Due Date: 24/07/2010.
Being my second time around, I was more afraid of labour than the first time, because I knew what to expect, I think. I hadn't packed my hospital bag until the day before I was due, because if there's one thing I knew, babies didn't come on time. I actually didn't want her to come on time. I was ready, but I wasn't ready. Yeah, because that makes a fat lot of sense.!?
Anyway, my wedding anniversary was on the 27th of July, my Poppa's birthday on the 28th. Either of these days were my 'goal birthing days'. I was so adamant that I wasn't going into labour anytime soon that I went out to bingo with my Mum & Nana on the 23rd of July.
The guy at Bingo: "Whoa! Don't go into labour"
Me: "I'll try not to"
The guy at Bingo: "So when are you due?"
Bingo Man laughs: "No, seriously, when are you due?"
Needless to say they looked afraid. Anyway, after winning three games that night [yeah, it was rigged!] and having everyone waiting for me to yell "Bingo... my waters broke", I am pleased to report I went home pregnant, with some extra dough, and no sign of a baby coming. Why? Because babies don't come on their due dates! Ha... or so I thought...
I can't even remember what I did all day.
I know I slept all morning on the couch. That was weird.
But other than that, it was any other day.
All I know is, I left the house, as I was not afraid of giving birth down the street.
Mum & I made our way to the laundromat to freshen up bub's bedding, ready for her to join us... in a few days... [I had a substitute OB whilst mine was away for my last few appointments. Believe it or not, it was the curly headed fuck afore mentioned. He didn't remember me, and when he told me he'd give me an internal at my next appointment to "get things moving along", I freaked out & willed labour to come in under a week!].
I was just removing the bedding from the dryer, getting ready to leave when the first cramp hit. Oh shit, I thought.
Mum laughed at me "Haha, you're in labour".
I'd had some nasty Braxton Hicks this time around, so while I was hoping that's all it was, I knew it wasn't.
It went as soon as it came, and like clock work, I was hit by another one before we got home. I knew, sounds silly, when it was coming.
This time I assessed my birth plan again.
No drugs, water bottle instead of shower because my sister was to be there and I didn't want her to see anything, and I was aiming for no swearing this time.
When I got home Mr. M had finished work, and we'd got pizza for dinner [what is it with me and labouring on Pizza Nights!?]. I settled down with my pizza, to watch Bee Movie with Master S.
Anytime a cramp hit, I walked it off. I rang the hospital as they seemed to get closer, and the midwife on the other end asked me to come in, just to get checked. She said it was probably Braxton Hicks, but it's better to get checked over. While everyone did the dash around [grabbing my suitcase to store in the car, just in case] Master S came over to me and held the hot water bottle against my tummy. I didn't want to scare him, so I tried to remain calm, and just having his presence was amazing. I was breathing through my contractions and talking to him before he left. I promised him the next time he saw me, he'd be a big brother. I probably shouldn't have promised that as my water hadn't broken, but I knew these contractions were real.
This labour, despite being more recent, is fuzzier in the memory for me, and you'll soon understand why.
When I got to the hospital and was set up on a monitor, they told me my pains were a little irregular, but that could soon change.
After a little bit I needed to go to the toilet where, when I wiped I discovered my bloody show.
I was set back up on the monitor and tried to watch Bee Movie/access my Facebook on my mobile to update a status about my location which for some reason [reception, maybe?] wasn't working.
I ended up lightheaded & unable to focus on anything, so I curled up on the bed in the foetal position, and closed my eyes. I stayed that way until my hot water bottle ran cold. I do remember tensing and squeezing hands during each pain, but for the most part, I was out of it.
I was eased back into consciousness by the presence of the doctor.
She was asking me how I was going.
"Mmmm" was my reply.
I was told that I needed to open my eyes and speak with my doctor so she knew I was okay.
I opened them enough to know that my doctor was a woman with curly red hair.
She seemed nice, and spoke softly, and I asked her if I could have my hot water bottle re-filled.
Yes, of course, but only with cold water due to OH&S.
Okay, can I go for a shower?
So I wandered into the bathroom, and sat under the shower, which soon ended up to be me laying down in the shower.
Mr. M. occasionally checked in on me.
My midwife came in with the monitor to check on bubs every so often.
I was praying to the Gods that be, whilst alone in my shower that when my waters broke, there was no meconium as there was in my labour with Master S.
I moved around a lot to get comfortable, rubbing my belly & talking to my baby.
I decided it was probably best if I got dressed and made my way out to the bed again, because I was getting cold.
As I've got on my hands and knees to get up, I felt as if I'd just peed everywhere.
I looked down and realised that the murky liquid was not pee, and I started to cry, because of it's colour.
"Not again" I yelled out obviously loud enough to cause my midwife & Master M. to come in.
I was devastated. My midwife & Mr. M were thrilled, and helped me out to the bed.
This is where my memory is vague.
I do remember getting on the bed, and I am sure I would have had an internal at some point here, but it all ran together in my mind, so I can not fully remember the order of it.
I said I needed to push, I was laying on my back, and was given the go ahead to push.
I tried. I pushed so hard and nothing happened. I could feel that my pushing was doing nothing. There was no pressure, pain, nothing to indicate my baby was being moved at all by my efforts, and I was exhausting myself by pushing. The midwife was telling me to keep pushing. I ignored her.
I climbed up onto my hands and knees facing my pillow and holding my sister's hands and I pushed, and the pushing, despite being hard work, and painful as hell, felt good, and I was happy because I knew this time, I was getting my baby out.
I breathed through my contractions, and pushed as I needed.
I think I uttered one noise and that was a long, low moan as I pushed the final push as my body once again felt the slither of arms, legs, body and the added relief as I heard the cry.
Everyone was murmering, laughing and crying behind me. I looked at my sister, exhausted, who was still holding my hands [mainly because I felt exhausted enough to collapse, if she weren't holding me up] and I said "What does my baby look like?" She couldn't see, I couldn't see.
"I want to see my baby".
Based on the position in which I delivered, they could not "show" me my baby.
Mum did, however take a photo of my brand new daughter to show my sister and I, while they were cutting the cord.
She was beautiful.
Perfect in every way, just like her brother had been.
I wept in relief, and was soon given the all clear to lay down.
11:48pm. After under 4 hours of labour [majority done in silence, drug and swear word free] I gave birth to Miss E on the 24th of July, 2010. She weighed 8 pounds & 3 ounces and was 50cm long. She couldn't wait to join us, that she actually arrived on her due date.
This photo is the first time I saw my daughter <3
After feeding her, having her dressed while I showered, the midwives assisted my Mum and Mr. M to escort me downstairs [in a wheel chair because I was absolutely depleted and could not walk] for a cigarette. While outside another patient was sitting down having a cigarette. "What are you in here for?" ... "I just had a baby" I replied. I laughed. No matter how many times I told myself that night I'd had a baby, it wasn't sinking in. I never slept at all that night, even after everyone left. I hadn't gotten used to the fact I had another baby, and I'd never spent a night away from Master S before, so to prevent me from sleeping through if Miss E needed me, I stayed awake, watching her sleep, loving her, and stroking her little, sleeping head. Many of the midwives popped in to see me that night, they even let Mr. M stay while I ate my [now cold] pizza from dinner that I didn't finish, and Miss E charmed them all, as did the fact that she was born there, due to the silence in my birthing suite when I was in labour.