It’s been a week since I brought baby Michael into the world, and Im still on a complete high from the memories of it. Even the very fact that I have memories of it makes me smile, for those who haven’t read Tia’s birthday story, I was knocked out basically on lots of drugs and remember very little.
I knew from the moment I found out I was expecting again that I wanted my labour to be as natural as possible. What I really wanted was a water birth, I had wanted one with Tia, but due to complications I was unable too. I still didn’t get my water birth, but the whole experience was so amazing that I don’t even care. Here’s what happened…
It all started on Sunday morning June 14th 2015, two days after he was due. I woke at seven with the others and felt pretty tired still, so I stayed in bed thinking I would get a bit more sleep and Michael took Tia to the boot sale after breakfast. I woke at eleven suddenly with a tummy pain, I didn’t think much of it but ten or so minutes later I got another. They reminded me of my Brixton hicks only more intense, like a belt being tightened around my stomach. I got up and went to the bathroom and again ten minute later got another, so now I started wondering if this was actually the start of something. I quickly downloaded a contraction counting app and started tracking, and sure enough it started to look like I was actually having contractions.
My last bump shot, taken whilst in labour just before I went up to the hospital.
I called my husband to let him know that I thought I had started and he said he was on his way home anyway and wouldn’t be long, I went downstairs and hoovered the living room whilst continuing to track. They started to get really intense and I found when one came I was having to stop whatever I was doing and brethe through it. I took two paracetamols at eleven thirty and called my mother in law to let her know. The pains were coming every four to six minutes, when my husband returned with Tia and his brother I phoned the hospital who offered to send a midwife to me to check me over, save me driving in. But a short while later the contractions started coming along much quicker, I called them back and they agreed I should go in to be checked over.
We arrived at the midwife led unit around 1pm and were shown to a small room, I met my midwife Abigail who took my notes and examined me, I was 2cm dilated. She kept commenting on how calm I was and offered to give me a sweep, she then explained she would pop back in a little while and we were free to roam around and use the balls etc. Quite soon after my sweep the pains became much more intense, I decided to stay in my room and Michael went and found me a ball. I bounced on it a bit but I found being upright much less painful, I was then able to hold onto the bar on the wall when I got a contraction and breathe through it. I was getting contractions every three minutes now, and I would get two to three short ones and then one that would last a minute and really took my breath away. I asked for gas and air around 3pm which helped so much, seriously apart from a couple of times when I totally forgot how to breathe it helped a lot.
My mother in law arrived shortly afterwards, just as we were being moved to a birthing room. Both pools were in use but one lady had just had her baby so they were hoping they could get me in soon. At 3:30 Abigal said I was in established labour, I couldn’t believe how quickly I had got there after it taking over 17 hours with Tia and eventually needing a drip. I asked for some co-codamol which Abigal said might help with my back pains, and I continued to breathe through the pains using the gas and air. Inbetween the contractions I managed to eat a cereal bar and drink three small cartons of carrot vitamin juice. I also drank a cup of tea and most of my husbands and my mother in laws haha! Thirsty girl!
One of the best parts of being on the midwife led unit was not having to be constantly examined to see how far dilated I was, the midwifes can tell lots by your responses and tell you to trust your body. I was so calm and was feeling really positive, I remember suddenly feeling like I wanted to squat down and did so on the floor, I had a different midwife in with me Abigal was on her lunch break. I remember her putting down lots of padding on the floor as she felt I was near, I then climbed on the bed on all fours and she then showed Michael and his mum the lump in my back which was baby moving down. This apparently was something that experienced midwifes looked for to see how far along you are in labour. My midwife appeared again after cutting her lunch short worried she was going to miss the birth, this was just after 5pm. Shortly after I explained I had the feeling that I needed to push and Abigal said to do what I felt I needed to do so I did and shortly later my waters went.
I could then actually feel baby coming down, it was the strangest but also the most amazing feeling. Totally different from my experience of being drugged up and basically strapped on the bed. At 17:46 Michael came into the world and I remember every second of it, I had full control of his entrance as I wasn’t off my face and was able to push him out slowly by fully controlling my breathing. I didn’t know at the time but he entered the world sideways apparently. He was passed through my legs to me and I sobbed with love for him, he was totally perfect. I asked to see if I could pass out my placenta without having the injection to restart my contractions and it came naturally at 17:56.
My “I’ve just had a baby face”
Baby Micahel meeting his daddy for the first time.
And his nanny.
Tia came up to the hospital to meet her baby brother a short while later, her reaction to meeting him still makes me well up, she’s been an amazing big sister from the moment she first laid her eyes on him. My mother in law filmed the whole thing and it’s the most wonderful and heart warming video, and one I’ll back up and treasure forever.
I may not have got my water birth, but it didn’t matter to me at all. I got the labour I wanted, it was a positive and drug free experience, and I can remember the whole thing from start to finish. It’s lovely to know first hand that labour can be an amazing experience. So don’t panic too much if you’ve had a rough time before, I promise you it doesn’t mean your next one has to be the same.