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The Birth Story of my first child

So following my son's birthday, I couldn't think of a better time to share my birth story on the blog...made me quite emotional reflecting on it, hope you enjoy the read...

I woke at 5.30am on the 29th of July at 39 +2 with my knickers feeling wet, I wondered if I may have had a little accident, I remember thinking “have I got to that point now?!” or if it could be my waters breaking.

I got up, went to the loo where I pulled my knickers down to experience more water, this time on my shower room floor, which I meticulously checked for meconium, and was then super excited I would be getting my birth at home today!

I woke my husband, very excited, my hypnobirthing course had said to let your partner sleep but I couldn’t, it felt like Christmas Day, I didn’t know what to do with myself!

I rang the maternity ward and informed them, just so they could notify the community midwives, but at that point I had no surges.

2 hours later, I started feeling what I thought were surges, my husband wanted to shoot up to his office up the road to get bits for the birth pool and wanted to stop by Co-op to get some food and pastries for us and the midwives! He put on quite a spread!

Fortunately only three days before we had done a trial run with the pool, so all my affirmations cards were up and I only had to light candles, as it was all laid out.

On his return things were getting a bit more intense, and I wanted a bath but waited as I wanted him there.

Once I got out the bath, I had barely time to chuck my hair up and pop a nightie on as the surges were intense, Instinctively I wanted to get down low and over my birth ball.

The midwives arrived and asked if I wanted to be examined, at this point I was 2cm, they advised my husband to call again when I was further along. (I can’t quite remember the exact timings)

This is where I had a wobble, all the videos I’d seen the first stage of labour started slow, (I had visions of going for a walk with the dog) the reality was different. My husband was fantastic and brought me back to my breathing and my hypnobirthing training, which calmed me.

I envisioned a lotus flower opening, shortly after my husband David had called the midwife, who came and examined me, and I was 5cm. This was only an hour after they’d left us!

The pool was ready, so I spent a lot of time in there, the warm water really helped my muscles, and it was surreal watching my midwife eating her cheese and pickle sandwich next to me on my sofa. She spoke softly and was very calming, and left us very much to it.

This was not how I had seen birth on TV or how people expect it!

I had the urge to push for a long time before my son was born, I recall the midwife doing a vaginal exam to check the position his head was in.

I remember getting so hot in the pool as they needed to keep it up to temperature. We’d not long had air conditioning installed, and I wanted it on but it kept cooling the pool down, so mum was on hand with a kettle of water to top it up!

Another midwife turned up, I called them my “Jayne dream team”. (As they were both called Jayne)

My surges were intense and full on, but in between my Mum said I was smiling!

I had the hypnobirthing instrumental playing, and in my head I was in my relaxing place which was down Appley beach with David and our Boxer dog Gandalf.

By this point I think they knew my son was in a tricky position, as they had advised I got out the pool to get my legs in a wider position. I hit the 2-hour stage of pushing, mine and baby’s heart rate were fine, and they advised that they had guidelines, if the baby didn’t come in the next 30 minutes or so I would either need an episiotomy, or a transfer to hospital. (I wanted neither!)

I also thought that there was no way I’d be able to lay on a stretcher as the pain was so intense in my back and I couldn’t stand straight.

45 minutes later our son made his appearance, with his head facing the side and at 8lb 15oz a good size. (He was back-to-back and turned in labour, but his head was in a transverse position) He was born at 18.07. I was absolutely exhausted and elated.

My son had initial skin to skin to initiate feeding and we delayed both clamping the cord and measurements. I needed gas and air to get my placenta out mind you. I came out of my “birthing brain” and using my hypnobirthing at this point and I had opted for a physiological third stage of labour and my placenta wasn’t making an appearance, so, I had to push again! Much to the midwives delight I birthed a beautiful intact “very large” (her words!) placenta! Phew!

After being made the world’s best tea and toast, and sitting on my sofa, I had two failed attempts of the midwives getting me off the sofa and up to bed. I am prone to fainting and I just had nothing in me. On the third try they got me upstairs and into bed.

My labour was 8 hours all in all, and my poor husband only got one break for a wee in that time! He was rubbing my back, (firmly, at my request!) giving me drink, encouraging me, supporting me with hypnobirthing and saying phrases like “calm & relaxed”

I am forever grateful to my friend Cori for recommending hypnobirthing. The confidence in myself and my body, the knowledge for both my husband and I put us in such good stead. A birthing partner can absolutely make a birth, and my husband David did with ours.

I am also grateful to the midwives, who do an incredible job. And despite “guidelines” gave us time, and supported us. One of the midwives at our birth said that the Yankee candle I had burning would forever take her back to my birth! She often popped in for a cuppa postnatally!

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