I wanted to do a post 8 months after giving birth. After having Ted my mind was very much a mess, I had just had major surgery, I felt exhausted, emotional and over sensitive as most women do after giving birth.
Here is my birth story from a few weeks after the birth - Newborn Mummy. I now am able to look back on my pregnancy in a whole new light and I wanted to share my thoughts with you.
Hyperemesis Gravidarum - Hell in Morning Sickness form
From 8 weeks into the pregnancy this intense nausea kicked in, it was like car sickness but it wouldn't fade. This lasted the whole way through my pregnancy and I was unable to keep any food down some days. At 14 weeks I was admitted into hospital with dehydration and after 24 hours I was sent home. I had countless sick days from work, most mornings I couldn't get out of bed and I lost 8lbs when I should have been gaining weight.
I was fighting a constant battle with food and smells were worse. I couldn't bear to be around Joe some days as the smell of his skin made me cringe. It was heartbreaking. I knew how much it was hurting him not being able to be close to me but I couldn't help it. I tried my best to explain that he smelt fine and it was just my hormones, he was understanding but it must have been horrible to hear.
I felt so lost, none of the medication was clearing the nausea but I just needed to push through. As the pregnancy went on I tried my best to get into work most mornings but barely made it past 10am before I had to go home.
The main thing I remember, I was actually told by my mum that she had the same feeling, was once I had Ted all of the nausea went instantly. I no longer felt sick, it was a great feeling.
Stretching and Sweeping and more Stretching and more Sweeping!
*warning those of weak disposition should skip the 2nd paragraph!
After having my measurements taken regularly by the midwife and the consultant, one of them (still not sure who) measured my bump as being too small, then one said it was too big so we went for a scan at 30 weeks. They said they thought Ted may be a little on the big size so they wanted to start things moving early. I was told I was 3cm dilated and that was exciting news! A few weeks later I was scheduled for a stretch and sweep.
I have 3 rather uncomfortable Stretch and Sweeps. This is where they sweep a finger around the cervix in order to separate the membranes of the amniotic sac from your cervix and in turn release hormones which should kick start the labour.
I was asked to come back after a week and see if the first one worked, it didn't so I had another and to my surprise this didn't work either. I was frustrated, I just wanted to meet my baby. I spent those few weeks constantly feeling like it could start any minute, I had baths, ate spicy curries and kept active to try and induce labour *I even took Rasberry Leaf but I have since read won't induce labour but will help tone the muscles of the uterus to make the labour easier but...nothing worked.
I needed to be induced.
On 16th December two days before my due date I was admitted and ready to be induced. This was in the form of a final stretch and sweep, which to my relief was much more comfortable when performed by a midwife and not a consultant. *I now remember I made a rather uncomfortable comment about her being much more gentle and we had a joke about the consultants big hands and moved on! I was disappointed to hear I was in fact only 1cm dilated and the consultant had measured incorrectly.
The S&S didn't get anything going so I was induced with a pessary...I won't go into details on where that goes but I am sure you can work that one out. I spent most of the day wandering around the hospital with minor contractions which started an hour or two after being induced. I was able to have some dinner and meet with family in the cafe to take my mind off things and when the contractions started to increase I used an exercise ball. I was advised several times to take a bath, I had 2 and was begging for gas and air as the contractions got worse but was told to have another bath! Grr...I didn't want another bath!
As 10pm was approaching I began to sob. I was in pain, had nothing but a couple of tablets to take the edge off and Joe was going to be kicked out any minute. It broke my heart being left in hospital alone and in pain and I begged them to let Joe stay but they said I would be fine and they would call him when labour started. *I am still angry about that.
2 hours later as I was trying to sleep through my regular and strong contractions, I felt and heard a massive pop as my waters broke. *This sounds extreme and I don't know anyone else that has heard their waters break. I couldn't reach my buzzer so had to ask the lady in the next bed to call the midwife. She came in and checked my waters, I couldn't see over my bump so had no idea if everything was ok and without even reassuring me she rushed out of the room and left me shaking in pain and worried if this was normal.
She returned with another midwife and they both told me to keep still and calm down. My body was shaking uncontrollably and I couldn't stop. * I now know this is quite common and was just my body in shock. I hadn't had anything explained to me about what would happen next and didn't even know where I would be giving birth.
The second midwife was really friendly and cleaned me up. She told me that when I had a break in my contractions we would get up and walk to the delivery room. I insisted I needed a wheelchair but she was adamant I could walk it, I didn't believe her but followed her lead. I waddled down the corridor, stopping half way for the next lot of contractions. I nearly fell over after leaning on a wheelchair which rolled off! *Note - Check object for wheels before using as a support.
We made it into the delivery room and it was then I met my dear friend...Gas and Air! It was fantastic, it really took the edge off the contractions and gave me something to do to take my mind off it.
I hadn't been there for long when Joe and my Mum walked in, I was relieved to see them but was in the zone and wasn't in any mood for a chit chat! I can't remember how long it was before I was examined next but that was when I was told I was 9cm dilated. *Me being stubborn and knowing I had decided upon an epidural put my food down and insisted on having one. Thinking about it now I probably could have gone on without it but with the complications that happened next it was handy to have the epidural in.
The epidural was administered by a lovely female anaesthetists and all while this was happening I was cracking jokes, I guess that was the gas and air. The epi kicked in straight away and I was able to get some much needed rest before it was time to push.
I was told by the midwife that they would let the epidural wear off a little and then I would need to push when she told me to, I really couldn't feel any contractions but I could feel a shortness of breath when they happened so used that and went with it. I pushed and pushed and pushed for an hour.
After that hour I was examined and the doctor told me baby was wedged sideways and wasn't going to move into position. They needed to take me to theatre for a forceps delivery and if they couldn't do that I would need an emergency cesarean. That word hit me like a tonne of bricks. I was terrified. *now I look back on it all and most of it is still a blur but it all went to plan and I did have a successful csection.
In the Hospital
We spent 2 sleepless exhausting days in the hospital, eating very little as it was horrible. Drinking lots of tea and sitting in tears most of the night due to lack of sleep and the post partum baby blues. *This is normal and happens to almost everyone. The girl next to me had her baby a day before me and had her baby blues kick in a day before me like clockwork! I was over the moon when I was allowed to go home and loved finally having my little boy with me. He was and still is a perfect little boy. He slept well, never cried and fed like a trooper.
The Ups and Downs
For the next few weeks I felt very overwhelmed I was terrified of leaving Ted in his basket at night and had this horrible disconnection of him and the baby I carried for 9 months. I knew he was my baby and I loved him but as I didn't physically see him coming out I struggled. I felt like he had appeared in our lives and the baby in my belly just disappeared.
This feeling lasted a few weeks and I cried lots. *This feeling eased for me and it never prevented me bonding with my baby but if anyone feels depressed, disconnected or just not quite right after birth they should speak to their health visitor or friends and family.
I don't remember much about the seconds after he was born and only last week realised I didn't hear his first noise when he came out. Joe told me he let out a little cry while he was having his checks and it makes me very sad I don't remember but I have more than made up for it in these 8months.
I love my baby boy more than anything in the world and the story of his birth is something I will never ever forget. I now look back on it with a clear head and it certainly hasn't put me off having any more children. I hope to take my experience forward with me and I am more prepared for anything that is thrown our way with future pregnancy/s.
I wanted to share this with #PoCoLo to see if other Mum's have had similar experiences and how they felt 6-12 months on.