12 hours to Motherhood

So here it is! My birth story. To be honest I don’t really know why it took me so long to get it down! Although it could be the fact that I have a newborn! haha

I view my birth as a positive, enlightening experience that I am tremendously proud of. There were a few things that I was trying to avoid during my birthing process (Interventions) but it turns out it was all necessary to deliver Little Boo safety and soundly into my arms. I did a lot of work around birthing without fear and I’m so glad I did, as I was able to enjoy most of the experience and now look back fondly.

So I planned to have a calm, natural hypnobirth. I only really decided this in the third trimester when I discovered hypnobirthing! I did attend the classes a tad late, but nevertheless I had 4 weeks after I had finished the classes to try and master the tools. In hindsight I would recommend if this style of birthing interests you – do attend classes as early you can so you can really tune in and develop/practice the skills.

I also had a detailed birth plan, however I am a big believer in going with the flow, as labour can take many turns (and it did!)! But it was my choice if it did go to plan, I did get the experience I would like.

I chose to birth in a private hospital and I always knew that I was unable to go over the 41 week mark (my OBs rule) and to be fair I was happy with 41 weeks of carrying Little Boo!  There was also the fact that Little Boo was posterior and showed no signs of moving into the preferred birthing position.

Generally they say that babies that are posterior make for a harder more painful birth – but I didn’t buy into that! I trusted my baby, I trusted my body and I focused on being calm and positive and then the rest,  I left up to my OB.

So from 39/40 weeks I started to do all the things I could to bring in labour. Eating pineapple, raspberry leaf tea, evening primrose oil, exercise, sex, squats, hypnosis, meditation, eating dates, massage, pressure points etc. I also did everything I could to try and move Little Boo from being posterior. 40 weeks rolls around and still no sign of him coming out so my OB booked me in on Tuesday 15th August for an induction, that I really didn’t want. The reason being is, at that stage I was scared of the induction due to the fact I wanted to use my hypnobirthing techniques without pain relief to see me through my labour and I was concerned that the surges (contractions) would come on too quickly.

I woke up that day with a horrible migraine and I tried to cancel the induction by calling the hospital but we were told to come in. By the time we got there I was very emotional and in pain. My OB at first was not too happy about moving it but agreed due to the intense migraine I was suffering. The induction was moved to Thursday 17th August. He sent me home with some strong painkillers and I was told to rest.

So I did just that, I went home and slept off my migraine and relaxed at home. That evening I rechecked my hospital bag, his room, and made sure I had everything ready to go for Thursday. Hubby had to work so I ordered takeaway and watched netflix.

Little did I know that at 8.30pm Little Boo started to initiate labour! I thought I had eaten too much so I ignored the tummy cramping and went to sleep, every hour or so I woke up and went to the toilet and there was no show or waters broken so I went back to rest. Then I realised the tummy cramping was not going away but instead becoming more intense. I was so excited I jumped out of bed, put my music on, got my exercise ball and starting using my relaxation and rocking techniques to breathe through the surges. I was also timing them on my phone to keep track. At 1pm I rang hubby who was on his way home and he said “Are you in Labour” and I and “YES”. We rang the hospital to advise them and then I told him to go to bed to get some sleep, as I knew I was a fair way off.

3.30am at I was in and out of a hot shower and I knew it was time to go to the hospital. I woke up hubby and told him that it was go time. I was still very much in my zone of relaxation and feeling positive, although the surges were now getting stronger I was thinking how on earth would I be able to sit in the car!

We made it to the hospital and checked in, I had asked for a room with a bath and requested midwives that support hypnobirthing. It was now 4.30am.

Now I had opted for no vaginal examinations and no talking so I could remain in my “zone” so that it could help me breathe through the surges without pain relief. However it all went a bit haywire!

The midwife checked me and said I was only 4cm dilated after 8 hours of breathing through surges, which were now very intense. I felt disappointed. At that moment I felt doubtful that I could keep going with my plan. She offered to run me a bath, which I agreed, however it was not hot enough and it was not helping me relax. So next was a hot shower. At this stage she told me I would have another 6 hours to go, and it was at that moment I was thrown out of my mindset and “doubt” had taken over. There was no way I could handle the intensity for another 6 hours! The surges were coming every 3 minutes and literally taking my breath away, and it was taking all my energy and focus to get through them. So I did what I didn’t want to do and asked for an epidural. She told me that the anaesthetist was 45 minutes away.

By the time he got there it was an hour and I was still in the shower. The hot water was my pain relief and I had my hypnosis/relaxation tracks which were on repeat. Hubby was in and out being an amazing support person and doing everything he could to help me.

Then the anaesthetist arrived and the process was started. Little did I know that it takes a good half hour for that! By this time it was 6.30am.

I did not feel the epidural go in at all! Then something interesting happened. The surges were as intense as ever and were showing no signs of easing. So I asked him when it would work? He said it could take 15-20 mins. By that time my OB had arrived and came in to break my water. He also bought with him another midwife and bright lights! Luckily I already had a flannel over my eyes to keep myself somewhat in the dark and relaxed. I had my eyes closed pretty much from when I arrived at the hospital until the very end! That was one thing in my control. It really helped me to remain calm and go with the flow.

Half hour passed by and the surges were becoming more intense. I asked if he had put any drugs in and he said it should be working! So guess what? It wasn’t! All of that for nothing! “Brilliant” I thought to myself and then I just focused on breathing and being in the present moment. It was 7.30am and I was 8/9 cm dilated and my body decided it was time to push.

This part was amazing! The body is incredible. Little Boo was working so hard on the inside and I was doing my best to help him. I did the second thing I didn’t want to do and that was birth on my back. But it was 11 hours of labour and I was one tired Mumma-to-be. So I went with the flow and listened to the voices instruct me on the outside (my OB and midwives) even though I couldn’t see them. There was one midwife that was in my ear and helping me to “breathe” through the surges and helping me ride them up and down. She was a godsend.

My body was pushing in waves automatically and I was verbalising the surges without me even trying and every inch of my body was pushed to the limit as I did my best to help Little Boo come earth side. 45 mins into active pushing and my OB needed to intervene. “Great” I thought – “what now”? The third thing I didn’t want to happen – an episiotomy. Much to my surprise – I didn’t feel a thing! Then Little Boo was still having trouble so out came the suction. I found out later that he was still posterior and he had a short cord! Those two things were working against us, so no amount of pushing or breathing would have helped without the suction or episiotomy. I said do whatever you need to do to deliver my baby safely.

It was then it all moved quickly.

I gave birth to my Little Boo at 8.34am after a 12-hour labour. I hypnobirthed through a majority of it and up until the last minute I had my eyes closed and was as focused as I would ever be. I was so focused I didn’t want to take of the flannel from my eyes until he was in my arms but I heard everyone yelling me to “Look” “Look your baby is here”. I will never forget watching him meet the world and being plonked onto my chest. I think I was in shock. I just remember feeling so proud, so relived and I was so in awe of him and of what I had just done.

He latched right away and stayed there on me for 90 minutes so I could bond with him. During that time I was stitched up (again that didn’t hurt either) and I birthed the placenta and it was a few hours before I was able to have a shower and get into my room.

By the time we got to our room, the enormity of what had happened dawned on me. I was a Mumma, I had carried, nurtured and birthed this little human. I would never be the same again and I knew then, that I was reborn also. I was so overwhelmed by love and affection I could not stop staring at him all night and every night since then.

And that was the day my whole world changed.

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