Well, things took an unexpected turn after my email to you on
Monday- my fluid was too low at my lunchtime appointment, so my induction was
scheduled for Tuesday night! We kept on with Operation Beat the
Induction Monday and Tuesday am anyway, as I was disappointed that I
wouldn’t get to go into labour by myself.
I was admitted Tuesday night at 7pm, the plan was ” half dose gel
insertion at 8, second dose at 2am, ARM at 8am..my body had different ideas! First half dose of gel went in at 8.50…had to be monitored for two hours as baby was too active for them to determine a baseline for her. Finally, we got to bed at 11.15pm. My contractions started at 11.30pm! So much for a good sleep to prepare for labour!
They were regular from the get go ” 3-5 minutes apart. I let Brett sleep for an hour or so, as I had been having some contractions during the week, and I thought at least one of us could get the sleep incase it was going to fizzle out again. I put my earphones in and listened to the affirmations and the relaxation tracks, and just rested. At 12.45, the surges were getting a little more intense, and I needed Bretts’ support, so I woke him and we lay together snuggled up and he did some massages on my back. I drifted off to sleep a couple of times
I was pretty relaxed.
At 2.45 a midwife came to see how I was doing, and to monitor baby and check my blood sugar level (I had a very strict number to meet or insulin drip time sadly, I did not meet it from the start and the drip was started). The midwife totally didn’t believe that I was contracting as nothing was showing on the monitors! The only reason I can see is that I was so relaxed??? I was examined and at 3cm, which was too far to insert another round of gel ” I was extremely happy about this, as I wanted as little intervention as possible.
Unfortunately, I still ended up on the fetal monitor and with the
insulin drip due to my risk factors.
At 4, I asked for another examination as things were becoming really
intense, and I lost it a bit! The first midwife said I was 9cm, but
wanted to check with a colleague ” I WAS 4!! This was, in my mind, my
first setback ” I understood the not finding out, but I was still
harbouring the fear from my first labour that I would not progress.
This news really set me back. But Brett bought me back down and put
the rainbow mist track on (my favourite) and was leaning by my side
whispering to me about my strength, meeting our baby, and how proud he
was of me. We had some amazing moments of closeness, and he gave me
the strength to push through.
I found the surges much more manageable standing or squatting, but it
was difficult to be in this position due to the infusion and
I went to the toilet at this point, and started to feel some intense
downward pressure ” I started making a fair bit of noise, the midwife
was a bit panicked that I was going to deliver baby right there on the
loo!! Back off into the room we went and again, I began to lose focus,
I was just so uncomfortable and restricted by the wiring :/ I began to
demand drugs, any drugs, and told Brett I couldn’t do it!! I
recognise now that this was probably me in transition? I demanded an exam, and
told everyone in the room in no uncertain terms that I was not
continuing! The surges were coming one on top of another at this
stage, with next to no breaks, and I was breathing through them with
great difficulty, clinging to Brett for dear life. Trying to get a
break big enough to actually allow the midwife to touch me was
challenging, and after about 20 minutes (at 5.35am, we eventually
established that I was at 7cm. This. This was my eureka moment. I
looked at the clock and actually thought ” I’ve got this. I’m DOING
IT. I for some reason fathomed in my mind that if I could make it till
7am, I would be holding our baby, and I would have achieved what I
set out to do. I felt like I could conquer the world at this point. I
actually bellowed! Bellowed out that I would not be staying on this
bed one second longer, and pulled the monitor off, the insulin
infusion out, and got up onto my knees, using poor Brett as a
Within fifteen minutes, I started to feel an intense downwards
pressure, and bore down a little and there went my waters. I could
hardly believe how fast things progressed from here, and another ten
minutes or so, and I felt this incredible urge to push…..I didn’t
actually believe the midwife when she told me the head was about to
crown, so away I went. Ten minutes later, with a final surge, our
beautiful little girl came out into the world
I cannot believe the pure rush of endorphins that I got from having
birthed our daughter into the world! I didn’t get what I wanted
through any aspect of my pregnancy or labour from the perspective of
my health issues, and unfortunately these interferences really
restricted my choices. From being kept immobile for the second half
of my labour, being mere feet away from the wonderful birthing pool
that I desperately wanted to use for both of my births but couldn’t, and
being induced in the first place despite my efforts, I ultimately
got what I wanted….did what I needed to do…and brought our little
one into the world (relatively) calmly!
I didn’t “breathe her down the birth path” I bellowed her down with
some of my surges! I struggled to focus on every surge bringing me
closer, I had two periods of ten, fifteen minutes, where my focus
was severely lacking! But I don’t think I “failed” at Hypnobirthing. Do
I have disappointments? Yes. Will I feature in a Hypnobirthing video
anytime soon? No! Not unless they are prepared to bleep out my moments
of sweary shouting that I hit during transition and crowning! But I
did it. I achieved what I set out to do, and that is thanks to
Hypnobirthing and the tools we were taught and used to get us through the experience.
love from Joanna, Brett, and Phoebe Rose
(7lb 2oz, 49cms, born at 6.29am 5th Feb 2014, she is just perfect!)