Monday, 27 April 2015

Birth the 2nd Time Around.

Hard to believe little over a 12 days ago I gave birth, I've been in a complete bubble the last few days and it still hasn't really sunk in yet that my daughter is here safe and sound and I went through labour again, mad as it sounds I know. It all just seems to be a bit of a blur. The last nine months has flown by scarily quickly and I'm sad in a way that this was perhaps my last pregnancy and baby! This post is a bit of a mammoth one but I do hope you enjoy reading about my birth the second time around.

So let me take you back to Monday 13th April, my due date was the 12th and I hadn't really had any signs of labour starting but on Monday afternoon I started to have a few niggly cramps that felt slightly different to normal, I didn't think anything of it though to be honest, I think I was just resigned to going overdue. When I went to bed on Monday night I was still having these little niggles, I remember waking up and taking some paracetamol but again thinking nothing really of it. Tuesday came and these little niggles were starting to get a little bit stronger but were very infrequent, I had the midwife coming over at 2pm for a membrane sweep so mentioned it to her and she said it might be the start of something. She was able to give a good sweep and off I went for a walk with hubby to see if I could get things properly started, in fact we went for a couple of walks and I then spent quite alot of time bouncing on my ball.

We went to pick Alfie up from nursery at around 5pm and I popped into the local Family Bargains to grab a couple of bits and while I was in there I had some really strong contractions. I knew at this point I was definitely in labour and was not in denial anymore! On getting home I spent a little while with Alfie walking around the garden, I then decided to have a bath, I told hubby that these contractions seemed to be getting quickly more intense and perhaps I should start timing them! It hadn't even crossed my mind up till this point to even think about timing then, funny how you're a little more relaxed 2nd time round! Off I went for a soak and I was steadily having more contractions, really quite intense but manageable, they were coming between 5 - 8 minutes apart but more frequently. After putting Alfie to bed I was starting to get more and more uncomfortable but managing to talk and walk through them ok, I figured I was going to be in for a long night! I was only able to manage a tiny little bit of food before promptly being violently sick, erghh, not good when you need energy in labour. I was pretty sick in my first labour too, how miserable!

Image courtesy of enchantedseashells.com
I remember watching Eastenders in a bit of a blur, I spoke to my Mum and Dad who were on standby to come and watch Alfie if I needed to go to the hospital, they live over an hour away so suggested to my parents that might want to think about coming over now. Thankfully they were all ready to go and set off immediately. I continued to have strong contractions and at this point I said to my husband I think I want my TENS machine on, his response to me.......'don't you think you can manage without it for a bit longer? You're doing really well and you don't to wear the batteries out........'. My response in the midst of a contraction 'put my fu*k*ng TENS machine on please, I need it, it bloody hurts!!.

My parents arrived just after 10:30pm and I was finding the contractions painful now, I couldn't seem to find a decent position to get comfy in so hubby suggested another walk and I was glad to get out in the fresh air. We walked for around 20 minutes and the contractions were starting to come every 2 - 4 minutes, it was at this point my hubby decided that when we got home we should ring the labour ward. On ringing the labour ward we were told because of my previous birth to head straight in to be seen, I think reality hit home a bit for my husband at this point as I don't think he anticipated them telling us to go in!

We arrived at the hospital just before midnight, we took a little longer than expected due to my husband deciding to fart around, he decided that having a shower and shave was appropriate and even debated about preparing some food until I pretty much yelled at him to get in the bloody car. We said a swift goodbye to my parents mid contractions and made our way to the hospital. During the journey I was writhing around like a lunatic while my contractions continued to come every 2- 3 minutes. 

Once we arrived I was swiftly shown to a room and asked how I was coping with the pain, I said the TENS was helping but wanted gas and air more or less straight away, ahhhh the relief as I sucked on that mouth piece! My husband kindly took this delightful picture of me having a lovely time (to begin with) on the gas and air!




I was examined by a lovely Student Midwife and found to be 4- 5cm, I was pretty chuffed by that and felt quite positive that I'd dilated to that in far fewer hours than my previous labour. I felt quite positive at this stage and continued to labour over the next couple of hours with my TENS and gas and air. My contractions really seemed to ramp up after a while and I was climbing the wall at the height of them, I was pretty vocal this time round and a fair few swear words were definitely yelled. I was starting to feel quite alot of pressure at this point and because my waters hadn't gone yet the midwife's suspected that the waters were putting pressure on my cervix causing the bearing down feeling. I was pretty sick again which didn't really help matters, ergh.

In my first labour I had a similar issue with bulging waters and I didn't dilate as quick as they liked, because of this I asked if they would break my waters this time round. After a discussion with the senior midwife it was decided that they would break my waters to see if that helped me progress, prior to this I was examined and told I was 7cm dilated. My contractions intensified even more after my waters had been broken (which I was warned about) and it was at this point I was starting to become quite anxious that I'd been labouring for a while now and I didn't feel like I was progressing. I asked if I could have more pain relief as I was starting to feel very tired, I didn't want pethidine so my only option was an epidural, before I could have this I had to be examined again to see if I had dilated any more, on examination it was found that actually I was still only 4 - 5cm, I cannot tell you how completely demoralising this is after been told you are 7cm. Basically because my waters had been bulging they had actually stretched my cervix giving the impression I was more dilated than I was, upon hearing this and the fact that my anxiety levels had grown I decided that an epidural was the best option for me. 




So Mr. Epidural man as I affectionately called him (the anaesthetist) came along and jabbed me in the back several times and put the epidural in, he got called several choice names as it wasn't the most comfortable of experiences, I was pretty monged on gas and air which accounted for that but luckily he took it in his stride and didn't take offence! Now even working in the health care industry I haven't seen an epidural needle and thank god I didn't at the time, it was only when I got home and googled it I saw the size of the bloody thing, wowzers! Trying to sit still through my god awful contractions while having the spidural put in was horrendous too! 

Image courtesy of aviva.com
Finally it was in and I felt back in control and actually more relaxed. Although it took around 2o minutes for the epidural to kick in the contractions I was having were much more manageable and I breathed through them alot less distressed than I had been. The epidural was weird though, I could feel some contractions, it was like a really dull ache, some stronger than others and I still needed gas and air through a couple so the nice anaesthetist kept giving me a top up to  get the right dose into my system. Eventually I had a nice amount of the drug in my system and was able to get some sleep for a short while. Unfortunately it was during this time that the baby's heartbeat was starting to show some signs of deceleration so I was then heavily monitored which included having a clip put on her head so it could be kept a close eye on, it was then discovered, that I'd started to run quite a temperature so was then dosed up with some IV paracetamol too, I'd also not pee'd since 4am so a catheter was also required. Oh they joys, I did not enjoy the boot being on the other foot, once again I had left my dignity by the door! 

I was then examined again by the Consultant and found to be 10cm, what a relief! I was told I'd would be given an hour to ensure baby dropped into my pelvis as she was still high and I would begin active pushing. It was at this point that both myself and my husband managed to get a little bit more sleep which was so much needed, plus I needed to get my energy to try and push her out, as once again I was very close to an instrumental delivery or a c-section.



So at 10:20am I started active pushing, although it was pretty hard as with the epidural I couldn't feel all my contractions so it was difficult to know when exactly I should be pushing! At 11am I was put on the synto drip to make me contract more effectively, luckily I didn't feel it to the intensity that I did previously but enough to feel the contractions more. I was pushing for 50 minutes, it was weird I could feel the sensation of pushing her through the birth canal but I couldn't feel much pain at all? Bizarre, but so much more controlled and relaxed than the first time. Reaching the end of the pushing stage was incredibly emotional and terrifying, due to the 3rd degree tear I suffered previously this is where my anxiety was at it's worse, however I listened to the midwife and her instructions when to breathe and push slowly. I had a feeling I might tear again judging by the midwife's faces but I just kept my fingers crossed that it wouldn't be as bad as before. I was an emotional, sobbing mess as I actually gave birth to her, I must have looked a right state. Elarna Lucy was eventually welcomed into the world at 11:50am and I had immediate skin to skin which was just incredible, she weighed a rather reasonable 7lbs.




Those magical few moments that you spend with this little baby that you've brought into the world are like no other, even though I was full of medication I felt so completely overwhelmed. After 9 months carrying her it feels like such an epic thing to do. Alhough this birth wasn't what I'd have liked again it was marginally better than my first labour, I was so much more aware of my body and what was happening and I'm pleased that I opted for an epidural. Unfortunately I did suffer a 2nd degree tear and when they were 'assessing the damage' I was petrified, my husband saw my face drop and he told me after he became very concerned about me, thankfully I was stitched by the Consultant and reassured that 2nd degree tears are the most common and should heal well and thankfully I think I am.

We were left to bond with our little girl for a while which was lovely but I then became really quite unwell, I felt like I was having some weird out of body experience, I was dizzy, light headed, couldn't move my arms and then violently sick. I think I was running on empty, full of drugs and completely washed out, I hadn't eaten for well over 24 hours and I think it affected me. Thankfully after a couple of hours I started to feel much better and once I'd had a shower and a bite to eat I was starting to feel almost human.




To end my epic birth story we had to wait for at least 6 hours before I could be discharged home because of the epidural but in actual fact we waited 11 which was ridiculous. We had to wait for her newborn check and I think they forgot about us, eventually she had it but the midwife carrying it out found she had a heart murmur so we then had to wait for the Paediatrician to come and check her over. He came and did find a murmur but it was only faint so we agreed to come back the next day for her to be checked again and possibly have an ECG (thankfully when we returned the heart murmur couldn't be detected which is quite common in newborns). We eventually got home after 11pm and we had so been looking forward to introducing Alfie to her that evening but sadly we had to wait till the next morning. It's always such a strange thing coming home with a new baby and having them next to you for the first night, bless her though she was very kind to us and only woke the once so we could catch up on a little sleep.





So then this happened and suddenly we're over a week into life with our new little girl. It's gone so quickly already, she'll actually be 2 weeks on Wednesday it's just my feet haven't really touched the ground since the 15th!




I'll leave it there now, I think I've rambled on enough and if you've got this far thanks very much for sticking with it and reading this post.

Alot of people have asked if we're done at 2, my response at the moment is yes, my little family is complete but never say never eh!!


MaternityMondays


Mummascribbles

40 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness you look amazing-even after the birth. You did so well and she is absolutely gorgeous. Such beautiful eyes. Big congratulations. I hope big brother likes his new sister. Such a magical time. Enjoy every minute xxxxxxxxxxxx

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    1. Thanks Emma, don't feel so amazing though feel zonked hehe. Thankyou for the comment :-) x

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  2. Congratulations! She is beautiful. Sounds like you did well in your labour. Hope you are enjoying your new addition to your family, i expect its very different with 2!
    Tarryn @ https://maternallove.wordpress.com
    #mummymonday

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    1. Thanks Tarryn, I'm pleased the labour wasn't as horrendous as last time definitely! x

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  3. An engrossing story! Congratulations your daughter is gorgeous :) I had a c-section due to Lizzy being breech but would have loved a natural birth, no epidural but now after hearing my sister's experience and yours among others I think I might go for an epidural next time! #mummymonday

    Carolyn
    http://stylishmemories.com

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    1. Thanks Carolyn, hope you enjoyed the read. I had counted an epidural out the first time but so glad I did this time and would if I ever had another! x

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  4. Many congrats on your little girl, she is beautiful! And you look gorgeous after labour :) ...

    #mummymonday

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  5. Congratulations, she's gorgeous and you look amazing, glad to hear the birth went well x

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    1. Better than last time haha! Thanks for the comment xx

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  6. Aww welcome to the wrols Elarna, such a beautiful name for a beautiful girl! Amazing to read your story and the highs and the lows, just so glad all worked out so well and hope you are healing well and enjoying your time as a family of four! Big love and thanks for linking with #MaternityMondays!

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    1. Thankyou Caroline, I'm not too bad now thankfully! x

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  7. Congratulations! What a beautiful thing to share. I love the pic of brother and sister meeting for the first time...and that you tried to sit through eastenders with contractions!

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    1. I know, bizarre and then it was One Born which promptly got turned off haha x

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  8. Massive congratulations! I think my baby boy was just behind Elarna as well #maternitymondays xx

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    1. Thanks Laura and congratulations on your little boy xx

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  9. I can't get over how gorgeous you look after giving birth! And she's so beautiful too, congratulations again Helen! xx

    Lyon Notes

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  10. Congratulations! Glad you're settling down well and your baby girl arrived safely. Enjoy the newborn days :)

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  11. Congratulations on your gorgeous girl!

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  12. Aaah huge congratulations — it's such a lovely story. She's absolutely gorgeous! x #maternitymondays

    Caro | www.thetwinklediaries.co.uk

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  13. What a lovely birth story, congratulations to you all on the birth of your (utterly beautiful) daughter. It may not have gone quite as you wanted it to, but you did it! Well done you, enjoy those gorgeous newborn snuggles xx

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    1. I know, totally feel proud! Loving the snuggles :) x

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  14. She is SO beautiful, what a gorgeous family you have. I can't believe just how good you look just after giving birth. Enjoy those precious newborn moments, they're all over far too quickly! x

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    1. Ahhh thankyou so much! It does go far quickly, that's the scary thing! x

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  15. Oh wow, she is beautiful! Congratulations. I must say you look fabulous too mummy!

    www.mylittlebabog.com

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    1. Thankyou so much! Feeling a bit tired now though! zzz.xxx

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  16. Gorgeous and I still can't wait to meet her! xxx

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    1. Thanks Saz, she's looking forward to meeting you too :) xx

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  17. Amazing!! I am 7 days off of my due date with baby number 2 and I am so excited to go through it all again! Very lovely read xx

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    1. Ohh how exciting!! I look forward to seeing your announcement x

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  18. Congratulations, hope things are going well for you #maternitymondays

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  19. Congratulations! I love the detail with which you told your birth story. It's so interesting to me how different "normal" pregnancies and births are compared to my twin experience. I don't know whether I would have been able to get as much done as you after going into labour had things been different, but my labour started with Twin A's water breaking. Twin B's was intact all the way through and had to be punctured after she was taken out by C-section!

    Good job on Elarna's size, too. She's bigger than my twins put together were at birth! Thanks for linking up at #TwinklyTuesday.

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    1. Thanks Sadia for the lovely comment :-) I love hearing all about other people's different experience's too and how different it is for everyone!! x

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  20. Loved this post. Congrats on your beautiful family. A lot of what you said reminds me of my labour! She is beautiful :) #mummymonday

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    1. Thankyou Tracey!! I hope your birth wasn't too traumatic :-) x

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