Nearly 10 years ago I went into labour with my first daughter Ava-Leigh and my goodness did she change my life!! Here is my birth story for Ava-Leigh and while it was a very straight forward labour, I wanted to share the experience that I had.
I was 20 years old and feeling pretty relaxed about the whole thing and as my due date got closer I just enjoyed those last few weeks and days of being pregnant. I went to bed the night before my due date as normal knowing that only a small number of babies are born on their due date, to be exact its between 3-5% so I was a little shocked when I woke up with pains at 5.15am on the 19th September 2008. I was pretty sure it was nothing so tried to go back to sleep but by 6.00am I was still really uncomfortable and decided to go downstairs and make a drink, the rest of the household were still sound asleep, but as it was my turn to take my then partners little sister to school I thought it was best to try and wake him and tell him what was going on. He wasn’t too bothered and so I went about getting his sister up and sorted for school, by 8.30am the contractions were getting worse but not unbearable, so I started the walk to school with his sister but had to take it easy and slow. By the time I got back home everybody was up and in the kitchen, I told his mum and she said it was probably a good idea to ring my midwife and let her know, as I was due to see her later on that afternoon. My midwife told me to take paracetamol and try and warm bath to ease the pain, so with her instructions I did but it really didn’t make a difference. I remember laying out on the living room floor as that was the only place I could get comfy and I also remember my partner just playing on the computer not really seeming that bothered.
By this time the pains were getting closer together and more painful, so I decided it was time to ring the hospital and see what they said. I remember it was 3.00pm and the sun was shining as the lady on the phone told me it was probably time for me to go up to the hospital. I rang my parents as it was my dad who was taking me to the hospital, my mum answered the phone and I told her I needed dad to come and get us. Her voice changed to panic as she told me he had just gone shopping and not taken his phone, I told her to calm down and just tell him as soon he got home. While I was waiting for him I thought it was best to finish off packing my hospital bag, yes I know I should of had it ready but I just had the few last bits to put in there. As I was doing so I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and put some makeup on as I was looking a little rough 🙂 My dad arrived and off we went to the hospital. I remember being really calm in the car and chatting away to my dad about the weather and how for September it was still really warm and bright, once at the hospital I was checked over and told that maybe I should go home as I wasn’t quite as far gone as they would of liked, but after speaking to the midwife and explaining that I had to rely on my Dad and being worried about traffic etc on a Friday evening she agreed that it wouldn’t be a problem as I was only a little off from being at the point where I was allowed to stay, she told me I had to stay active though to allow things to progress, so I got things in my room and sorted and decided to start doing laps around the ward and it wasn’t long until I was in agony and knew things were moving in the right direction.
I ended up going in the bath to try and ease the pain at around 8pm and by this time I had only had paracetamol as I had wanted to do things as natural as my body would allow me, but while in the bath I asked for gas and air, I had to put up a bit of a fight with my partner as he knew I had previously said I didn’t want pain relief but it turns out the pain relief wasn’t for me and just made me feel out of control and so I told them to take it away. I was examined and told that I was 10cm dilated and so moved back to the bed, where I swear it felt like I was pushing for hours but in all honesty it was pretty quick and after being in actual labour for 4 hours and 53 minutes we welcomed our 5lb 15oz baby girl into the world at 10.06pm.Throughout the pushing stage I was pretty calm and didn’t make much noise and just tried to stay focused on listening to my body and my midwife. I did end up with a second degree tear, but I was fine to not have stitches and if im honest I didn’t want anybody else down there after just pushing a baby out!!
From the moment she was placed in my arms I knew my life had changed and even though I didn’t have that amazing gush of love that most women speak of I knew I had made the right decision to have a baby.