K's Birth Story -
I guess the story begins at 9am on 7th April when I went into the hospital for an induction via a Pessary.
By this time I was just under two weeks late. I had already been seen by a midwife the week before for a sweep, but apparently my cervix was too high and she couldn’t reach to conduct the sweep – this miffed me slightly. I probably wouldn’t have minded if a little more effort to reach my cervix was made but it seemed she went in and promptly came back out, it’s like she didn’t even try!
Anyway, a few days after the non-sweep, I was at the hospital for 9am awaiting to be induced. I was so nervous. This was it – although in reality I still had the drip to come if this didn’t work, but it felt like I was finally in going to meet my baby.
I was briefly placed onto a heart monitor and was monitored for about 30 minutes to check everything was alright with the baby before they started. Once this was done, I was then ready to be induced! I didn’t really know what to expect, I had heard the pessary was like a mini tampon that released chemicals slowly to soften the cervix but when I saw it it was a little strip of paper no bigger than what you spray perfume onto.
The insertion hurt like hell as the midwife really went to town on making sure it wasn’t going anywhere, with this though, the midwife was some how able to advise me that my cervix was already nice and soft, albeit very very closed. Great – more waiting.
After insertion, I was placed back onto the monitor to make sure both me or the baby didn’t have any side-effects to the drug. As beansprout was a little quiet, I was then told to go for a walk round the hospital to get everything going and come back in an hour for further checks.
I hadn’t even left the hospital before a dull ache started. I felt bruised anyway from the insertion, but this was different – it sat right under my muffin top and was very similar to severe period cramps. Very quickly, I had to sit down every few minutes as I felt a huge heaviness down below – it was manageable, but wasn’t pleasant.
After the hour, I went back up to see the midwife, got checked over, and was then sent home to just wait it out. Before leaving though, I was booked in for the following day to have the drip put in meaning that within the next 48hrs I would definitely have our baby.
By the time I got home, the cramping had intensified 100%. I’ll be honest, it scared me a little. Not only was I not expecting such a sudden reaction, as I was told that the pessary was only there to soften everything but I wasn’t expecting the amount of pain! It was now uncomfortable. Throughout the afternoon, the pain was continuing to intensify as well as the duration in which the cramping lasted – I was already getting tired. The pain was so awkward I couldn’t lie down, let alone sleep. By late afternoon, I was finding it difficult to sit, stand, or do anything.
At around 4.30pm S called the triage ward for advice as the pain was getting worse – this must have been it, surely? No. They advised that this was unlikely to be contractions and was just “tightenings”. (TIGHTENINGS! I’ll give you tightenings). With this, they advised that I go have a warm bath, rest, take 2 paracetamol, and to give it a few more hours.
During the afternoon, the pain intensified – still in the same location. I ate some lunch but promptly threw it up due to the pain as well as had several warm baths.
By 10pm I was in agony. I had pretty much stayed in the bath the whole afternoon pouring water over the bump. I’ll be honest, this was probably the first time in 9 months I hadn’t thought about beansprout. I didn’t think about needing to feed him, I also couldn’t remember wondering whether I may have been lying on him in the bath – all I could think about was this severe cramping. I remember telling S at one stage to just take the pessary out and I’ll just have to be pregnant forever – I was in that much pain. I wouldn’t have minded so much if the pain was spread out a bit more across the bump but it wasn’t – it was all down below. By now the “tightenings” were lasting for 3 minutes with a break of 3 minutes – I was exhausted.
Suddenly, things then changed – I got an almighty feeling that I needed to poo. I had no control over the feeling – it was so intense I thought I was going to push my intestines out. It was scary. Once this started, S then promptly called the triage unit and told them that we were coming in, explaining what was happening. Even at this stage, because my waters hadn’t broken, they advised that there was very little they could do and it was likely I would be sent home.
We had already arranged a few weeks ago that my mum would take us to and from the hospital and I’m so glad she did – it would have been so stressful for S to drive us. At this point, I was making quite a bit of noise – not as bad as some of those ladies on One Born Every Minute I must say, but I was vocal to say the least.
My waters finally broke in the car on the way – which was a nice relief not just for me, but for S, it meant I might actually stay at the hospital.
We arrived rather *cough* promptly at the hospital outside the A&E department, and S grabbed a wheelchair (no idea whether she turfed someone out of it, but she had one) and wheeled me to the lifts where the slowest climb to the 12th floor would begin. We were so close. Thank god for the wheelchair as there was no way I would have been able to walk now as I started to feel a burning feeling around a certain hole. It felt like something was coming out.
As I arrived at the triage ward, I was greeted by a lovely midwife who was so chirpy I couldn’t help but be chirpy back despite being in absolute agony and grunting. When S advised her than my waters had gone she simply responded with a “Oh how lovely! Let’s pop you on the bed”. She told me to get undressed (which was easier said than done) so she could examine me, and advised that she would be putting a monitor on me to check baby. I was a mess – there was water everywhere and I probably looked like a tramp.
As I opened my legs, the midwife suddenly shouted for a labour kit. Beansprout was crowing – and fast! Within 20 seconds, and after one giant push, he then plopped out on the bed. He was here and put straight on my chest.
Time of Arrival:- 11:25pm
Weight:- 8Ib 7oz
The next few minutes were then a blur to me. What I do remember is this; the midwives really read my notes through thoroughly (something I was dubious about previously), T was placed on my chest for skin-to-skin, the cord was left to continue pulsating as requested on my notes, S then cut the cord and was handed her son whilst I delivered the placenta (have you SEEN how big that bad boy is?! It’s huge!). My job was complete – he was here.
I was told I had a very small tear but it was nothing to worry about, but I would need stitches once I arrived at the labour ward.
Once I arrived on the labour ward, it was time for my stitches. I must say, in my opinion, this part bloody hurt – and I’m only talking about the injection I had containing the local anaesthetic (that got a giant “
fuck” “ow”). Thankfully, once everything kicked in, and I got handed some gas and air, everything was bliss. Finally, after everything was done, I got THE best tea and toast. I don’t know whether the bread they use is made of crack, but it was the best tasting toast I’d had in a long time. On top of this they also served it with a basket of preserves and a pot of tea. It. Was. Heaven.
After tea and toast I then had my first feed with T – it went suprisingly well, I felt so proud. I was feeding our son.
After a few hours on the labour ward where I was able to rest and have a shower, I then got taken down to the post-natal ward to sleep until the morning. At this point, S then left me and I got put to bed – not that I could sleep, I was wide awake. I couldn’t stop checking on T – not that he needed a thing, he slept the whole night.
There was only 3 of us in the ward I was in, and I certainly had the easier ride. One poor lady in the bed next to me not only had a c-section but also had IBS so kept wretching and crying – I just wanted to give her a hug. The lady across from me also had a c-section but was on a drip due to an infection – she was also having a rough ride.
The care at the hospital was exemplary. I was woken at 6am and told there was a small breakfast buffet and shown where the showers were. The midwives, nursery nurses and other staff were constantly keeping an eye on us throughout the night and were so kind. In the morning, a drugs cart came round and pretty much offered drugs like they were sweets, and then the midwives did their rounds; making sure we were comfortable. It was an amazing service.
At 9am S arrived, and by 11am I was discharged and we were sent home. S looked so proud carrying T out of the hospital in the carrier.
The next 24hrs after arriving home were then a blur but it was a pretty awesome blur…