At 38 weeks I was uncomfortable, but excited to meet my baby. Surrounded by pillows, Poor Paul hardly fit in bed anymore. I felt like I lived in the toilet my baby liked playing on my bladder so much, but I loved feeling our “munchkin” moving around. On Thursday morning, I was up at 530 for my usual pee, hoped back into bed and thought- eew I’m weeing a bit.... Jumped up quickly and woooooshhhh my waters went everywhere!! I couldn’t believe how much fluid there was. I started laughing and jumping up and down. “Paul my waters broke “ So he called in sick and grabbed towels! Luckily we had wooden floors. I popped a pad on, but it was soaked within minutes, every time I moved I would gush. We laughed and in the end I walked around with a towel between my legs!
Since nothing else was happening, we decided breakfast first- so off Paul went and got me pancakes from MacDonald’s! Yummy . Once it became a better hour of the day I put my team on standby and waited for things to start happening. Private hospital always want you to go in straight away after waters have broken, but as things weren’t happening much contraction wise we decided to wait. I could feel bub moving and wanted to try getting contractions going. I used the birth ball a lot at home rocking and bouncing, and I loved the shower . Slowly I started to get niggles... After a few hours we headed in, with contractions slowly increasing.
We got to the hospital around 1030am, with contractions manageable and not too intense. Really excited to be checked and found i was at 3cm, We did want to go home, but agreed to staying as we had the big family birth suite. Big double bed, bath and lots of room to do whatever we wanted. We set up our space with candles and music and went for walks. When my mum and best friend arrived, things slowly ramped up. Using my hypnobirthing was amazing, just getting into the groove. I felt bub do something and she flipped to posterior! Cheeky thing. I slightly panicked but everyone helped me calm and we used the ball a lot. That made it harder, and soon I just wanted the bath. Oh the water was heaven. Paul flowing water on my tummy, music and relaxation on and candles surrounding me. I was able to go with it and breathe with each contraction.
I cannot describe the amazingness of my husband. He was with me, breathing, holding me, and rubbing my back when I needed it. He believed in me. If I had a fear he showed strength, when I needed to laugh he made a joke, when I wanted to cry he let me. He was my rock and still is! He didn’t want to leave my side once. During my bath when I relaxed, I kicked him out to go eat lunch! But he was back within 10 minutes again.
I remember looking up and seeing my team, my mum, my best friend just beaming at me, no fear, just joy and respect. It gave me such strength. Having my mum with me, being held and supported by her was something I won’t forget. I kept thinking she did this for me, I can do this.
I didn’t want clothes on at all. At first I was worried about being so large, but once i was in the bath i couldn’t dare face putting them on again. I happily walked around, bounced on balls naked. For a plus size person it was so freeing, and no one battered an eyelid or said anything! Birth and labour was going great.
Then I started to feel something different. My body wanted to push but felt stuck at the same time. Baby was so low, and moving constantly, I could feel her head against me. My midwife checked I was 6 and stretchy; baby’s head bouncing down hard on my cervix and making it swell because of her position. I wanted to scream and give up the pressure was so intense, my body kept pushing... My amazing best friend and Paul and mum got me on all fours head down Bums up (Polar bear position) to help take the pressure of. I used Gas to help regain control of my breathing. It was awesome in stopping me pushing and fighting. I was able to go with my body again. After breathing too deeply a few times I had the gas turned off and kept the oxygen to hold on to and breathe with. Making the machine rattle helped me focus on something besides the urge to push. Lots of hips movements and 20 minutes later baby turned and I was fully dilated.
I was so relieved. Pushing for me was the most intense, primal amazing feeling ever. My body just took over and there was nothing anyone could do to stop it. I could feel my little ones head wiggling and moving with each contraction and moving down. I pushed on all fours for most of the descent, but was tiring, so eventually settled on my side, with Paul holding one leg and my mum behind me.
My OB arrived at some point and sat back letting everything happen, the midwives were doing great and he was just there in case. Being in a private hospital with low natural birth rate, many of the students and midwives kept poking their head around the door in excitement. Not that I saw any of this as I was in my zone and nothing would break it until baby came. My best friend was amazing and kept my space as much as she could.
With Paul on one side and my mum on the other I let my body work. I remember swearing once when baby pushed against my perineum, it was such a scary odd feeling, but breathed through it . Apologised to my mum who laughed at me, then with a low grunt my babies head was born. Her little head still moving and in the next push her shoulders, then body was born. My baby was placed straight onto my chest.
Tears of Joy, rush of hormones immediate love. Tears, love amazement. She was healthy and staring straight at me. After a while the OB asked what we had. Paul looks and says it’s a boy; the midwife corrected him... that’s the cord. It’s a beautiful girl we have a precious baby girl!! Briannan Grace! After he cut the cord, I looked up and the room was full of people. (Apparently there were 12!!) A natural vaginal birth no epidural was rare.
We had some skin to skin and boob licking. A few little pushes and this ahhhh feeling and my placenta came. An amazing squishy blobby feeling after having a baby. I had some extra bleeding, so needed a lot of stomach massage (that’s the nice term for it.... I call it torture!) No one tells you how painful it is. Way worse than any contractions. I had a tiny tear along an old scar line on the inside wall but no stitches needed.
While this was hap
pening, the paediatric team wanted to check her over. (Due to my medical history and increased risk of breathing difficulties.) She was so quiet and they weren’t that happy because she hadn’t cried a lot, but her apgar scores were fine. I had a huge feed and we just stared into each other’s eyes, taking her in. Eventually the bleeding settled with the breast feeding, and she had had a full tummy of milk. She was weighed 3.45 kg. Perfect. Paul went with her for a quick check in the NNU (neonatal unit), while my mum helped me into the shower. I confess it was one of the best showers ever.
By the time I was out and walked around to my room they were there waiting for me. My beautiful baby girl back in my arms and all was well. Our precious Briannan was finally here. We were a family!