As usual my partners snores resonated around the house... keeping me awake in the early hours of Friday morning, usual angry frownings on my part at 2am. Ugh... snore snore boring! Can’t sleep! Usual period pains ensued, they came and went nothing unusual about that. I had made a bet with my partner that she was going to come on the 1st May when i’d been scheduled for an induction, he had bet the 23rd, that day came and went... a chance for me to be on the money! But Squiggly had her own designs...
About 3.30am those period pains seemed to gnaw a bit more... hmmm... i started to pay more attention, they were as usual consistent pain but had surges that were intense. Braxton hicks? Maybe this was a braxton hicks, i can’t tell!
I went for a wee and wiped and my midwife’s words came into my head “you’ll know when you’ve lost your plug” there, sure as day light, was a bloody show... mucous plugs vary from person to person but mine was bloody and like snot. Well... i guess it didn’t mean anything was happening, some lose their plugs and it’s weeks before labour or days. Period pains weren’t going though and i found myself leaning against the wall swaying my hips... i felt like a nut but compelled. Forget sitting down... yowch... laying down... no way jose... i called triage... apparently this was early labour which may take hours or days... so no induction and a lost bet but instead Squiggly count down had begun...
I had not attended any ante natal classes, I didn’t think i needed it. i trusted my instincts, stayed upright listened to music, swayed my hips and had snacks of dried fruits, then at the worst possible time while gnawing dried pineapple a filling came out of my toothy peg no time to fret about a tooth so drank water and breathed through the pain. i had a contractions monitor app so kept an eye on things. i was really scared that i’d find the pain too much go to hospital find i was 1cm or worse find out i was 0cm and have to go all the way home which I knew I couldn’t stand! i was staying put till i reached a plateau of pain. I panted and deep breathed... my partner put on a movie (the hobbit) which I watched and after another visit to the loo I discovered even more plug coming out! The pain was getting worse... eek! Contractions about 4 mins apart. I spent a lot of the early labour (apart from the film watching) on my own. I tried to lay down, see if I could sleep but no chance, no chance at all. I self massaged my back... big mistake for me... it made my lower back hurt like nothing else so I called the triage again saying I couldn’t manage the pain any more, was about 5pm, paracetamol and codeine were not touching the pain... they said come in.
I could hardly sit in that car... oh boy oh boy no WAY! It was the longest journey (it wasn’t really but felt like it!) the whole time these waves of incredible sensations. I wasn’t screaming but it was certainly hard to manage.
The labour ward assessed me and I was over 3 cm dilated... I could be kept in but... no room for me... no pain relief and nothing for the insane nausea... so into the waiting room... eek... no privacy... no midwife available either after my initial assessment.
The plan was:
Any pain relief I felt I needed I would have
Partner to wait in the waiting room
I cut the cord
BUT as there was no room my man was with me in the waiting room. Holding my hand, giving me sips of water... no pain relief allowed... just to have a bath. It helped but it was getting excruciating... I couldn’t hardly stand up, hardly walk... from the bath room to labour room took forever but was so close. After being examined I was told 8cm.
Finally gas and air! Was fun for 10 mins but was utterly useless after, an ice lolly would have had more effect... I thought i would have been spaced out half way to la la land but seriously... weak as water.
Ha! The midwife said the transition phase was the worst bit. Really? REALLY??? L I E S!!! Lol! i believed her too. She said if i felt the urge to push then push... yeah... right... but i had NO urge to push! I pushed when told. My waters didn’t break without assistance but it was quite the sensation... so much liquid!
I’ll be honest... I found the pushing part the most distressing disheartening experience i’ve ever had. I freaked out... the not screaming wish i had... out the window. i felt like any pushing i did had no effect. “Why won’t someone help me?” “i can’t do it!!!” “i’m doing all i can and i’m failing... i’m doing it wrong... help ME!” That’s what I was screaming... this is why i didn’t want my man there to bare witness of me freaking out or being that distressed, losing my ability to be positive and being so vulnerable. i knew he didn’t know what to do to help but to his credit he was very helpful, loving and supportive.
I wanted an active birth... desperate for that or a water birth... i could do neither. My body was in no position to be active. I was on all fours doing hip sways most of the way through then much to my surprise delivery was done laid on my back. I say, delivering the head sure did STING! I can confirm that at least in my case as soon as she was in my arms the memory of those pains, the panic and stress of pushing dissipated straight away, in its place LOVE!
Squiggly born 00.43 27th April 2013, 8lbs 4oz, 7 hours of active labour, entonox used, I cut the cord.
I now have a Squiggly in my life, here in my arms, forcing me to type with one hand. I have felt nothing but love for her from inside me to her entry outside my tummy. The chance to raise a child is here. My fiance has been great during the delivery and beyond, I am part of a family! Would I do this again for a second baby? YES!
Thank you all on NCT for your support from the very beginning of my pregnancy at week 4 all the way through. Special thanks to Skyblueboston, DrFluffy and alleymo for personal messages and to all those who shared their expertise and opinions in answer to my many many questions, worries and fears. I would have been lost without the support of all of you.
Good luck to all who are starting their journeys, those trying to conceive and good luck to those preparing for birth. Remember no two pregnancies are the same and another persons experience may have no bearing on what you will experience. Enjoy your unique path through pregnancy. Embrace the support from the wonderful online community available to you.
With genuine love and appreciation,