Ainsley shares the birth story of her daughter
I had heaps of Braxton Hicks throughout my pregnancy, much more than with Nathan. So on the morning of Monday 22 July when contractions started feeling more painful, I thought they were just more Braxton Hicks. They started at about 10:30am and were about 30 minutes apart, so I wondered if maybe this was the start of pre-labour, or if it was a false alarm. I went to pick up Nathan from daycare at 12:30pm, with Mark helping me lift him into the car because the contractions were quite sore. I was still convinced this was a false alarm.
At 3:30pm I text Mark to let him know that the contractions were now about 7 minutes apart and he said he’d be home as soon as he could. I didn’t want to get everyone mobilised yet because I was still sure it was just Braxton Hicks! By the time Mark got home I was in bed mooing, still unconvinced it was actually happening. Mark text my mum to let her know I was contracting but not to rush over (from Te Puke) yet. Mark was running around sorting Nathan and packing a bag for himself just in case we had to rush to River Ridge. Mark called our midwife at about 4:30pm to let her know I was contracting but that we weren’t sure if this was really happening yet. She said I could come into River Ridge when I was ready.
At about 4:45pm I had a massive contraction and felt the baby move down. That’s when I realised it was actually happening. Mark called mum again to ask her to come over, and then called Fiona to say we were coming in to River Ridge. Because Grandma was 1.5 hours away, we had to find alternative arrangements for Nathan. Thank goodness our neighbour and good friend was off work sick that day so we asked him to come and sit with Nathan in front of the telly until Grandma arrived. He made sure Nathan was fed too.
After we’d made the decision to go to River Ridge, Mark brought Nathan in to say goodbye to me. He was quite quiet but said “you go get my sister now”.
At about 5pm I needed to go to the toilet and looking back I think I was transitioning while I was on the loo. I remember asking Mark to grab a sweatshirt for me and yelling that the one he grabbed wasn’t the right one! Caleb said later that he kept turning the telly up so Nathan couldn’t hear too much. We finally got into the car and Mark sped along to River Ridge.
The whole way there I was having massive contractions and trying NOT to push because I knew it was time. We got to River Ridge about 6:10pm and Fiona met us there. I had a contraction in the entranceway and she realised I was really close so asked Georgia (her midwifery student) to start filling up the pool. I remember thinking “why isn’t it full already?!” Once we got to the birthing room, I had another massive contraction and felt baby move down again and my waters broke. It felt like baby was right there ready to come out. Fiona kept suggesting I birth in the birthing room but I was so determined to get into the water.
The pool was finally full enough at 6:20pm and I got into the pool and started pushing. On the second push, baby’s head was half in and half out and with the next contraction baby’s head flew out. One last push and baby was born at 6:30pm. I remember feeling so amazed and proud of what I had achieved! Especially the fact I had managed to have baby in the water. We stared in wonder at our little baby and then checked to see if it was a boy or a girl – it was a girl! What a lovely surprise 🙂