At 37 weeks pregnant, I had an examination and was told I was 2cm dilated, and in ‘slow labour’. As a first time mum, I began to get excited and anxious that established labour was imminent! I told myself that baby will come when baby is ready, and tried to relax remembering the techniques learnt in class.
At 38 weeks pregnant, I was worried I was showing signs of an infection and baby had slightly reduced movements throughout the day. After a trip to the hospital, test results came back clear, and baby was very happy on the monitor! However it was decided by the consultant that I was no longer allowed my planned home birth and I was to be induced at 9:30am on my due date.I remembered that I did have a choice, and after a lot of discussion and questions with various midwifes and consultants, I decided to go against the consultants advice and carried on with my original plan to have a home birth. I opted to go for daily monitoring just to check baby was happy. I felt that this was the best decision for me and my baby.
On the 25th of May, at 11am, my contractions started. I had been having periods of stop/start contractions for several weeks so I tried to relax and carried on as normal, hoping that this was the real deal! By 1pm, my contractions came on strong and were around 4 minutes apart. Initial panic set in, but I focused on my breathing techniques and counted through my contractions which really helped to calm me down. By 4pm my contractions were coming every 2-3 minutes lasting roughly 60 seconds, so I decided to contact the home birth team. After being examined I was very disheartened to find out that I was now only 3cm. I focused on the positives, and told myself that my body was doing what it needed to do!I tried to stay calm at home, focusing on my body and baby. By 10pm, I felt like I needed some form of pain relief as the contractions were becoming much stronger. I had been told earlier in the week that baby was back to back, so I tried various positions that I learnt in class to help with the contractions whilst I waited for the midwife to return. I was examined again as I wanted to know what stage my labour was at. Again, I felt disheartened as I was now only 4cm. By this point I had became pretty exhausted, and I wasn’t coping as well as I liked with the contractions.
I made the decision with the support of my partner, to go into hospital where I could receive stronger pain relief. This was the right decision for me, as I instantly began to relax once in the hospital. I was examined again at 12pm and was relieved to now find out that I was 6cm! YAY! I was then moved onto the labour ward! I carried on counting through my contractions, and kept active around the room. By 1pm my contractions were now coming 1 minute apart, and I was becoming very exhausted.
Even though on my birth plan I only chose to have gas and air, I made the decision to request an epidural as I felt this was right for me. However, it was exceptionally busy on the labour ward through the night, and I wasn’t able to have the epidural straight away. I breathed through my contractions, went into my ‘zone’, and told myself that I was strong, and that my body was designed to do this! At 7am I was finally given the epidural, and I was 9cm! Double Yay! I was so proud that I had managed to get to 9cm on gas and air. I caught up on a couple of hours sleep before being woken up with the news that I was now ready to push!
Throughout the night, baby had shown signs of distress, and was now in a tricky position, so it was decided that if after an hour of pushing baby wasn’t moving, I may need a little help with forceps! The hour flew by before I knew it! But unfortunately baby didn’t want to move! I was then taken to theatre for a forceps delivery and told that if this didn’t work I would be having a C sections. Everything seem to move very quickly, and I quickly become anxious. I tried to remain calm with my breathing techniques and focused on the fact that very soon I would be meeting my baby!
Once in theatre, baby shown further signs of distress and was still in a difficult position, so I was prepped for a C section….
At 11:12am, right on her due date, my beautiful little girl, was born, and she was so worth the wait! Pure love and joy soon replaced the earlier feelings of anxiety. I believe that by listening to my body, I made the right decision to go against induction, and once relaxed, baby knew exactly when she wanted to enter the world! A huge thank you to you Kate, you taught me so many great techniques that helped me through my labour, and although it was a ‘tricky’ labour…I would do it all over again in a heart beat!
Welcome to the world Eliza Amy Jane