in my bum, but I finally got it right. Baby perked up again and Sharon told me that she liked the pushing so I needed to continue.
All the while I was thinking "I don’t remember this from Seth’s birth?" the sensations were all so unfamiliar. I could actually feel the baby moving down with each push and then sliding back up a little. It also hurt! When my midwife made some encouraging remark about how good it feels to push I told her “Nope, it F$%^ing hurts!”
, but then I had to admit it actually did feel better to push than to just wait through the contractions
Suddenly I felt a big movement and the head start crowning. I cupped the head in my hand between pushes so I could feel the progress, it was amazing. A few pushes later the head popped out and the body followed straight away and I was holding my baby in my hands.
A teeny tiny girl!
I was shell shocked! t was 02:38am, I’d gotten in the bath at 00:30am…in the background my birthing pool for the nice calm, relaxed birth where I was going to breathe my baby out was slowly filling up.
But my little girl was absolutely beautiful and just perfect. She needed a little suctioning and we blew lightly in her face while she came into her body and suddenly she was all there! When I was ready we passed her to get cuddled by her Dad.
From there I birthed the placenta with no problems and Sharon checked me because I had torn. Everything was ok though and after a quick chat with my gynae we agreed to meet him in his rooms first thing in the morning to get the stitches done there. Yay, no admission to hospital required!
With all that out the way, Daryn and I climbed into the birthing pool with our little girl and welcomed her to the world. Andrea put on our welcoming songs and then they left us alone. We all gazed at each other in awe an amazement for quite some time, until out little girl was rooting so furiously I said I needed to get out and feed her.
We were then settled into bed, and Sharon went over the birth with us as she helped me give my little flower her very first feed and Andrea whirled around cleaning everything up. We checked out the placenta (which was still just perfect and could have apparently sustained her for another few weeks…I quickly gave thanks that it didn’t). Sharon also mentioned that if she had her hands up by her face when she was born, which was probably why she got a little stuck, and if she hadn’t then she would have been born even faster and she probably wouldn’t have made it there in time! It may also have been the reason I tore a little. After cuddling skin on skin I eventually let go of my little girl and she was weighed, measured and dressed.
Then before we knew it they left us alone after promising to all meet at my gynae’s room in a few hours for the glamour that is stitches in your perineum. Luckily it was just a small tear along my old episiotomy scar and only needed 3 stitches and my gynae was a darling!
All in all, it wasn’t exactly what we planned, but it was still perfect…and as opposite as could be to my first labour and birth. Isn’t life amazing!