I’d like to introduce you to my son, Rory, born at 17:22 pm on 8th July 2017 & I’d like to share his somewhat dramatic entrance into the world with you all! So if you’re interested, read on.
Now when I say he had a somewhat dramatic entrance into the world I don’t mean anything too serious like an emergency c section or life and death situation but what happened really wasn’t expected and took us all by surprise.
I’ll rewind a little and explain how my pregnancy with Rory was first, so you’ll understand how it all started…
This was my first pregnancy, so I didn’t know what to expect and I was told by most people that I wouldn’t feel baby move until around 20+ weeks with it being my first, so I was really shocked when I felt regular movements from around 15 weeks, just little pops and butterflies, nothing huge but I could tell it was Rory as I hadn’t felt the feeling ever before.
Around 19 weeks I hadn’t felt him move for a few hours, almost a day, so I phoned up the day unit and they said they wouldn’t normally do anything to check him out as they only deal with pregnancies from around 22 weeks or so and that movement before then isn’t much of a concern, but they got me in for a scan anyway and things were fine so I was sent on my way.
Relieved, I got on with life but the same thing happened again at around 27 weeks so I got brought into the maternity day assessment and was put on the monitors for one hour, he eventually had a wiggle and the trace was good so again, I got sent home and told to monitor things.
Fast forward to 34 weeks and the same thing happened, reduced movements for a day, monitored for just over one hour and things were fine so I was sent home again.
Now I got to 37 weeks and 3 days, (Wednesday, just for reference) and I had felt reduced movements since the Tuesday but I stupidly ignored it and I was that bad I woke up Wednesday morning crying and having an anxiety attack worried sick thinking something had happened since he wasn’t moving as much as he was, phoned the midwives and they told me to get checked out if I was concerned. About 15 minutes after I put the phone down on the midwives Rory did a huge roll in my tummy it looked almost alien and then had a good wiggle in there so I didn’t get checked out.
On the Friday (37 weeks 5 days) I still didn’t feel right, but we were getting his nursery furniture delivered so I held off all morning until it had been delivered and I said enough is enough, no way would I be able to relax over the weekend if I didn’t go get checked out as our DAU is closed over the weekend and I wouldn’t be able to visit until the Monday.
So, Friday afternoon I phoned the DAU and said I’d been feeling reduced movements for a few days, I was meant to come in on Wednesday and I didn’t, could I come in today and they gave me a good telling off for not coming in on Wednesday and told me to get down ASAP, so we did.
Once I was there I got put on the monitors, his movements were reduced still and the monitor was picking up his heart rate decelerating, I had 3 different midwives including the head midwife come in and assess the trace, spent over 1 hour on the monitor before being told they had phoned an ambulance for me to transfer to the hospital I was due to give birth in as they needed to monitor us closer and it could result in an induction.
15 minutes later, I was placed on a stretcher, wheeled into the back of an ambulance and blue lighted 40 minutes away to North Tees hospital for monitoring, I was so stressed, I couldn’t keep calm and I was on the verge of a breakdown thinking something serious had happened to Rory and why didn’t I just come in on Wednesday to get monitored maybe it all could’ve been avoided.
After the long journey that felt like a lifetime, I arrived and I was wheeled up to the labour ward and put on the monitors again, after being monitored for another hour a consultant came in and said as you’ve been in over 3 times with reduced movements, plus with the heart rate decelerations we need to keep you in and induce you, this was at about 5 pm Friday evening.
Come 6pm, I had the same consultant come in armed with a pessary and gel to give me a sweep and insert the first pessary to try get things started, as my cervix wasn’t favourable (the consultants words!) the sweep was rather uncomfortable but not too bad, once I had it done I had to stay in from that point and my fiancé had to leave until active labour so I just set on making myself as comfortable as possible until he was allowed to come back in.
Luckily my grandparents were coming to pick him up as they were able to bring my hospital bag, I didn’t bring it with me as I was totally unprepared as I wasn’t expecting to be induced!
1 am came and I had my second pessary, I was having period cramps by this point but when I was examined I was still 0cm dilated so that was disappointing and as I hadn’t progressed at all I got told I may need another two pessaries and if those don’t work, I’ll need a section. The second pessary wasn’t as painful as I’m guessing my cervix had softened by that point, so once it was done I just tried to get some sleep as I was going to need my energy.
I got woken up at 7 am by a midwife coming in to examine me to see if I needed a third pessary or things were progressing by themselves and luckily they had, I was 2cm. The midwife left me and came back 30 minutes later and told me she was going to break my waters, I was still alone, my fiancé was at home so I was nervous about getting this done without him there but I consented to it anyway as I really wanted to get things moving.
I’m not going to lie, I had to stop her half way through as I was in so much pain I almost passed out, she said she needed to break them so offered me some gas and air which I happily accepted, once I had a few goes to see how it worked she began attempting to break my waters again, I did black out halfway through getting them broken due to the pain and the gas and air as I wasn’t used to it so it went straight to my head but once they were broken it was fine, the pain stopped.
The midwife came back and informed me she had called my fiancé and he was on his way as soon as he could get here, it was 8 am by that point and my contractions had begun, I got put on the drip to help them along around 8:30 and that really kicked things into gear, this was also around the time my fiancé arrived at the hospital.
Things just progressed nicely from then on, I was starting to get more pain which I managed with paracetamol and gas and air until around 11 am when I asked for some stronger pain relief as things were progressing so quickly, due to the drip I was having 5-6 contractions every 10 minutes so they lowered the drip and gave me some diamorphine – that stuff is amazing! I felt like a new woman so that really helped.
I was then left to carry on, getting checked every now and then until 2 pm I requested to be examined as I wanted stronger pain relief and I wasn’t wanting an epidural until at least 5-6cm so that it didn’t wear off for the actual pushing stage and I was 6cm! It took over an hour to get the epidural administered so this was around 2:30 pm when it was finally done but something didn’t feel right, I could still feel every contraction, my legs, my toes, my thighs, everything.
I kept complaining saying something isn’t right and I can still feel everything to be told to press the button that releases more pain relief, but you can only use it once every 10 minutes, 4 presses and 40 minutes later I still felt every single thing I could’ve got up off the hospital bed and danced if I wanted to.
3:30 pm the anesthesiologist came in and checked, the epidural had failed, it leaked. No pain relief was actually going into my back and as soon as he removed the dressing the fluid ran down my back as it was just staying in the dressing and filling up like a balloon so he said he would have to restart the whole process, which I wasn’t too happy about but I just wanted the pain gone now before it got worse..
So the anesthesiologist went to go get the new things to re-do my epidural, while he left the room I felt a sudden urge to push, I physically couldn’t stop my body pushing so the midwife examined me and told me I was 10cm and that I couldn’t have the epidural but not to push yet!
I really couldn’t handle it so I told them I needed to push otherwise he was just going to force his way out – I can’t describe it properly but it felt like I had no control over my body and it was just an insane feeling, I kept up using the gas and air and focusing on my breathing until she came over and said okay, you can start to push now.
4pm I started to push, but the monitor they use to keep an eye on baby’s heartbeat kept slipping so I needed an internal one which I got sorted at around 4:30 pm, I kept on pushing for another 10-15 minutes and the midwives faces went blank and they pushed the emergency button and said we can’t find a heartbeat, we need to get help quickly.
At this point, I panicked, I was exhausted as it was from trying to hold him in, to pushing for almost 1 hour and getting nowhere, to then thinking something bad had happened to Rory.
Not even a minute after pressing the button about 3 midwives and 2 consultants came rushing in and pushed my mum and my fiancé out the way to try find his heartbeat again, by positioning the external monitors and also trying to reposition the internal monitor, after a few minutes of trying they found his heartbeat again and it was time for me to start pushing again.
It got to around 5 pm, so I had been pushing for one hour at this point and I was using all of my energy but felt like I was getting nowhere, I was told I’d need an episiotomy (a cut, rather than tearing down there!) so the consultant numbed me and then performed the episiotomy which I was oblivious to, (I only know all of these details because my fiancé is helping me write this!) I was delirious and felt like I was going in and out of consciousness probably from exhaustion and stress.
My consultant then informed me if I didn’t have him out in the next push I needed a ventouse, I refused and said hell no I am not having a ventouse, give me a few more pushes and I will have him out…
The next push, his head was there and in another two pushes he was fully out at 5:22 pm and the relief I felt knowing my little boy was out, in the world, perfectly healthy (thank god!) was wonderful, it was the best moment of my life.
He was placed on my chest for some skin to skin while I was getting stitched up from the episiotomy but I found the stitches worse than labour pains so my fiancé took him off me so I could get stitched up without worrying about flinching and hurting Rory.
I am so in love, honestly, when they say you’ll never feel love like it, it’s true.
After that traumatic birth, I was in hospital overnight which I hated as I just wanted my own bed and my own house to try to relax a bit more, but luckily one of my friends who is a midwife was working the night shift so she made it so much easier for me and even took him for 2 hours so I could get a little bit of sleep. (Thanks, Leanne!)
So there you have it, my labour and delivery story! A bit of a long post, but it was an eventful labour and even though it was really stressful it hasn’t put me off, I’d do it 10 times over if I had to.
Have you got an interesting labour and delivery story to share? I’d love to hear about it!