During the night I was dreaming I was having pains and I woke up at 6am and realised that it wasn't a dream and I was actually having pains. I thought "oh I wonder if these are little contractions". I really didn't want to be induced so when I rung the hospital I told them I was having pains and could I see if I started naturally. They were perfectly happy to let me do that and so I got up and went and had some breakfast and a tea and started to sit on my bouncy ball. All of a sudden at 9am I stood up and felt a trickle, my waters had broke. It wasn't at all like you expect with a big gush, and more like a leaky tap! Haha. So I call the hospital back and they told me to come in and check if they had broke and happy days they had and I was going to get my natural birth I wanted!
I got sent back home and instead of doing what a lot of labouring women do and lay down and relax, I decided to go to Morrisons for breakfast and to pick up some food for the hospital. I had a small fry up! As I sat there eating I felt the little pains getting stronger and more painful, but I didn't let them bother me.
I grabbed a trolley and started shopping and my way of getting through the pain was to keep moving, which really wasn't helping my parents as I kept disappearing isles away with the trolley. I laughed off all the pains and then we went back home. I wish I had a photograph to show you of me shopping in labour but photographs were the last thing on my mind.
At home I spent time bouncing on my ball and walking around, I tried to sleep but the pains were to much and I couldn't. During my antenatal class, one thing we got taught that was more helpful than anything was to find a go to spot. This is simply a area you go to if your about to have a contraction as having a 'place' can make you feel safe and in control. My place was my arm chair and so I sat facing away with my head on the back of the chair. It was that and my breathing that got me through the next couple of hours.
The hours seemed to fly by and at about 6pm I had had enough and I called the hospital. I told them my timings and they told me I had to be having a contraction lasting around a minute, 3 minutes apart. They told me to have paracetamol and a bath so I got Chris to run me a bath but I decided to skip on the paracetamol. I wasn't in the bath long and the contractions got longer and closer together so I called the hospital and told them and they said I could come in. I do remember that the midwife was listening to my breathing from the other side of the phone, to time my contraction to see if it was long enough to come in. I may have let my breathing carry on that little bit longer so they would say yes, as I really did feel ready to attend the hospital.
It was getting out of the bath when I had my worst contraction yet. I think mainly because I wasn't ready for it. I didn't have my go to spot and so didn't know what to do with myself. I wasn't in control at that moment and so I felt more pain.
On arrival to the hospital I was taken to a suite with a pool in, the room was called The Lily Pad, which was a coincidence as we were calling our daughter Lily. I had wanted to be in the birthing centre, which is more like a home environment but although I got told on visiting there would be a 99% chance of getting one, it seems I fell into that 1% as there was none available. But luckily there was still the pool. The midwife checked me and I was 5cm. I tried some gas and air but after a few goes on it, it made me sick and I didn't want anymore. Its at the point things become a bit of a blur for me and next thing I remember is getting into the pool.
One funny but annoying little story I will always remember is that before I went into labour Robbie Williams had his baby and he sung to his wife while she was in labour, my mum asked me would you like it if you had Robbie Williams singing to you while your in labour and I answered with a big fat NO! Well my mum didn't turn her phone of while I was in labour and my dad kept ringing her to find out what was happening and who does she happen to have as her ringtone? Robbie Williams! So I did have him sing to me while I was in labour. I find it funny now but at the time I really didn't.
The time it took for Lily to be given to me and in my arms felt like a lifetime, I remember looking around for her thinking where is she, all I could hear was her almighty cry. The midwife tried to pass her to me but I had lost all feeling in my arms and couldn't hold her and so they had to get me to lay down before I could hold her. Holding her for the first time was the most amazing feeling, I could not believe how tiny and beautiful she was (or how loud she was haha) and straight away there was a connection and love.
Lily took to breastfeeding straight away and latched on as soon as she could. I got this lovely first photograph of her doing it.
Lily weighed 6.15 and here is a photograph of her on the scales.
Though I didn't get my water birth, I'm happy that my birth was natural, I managed to not have any pain relief and I didn't have to be induced. But it was just after Lily was born that I always look back on and feel sad about.
After having a hour worth of stitches, and after Lily had been weighed and my mum left to give me and Chris some alone time, I suddenly got told I was going straight to a ward. This was around 2am, and so I did have about 3 hours after Lily was born with Chris there, but it wasn't relaxing time and we didn't really get to have those special moments where you look down at your baby and think wow that's our daughter. Instead Chris spent that time cleaning me down as my legs were like jelly and I couldn't walk to a shower, and I also still couldn't move one of my arms. A midwife came to get me and got me in a wheelchair and wheeled me to a ward where she parked the chair at the end of the bed and expected me to walk to the bed which I told her she had to move it closer. I then laid down and was laid flat on the bed, and Chris had to leave as no males were aloud on the ward. No one offered to make me comfortable and I couldn't even prop myself up to sit up and so was just left there looking at the ceiling and began taking it all in what I had just done. It was at this point I started to have a panic attack and was sick and started to cry.
A midwife calmed me down and made me comfortable and then left me. Then Lily started to cry, and my arm was so lifeless I couldn't even look after her which was horrible. The midwife came and picked up Lily and said she needed a nappy change and she would go and do it and just walked away with Lily and that was it, tears again. Lily had been so close to me for 9 months that her being taken away felt horrible and I just burst into tears and started to panic again.I was such a mess that they asked me if I would feel better with my partner there. Well Duh?? (which wasn't my reply though should have been) So they decided that I could call for Chris and they would move me to a private room so he could be with us, which wasn't just great for me but him to so he could get some daddy time.
I was in hospital until 8pm the next day, pretty much 24 hours after I had gone in. I still couldn't move my arm and they think I had trapped a nerve with my arms over the bed. It was actually months before my arm returned to normal.
When I got home I finally could relax and got my first photograph (with my face in it) taken of me and Lily. Tired and Bedraggled but non the less a very happy mummy.