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Nov 2011: aches, pains and waddling, soon to be cuddles and swaddling(632 Posts)
Thanks Moosey for the title
I thought I'd go for it as there are only 4 or 5 posts left to go on the old thread.
Two other threads to be aware of:
Stats - you can update announcements here
Post Natal - for those of you already cuddling
Hope this thread sees all our nests full.
Yay MrsA congrats and so we reach the end / beginning of our successful charting journey together!
Woo hoo! Congratulations MrsA on what sounds like a mammoth shift from you and on the safe arrival of baby Matthew. Welcome to our last thread baby
Should we have an official closing ceremony?
Yippeeeeeeee. Welcome baby Matthew. Hope you are doing ok Mrs A Sounds like you had a difficult time but glad to hear both safe and home.
See you on the post natal thread.
Phew what a relief - many congratulations MrsA and wishing you a speedy recovery, so glad baby Matthew has arrived and is well!
For anyone left, here is my LOONG birth story:
BIRTH STORY DS BORN TUESDAY 6 DECEMBER 2011 @ 4.26PM
Saturday 3 December. Had on/off tightening throughout the night and a lot of time on the loo. Was hoping for some progress (had a sweep on the Friday mw said my cervix was thinning and open at the bottom but still closed at the top), as I was 10 days overdue. Couldnt sleep through them and started to think they were more than BHs but still not sure. Woke DP but then said he should sleep. Couldnt lie down and ended up sitting by the bed on the ball watching telly with a cup of tea. (In hindsight, they were contractions but I wasnt sure at the time) Around 5am had very painful tightening on the loo and lots of blood when I wiped a show! Excited as Id been induced with DD and never experienced going into labour.
Woke DP again and we went downstairs to start preparing things and put the kettle on. Phoned independent midwife and DP started to fill the pool. Contractions started to come around 7am and were lasting about 40secs every 7 or 8 mins. Very early labour.
By 10am they were lasting longer, between 40s and 1m 20s but still not more regular (although the odd few were every 3 mins). Midwife and Doula had arrived by now and were observing and chatting. Contractions were fine just breathed through them whilst leaning over the pool, which DP had filled. Had an exam and discovered cervix was now completely open and thinned and i was about 3cm dilated.
Around lunchtime, midwife and doula left for a while and i got a bit of a rest on the couch. Sadly, things then all stopped and faded away. Midwife stayed overnight in a hotel but there was no progress on Saturday night nor on Sunday. Another exam and sweep on Sunday showed I was still 3cm and midwife asked me if i would go to hospital for a scan to check all was OK. I agreed to go in tomorrow (Monday) and heartbeat was still all fine.
On Monday we left for the hospital about 10.30am. By then contractions had started up again, only 3 or 4 every hr but definitely there. We met midwife there and went up to labour ward. It was there our world collapsed. The last thing our midwife said was she would support me whatever our decision. The NHS midwives came in and said our midwife was having a long chat with the supervisor of midwives at the hospital. They then dropped the bombshell that she was transferring my care to the NHS and could no longer act for us. She would not talk to us and would not remain as our advocate or provide post natal care. I was shattered. I was almost 42 weeks pregnant and trusted this woman and had built up a great relationship (and paid her!) and she was dropping me without talking to me and she would not even remain as my advocate for me the post natal care was particularly important eg daily visits from someone who knew me and who could support me with breastfeeding.
We had monitoring and a scan and thought all was OK and so left to pick up DD, despite pressure from the hospital to stay in. On our arrival home we were met at the door by 2 community midwives who came in (despite me saying I had had enough today) and told me how I was risking my life and the life of my baby by continuing with homebirth.
Anyway, we put our daughter to bed and had something to eat and I noticed that the contractions were ramping up a bit. I had a good phone conversation with one of the women from the UK VBAC support group, which gave me some confidence. By 8pm they were coming quite thick and fast every 5 mins and lasting about 50 secs. As with Saturday, many contractions were followed by a shorter one quite soon afterwards. I coped by leaning over the kitchen worktops and breathing. DP started to refill the pool and called the community midwives and the doula.
The next few hours passed in a blur. Contractions were bearable but certainly painful and I think my waters dribbled a bit. The midwives were ok and did not examine me as they were not sure where the babys head was they felt it might be to the right of my pelvis. This was a surprise as the midwife had always said he was in a perfect position for birth. They did not want to accidentally break my waters.
At 11pm I got into the pool. I stripped naked and spent the next 4 hours in there. It was bliss. I alternated between holding onto DPs hands and my doulas hands. The contractions were coming thick and fast and lasting over a minute each. At 3am, they asked me to get out of the pool to examine me. They still did not think the head was down in the pelvis, so recommended a transfer to hospital. I reluctantly agreed as they were also concerned the baby would get tired as active labour would eventually wear him out.
It was an ambulance blue light transfer. The comm. midwife came with me and DP went in the car of the 2nd midwife. Our doula followed on. In the ambulance i got my first wiff of gas and air and was sick! I also got very hormonal and told everyone they were fab. On arrival at hospital, i got taken in a wheelchair to labour ward, where DP quickly followed me.
The next hours flew by in a blur. We had a great senior midwife called Katharine, who was very good. She put a canula in my left arm (at my request so it didnt interfere with my hands) and we later on had Judy, who was also fab. Contractions were hard work and I bounced on the ball, sat on a chair, walked about the room, held onto my doula and to DP and breathed through them. I took on some gas and air but it kept making me be sick. I kept feeling great pressure in my bladder and bowel and tried to keep weeing. Every time i changed position, I got a contraction. They were lasting over 90secs and coming every 3-5mins, this lasted from about 4am Tuesday morning till midday Tuesday. In that time i went to 5cm dilated and got a very painful anti-sickness injection as i was dry heaving. My memory is fading but I remember some of the contractions being very scary. I had my doula helping me breathe through them, plus a senior midwife, Judy, who was very very good and helped me to ride the wave. I tried to relax and go with them but bloody hell they hurt. Afterwards my doula said she had never seen anyone labour so long and hard with only gas and air and I should be proud. I have to admit I am chuffed that I laboured so long on breathing/g&a. On arrival, I was also palpated and it appeared the ambulance journey/vomiting had put the babys head into my pelvis yay! I also remember telling DP i couldnt do this! But I would have continued on and on. As it was, I laboured mobile (upright or on the ball or walking or sitting on the edge of a chair) from 4am till around midday, when i was totally exhausted and agreed to a lie on the bed and to be examined.
They kept wanting to monitor the babys heartrate and i refused. Eventually they persuaded me that they could attach a clip to the babys head and I would have a wireless, walking monitor. They tried 4 times I think over a period of a couple of hours and it was so very painful. My doula and DP really helped by keeping me focussed on them. I was so worried about the baby being hurt by the clip but by then I was tired and they were worried labour had not progressed and the baby would get tired/distressed. They finally succeeded 4th attempt.
Around midday, Mrs K came to see me. She was a very senior consultant (apparently my intention for a HBAC had caused alot of discussion amongst the local NHS community, as I was unusual). She said that as I had not progressed, there was now a risk that the baby would get tired and distressed. As I later found out, his head was being bounced in and out of my pelvis by contractions. She recommended a c-section but could offer a 2nd choice of drip to speed up contractions and an epidural. By this time, i was exhausted and I was worrying that the baby was getting very tired and not progressing Id been in full labour for over 16 hrs. I went for the 2nd choice and managed to get a nap for a couple of hours. DP also dozed and our doula nipped off to get something to eat. Around 2pm they examined me again and sadly, i was still at 5cm. I asked to be left to see what happens over the next hour or so.
Im not sure what time it was but probably about 3.30/4 I had a massive contraction which I felt, despite the epidural. Things then happened very quickly. A lot of people came in and examined the heart rate output. The heart rate dropped for 6 minutes and did not recover. I then heard a midwife calling for a category 1 c-section. I realised that meant general anaesthetic. An oxygen mask was put over my face and I was wheeled off with DP along side me. I kept begging them not to put me to sleep.
Things went very quickly but in the theatre, the heart rate had recovered and so things were not so stressful. All the staff were very kind, to be fair, and they said they would do everything they could to keep me awake. They kept topping up the epidural but it did not work I could still feel the spray they tested with. In the end, they tried a test cut but I felt it and so there was no option but to put me under. DP had to leave and ended up sitting outside in the corridor, along with my doula who had returned.
I remember them putting a big mask on my face and telling me I would feel pressure on my throat. Everything went black within a few seconds.
I came round a few seconds later (so it seemed it was more like an hour) and was in recovery room surrounded by people. I later found out they had got our son out and wrapped him, unwashed and unweighed and they had left a long length of cord so DP could cut it. They really tried to listen to my wishes. When I was brought round, Judy appeared with our son (he had been given to DP when he was delivered incidentally he had an agpar score of 9) and gave him straight to me to try to feed. I felt sick, so asked for him to be taken away (to which Judy told me she knew I was still out of it as she knew I didnt want that) and eventually he latched on in the recovery room. A lot of this is very blurred now as I was heavily drugged. DP arrived in the room and videoed me feeding him, as I certainly dont remember much of this. Part of the time i drifted in and out of consciousness but still held onto our baby. At some point I felt a huge gush and I lost about a litre of blood and my blood pressure dropped to 60 something over 38 I remember thinking that I certainly did not have high blood pressure! They talked about a blood transfusion but I didnt have one in the end.
After a few hours, i was taken into a labour ward room used for recovery and was monitored for 24 hours. I had a dedicated midwife and drips, a heart monitor and had to have blood pressure, pulse and temperature taken every few hours. All in all an epic journey!
The next day I had visits from all the consultants, surgeons and anaesthetists. They were all very supportive and realised that things had gone about as far away as I wanted from my natural birth. It was explained to me that when they went in, they could not go into the bottom of the uterus (like my first c-section) as they found my uterus was tucked into my bladder. I dont really understand this bit but they made it clear that the reason labour did not progress and the reason his head kept bouncing in and out of my pelvis was the fact that if he had come out naturally, my bladder would have burst and we probably would have died. It was impossible for a natural birth and they had to go into the top of my uterus to get him out and ended up having to cut through the placenta to get into the uterus. It was a major op and saved our lives. It was a rare complication that would never have been detected. Looks like my body knew a natural birth was not possible and hence did not push the baby down my pelvis.
I am very very sad that I did not get my natural birth and I will never know what it feels like to give birth but I take comfort that things could not have gone differently a natural birth was simply not possible. There are no what ifs like there were with my first baby. I did go into labour naturally and I laboured for over 16 hours (over 24 if you count the early ones on Monday morning) on just gas and air/tens/pool at home. I got to labour at home and know what it feels like to be in active labour. For that, i am thankful.
What was the hardest was being dropped by our independent midwife at almost 42 weeks pregnant with no warning. We arrived at hospital with her for what we thought was a routine overdue monitoring scan of the placenta function etc (I was 41w + 5 days), and before any monitoring had been done, we were informed by NHS midwives that she had a long meeting with the on-site supervisor of midwives and had transferred our care to the NHS. She would not meet with us to explain or discuss. We were devastated as there were no new risks as far as i could see. I was nearing 42 weeks. Labour had started on the Saturday but stalled, but it felt it was starting up again and all my existing risks that caused concern for the NHS (eg previous section, high BMI, possible high blood pressure), she had known about when she took us on. We asked if she would therefore remain our advocate/supporter and provide the 121 post-natal care we really needed (especially to get breastfeeding established) but, through the NHS midwives her answer was no. Our contract with her stated that if we transferred in to hospital, she would remain with us as our supporter and still provide the post natal care or at the very least I had expected her to remain to hold my hand, explain medical terms and just be a knowledgeable person that we had a good relationship with a constant in my labour. I did know that it might not all go to plan regarding our homebirth but I felt at least we would have a trained advocate no matter what happened But no...we had been dropped and dropped hard. She has refused to talk to us and has refused so far to provide a copy of my notes (they will be provided at the face to face debrief we must have, according to her own independent supervisor of midwives. That is something I am just not ready to do yet. DP has spoken to a solicitor to get our money back and we're coping!
Wow what a labour story. Sorry about the midwife.
Hope you and your son are doing ok? X