As previously mentioned in my post Acknowledging it, I talk about sharing your birth story. And the cathartic feeling it may bring. This is me cleansing, releasing, cathartisising (made up word) before bubba 2 arrives. You don’t have to read it, it’s awfully long. But I did have to type it. Because I needed to. Because I’m shit scared.
So here we go. Like the labour, it’s a very long one.
Lilys due date was Thursday 25th June, 2015. Josh decided to stay home that day, because we had no idea Lily wouldn’t arrive on said due date haha. So clueless. SAAHHhhh clueless.
Thursday 6am. I wake and feel like I’ve pulled a muscle in my lower abs. It’s tight but ok. We have a midwife appointment at 10am.
10am. Feeling a bit sore, we head to her and all seems well. She mentions the pulled muscle feeling could be the start of labour. She doesn’t put me on a machine to check. No need. Head out for brunch. God it was delicious. But towards the end I feel I need to do a massive shit. Nothing worse than being in a cafe loo, and taking 20 minutes. Everyone knows you must be doing a poo. It was the most painful poo ever! I thought I was going to pass out. We left (realised later without paying!), and headed home. I begin to get a few more twinges down below.
4pm. I feel quite funny. We decided to go back to midwife to just check. Check what, I wasn’t sure. She checked my cervix. 1cm. Oh my God the excitement!! 1cm! It’s actually happening!
6pm. Home. Start swaying in the kitchen. Have some dinner. Feeling a bit more sore. After dinner we go for a walk which was a fucking dumb idea as my butt region feels like it was going to rip open, placing fear into my mind that the baby would be born out my ass. Get home and google ‘Can babies be born out your butt?’ Not the cleverest moment in this Biologists life….
8pm. We hired a tens machine and Josh had loaded the laptop up with some movies. So both got a bit of use; Me with the tens, hanging over the back of the couch on my knees saying owwwuchh, Josh watching movies.
Thursday Sleeptime. Or lack of. Not the most rested sleep ever. Lots of ouch moments, patting of my back and cranking the tens for distraction. Think I got an hour sleep? Whose counting.
Friday morning time. It’s been 24 hours since that first twinge. I’m tired and sore. No waters broken or no mucus plug fallen out. Mucus plug is such a gross sounding word! We stay at home til 10am, which we then go see midwife. Nothing more disheartning to hear that you are still about 2cm dilated. Its been 24 hours!! And it’s this painful????
Friday day. Home again. I actually can’t remember the day part. Other than; a fair amount of pain now. Tens machine was just a distraction from the pain and wasn’t doing shit. TV or movies weren’t being watched as they just made me angry. Timing of contractions, which went from like 15 minutes apart to 5 minutes apart back to 11 minutes to 8 mins to 4 to just all over the bloody show. Annoying, so we give up timing. Most of the pain is in my butt. Being on my knees, leaning over something is the best position. Sitting down or lying down is hell on earth.
Friday 5pm. Ring midwife for another check (Note: We live 15 minutes away from midwife, 15 minutes of absolute ass torture in that car with unpredictable contractions). 4cm! Woohoo! We tell her contraction times are all over the show, so it’s hard to gauge where we are at. She tells us to go home, rest (OK…) keep timing and if waters break ring and come in.
Friday 9pm. Not much difference to the day, apart from way more painful. I try have some rest. Josh runs a bath for me. Bath bring some comfort. But WTF is that red floaty jelly shit in the bath??! Panic! Take photos of said jelly shit as evidence..Get out, ring MW, she says whack a pad on and if it’s soaked within the next 20 minutes, come in. Ummm ok..so I’m meant to just bleed out and not panic…? Check every 2 minutes. Seems to be ok BUT me being me, I wanted to go to see her. Who wouldn’t? So I exaggerate and say there is still a bit of blood. She sounded reluctant but says come in. She gets a speeding ticket to get to the maternity unit, only to tell us (I proudly show her the jelly photos) it is just my mucus plug. She does a vaginal check, which is SO painful. My cervix has redilated?! It has started to reverse, so its gone from 1cm to 2 cm to 4cm and BACK to 2cm. She says shes never experienced this before. Cool. So I’m a freak. What does this mean? It means we have a long night ahead.
Friday 11pm. MW breaks my water with the ugly crochet hook (read my first blog) and I feel instant relief. Contractions are still scatty all over the place. Jump into the birthing pool. Ahhh nice.
Friday midnight-early saturday morning. From here on out, it’s a blur. In and out of the pool. Tens machine on my back. Decide to suck on the gas. Bit of a fun buzz for a bit. Then it just becomes a distraction from the pain but not actually masking the pain. Keep getting heartrate of baby monitored. Josh falls in and out of sleep while cranking the tens and holding gas for me. Me=no sleep. Cervix dilated to 4cm. But stays there til about 6am. MW sees my exhaustion and slow progress of labour. Checks baby HR and it’s decreasing.
Saturday 6am. It’s been 48 hours since that first twinge. I’m exhausted and going in and out of delirium. The call is made to get an ambulance to take us to Middlemore Hospital, 30 minutes away. (we aren’t at a hospital, just a birthing unit where there is no special medical intervention equipment). Blur blur blur. Turn on the lights and sirens Mr ambo driver! Apart from feeling like I needed to push out my butt. I swear google lied to me when it said ‘No you can’t have a baby out your ass’.
Saturday 8am. Say see you later to my MW, as she doesn’t birth babies at Middlemore hospital. That was so SO hard, being handed over to people who don’t know you. True fear starts kicking in. They start throwing around words; induction, cyntocin, epidural, c section, heartrate dropping, exhaustion, no progress, difficult position for baby. I break down. I’m spent. This is not the plan! Not how we wanted it! I’m so angry yet succumbing to the words. Drip of fluids go into me as I’m weak, as well as cyntocin, to get the labour progressing. Needle into the back for an epidural. Twice. Because the first time I can still feel shit.. fuckkkkkk its awful. But I’ve given in to the medical interventions. Blur.
Saturday 10am (so I’m told). Drugs kick in and take over my body and mind. No more pain! Sleep.
Saturday 11pm. Wake. Blur. Dilated to 8cm! Don’t jump for joy as can’t feel anything. MW on duty (the 3rd one we’ve seen) says I should try push as the monitor tells her I’m having a stromg contraction. Ok, lets do this! Bear down into the bed, push!!! Nothing. Do you know what is the weirdest feeling? Trying to push something out your fanny/ass when you can’t feel anything from your boobies down. And everyone encouraging you with their cheers.
Saturday 1pm. 2 hours of that cheerleading. No progress. Blur. But I do remember feeling every emotion. I feel defeated. Deflated. Scared. Angry. Sad. Scared again. What’s wrong with me? With baby? This time a team of doctors comes in as they are worried about baby HR and positioning. Something about slightly sideways but still head down? Twisted? God knows, I’m not taking it in. Try pushing again for another hour. No progress. C-section is scheduled. Fuck. (At this point I need to say that however baby is born, via c-section or vaginally, it is still a birth. It just wasn’t our plan. I salute you C-section mummas!) I lose my shit, not yet literally, that’s still to come. I can’t deal. It’s been only 2 hours of active pushing but over 52 hours since that first twinge. I’m going with 48 hours of actually feeling pain. And to be told at the end of all that 48 hours of shitness pain, I’m going to have a C-section that I have not mentally prepared for? Lost. My. Shit. Buttttt they are so busy in the Emergency department with other women and their c-sections, that I have to wait. HAHAHA. Waiting.
Saturday 3pm. I’m shaved, prepped and ready to roll into the bright lighted surgery room. God there is so many people in there, I think I counted 12. And they all get introduced to me. As if that will ease my nerves. Josh is there with me, giving me reassurance. He is my rock. I’ve never loved him more than in that moment. I despise everyone else in that room (even though they are trying to save my babies life and mine and are doing an absolutely amazing job!!) Everyone but one lovely lady who can see the exhaustion yet determination in my face that I don’t want this (shit I sound selfish, but that’s how it was in that emotional moment, not gonna lie). She tells the room “We are going to try to push a few more times”, much to a couple of peoples horror, gives me a wink and away we go again. Push push push. Nothing. And again. Nope. “One more time but this time with forceps” to which I actually say “No, please no”. Umm, Jess, you aren’t in control anymore. She sees it, she gets it. I like this woman. “Ok, once more but with ventouse (the vacuum)”
Saturday 3.13pm (so specific time, just guessing ya know). Push push push. Poop. Push push push. More poop.
Saturday 3.15pm. Lily Tessa Baker enters the world. In that moment, our lives have changed forever.