Friday, 20 January 2012

Labour of Love

I suppose it might be about time to tell you the story of my labour....

My baby girl was fashionably late....12 days late to be exact!  Even then she didn't come out of her own free will, I was induced.  My little angel was perfectly happy inside my tummy, and to tell you the truth I was in no great rush to get her out!  Don't get me wrong, I desperately wanted to meet her, but having unexpectedly enjoyed the whole pregnancy experience I really didn't want it to end!  So induction day arrives and off we went to the hospital.

I had my birth plan all set. If the induction was successful at the first attempt, I had decided to try out the birthing pool and stick to breathing techniques and possibly gas and air.  In the event that it became too painful I said I would consider other methods of pain relief.  I didn't really see that as being likely, I have a very high pain threshold and was pretty confident I would be able to cope.

So I was given the drug to induce me at 4.30pm in the labour ward, where I was sharing in a room with 4 other women. I was told once my labour started I would be taken down to my own room for delivery.  The midwife told me not to expect anything to happen very quickly, so it would be case of making myself comfortable and waiting.  We were also told that if nothing happened by 10pm my partner would be sent home which I wasn't very happy about, but those are the rules so if the time came he would have to go...

The evening wore on and  by 9pm I was absolutely certain I was having contractions.  They were painful but bearable and were about a minute apart.  My partner David went to find the midwife to let her know and it took her a full hour to come and see me.  She didn't check me at all, she basically told me I didn't seem uncomfortable enough for them to be real contractions and there was no way I'd be in labour so quickly.  she told me to relax and stay put. Now I know my own body, and I knew that I wasn't just having "niggles", but as the midwife refused to check me there wasn't much I could do.  I was offered 2 paracetamol for the pain and told to go for a bath.  David was quite annoyed, it was 10pm now, the time he was supposed to leave by, and he told me in no uncertain terms he would not leave me until the midwife checked me properly.  He said he wasn't going to make the 30 minute journey home only to be phoned and told to come back because my labour had started and run the risk of missing the birth altogether.  So he stayed and the midwives didn't say one word about it!!  So by 11.30pm I was starting to become very uncomfortable and the midwives still refused to believe I was in labour, they still would not examine me either. Again I was told to go have "a nice relaxing bath", which I did because it was the only thing I could do!!

I had stayed in the bath until 12.30am with David by my side and by this point the pain was getting much worse.  when I got out of the bath again we spoke to the midwives and they just told me to "relax" and they would come and check me in a few minutes.  That made me feel a bit better...until an hour had passed and I was in agony and still no one had come to examine me.  It was at that point I had started bleeding, and David ran to get one of the midwives who did come straight away (only because I was bleeding though).  Finally I was examined and the midwife got the shock of her life.  she took one look at me and exclaimed,

"Oh my, you're 9 centimetres dilated and your fluid sac is bulging!!  We better get you down to deliver!"

I had been in labour all that time!  I was too uncomfortable to be angry though!  By the time all this had happened it was 1.25am and they rushed me downstairs.  From the time they got me downstairs to the time Holly was born was 20 minutes.  She was born at 1.45am and all I'd had was 2 paracetamol and I didn't scream once!

I have to say it was the most astonishingly amazing moment of my life being handed my tiny baby girl (7lb 1oz), I was a bit shell shocked as I hadn't expected she would be born so quickly!  Although it was painful, I coped fine despite not having time to have the water birth we'd hoped for. Looking back though, several things still bug me...if David had been sent home at 10pm and they had waited to phone him to come back at 1.25am, he wouldn't have made it back to the hospital in time for the birth, we both would have been devastated if that had happened.  Thank goodness he was too stubborn to be kicked out!  Also, in those first few hours of being told repeatedly I wasn't in labour even though I was in a lot of pain, it really worried me because I thought "If these aren't labour pains or real contractions I'll never be able to cope with the real thing when it starts!"  Why couldn't the midwives have just checked me to reassure me?  Didn't I make enough of a fuss?  Maybe if I had seemed more uncomfortable and was screaming and crying they might have taken me more seriously?  Not that it matters now, the end result was still the same...I have my beautiful daughter here with me and that is the only thing which really matters.  My baby Holly, my labour of love.


sista-t said...

Awww lovely birth story! Amazing how the midwives didn't listen to you though!

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