VBAC – Drug & intervention free! 7 hour labour
***Trigger warning, previous c section, induction, mec, fetal distress, ptsd
Long post ahead:
Previous birth: 2018, I was booked to be induced at 41+2 but thankfully I went into labour naturally that morning at 3am, planned to have drug/intervention free birth with KEMH birth centre but ended up being rushed to main hospital. Baby was posterior, apparently couldn’t get in a good position (although I didn’t know about spinning babies & exercises that can totally move bub) I didn’t progress ‘quick enough’ waters were broken after about 16 hours, tried the pool etc nothing worked, mec in waters, rushed with bells & whistles to hospital, this was so traumatic for me, I literally wanted to die it was a horrible experience. Once in main hospital I was put on the drip to induce, baby’s heart started playing up due to the unnatural induction, ended in a c/s due to fetal distress, very long labour! Resulted in PTSD.
This pregnancy! Would you believe I was being pushed to be induced due to being over 40wks, I declined early induction & agreed to booking a date closer to 42 wks. I went into labour naturally at 41+2 the same gestation as my previous labour. So glad I pushed to trust my body, I knew I could do it. Do not be discouraged if your following pregnancies don’t come sooner, your body eventually knows what to do & when. Although I had been feeling like I was going into labour on & off for weeks due to a few S&S which just irritated my uterus. I started contracting the morning of 22/2/21 at 2:30am, 10 mins apart then after 3 hours they were 3-4 mins apart & unbearable. Called my amazing MGP midwife to meet me at hospital & was 5cm on arrival!
Once at hospital all I wanted to do was lean over the bed & not move. Tried the gas for one suck & almost threw up so didn’t have it again. Pain really started ramping up so I eventually got in the bath which I actually didn’t enjoy weirdly enough, I’m guessing I was in transition as fear started setting in big time I started begging for an epidural but of course the doc was on call & had to come in from home. When he finally got in after about 40 min wait, I was well & truly not wanting to do it anymore. I started having a few involuntary pushes in the bath & a burning sensation which made me freak out as I didn’t want to do it without pain relief now. I made my hubby help get me out & move me back to room to try stop baby coming then & there (so silly!) Thank God one of my friends was rostered on the maternity floor as a midwife & was able to come into my room & pray with me, speak life & encouraging words over me & get me back on track mentally. The doc tried to get an epi in & it just didn’t work, he hit a vein, he came back to room & was going to try again at that point I had a VE & told I’m 10cm & was told the only way to get rid of the pain was to birth the baby. Trust me this is not what you want to hear!
But somehow, this extremely terrified & fearful of birth Mumma bared down & went within. At that point I wouldn’t have cared less who was in the room seeing what I totally surrendered to birth. Baby moved up and down a few times which gave my body the chance to stretch, extremely uncomfortable but I really wanted to trust my body to know when to push, then I got the natural urge to push and that I did, within 20 minutes her head was out. Then on the next surge her body came flying out. My midwife was amazing at coaching me & holding a hot compress so I did not tear. 😱 Just a small graze no stitches needed & was even able to have a natural placenta delivery.
The feeling of total achievement & shock took over. I could not believe I birthed a baby through my vagina! I want to encourage anyone who is fearful, I was extremely! I would have panic attacks just getting a sweep done or having anyone look down there. But I can tell you this, our bodies are 100% capable!
My advice: I highly encourage you to find a good support network, do a hypnobirthing or calm birth course, knowledge truly is power, know your rights, also be aware of what your hospital guidelines are but also know they are just a guide & you dear Mumma are able to advocate for yourself & request different by signing a Non-Standard Management Plan (basically saying you understand the risks etc stepping out of guidelines & agree to them) such as not being connected to ctg constantly, not having cannula, using a birth pool etc!! Also listen to positive birth stories on audible, get your hands on some positive birth book stories, if you need to change care providers last minute.. do it! I was so grateful to be with MGP for continued care & if you need like I had to delete all social media. Those last few weeks can really eat you down emotionally getting messages like ‘are you stillll pregnant?, when’s this baby coming? Blah blah! How about when baby is ready!
Thanks for reading if you got this far x