Friday, 5 February 2016

My labour story: Part two

Here's part two of my labour story of my second baby.  For part one you can head over here if you missed it, but we left it that I was on all fours and only 4cm dilated. 

You can't really put into words the pain and intensity of contractions, and I certainly don't want to scare anyone who is pregnant or plans to have a baby in the future. I mean we all know it hurts. It really hurts. But it's a pain unlike any other, it's a pain that has a purpose.  And no matter how many babies I see, I still can't quite believe the miracle that is pregnancy and child birth. 

The contractions were getting stronger and more close together so I tried gas and air that I immediately didn't like.  It just made me feel really sick having a plastic mouthpiece in my mouth and I think it also made me lose focus of my breathing technique that so far had been quite effective.  The gas and air just got thrown on the bed and I resumed focusing on breathing and counting out loud to ten until the contraction had passed. 

I think alot of people perceive labour to be this one long excruciating pain, when in fact inbetween contractions you are pretty pain free.  This kept me going.  I knew if I could just count up to ten, by the time I got to ten the pain would have passed and I would have some respite.  I really tried to stay in the moment and not even think of the next contraction.  

By around 2am my contractions were so intense that I began to doubt myself and I felt so overwhelmed. I remember telling my husband he had better get me an epidural ASAP (even though an hour before I'd bleated on about a natural birth!!!). The midwife was amazing and just kept telling me I could do it and to hold on for a bit longer. I can remember arguing with her I couldn't.  At some point I can remember saying I'd had enough, it was all too much.   The midwife agreed to examine me and found I was around 8cm! I was nearly nearly there, I could do it! I think she did a sweep at this point to help my cervix fully dilate. 

As the intensity grew to the point that I felt I could take no more, a really strange feeling came over me which I can't describe. My body just felt so different, I felt shaky and weird and a little scared.  I can then remember my waters breaking and the midwife opening a delivery pack. 

At the point I thought I could take no more we had reached the point of pushing.  And this gave me a renewed sense of purpose.  Whilst the contractions were still there, I had a renewed purpose, I had to push as hard as I could to see my baby. 

I won't lie, I was scared at this point. I'd had an epidural with my first daughter so all of the sensations were new. I told the midwife there was no way I was pushing, I was just going to wait it out, to which she laughed and told me I didn't have a choice. 

The pushing was hard and exhausting (think doing a giant poo) and my husband said he could actually see my stomach shrinking as baby was being pushed down.  I can't put into words how I felt or what my body was doing.  My body just completely took over and I just knew I had to push and push. Every single part of my being was focusing on pushing this baby out.  A monkey could have delivered my baby and I wouldn't have noticed.   

It was intense but the most amazing experience. Three hours after arriving on the ward and our daughter, baby LL was born.  It was love at first sight. 

I delivered the placenta naturally after the cord had stopped pulsating, and to me this was a breeze compared to birthing a baby.

I needed some stitches afterwards, but just 6 hours later we were discharged home and I don't think my parents could quite believe it when we walked into our home holding our new baby girl.

The care I received was faultless and as hard as it was, I would do it all again in a heartbeat.  I know not every birth is the same and I would never compare this birth to the birth of my daughter where I had an epidural. But I feel so lucky to have experienced a different type of labour and birth.  

Welcome to the world LL xxx

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