I can’t believe I’m finally writing this post. It felt like I was going to pregnant forever at one point but now my sweet boy is almost 4 weeks old and I feel like I can finally emerge from our newborn bubble and write this down!
Obviously, it goes without saying that this was my own experience and although for me it was an overall really positive experience, it may not be that way for everyone. I just want to share my positive experience as reading other positive stories helped me prepare myself.
Okay, so I ended up in the hospital on the Monday (18th Nov) after going in for reduced movements (I hadn’t felt baby move for a little while and he was quite an active baby). After talking to the doctors and a lot of deliberation, we decided to go for the induction that they had offered so went home, packed our last minute bits and got some rest before heading back to the induction ward the next morning.
Tuesday (19th) morning, we headed back to the hospital and got ourselves all checked in and comfortable in our room. Very quickly, one of the midwives came in and did an internal exam to see how far along, if it all, I was because what they give you to start your induction depends on how progressed you are. I was already 2cm dilated, which is far enough to skip a few things like the pessary to start you dilating, so they could instead jump ahead and break my waters as the next step but to do this they had to move us to the delivery suite.
The delivery suite was super busy so the midwife told us to use the time to rest up and they would come and get us when it was time to move over. It was a long ol’ wait as it was 6am Wednesday (20th) when they woke us to tell us that a bed was ready and we could finally move over to the delivery unit and honestly, this is where my nerves kicked in but I used the tools from my hypnobirthing course and stayed really calm.
When we got to the delivery suite, they had to do some monitoring of me and the baby to make sure we were both ready for them to break my waters. Baby was absolutely fine but my heart rate was a running a bit fast so they had to let that come down before they could do anything. The midwife team I had were absolutely amazing and helped keep me in a really good headspace as did Sam and my mum.
At about 5pm, they could finally go ahead and break my waters. They explained everything to me and made me feel so comfortable the whole way through. Baby was really low so the midwife did struggle to break them and did have someone else come in and double check that she had got them (she had, wahoo!) and then they recommended that I got up and went for a walk to really help bring the contractions on (I had already been having minor ones for days at this point) as if they didn’t start up within an hour, they would have to put me on a hormone drip to get things moving.
I went for a wander with my mum around the hospital and to get some food and drink to keep us all going as we knew it could still be a long time before anything happened. We came back after an hour and I was definitely feeling the contractions, they were coming every 5 minutes and were very powerful but I was breathing my way through them. They did another check and I had progressed to 3cm but they ideally wanted to start the hormone drip. I asked if they could give me another half hour or so and if the contractions hadn’t gotten more powerful then we would start the drip. So while we waited we discussed pain relief options. I took some Paracetemol to take the edge off while we talked. She took me through all my options and debunked a lot of negative thoughts I had about epidurals which was amazing.
I decided to get the epidural relatively early compared to most from what they told me. I decided to get it early because I knew that once they started the hormone drip, my contractions would come on faster and more powerful and I wanted to get ahead of the game really and as someone who is not a fan of needles, this was a big deal to me.
They called the Anesthesiologist and he hooked me up (pun so intended). I didn’t feel a thing as he did it and if anything I was more nervous for that than I was labour itself and it was absolutely fine. Then they popped the hormone drip in to help my contractions along.
Unfortunately for me, the epidural worked everywhere but one spot in my back. Doesn’t mean that will happen to you guys though but honestly, I was still way more comfortable than I would have been had I not had the epidural. Slowly over the hours, the epidural gets stronger and stronger so eventually I couldn’t lift my legs even though I was so determined that I could and gave it a good go!
The hours ticked by and they checked me again at about 4am on Thursday (21st) and I was 7cm dilated and I knew I was going to have my sweet boy at some point today which gave me a second wind of energy, kinda. I was struggling to stay awake so tried to get some sleep in between my contractions. The midwife told me that the day shift would check me over at about 7am and see where we were at as she didn’t think it would be much longer until I hit the big 10CM.
Lo and behold, when they next checked me I was 10cm dilated. Once you hit 10cm, they have to leave you for an hour for babys’ head to descend further before you start the active pushing stage so that’s what we did.
An hour or so later, it was pushing time. They thought baby was back to back as I was feeling all my contractions in my back and not in my belly like most people will tell you they did and they also thought his head was a bit on the wonk position wise but said it should rectify as I started pushing.
I was pretty vertical to try and have gravity on my side and it was go time. However, the epidural was now making me feel very sick and I had thrown up a few times throughout. Thanks to my hypnobirthing course, I used my breathing to help me through each contraction and pushing and stayed so calm, like I had been for the last few days. I didn’t make any noise. No shouting, no screaming, just calm breathing to help me get through it. I felt very in control of my body and what it was doing and felt so supported by Sam, my mum and the midwife team.
After 2 hours, we weren’t getting anywhere so we discussed our options. They said that the next thing they would offer would be an assisted delivery with the use of forceps. They talked me through it and explained why I would have to be moved to theatre as a precaution and I agreed.
So they wheeled me to theatre and got Sam all scrubbed up and in the midst of it all. I still had time to laugh at how funny he looked.
After the theatre team looked me over and we did a few pushes so they could assess whether they would be able to do anything they told me that the baby was too big and that I would have to have a c-section, especially as I had now been in labour longer than they like when someones waters have broken.
Although it was technically an emergency c-section due to the high infection risk since my waters had been broken 19 hours prior, I still felt very calm and collected and could understand why everything was happening.
They then had to administer the spinal block, basically the same thing as an epidural but 50,000 times stronger and it numbed my body from the ribs down. I could not feel a single thing and it was such a weird out of body experience seeing my legs being moved around without feeling anything!
Again, the team kept my so informed and I felt so unbelievably chilled out that I spent more time poking fun at Sam and trying to keep him calm as I could see how concerned he was for us.
Then, at 1:38pm our sweet boy was born weighing a hefty 10lb 13oz. Now, I did not have a very big bump so literally everyone in the room, myself included questioned where on earth he was because my belly did not look big enough to be homing an almost 11lb baby!! I genuinely thought I misheard them when they said how much he weighed!
Sam cut the cord and they then bundled him up and brought him over to me so I could have some cuddles whilst they stitched me back up. It’s a moment I’l never forget, hearing him cry and seeing his little face for the first time.
They then moved me over to recovery where my family came in to see us all and check we were okay and have some cuddles before they moved me to the ward.
I know that for some people this may sound a little scary but honestly, it was one of the best experiences of my life. I felt so calm and in control and the team were so wonderful in keeping me informed and helping me and Sam make decisions that were right for us and what was happening.
My sweet baby, Sebastian Noah.
21/11/19 at 1:38pm.
I would also 1000% recommend to anyone who is pregnant, to buy the hypnobirthing course from The Positive Birth Company. It was the best thing I bought and it gave me so much information and techniques that helped me stay calm and make my decisions throughout my labour.
THE BEST THING I DID. I’ll link it here —> HYPNOBIRTHING.