The “most amazing” experience

Mama A – “Giving birth to our baby boy was the best thing I have ever done!! I have an even greater respect for women, our bodies are amazing!!”

For about a week I’d not been feeling well and I had this headache I just couldn’t shift. I eventually decided to go into the assessment unit on Saturday 17th Feb to get checked out. My partner and I were there for hours, which we weren’t expecting as we both thought I was being dramatic! I was monitored and had a few tests. The doctor came down from delivery suite to see us and told us that I had pre-eclampsia and that she wanted to induce me. My first reaction to this was to cry as I had this idea of a perfect natural birth in mind. We discussed options with the doctor including waiting and having extra monitoring but with the risks and the doctors and midwives advice we eventually and reluctantly agreed to be induced the next day.

We went home, it was a strange evening knowing we’d be going back into hospital the next day and wouldn’t be returning as a threesome! We had a chilled out evening, preparing for what was ahead of us.

The next day (Sunday 18th) we went into the induction ward about 12 and were given a bed. The midwife visited and told us about the induction process and inserted a prostaglandin pessary. The midwife said on examining me that my cervix was so high she couldn’t do a sweep. We waited 24 hours for something to happen – nothing! During this time I watched Netflix, my partner read a book about the history of Wales (lol, my partner loves Wales!) and we ate a lot of food – really enjoyed the hospital food at that time!

24 hours later (Monday 19th 1pm) a different midwife examined me and confirmed I had not dilated at all and so inserted the gel. She said they would leave the gel for 6 hours and if nothing happened they would give me another dose of gel. Within hours I was having the most intense contractions driven by the gel, it was too intense, too quick and made me a bit crazy!! The midwife kept coming to check l was okay and telling me to relax, I felt out of control. This lasted a few hours during which time I bounced on the ball and had a bath and then they slowed down.

I was SO hot, so me and my partner went for a walk outside to the concourse so he could get something for dinner – when we got back, we sat in the common room on the ward while my partner watched Take Me Out and I paced the room, at this point I didn’t feel like I could sit down. As contractions came, my partner would help me through them. I went to the loo and I had my show.

I wanted to show the midwife (lol!) as I wasn’t sure what it was – it was about 7/8pm now, my partner got the midwife for me. As I sat on the bed, I felt a gush of water, my waters broke. The midwife did a quick examination, I wasn’t even one cm dilated at this point, although she was able do a sweep. The midwife decided not to give me any more gel because my waters broke. To be honest, I’d had enough! I asked the midwife if I could have an epidural. She said she would get me cocodamol and speak to the doctor about an epidural.

At this point My partner started to push Hypnobirthing on me (which had been out of the window until now) … I don’t think he wanted me to have an epidural really. The midwife returned with cocodamol and left us for 2 hours. I think in my head I thought I was having an epidural so it made me think I just need to wait it out. During those 2 hours, my partner sat next to the bed and stroked my hand (a Hypnobirthing technique which we practiced nearly every night for weeks!) and he used my calming trigger word (another technique) ‘relax’ as he stroked my hand. I was silent and concentrated on breathing and before I knew it, I was in this calm state, I felt in control again! After the 2 (or so) hours the midwife came back and examined me. She said “oh!” I thought oh god what now, “you’re 8cm dilated, we’d better get you up to delivery suite”. I continued in my trance-like state while the midwife pushed the bed up and my partner collected all of our things. We met our midwife who delivered our baby, Cara, who left us to it for about 20 mins while she read my birth preferences and did some paperwork. My partner and I continued our Hypnobirthing, as people came into the room and my partner did the talking for me as I was so ‘in the Hypnobirthing zone’. I didn’t use gas an air until I pushed – I didn’t feel like I needed it. After about half hour or so I told the midwife I needed to push, she did a quick examination and said to go with my body and left us to it again.

The midwife was amazing, she really understood what we wanted from reading our preferences, including dimming the lights! I pushed for about 20 minutes before she came to support at the bedside. I pushed for about a further 15 minutes, it was the most amazing feeling!! My partner held my hand and helped me breathe throughout telling me to relax.

Our baby arrived at 12.12 on the 20th and was put straight on my chest. My partner said “that was the most amazing thing I’ve ever done” lol. We waited for the cord to stop pulsating and then the midwife helped me put our baby on my breast to feed. Our baby fed like this for about 15 minutes and then the midwife took the baby and wiped him/ weighed him etc. He was 9 lbs 2 ozs! I couldn’t believe it! How did I produce something that big!! lol Anyway I waited half hour before giving up and having an injection to help deliver my placenta, which the midwife guided out.

Giving birth to our baby boy was the best thing I have ever done!! I have an even greater respect for women, our bodies are amazing!!

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