Contractions Didn’t Increase

Clare shares the birth story of her son Peter


I was sitting around the house on the Thursday when I remembered that I hadnt had any rasberry leaf tea that day, and i’d just finished making a huge shopping list to cook up some food that night to put into the deep freeze. DH’s parents dropped around and were just chatting to him. I drank my tea and then about an hour later I went to the loo. I went, and then as I went to get up I ‘went’ again. Except I hadnt felt myself peeing. I was like .omg omg omg did my waters just break. I put a pad on and wandered around and then realised I was still leaking. I was so excited!! I rang the hospital and they said to come in to be checked, when I got there they said it was defintely my waters, and if contractions hadnt started by the next morning I would have to be induced. While we were in the hospital though, my contractions started about 10 minutes apart but not too painful.

We went home and DH ate and i tried to relax (haha) but was having a hard time as my contractions had kicked in to every 3 minutes and were really starting to hurt. I rang the hospital and they said to come in, they checked me and my cervix hadnt MOVED but they could see i was having strong contractions really often. The midwife said she didnt want to send me home, and we stayed for a few hours in the room where they check you. I laboured for a few hours while DH caught up on some sleep, and the next morning at 6am they took me into labour and delivery to start the syntocin drip as my contractions were still the same, 3 minutes apart and still hurting but not getting closer. The midwife i had initially was a really sour cow but luckily at 7am there was a shift change over. THe next midwife I got had a medical student with her and was sooooo lovely she was just great. I sat on a birth ball for a couple of hours, things were a bit awkward with a drip in and having to be continuously monitored but I was coping ok for a while. The midwife checked me at about 9am and at that point I was 4 cm and 100 % thinned out. Then things started to get really painful so i started thinking about pain relief. I talked to the midwife for a bit about sterile water injections but then I said you know what, i want an epidural.

I was so tired from the previous 14 or so hours of contractions. I was half expecting her to try and talk me out of it but she just said no worries, and rang the anethsetist! (sp?) He was doing another epi but as soon as he finished he came and did mine, and oh my word i was so glad. For the next few hours I just slept and dozed, and the midwife got DH a beanbag so that he could do the same. The next few hours were pretty uneventful, and eventually around 3:30pm the midwife checked me and said you are fully dilated and we will wait an hour for the baby to come down a bit more then start pushing.

I was really excited to hear that and DH didnt know what to do with himself he was so nervous. Anyway at 4:30, because I couldnt feel anything the midwife got me to test out a couple of pushes. I did and she said I was pushing really well and that it shouldnt be long. So the pushing began! I was pushing for half an hour, then with each push the babies heart rate started going through the roof. Not only that but my contractions had started to go weak and irregular (they’d turned my drip off earlier). So the midwife called in the obstetrician to talk to her. They decided to turn the drip back up to get stronger contractions, and to let me push for a while to see what happened.

She said i may need some assistance like the vacuum not because i wasnt pushing well but because the babies heart rate meant they wanted him out sooner. Each time I pushed the babies heart rate just kept going up, and he just kept not going anywhere. 15 minutes later, the obstetrician says ‘lets get this baby out’. Next thing we know, they’ve broken down my bed, 9 people run into the room and they get ready to do a vacuum extraction.

All I remember thinking is, god let him be ok and DH was standing next to me wiping my face down and just telling me how well i was doing. The obstetrician said, just listen to me and push when i tell you and dont push when i tell you to stop. He then said i am going to cut you, and did, but obv i didnt feel anything thanks to the epi.

Three or four more rounds of pushes and they pulled our little boy out. Then they took him over to the table to examine him, and he wasnt breathing for what felt like for EVER. then finally a little squeal and a cry came out but it was muffled due to the fact that they were giving him oxygen. He had only got a 6 on his Apgar initially but then it rose to an 8. They put him on me then and I looked at DH and we were both so overwhelmed we were crying our eyes out. Then I noticed that Peter was grunting.

The pediatrician came over and said to me that sometimes they do this grunting for a while, but if it went on for longer than half an hour they’d have to take him up to special care. I was just stroking his little cheek willing him to breathe properly and DH was freaking out. 40 minutes later they took him up to special care and I made DH go up with him, I could tell he was torn between going and staying but i made him go.

By this point i’d been stitched up but was still numb and a new midwife took over. She started cleaning me up and telling me that everything was going to be ok. DH eventually came back into the room and told me he was doing well but that they had to keep him in special care for 24 hours. Next thing I know my mum and sister rush in all crying and hugging me. They wheeled me up to special care to visit Peter and he actually looked pretty good but was hooked up to a bunch of monitors so i was just stroking his leg in his humidi crib for an hour.

They then took me to my room and said try to get some rest before you have to start looking after him tomorrow. YEAH RIGHT!!! As if i could sleep all these babies were crying around the ward and my baby was downstairs. They did a bunch of bloods and tests on him and he was doing really really well so finally the next day I had my little boy in with me.

It took me AGES To figure out how to get him to attach and had to give him formula a few times because the poor thing would have been so hungry. They’d already given him formula through a tube in special care – they actually asked me if that was ok, i was like of course its ok i dont want him to starve!!

So thats my birth story, and as much as it knocked me for six I know I would do it all over again.

~~ Welcome Peter ~~