Friday, 28 January 2011

So what happened on Monday night?

I'm going to have to back track now so that the story of Mabel's birth is complete.
So what did happen on Monday night?

After a long day of not very much we did indeed go to bed and watch 'Modern Family' for some light hearted relief from the waiting and in the hope that humour would help bring on contractions. After watching too many episodes at about midnight we finally decided that it wasn't going to happen any time soon and that we should try and get some sleep.

And, as is always the way when waiting for something, lights out, eyes closed, contractions started. At first nothing too bad but quite soon they became stronger and therefore I really struggled to get to sleep. Quite a tough call to sleep through contractions I find, although at this stage it could have been what is described as 'first stage' or latent labour I believe.
A couple of calls to the birth centre later, and following a bath and some pacing, at about 3pm I did utter the words, "oh my God, I have completely underestimated my pain threshold. If this isn't even labour yet I am really not gonna get through this". The birth centre kept telling me that we needed to wait as long as possible to come in, and asked me to try and get to 6am. G Kisby, as always, was brilliant.
However, I started to have some bleeding which was getting worse every time I went to the toilet. By about 4am this started to feel a bit wrong so I called the birth centre again who advised us to head for Calderdale. We always knew that the Spa wouldn't take us if we had any kind of variation on normal and to be honest at this point I was seriously thinking I would need pain relief at some point anyway.

So we head out about 4.45am. This time no shower for G Kisby. The drive there is a bit of a blur, I was fully concentrating on breathing and getting through each contraction (still semi panicking that this wasn't even active labour yet).

When we got there the midwives were absolutely lovely. They checked the bleeding and weren't too concerned, apparently it may have been Mabel pulling on the chord and this was showing since my waters had gone. That pesky baby always was a handful in the womb.
They also checked and found I was 4cm dilated so in active labour - thank flaming God. This made me feel loads better and more motivated again that I could do it. I also had a couple of codine tablets just to take the edge off. Unfortunately because of the bleeding and the fact that Mabel's heart rate bordered on the wrong side of normal, we weren't even able to go down to the birth centre at Calderdale so made our way down to a delivery room on labour ward.

Now, for those who aren't fully offay with labour timings, with a first baby you are looking at about an hour per centimetre and aiming to get to 10. So we thought we had a while to go. However, we get to the room, I nip for a wee and suddenly feel a massive urge to push. Turns out that in the space of about 25 mins I had got to the 10 and was at the final hurdle (I have since asked Gaz if he reckons I have a good uterus due to raspberry leaf tea - he said he wasn't sure how to answer that question) . Don't think I have ever been so pleased (and now looking back slightly concerned that if we had waited until 6am at home I think Mabel may well have either been born in the car or in an ambulance). G Kisby had a major rush to the car to get our bag just to stop me delivering Mabel in a little black jumper dress and leggings! Pretty much may as well have had my coat on.

And I won't go into too much detail of the rest. G Kisby needless to say made it back from the car in time, I changed into a more appropriate vest and Mabel was born at 8.20am after a very reasonable hour or so at the end. We had a lovely, if a little stern midwife who really helped me in a way she'll never realise.
I asked, "how much longer, how many more contractions?" - looking for some moral support / a bit of motivation.
She answered, "well that depends on how many pushes you get from each one" (I then heard her say to the student nurse, "she is currently only getting 2 so...)
ONLY getting 2. Suddenly my competitive streak sprung into action.
ONLY getting 2 you say, we'll see.
G Kisby relays that I then became obsessed in between contractions with asking how many I'd got and how good they were, including exclamations like,
"that one was good wasn't it!"
and "right, next one is going to be the best one you've seen yet"
verging on "how good am I"

So labour was good. The hypno birthing bits helped even if the exact circumstances weren't as we had wanted (no birth pool, lighting not quite as dimmed etc). The breathing definitely helped and I am 100% certain that the whole mind over matter and belief in my body's ability to do it made all the difference. Two codine tablets and a swig of gas - I'm pretty pleased with that . And also G Kisby's role in the whole thing, I don't think I could have done it without him. He was absolutely fantastic; supported me through every single contraction, reminded me to relax and breathe, told me how well I was doing and kept me drinking water. All of that despite the fact that he couldn't take his eyes off the wall behind my head or even turn towards where anything was happening. When asked if he wanted to cut the chord I practically heard him hold back a heave.

No-one can describe or even try to articulate the emotions you feel at that moment. It genuinely was for both of us the most emotional moment of our lives (our wedding we agreed is a close runner up but emotional in a different way since spread out over a period of time). I still struggle to talk or think about it without wanting to cry. Though notably I am on day 3 today so pretty much anything makes me cry. A baby girl, a beautiful perfect baby girl, who was passed to us making these little snorting noises and looking so scared to be out of her safe world. G Kisby couldn't hold back tears and I seem to remember my whole body shaking uncontrollably. 
I am almost, I say almost, sad that my labour has past, truly amazing.

On my lovely philosophy shower gel that Mum gave to me for Christmas it says,
'Have a baby if you no longer believe in miracles' - too true.

So that was how it happened. It was followed by a bit of a blood loss incident which then meant I wasn't quite as copus mentus to update the blog straight away. In fact, it did take a couple of bags of blood and a few days to get my iron levels back up to the level of not needing someone to accompany me to the toilet. 

We have some pictures of Mabel's first day at home which I will add tomorrow but for now, some more pictures of our gorgeous girl are below:


1 comment:

  1. Still loving the idea of delivering in a 'LBD' and think we should embellish this story for the future.
    Also love the idea of mabel pulling on the cord ("ready!!!")
    We are all so in love with baby Mabel and can't wait to see her again later...and eat some cakes in celebration.

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