02 May 2010

My beautiful girl is born

My girl turns six tomorrow. Just after midnight to be precise. It is funny but I woke this morning at 3.30 and so did she and that is when my labour started with her six years ago. All day I have been thinking about where I was at six years ago. As you will see from the birth story below by now I wasn't in the greatest of places. As time has passed I am not affected as much by not birthing by babies but it still hurts and reading beautiful birthing stories trigger a myriad of flashbacks and unpleasant memories. Even sitting in a psych lecture on PTSD triggered a not so nice episode last week, go figure!

However, I have this beautiful girl who makes my life so very interesting and entertaining. She is pure magic and totally warped! We get on pretty well in that regard LOL From when she was little her life has been a stage and she steps on it at waking and has to be forced off it at bed time. Today she was having a very animated coversation for some time on a toy mobile phone, I interupted to ask if she could hear voices LMAO, she said no but asked why I wanted to know........ just thought I should check LOL
She is kind, caring, compassionate, generous, loving, affectionate, stubborn, confident, daring, intelligent, frustrating, firey, snuggly adn the list could go on for ever. She lost two bottom teeth this past year, learnt to swim, ride a bike without training wheels, read, write, she danced on the public stage for highland dancing and made my life an utter joy. I love my baby and relish every minute I get to share watching her grow into the beautiful person that she is...

Nienna’s Birth Story

‘Twas a dark and stormy night…………..nah, was cold and dark though. My waters broke at 3.15am Sunday, 2nd May. Just as I was rolling over in bed from giving Beren something for his teething I felt this funny feeling in my abdomen and wondered if it could possibly be. I got up and went to the loo and sure enough. No gush as it was only the hind waters. I woke Andrew to tell him and then went back to bed hoping to get some more sleep as I didn’t have any contractions or cramping at this stage.

My body had different ideas, within 15min I got my first contraction and heavy cramping. By 4am I was having 4-5min contractions and no way could I sleep thru them. I of course got Andrew up too as is only fair. Pottered around, checked email etc for about an hour then they started to get serious and needed a bit of concentrating to get thru. The timing was much the same but they were lasting around 1min and were becoming quite intense. We called our Doula, Victoria and Andrew set about getting Beren’s things together for him to go to his Aunts.

Victoria arrived at 6am and set about getting me more comfortable and couriered heat packs from kitchen to my back. The contractions were becoming very strong and painful now and required quite a bit of concentration to get thru. We called the hospital to let them know what was happening and found out that the birthing pool would not be available which was disappointing.

Beren woke at 8am and left to spend the day with his aunt shortly after. In the meantime Andrew finished packing everything up and I started to get a bit vocal . Victoria was already starting to prove her worth with comforting words and help with breathing thru the contractions and relaxation exercises. At around 10am I decided I was ready to go to the hospital. I was worried about the car trip as it was some distance and I didn’t want to leave it too late.

Needless to say the car trip was horrendous and the trip up to the labour ward took some time, but at least I looked the part in my tired grey jammies and daggy jumper moaning against the walls. J

We got ourselves set up and signed all the required waivers as we had declined several of their ‘standard procedures’. I laboured standing up or supported over beanbags and cushions for a couple of hours and by then things were really starting to become difficult. We were using heat-packs and pressure as pain relief but it was becoming evident that this was not enough. Victoria suggested the shower so Andrew and I went in there but didn’t last very long as the ‘room’ was no more than a cubicle and was very claustrophobic. I also found that it slowed things down in the shower too and I really didn’t want that to happen. Went back to the bean-bags and tried resting on my side on the floor too. The contractions were stronger on the floor but my body got a rest in between. By this stage the pelvic pain was beginning to rival the contractions.

I remember wondering how women gave birth without a Doula at this stage as I was starting to become ungrounded and finding it difficult to stay focused. Victoria anticipated my needs beautifully and seemed to know when I needed help breathing or a drink or pretty much anything. Andrew’s comforting hands stroking my back and applying pressure when needed were so reassuring and I still felt confident that as a team we would do this. I think we all felt that we may have hit transition too. The pain was becoming too much for me now and so Victoria started soaking nappies in hot water, (unfortunately the hospital couldn’t provide boiling water) to drape the hot towels over my back and under my belly. They did feel nice but not hot enough to provide any real pain relief. I then requested gas and found it to be no help whatsoever.

At this point I started to lose the plot. I was having difficulty breathing and I felt myself starting to panic. I took some pulsatilla and rescue remedy and this helped me to ground myself again a little bit. I decided to have an exam and see where we were. The doctor came in and I was 4cm dilated. This devastated me as I felt sure I would be more after all the work I had done. I really lost it and knew that I could not labour without pain relief to get me thru to 10cm as I suspected it was going to be slow going. (it was 2pm). Victoria and Andrew suggested the birth pool, which was now available but I didn’t think I could manage the trip up the hall to get to it and I was scared it would also slow things down, instinct told me it was not what I needed. I requested an epidural and the anaesthetist was called.

I was given a low dose so I could still feel some of the contraction but the pelvic pain was dulled as I had requested. I remember sobbing “I’m sorry” over and over and everyone telling me I didn’t have to apologise to them. I was apologising to myself , not to anyone else.J Things went quiet after this and we just chatted until 5pm when I had another exam and found I had dilated to 6cm. The waters were holding the baby back so we decided to break them and see if that would help. We also found out the baby was now laying traverse and had her head in my cervix side ways.

Over the next 4hrs I had the epidural topped up twice as it wore off and I started to get excruciating pain again from both contractions and pelvis (despite being turned from side to side regularly). Another doctor took over who I joked was on work experience due to her youthful appearance. She examined me at 9.30pm and I was still only 6cm but the baby had moved further down and was still in the same position. She said straight away she wanted to do a c/s and called her boss to confirm. I refused and requested more time. As the epidural had kept dropping off and I was experiencing a lot of pain I was quite tense. Victoria suggested taking more time with the epidural up high to give me time to try and relax to see if this made a difference. The doctor agreed reluctantly and I set about trying to relax. I pretty much used this time to make amends with myself for what was happening. I think I knew what was going to happen and I needed time to accept this. I of course felt devastated that after all this work we had probably ended up with what we worked to avoid. It wasn’t fair.

We discussed any other possible solutions such as Ventouse (which has been done at 6cm before), positioning to change the way the baby was laying but we had run out of options. My contractions were lasting 1.5min and coming around 2min apart and as intense as ever, that was working but for some reason I was not dilating with them. I think it had a lot to do with the position of bubs.

At 11.30pm I was examined again and nothing had changed. The theatre was called and at midnight I was taken down with my entourage. Unfortunately the anaesthetist wouldn’t allow Victoria in which I found very disappointing as she had come so far with us.

At 12.41am, 3rd May, 21hrs after my hind waters broke our gorgeous daughter was born. The screen was lowered as she came out so I could see (this has helped immensely). She exercised her lungs not long after and proved to have very powerful ones. About half and hour later she was put to my breast in recovery and latched on like a pro

An incredibly intense and tough journey that I couldn’t have done without Andrew or Victoria but one with a beautiful result.


Spiralmumma said...

Beautiful story and beautifully written too.I am not sure how women birth without doulas either! Sorry you didn't get the birth you were hoping for, but you certainly got a lovely daughter :) Happy birthday Nienna!

Laki said...

OMG Kell This was such hard work. What a beautiful story though. It goes to show how all female bodies work so different at the time of giving birth. I went in all four times with no plan and had four natural births. The first being 4 hours and the last being only 2 hours from start to end. I thank myself to be so lucky to be one of the lucky ones whos body can seem to work quickly at a time like this. I can relate so much to the part of walking down coridors hanging off walls. But its so true, all the pain and hard work woman go through to produce a tiny person so beautiful.. xx Happy Birthday Nieanna xx

Bel said...

What a lot of hard work you did before welcoming your baby girl!

This is a beautifully written birth story, Kelli, thanks for sharing. xx