As I sit here 36 weeks pregnant with my second child I can’t help but reflect back on the birth of my First Daughter just over 20 months ago.
This has turned into a very long post so you may want to settle in with a cuppa!
The Original Plan
My Original Birth Plan was to have a Water Birth. When we visited the labour ward, the pool room looked so relaxing and inviting and like the perfect calm atmosphere to make birth as pleasant as possible.
That’s not what happened!
Not Quite What We Expected
To put it bluntly, the birth of my daughter was about as far from what I had planned and expected as it was possible to get.
I had spent many many weeks beforehand obsessively watching You Tube videos about what to pack in my hospital bag and what I would wear during labour. I was absolutely terrified at the prospect of labour and thought this was the only thing I could control – little did I know that this would turn out to be a waste of time…
Soaring Blood Pressure
My blood pressure was always on the higher side throughout my pregnancy.
As it had started creeping up towards the end, I had to have it checked every week.
So there I was 38 weeks and 5 days pregnant and off for my weekly blood pressure check, having paused the final of Series 3 (or it could have been 4) of Face Off thinking I would find out the winner when I got back.
My blood pressure was taken and it was high … very high. I asked them to take it again as I was prone to white coat syndrome and it was often higher first time round … still high … too high.
The midwife referred me to go to the hospital to be checked over, so I called my partner and off we went.
Off To The Hospital
We arrived at the day centre of the hospital and waited to be seen.
We were taken to a room and I was hooked up to some monitors to check Baby’s heart rate, and given a button to push each time I felt her move as she had slowed down a little.
While we waited we were both discussing how excited we were to have a Chilli Con Carne pizza for dinner that night, and how we should probably pick up some Coleslaw on the way back … very important stuff!
However, not much was happening so I was given some tablets to reduce my blood pressure and was told I was being admitted to the labour ward.
Freaking Out on the Labour Ward
I was wheeled round to the labour ward – which seemed completely excessive to me as I felt absolutely fine but told someone with blood pressure as high as mine shouldn’t be quite a cheery.
Then as I hadn’t brought my Hospital Bag – due to the fact I thought I was going to a standard midwife check – I was given an oh so attractive hospital gown to wear and hooked up to more monitors.
Then in came all the consultants, and tons of other people – it felt like a party at one point except I didn’t have any idea who anyone other than the consultant and midwife were as these were the only people that had actually been introduced.
My cervix was checked. And it was confirmed that my labour hadn’t started – although I was well aware of this.
Sh*t’s Getting Real
It all then started to get scarily real. The consultant started talking about inducing me – and I cried a lot it became clear that our Baby would be arriving in the next couple of days if not today – and I most definitely was not going home for Chilli Con Carne Pizza or to watch the end of the Face Off Final.
Oh and we were about to become Parents!
I asked if I was induced if I would still be able to have my lovely water birth and the Midwife pretty much laughed in my face … that was a no.
As my blood pressure was checked again, it was clear the consultant was not happy.
Due to the tablets I had been given earlier, my blood pressure had plummeted, and as my baby was used to my blood pressure being on the higher side this was not good … and it was go time!
Time To Scrub Up
My Partner was told to scrub up and prepare for theatre, we were going in for a Code 1 Emergency C-Section.
I’m not really sure what I was feeling at this time, a mixture of terror as calm I think. The midwive’s had just changed over so we had a new face with us.
I was given a Catheter, which was the the most painful part of the whole experience. And then taken off to theatre to get a Spinal Epidural and be prepared for the birth of my first child!
Well This Isn’t How I Expected To Give Birth
Once I was numb from the waist down, my Partner was let in and sat by my head while we were having a little chat.
And that’s how it went, I had some feelings of pressure and having the wind knocked out of me as I was pushed and prodded. But instead of the sweating, panting, painful birth I had been expecting, I spent it having a chat and a bit of a laugh with the Father of my child. It was one of the most bizarre experiences I have ever had.
Then before I knew it, there she was! My beautiful little girl had entered the world, when neither one of us had been properly prepared.
Preparing for the Unexpected
So what have I learnt for Round 2? Pretty much that you can’t prepare for giving birth, other than have some loose guidelines of what you would like to happen but know that these are more than likely to change.
My ideas of a lovely Water Birth, went to an Emergency C-Section with no labour whatsoever.
Thank you so much for making it all the way to the end!
Did your labour and birth go the way you planned or were you thrown a complete curveball? Let me know in the comments!