What I have taken most from reading this positive birth story, is that ANY birth can be positive. The support a mum has, the involvement in decisions and the control over their own experience is what makes something positive, not the way they birth their baby. This is the story of an incredibly strong and powerful Mum, who did an incredible job birthing her baby!
38 weeks pregnant
Following a very busy day pottering around, baking, shopping and nesting, Zippy (our name for the bump, we didn’t know the flavour) decided it was time to make an appearance. I had been off for two weeks on maternity leave already and in my head, I had at least another month to nest because I knew it would be late, being my first baby as well!
Zippy had other ideas, he was coming two weeks early! At midnight, exactly week 38 to the day, I got up for the 100th wee of the night. Nothing out of the ordinary, popped to the loo then snuggled back into bed (as comfy as you can be at 38 weeks!). Suddenly, I could feel my waters break, I knew exactly what it was. J was only half asleep due to my constant trips to the bathroom, I gave him a nudge to calmly tell him what was happening. He leapt up and grabbed me a towel which I sat on. Not really knowing what to expect, I wasn’t sure how much ‘waters’ there might be. A lot, is the answer! 😊 I made it to the shower and stood half naked letting the waters do their thing. I was so excited, I was smiling with absolute joy while J stared at me half asleep wondering what exactly he needed to do. We’d prepared for this moment (well actually we thought we’d be in the middle of a shop or dinner out somewhere) and both of us seemed relatively calm. There was no pain and no panic, we were just over the moon that Zippy was going to make an appearance and today was the day!
One call to the hospital and we were advised to wait until any contractions started. Who knew when they would come but advised I could call at any point if I was concerned or just wanted reassurance. I wanted to be at home as long as possible, home is where most of us feel most comfortable and if the hospital was in no rush to have me in, I was taking full advantage.
We both laid in bed with a cup of tea, then snuggled down to try and get some rest, it could be a long day! We both laid there wide awake, thinking about what was ready, what wasn’t, who we’d call to come and look after the dog if we were admitted to hospital today, did I have enough chocolate in my hospital bag, was Jamie Cullen actually the right sound track for my birth plan, ha ha! At 5am J decided he’d go and walk the dog, in case the contractions came, then at least we knew the dog would be ok.
Between him leaving the house and him getting back, the contractions had started, it was a dull achy cramp, not very painful but they were coming thick and fast. I was keeping a track on my app! I had called J half way round on his walk to say he’d better cut the walk short, I was about to call the hospital.
I told them the contractions had started and they were at least every 5-6 minutes. It was surreal to think that I was going to meet my baby the same day! They advised I come in. Still reassuring me there was no rush and just to get here when I could. Bags at the ready and having had a shower and blow dried my hair (one of the crazy things I just had to make sure I did) we made our way to the hospital.
J dropped me at the front of the hospital, it was only 6am, it was lovely and quiet and the sun was shining. J parked the car and I sat on the bench waiting for him. He joined me five minutes later. I said we should just sit and enjoy the peace and quiet and our last few moments as just a couple. It was like time stood still in those few moments, the heat of the sun on us, the quiet of the normally manic hospital traffic. I have a tear in my eye just writing this part. It was emotional. I took J’s hand and said, ‘let’s do this!’ We walked through the main entrance and made our way up to the maternity suite. While all of this was going on you wouldn’t think I was in labour! The contractions were still coming as quickly as they had been and the pain had increased but it was still very manageable, I was able to climb the stairs and walk all the way. We did have a few stops along the way while a contraction was passing.
We were introduced to our midwife and shown to our delivery room. We made ourselves comfortable and I was attached to a monitor to check things were all ok and they were.
The contractions started ramping up and I was finding I wasn’t having more than 30-40 seconds between each one but J was there by my side and the midwife so reassuring that I coped well and the gas and air was the best thing ever! That kept me going! It got to midday and I’d not managed to eat anything or even take much in around me. High on gas and air and contractions so close, the morning seemed a blur. I decided to opt for an epidural, as mad as it sounds, I wanted to be aware of the experience and not to worry about the pain getting worse. Luckily for me the epidural came very quickly, by 2pm I was pain free, totally coherent and able to speak to J properly.
By midafternoon I was 7cm dilated and quite tired but very happy and very comfortable. Tea time came and went but that’s when things started to progress. By 6:30 ish I was fully dilated and the midwife said I could start pushing. This was it, the main event, my energy was on high again and I was ready to push Zippy out. After a long day, I was ready to meet him/her.
I started pushing, I gave it all I’d got, pushed for my life! The room was still very calm and the anticipation was building. Although Zippy had started off eagerly at midnight, at this point I think he/she had changed its mind. Zippy was not coming out by him/herself. The room suddenly became full of doctors and various other professionals (I’ll be honest I still don’t know who they all were). Zippy was coming out with an episiotomy and a ventouse. At this point I was tired and gladly welcomed any help I could get!
At 19:51 our beautiful baby boy was born, weighing 7lb 1oz. The feeling of his warm body on my chest was overwhelming! We had a baby boy and he was healthy and adorable!
While holding my new bundle of joy, the midwife stitched me up, still pain free from the epidural. I couldn’t have cared less what was going on down that end because in my arms was the best thing that ever happened to me and that’s all I could focus on. J also had his fair share of cuddles while I sipped tea and had toast. We weren’t a couple anymore but a perfect family x
If you'd like to read some more Positive Birth Stories, you can find some here.
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If you are interested in taking the next step to a positive birth, Positively Birthing Hypnobirthing and Antenatal Classes run throughout Surrey and SW London- areas including Surbiton, Esher, Teddington, Cobham, Twickenham, St Margarets, Thames Ditton, Molesey, Richmond, Wimbledon, Kingston, Sunbury, Epsom, Ewell, and beyond. All bookings can be made here.