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Discussion in 'Pregnancy After A Loss' started by fides, Feb 22, 2011.
Congratulations Fides, so happy for you. I will read your birth story after feeding Alana.
Gosh Fides! Jacob is adorable!
Here is my birth story. Its really long, so I suggest you only try to read it if you have a spare 10 minutes!
The birth of Freya Bo 19/10/11
So, as many of you are aware, I was booked in for a home water birth. I had the pool set up in my living room from 37 weeks, as I just had a feeling she would be early. I had been having early labour symptoms since the day we set the pool up - period-type pains, lower back ache, etc. I had also had 2 bloody shows/mucus plugs.
At 5am on Tuesday 18th October, I woke up feeling damp. I went to the bathroom, and my underwear was quite wet. I also had lost a huge bloody mucus plug. For the rest of the day, when I wiped, I had red mucus on the paper. I thought "this must finally be it". I was 38+5 weeks, and had been having symptoms for almost 2 weeks, and I was ready to meet my baby girl.
I had lower back pain all day. So I drank my raspberry leaf tea, and bounced on my birthing ball whilst watching TV. Coincidentally, we were due to go to our antenatal class at the hospital that evening. So when OH got home from work, we headed to the class. I was the furthest into my pregnancy out of everyone there, only 9 days til my due date, and the class leader was worried I would go into labour there! I didnt tell her I was already in early labour! The class was 3 hours long, and my back pain got worse throughout. It was starting to get uncomfortable to sit still.
The class finished at 10pm, and we went to the chippy to get fish and chips for our dinner. The back pains got worse at home, and I realised this really was it. OH was very excited, and suggested we had an early night, as we would need all our energy tomorrow. We went to bed at 10.30pm, but I couldnt sleep. By 11.30pm, the back pains were quite bad. I started timing them, and realised they were coming every 3 minutes! I asked my OH to ring the community office, and ask for a pair of midwives to come round.
The midwives arrived at midnight. I was having to breath throught the pains. I was concerned that because they were all in my back, and I had none in my bump at all, that perhaps I wasnt in labour after all. But the midwives assured me it was "back labour". This worried me, as I didnt want my baby to be "back-to-back", as this can make labour longer and more difficult. The midwives didnt want to examine me at that time, as my contractions were only lasting 30-40 seconds. They said that they would wait til they were lasting 60 seconds or more.
The midwives left at 2am, and said to call them when the contractions were lasting 1 minute, if my waters broke, or if I was starting to struggle with the pain. I had taken 2 paracetamol at midnight, and was looking forward to being allowed to take 2 more at 4am! I tried to sleep, but as soon as I dozed off, a pain would wake me! I tried to take a hot bath, but I had to get out of the tub every time I had a pain, as I couldnt bare to be in there during them.
By 6am, I was really struggling to cope with each pain. OH was rubbing my back, but it was still terrible. I asked him to phone the midwives, and they came back straight away. One of the midwives examined me, and found I was 1-2cms. Part of me was relieved, as this meant I was actually in labour, and it wasnt just a false alarm. But another part of me was disappointed, as I knew I had a long way to go! Also, I had been told that I wasnt allowed to get in my birthing pool, or use gas+air until I was 5cms. That seemed a long way to go....
The midwives left once again, and me and OH were left alone. I couldnt sleep at all, so decided to get up and have some breakfast. My OH made me some toast, but the thought of eating it made me feel sick, so I didnt. I put on my relaxing Enya CD, and lay on my sofa, getting up and leaning over the back of it every time I had a pain. They were still in my back, and still coming every 3 minutes. By 10am, I was getting myself in a state emotionally. I couldnt stop crying. I was vomiting whenever I ate anything. and I needed something stronger than paracetamol!
So we called the midwife again, this time a different one came out. I asked her to examine me, as I was hoping to be 5cms, so I could use the pool and get some gas+air. When I was examined, I was only 3-4cms. I was gutted! I was exhausted and hungry. But I couldnt sleep, I couldnt keep any food down. and I had no energy. That was when the midwife suggested going into hospital. She said at 3-4cms I could have Pethidine or an Epidural, and then I would be able to get some sleep, and build my energy up, ready for the pushing stage. But I was adamant I wanted to stay at home, and I definitely didnt want those forms of pain relief. So I struggled on - still contracting every 3 minutes, all in my back. Still taking paracetamol every 4 hours.
By 2pm, I was a total wreck! I was in agony, exhausted, hungry, no energy. I begged the midwife to let me get in the birthing pool. She insisted that I had to be 5cms. So I asked her to examine me. She did, but I was only 4cms. I cried my heart out. She took pity on me, and bent the rules. She said I could get in the pool for 1 hour, in the hope that it would relax me enough to start dilating properly. If after that hour I was still 4cms, I would have to get out. If I was 5cms, I could stay in, and she would get the gas+air. I was so relieved, and jumped in the pool. It was warm and relaxing in between contractions, but during the pains, it did nothing to help. They were still agony. I begged my body to start dilating.
One hour later, I got out of the pool, and was examined. I was still only 4cms. It broke my heart. The midwife said she couldnt bend the rules any longer, and I had to stay out of the pool. I cried and cried and cried. The midwife again suggested going to the hospital for stronger pain relief. I really didnt want to give up on my dream of a home water birth,and I desperately didnt want the "cascade of interventions", but I knew I couldnt cope on just paracetamol for much longer. The midwife assured me that I was still classed as low risk, and therefore wouldnt be strapped to the bed on a monitor, or need a cannula or anything. She also assured me that I wasnt going in for "failure to progress", so I wouldnt need syntocinon (pitocin).
I had been in labour for 16 hours by that point, contracting every 3 minutes from the start, and only having 2 paracetamol every 4 hours for the pain. I knew it was for the best. So I grabbed my hospital bag, took one last longing look at my birth pool, and got in my OHs car. We arrived at the hospital at 3pm, and I settled into my room. I knew that I needed stronger pain relief, so I asked for a shot of Pethidine. That kicked in about 3.15pm, and although it didnt take the pain away, it made me feel "high", spaced out, not really aware of what was going on in the room. Apparently, I was quite funny. Saying silly things, and acting quite drunk.
At 3.30pm, the midwife in charge said she wanted to break my waters. I had previously been against this form of intervention, but I just wanted it all to be over, so I consented. I dont really remember much from this point onwards. The Pethidine had made everything quite hazy. Apparently I started pushing with each contraction, so I was examined to see if I was fully dilated. I was only 6-7cms, and was told not to push, as I would damage my cervix. But I continued to feel the urge to push. The midwife suggested I have an epidural, to stop the urges, but I wouldnt consent to one.
At 6pm, I really started bearing down with each contraction. I also started shouting that I "needed a poo!" I was examined, and found to be fully dilated! I had dilated 6cms in only 3 hours! The midwives spent the next hour coaching me through pushing. But I just didnt have the energy to push effectively. I hadnt slept or eaten in days. After an hour of pushing, a doctor was called in. He said that I had been pushing too long, and it didnt look like I would have the energy to push the baby out alone. He said he may have to perform a ventouse or forceps delivery. But I cried, and insisted I could do it myself. He said he would stay and watch my next couple of pushes, and if he couldnt see the baby moving down the birth canal, he would have to do a ventouse. I must have found some inner strength from somewhere, because I pushed for my life with the next few contractions, and he started to see the baby's head coming down. The doctor said that if I continued to push like that, I would do it myself. However, he said he would come back in 20 minutes, and if the baby still hadnt arrived, I would need a ventouse.
For the next 20 minutes I pushed and pushed and pushed as hard as I could. I could feel the difference between my earlier pushes, where nothing was actually happening; and these new effective pushes where she was actually moving. I could feel her coming down. Eventually, the midwife told me to pant, and I eased my baby's head out. With the next push, her shoulders were delivered. The midwife brought her up onto my chest, and suddenly the haziness disappeared, and everything seemed clear. My baby girl was here! I cuddled her close and kept saying over and over again "Bo, oh Bo". She was born at 7.48pm on Wednesday 19th October 2011, weighing 7 lbs 10.5oz.
Due to the Pethidine, her breathing was abit slow, but I just rubbed her back, and she responded well. I had opted for delayed cord clamping, and so I held her to my chest while we waited for the cord to stop pulsating. That took 10 minutes. Then my OH cut the cord, and he sat and held her whilst I delivered my placenta naturally (no injection). That took 8 minutes. I was checked to see if I needed any stitches, but I already knew. I knew that I hadnt felt my perineum tear at all. But I knew that I had felt some pain "further up" when her shoulders were delivered. And I was right! I had an intact perineum, but some deep grazes to both my labia. I was offered the choice of leaving them to heal naturally, or having them stitched. Apparently, I would be left with a "neater appearance" if I had them stitched. And call me vain, but I wanted to look neat down there! so I had them stitched, whilst OH held our baby.
It was during this time, that we had a talk, and decided to name her "Freya Bo". It was important to us that we incorperated the name that she had been known by for the last 9 months. She was so calm and peaceful in her daddy's arms, and as I looked at them together, my heart melted.
We then went through all the formalities - tea and toast for Mummy, all-over check for baby. Daddy went home to fetch the car seat (we had forgotten it in the rush to get to the hospital earlier). I then went and had a nice hot shower. I stood there for 20 minutes, enjoying the feel of the water on my skin. But it was strange to look down and not see my bump! When I returned, the midwife suggested I go down to the postnatal ward and settle in for the night. However, I insisted that I wanted to go home. The midwife was worried, as I had had a PPH (I lost 600mls of blood). But I explained that I felt fine, had managed to stand up in a hot shower for 20 minutes without fainting, and had a good iron level (12.5) - so I was unlikely to take a funny turn.
The midwife was not happy about it, but she respected my wishes, and went to complete my early discharge paperwork. One of the main reasons why I wanted a homebirth was because I didnt want to stay over on the ward. I wanted to spend our first night as a family together, at home in our own bed. I do not think its fair that men have to spend their first night as a Dad, at home alone, away from their partner and newborn baby. I was proud of myself for standing my ground, and was looking forward to going home with OH and Freya.
Whilst we were waiting to be discharged, I tried to breastfeed Freya, however, she was so sleepy, she didn't want to latch on. I wasn't worried, as I knew she had had a busy day and night, and I was confident that I would just feed her at home when she woke up. However, when the midwife found out that she hadn't fed yet, she tried to convince me to stay over on the ward again. She said that there would be staff on the ward who would help me establish the breastfeeding. But I was adamant I wanted to go home, and that we would be fine. Im so stubborn!
So at 1am, me, OH and Freya got in the car, and travelled home. We all got in our big bed, and snuggled up together. Freya was fast asleep, and OH and I stayed awake all night staring at her. We just couldnt believe how lucky we were to have our amazing rainbow baby here finally.
I thought that I would be really disappointed if I didnt get my "perfect birth experience", however, I am just greatful to have Freya here safe and well. Thats all that matters to me now.
Thankyou for reading, and sorry it was so long!!
aww what a lovely story. I am with you. I wanted the homebirth so much but what is most important is that Alana arrived safe and sound.
However, I too waved bye bye to my birth pool which was up at home in the living room as we left for hospital.
Aww hippy. sorry to hear you had a similar experience. but at least Alana arrived safe and sound
Lovely birth story fides thanks for sharing, and Jacob is absolutely gorgeous!
Off to read yours now Shelleney
I just read your story shelleney, sorry you didn't get your home water birth but i'm glad you still feel positive about your experience and that your baby girl arrived safe and well
Great story Shelleney! Congratulations on your daughter.
wow - well done!!! you are certainly stronger than i am to be able to push for that long and turn down the doc's suggestions and such. sorry things didn't work out at home, but i'm really glad things ended up well for you and Freya!! Thanks so much for posting your story.
beautiful birth story - how is nursing going now? my milk still hasn't come in, so things have been crazy here...