Friday, 10 December 2010

The birth

Wow! A whole week has passed since the birth of our baby girl. It's really flown by. I'm sure you'll forgive us for not doing any posts recently.

So I'll start at the beginning. Warning - skip this post if you don't want too much information...

We went to bed Wednesday evening and I woke up just after midnight for a quick toilet stop. For reasons which I'm sure are obvious, I thought that my waters (amniotic sack) might be leaking. I still felt like this the following morning so called the hospital, who suggested I pop in to get checked out. They confirmed my suspicions. As I wasn't having any contractions at this point, I was booked in to be induced the following morning at 8am. We were all hoping contractions would start on their own but either way it meant that I wouldn't be having the water birth that I wanted. We were sent home with instructions to get cosy and prepare ourselves for the birth.

At about 7.45 thursday evening, I thought there was a bit of meconium in my leaking waters. Another trip to the hospital and again my thoughts were confirmed. This meant that I had to be induced straight away as there was too great a risk to the baby to wait. They set me up with drips in both hands as I had to have various different fluids pumped into me throughout the process.

It took a while but eventually I began to feel the contractions that the machine said I was having quite regularly. After 4 hours I had started on the gas-and-air for some pain relief and the midwife checked to see how dilated I was. I wasn't at all dilated which was a huge disappointment. The drug they use to induce labour (synto) was increased and we would have to wait another 4 hours for my dilation to be checked.

By the time that next check came around, I was having 8 contractions every 10 minutes. I was in a lot of pain! There was no respite between the contractions so I didn't have a chance to get over one before the next one hit. So, the midwife (Kath) does her thing and I'm still not dilated at all! I decided to have an epidural.

Duncan, the anesthesiologist, came to us really quickly - at least it felt to me like it was quick. I think it then takes about 15 minutes to prepare everything. I sat on the side of the bed, patiently waiting to have a long needle stuck in my spine, whilst trying to cope with the contractions and letting Duncan know when they were coming. He needed to do his thing whilst I was absolutely still. 15 minutes after that the drugs started working and I had a rest. I'd been awake for a long time and hadn't really slept much wednesday night, due to worry.

My dilation was then checked again 2 hours later. I had got to 5 cm! I have no idea what happened during those 2 hours or the 2 hours after that, except that baby started to get a little distressed. A device was therefore attached to her head to keep a better track of her heart rate and some other tests were done to see if they could determine why her heart rate kept dropping. They then measured my dilation and I was 9 cm! Minutes later, we had the results and the doctor decided that her results were too low and they needed to get her out. I was wheeled to theatre for an emergency c-section (caesarean).

By the time we got into theater, I was fully dilated. It was decided that I would have a ventouse delivery (where they attach a suction cup to baby's head) and I also needed an episiotomy (cutting me). Elizabeth was then born at 7.25 am.
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