I guess things started with the twinges in my pelvic region on Tuesday night but as I’d had worse last week I’d thought nothing of it; I had actually become accustomed to the idea of having another late baby and had a long list of things to do this week. I went to bed Tues night, but didn’t sleep well… backache had randomly appeared and I was having to get up every 45 mins to pee. I got fed up of tossing and turning at 4:30am so got out of bed, had a cuppa and low and behold started having very mild contractions. It was then I tweeted my first labour tweet #uhoh
I was kept suitably distracted for around an hour by Erin who, despite trolling me in 2010 and signing up to Snark just to spam her crappy contest, had the nerve to ask me to “make her a script like rev.iew.me” for free. I’ll save the hilarity of that one for another day.
Anyway, I eventually woke Karl to tell him he wouldn’t be going to work that day… he responds “I have to”. Well, love, only if you want to miss the birth of your child!
Isabel woke before 6am and while I got her fed and dressed the contractions mostly disappeared — what a clever body.
Around this point I rang the Midwife Led Unit to advise them I was in early labour, mentioned my previous delivery and repeat iron issues. I acknowledged their protocol but told them I was either giving birth at the MLU or at home. They told me to ring back later. I barfed up my breakfast mid-contraction.
Around 7:30am Karl took Isabel off to nursery to try and keep her usual routine, my mum arrived to keep me company. I took some paracetamol (don’t know why, seemed like it might help… it didn’t) as the contractions started getting closer together; about 3-4 minutes apart. I rang the MLU back, they told me to come in straight away.
When I got to the MLU I was told there were two senior midwives on duty, someone suggested that one (Supervisor of Midwives) had been called in specifically because of/for me. The SoM just happened to be a lady I clicked with when I was pregnant with Izz and I couldn’t have asked for a better person to support my labour.
The SoM did a vaginal, said I was 4-5cm dilated and that my ‘membranes were bulging’. Still very manageable pain levels so we decided to go for a walk. Too hot outside, retreat back to labour room to keep up my pacing.
The contractions really started to get intense around 12:30 and so I finally ‘gave in’ to gas & air. The midwife fetched me a birth ball which allowed me to stay in a good position but rest my legs; this really started to speed things up and around 2pm I began to question the sanity of a #2 (last tweet, phone was annoying me again).
At this point (just past 2pm) the contractions started piling on top of one another — despite the pain, I was still laughing/joking between contractions with the midwife and Karl and I think being comfortable in my birth environment was a huge help — the midwife tells me she knows I’m pushing as I am ‘mooing’ (classy). I hadn’t realised what I was doing, I was just letting my body get on with it (albeit vocally it would seem). She asked me if I wanted my waters broken or if I wanted no intervention and although the latter was my original plan, I thought screw that, I’m getting tired – have at it!
The midwife did another VE, tells me there’s a rim, pops my waters and I absolutely flooded the bed. Sudden unbearable urge to push, and I can’t be arsed to get up to change to a better position so I start pushing using the bed as brace. I can’t begin to tell you how much it hurts but the pushing was productive and I quickly feel his head born.
Just as I’m summoning the energy to push with the next contraction, the midwife shouts at me to LISTEN and STOP. The cord was wrapped very tightly round baby’s neck. All of a sudden things are happening… the cord is clamped and cut (there goes my plan to let it stop pulsating) I am pushing again, there’s a purple baby plonked on my chest and it’s a boy! Hands everywhere, warm towels being fetched, SoM is trying to get baby to cry. He makes a half-hearted whinge which isn’t good enough so he’s whisked away from me for oxygen & suction; Karl followed.
I vaguely remember at this point that the midwife assisted delivery of placenta, lost ~400ml blood, had the jab to help with reducing bleeding. It’s all a blur, all I can think is I want my bloody baby back. He was brought back in (gone for just a minute but felt like an hour) and I’m repeating I want my baby, give me my baby, give me my baby, give me my baby. He’s placed back on me, latch him on the breast, phew… calm.
I got my tea and toast this time, but was sick again. I didn’t have pethidine so it must either have been the blood loss or the synto-whatsit jab they use to reduce risk of PPH. I didn’t want it because I wasn’t sure if it made me sick last time, but the SoM wanted to cover her arse (I’d already broken the ‘rules’ by staying at the MLU) and I had already lost my physiological third stage anyway.
Anyway… all in I am quite pleased. I got the birth I wanted (mostly) and think the way I dealt with labour this time reflects my comfort with the surroundings. Baby Oliver is well, with no ill effects from the cord ‘incident’. He has a lip tie like his sister which is contributing to a poor latch and sore nipples, but we’re taking each day one at a time.