Monday, December 2, 2013

The birth

I apologise for the MASSIVE delay. But of course looking after a tiny child for the first time ever is overwhelming and time consuming and amazing and and and and.
So I will start again now that the fuzz as begun to subside. Here is the start. The birth story. And I will continue to write and post pics long after everyone has stopped reading as I love looking back over the posts and seeing my belly grow. So it will be a record for me if nothing else.

Smily baby (picture from Edith)

Sleeping soundly

naps with dad

chubby face

hearts from mum (Photo from Julia Grey)

First bath with dad
The Birth

There is a chance I may come across smug in the next few paragraphs. I don’t mean too. Billions of women before me have done it and billions of women after me will do it, but it is probably the biggest athletic, most adrenalin fueled experience I will ever have. My medal is by gorgeous baby boy Jett, now going on 9 weeks.

A few weeks before he was born, my work colleagues had decided to make a bet on when I was going to give birth, how long it would take, how big the baby would be, if it would be natural or c section and of course the sex.
My guess? 1st of October, 8 hours, 3.8kgs, natural and boy. Must have been a mothers instincts as Jett arrived on the 1st of October, it took 7 hours, natural birth, he was a he, but I was out on the weight however, he was born a whopping 4.3kgs.

It began on Tuesday the 1st of October at 2:30pm. I had just had lunch with my friend Anna, and was walking, no, waddling home via the garage to buy Ricky a coke, when I felt a contraction. At first I thought it was a Braxton Hicks, but a little different. A little na├»ve perhaps? I mean there I was 40 weeks and 3 days over my due date and my first thought wasn’t that I was in labor. The“Braxton Hicks” where shorter than normal, and were happening every 12-15 minutes and getting more and more, for lack of a better word, intense.

Having tried to nap a bit when I got home I eventually gave up on that idea and at about 4pm I went into the lounge where Ricky and his business partner Richard were working and said, “this is it”. Richard ran out the door as fast as he could yelling good luck on his way out. The contractions were now every 8/9 minutes and I defiantly knew they were no longer Braxton Hicks!  I called my Doula and Hypnobirthing coach Lauren, and let her know what was going on. She said to go and have a walk in the park and to call her again in half an hour with an update of how I was doing. So off we went to the park up the road, me having so called mild contractions every 8 minutes. The dogs where non the wiser as to what was going on, so they enjoyed their brief freedom before I decided I wanted to be at home. I called Lauren again and asked her to please come to the house. I was excited now, and felt in control of the contractions, as they were more intense but short and thanks to the Hypnobirthing breathing and positive thinking, I was able to get through each one.

Lauren arrived soon after we got home. Ricky ran around feeding dogs, packing the car and doing all the chores so we would be ready to go the moment it was time to head to the hospital. Lauren sat with me in the lounge and every time a contraction came on I would get on all fours on the yoga matt and she would calmly massage and add pressure to my lower back, encouraging me to breath slowly and evenly. Both Ricky and Lauren made sure I drank my water and ate slices of banana to keep my energy up. I moved the kitchen at some stage, and lent on the counter every time I needed to get through the contraction.  We then decided to call the midwives, (Glynnis and Ciska from Birth Options) and then the hospital, to let them know we would be coming in that night.

It was starting to get dark outside as it was about 6:30pm.
I decided I wanted to go to the hospital. We had intended to stay at home as long as we could, but I had the sudden need to be in the place where I would be giving birth and then I could “relax” and know I wouldn’t have to move again.
So we headed towards the car. Lauren followed us for the 10 minutes drive to Vincent Palloti. It felt like an hours drive! Having contractions in a car is not fun, I am not going to lie. But I made it though. From the time we arrived at the hospital I allowed myself to be walked and directed though the entrance, into the lift (contractions coming ever 4 minutes by this stage) and up to the maternity ward.

It seems we picked a busy night as the labor ward was busy and the maternity ward was full! We were sent to the waiting area of the maternity ward and I knelt on the floor with my head in the couch as I continued to breath though the surges. It was now getting harder and harder to focus, and took all my effort and energy to slow my breathing down and keep it together. And then I needed to push. Right there in the lounge area. Lauren told Ricky to fetch the midwife ASAP. When she arrived I was taken into one of the private rooms to be examined. I have to mention that my eyes were tightly shut at this stage and I didn’t open them again until Jett was out. 

My midwife Glynis examined me and declared that I was fully dilated and I could start to push. The time now was around 8:30am. I was so relived that I could start to push as I had started to think that if I had to go on much more I wouldn’t be able to do it.
And so I pushed, and pushed and pushed. I had Glynnis on my right leg, Ciska holding my left leg, Lauren standing at my left and Ricky standing on my right. I am pretty sure Ricky and Lauren needed new hands the next day as they allowed me to squeeze them so tightly.  With my eyes still closed, I apparently growled like an animal, and kept asking “to get it out!”. And out baba eventually came at 9:40pm. Face up too which can add to the intensity apparently. This tiny,  screaming, wet and wriggly thing was placed on my tummy and the whole thing became a reality. What I had been carrying for nine months was suddenly right there, and it was all worth it.
 We didn’t know what we were having and it took us a while to think to look. I mistook him for a girl for a split second as I couldn’t see around the umbilical cord, but the midwife quickly confirmed it was a boy. He was perfect. He is perfect. And I felt like super women. The adrenaline kicked in big time and I couldn’t stop smiling. After a while, I handed him to Ricky for some skin on skin time while the midwifes fixed me up and I had a shower. Then I was wheeled to the ward where we sat looking at this tiny little, perfect human we had created slept so peacefully and unaware of what was going on around him. When everyone had gone home I just lay there with him and stared. I don’t think I slept a wink all night

With the best team of people around me, I was able to give birth naturally without any pain medication. One of the things Hypnobirthing advises, is to write in your birth plan that you don’t want anyone to mention the word pain. They are not to ask you if you want pain relief or even how you are feeling. And the reason they say this, is that it doesn’t even cross your mind to ask for it when you are in the moment. Yes, you ask to go home and you want it over, but not once did I think to ask for pain relief.

I was proud of myself. I am proud of myself. I feel lucky to have experienced it and seen the extreme limits my body is able to deal with. Its amazing what the body can do. I went for my first run yesterday, 8 and a half weeks after the birth, and I can already see that my willpower is stronger than it was before. If I can give birth naturally, then I can definitely run just that little bit further.