We had prepared for a natural delivery and hopefully a water birth with hypnobirthing with the amazing Kathryn Wilde. I still swear by hypnobirthing and it helped a lot throughout our labour as I was informed about every intervention. (My husband and I prefer to use the word contractions, that’s just our decision and something that was taught in Kathryn's course that you need to make these decisions for your family).
36+2 weeks we went into spontaneous pre-term labour. Contractions started at 5pm and were very mild, after 3 hours we were sure I was in labour and headed to hospital due to being too early (1.5hr drive). When we arrived I was 1cm dilated and 1.5cm’s effaced, so they medicated me to stop the contractions due to being too early which worked and also gave me steroids for bubs lungs incase it didn’t work or If I were to go into labour again soon after. We stayed in the hospital one night and left the next day mid morning. I was told “any day now”. I had been having “prodromal/fake/practice labour” 6 more times since the pre term labour.
Contractions would start but after a couple of hours would stop. I was told this was because bub had turned posterior! I spent every day thinking bub would come because that’s what I was told! I had 2 stretch and sweeps with my permission at the end of week 36 and at the end of week 37 by my obstetrician. I spent 2.5 weeks attempting to turn bub with techniques taught in class, listening to hypnobirthing tracks, and trying to get the hormones going. I bought clary sage oil at 38 weeks and used a diffuser daily, bounced and swayed on my ball, leaning forwards, shaking the apple tree and NOT leaning back! It was starting to affect my mental health due to being told “any day” and then thinking I was in labour and then it stop. It also always happened at night time so I lost a lot of sleep and was exhausted and my body was getting physically exhausted.
I still wanted to go into spontaneous labour but at 38+6 days I knew something was wrong, I had reduced movements for the third day in a row and headed to PAC to get assessed. Bubs heart rate was fine and was moving but I knew within myself that bub wasn’t moving the same. Hubby and I were exhausted, it was all messing with my mental health, I was fatigued so I was worried about how I would make it through a long labour. My obstetrician knew we wanted a natural birth so she left it up to us, but we decided to be induced the day after on 39weeks for bubs health and I was very worried that day.
I was 2cm dilated and was given a stretch and sweep with my permission to try bring in labour still. We stayed in hospital that night. 24th April 2021 8am - 3cms dilated! 1.5cm effaced, fore-waters broken, they were clear initially, but then had one little chunk of meconium in it which meant instead of waiting for me to start contracting naturally we decided to start the drip due to the risk of meconium and reduced movement. While setting this up I had starting contracting but for the hospital rules they were not close enough. Clip was inserted on bubs head so I could get up out of bed. Lights were turned down very low. Due to hospital rules I was not allowed to go into the bath.
8:30am - Syntocinon drip started. Contractions became intense fast due to my cervix being ready, I had started on my own and the synthetic hormones! I laboured for the next couple of hours listening to Disney music on a speaker, and moving my hips on the exercise ball while leaning forwards into my husband. I then wanted to stand as the pain intensified, we did the slow dance position and I put headphones in with hypnobirthing affirmations playing. This helped me labour for an extra hour without pain meds. I was in so much pain and the affirmations kept me positive! I became extremely nauseas and even with anti nausea administered I was feeling very sick. I have a phobia to vomiting so this was my limit (and also why I didn’t want to use gas or morphine). I asked for an epidural, I had already discussed this with my ob as my only choice of pain meds. My pain was all in my cervix/lower uterus, I only had very mild back pain.
11:30am - I had the epidural administered, Still 3cms dilated but completely effaced. I had a rest for an hour on my left side with a peanut ball between my legs. I could move the left side of my body but the right side was completely numb. My mum also joined us at this time.
12:30pm - Bubs heart rate started to dip with contractions so was asked to move onto my right side, and had the peanut ball again. Started off fine but then bubs heart rate started to dip.
1pm - I was put onto my back to see if this would help with the heart rate. My obstetrician arrived at this time. I had a photographer/videographer booked and was to be called to come to hospital when I reached 7cms. So we did another vaginal examination and I was 10cms!! They wanted to get bub out quick as the heart rate started to dip again. I quickly called my photographer and she was on her way!
1:30pm- photographer still hadn’t arrived but we needed to start pushing! My ob talked me through pushing as medically I couldn’t wait to breathe bub out, bub needed to come quick!
1:45pm - Luckily the photographer arrived! Bubs heart rate got worse, it wasn’t rising between my contractions, they called in a paediatrician and 2 other midwives. I then needed help with a vacuum (my choice over forceps and had been discussed with my OB who warned me I would need an episiotomy with this) so they did the episiotomy, they needed to get bub out ASAP! I was warned I might not get my delayed cord clamping or skin to skin straight away as the paediatrician (paed) most likely needed to take bub away straight away to assess.
2:07pm - Bub was born and put on my chest, a midwife was rubbing Bubs back and then let out a big cry! The paed said she didn’t need to take bub off me at that stage. My husband then looked at the gender and announced our baby was a girl!!! We were in complete shock as we 100% thought we were having a boy! I balled my eyes out I was so happy! We were able to do delayed cord clamping! 10 mins and the cord was white and hubby cut it. I was able to do “the golden hour” of skin to skin with Laker and let her do the “breast crawl” and fed her for 25 mins! Dad then got skin to skin. No rush for being weighed and/or dressed Total 6hrs 7 mins from start of labour until she was born!
Looking back, if my nausea was better controlled I think I could have used the shower to help me go on longer. Next labour the plan will be to have anti nausea Administered regularly to try prevent it. This way I could also possibly use gas and air! I still love my labour and I was not traumatised by it at all because I knew I was doing what was safe for bub and I was educated about everything. I look forward to my next labour and still hope for my water birth one day.
Photos taken by Mrs Fox Photos - Click here to BOOK
Kathryn - I am so overly proud of this couple, they took the tools and techniques that we discussed in class and applied it to their birth experience. When I got the text that they had had their baby girl I couldn't help but let happy tears escape. Laker is so lucky to be born into such an amazing family and look forward to seeing them again soon.
Thank you Sally and Issac, I will be forever grateful for meeting you both!
Thank you for doing my course!
It doesn't not matter how baby is born BUT... it does matter that you felt you made each choice along the way. All births can be empowering and positive if you use the knowledge and tools to make informed decisions for you and your baby.
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These stories are shared by amazing woman to help others through their pregnancy and birth journey.