Myla’s Birth story. 6lbs 10 ounces.
Sunday 24th March 2013
Gestation 38 wks +3
Contractions – gentle cramps
On Sunday morning I woke up feeling a little different with period pains and after about half an hour as I sat down on the bed there was a gush of fluid and blood. I told Chit and we had a mini panic about it being my waters but decided it must just be my mucus plug and continued with the day. That day we had friends around for lunch and therefore forgot all about the cramps. Once our friends left in the early evening the cramps quickly got going again. I believe they stopped because we had people in the house and my body put the labour on hold as I was not feeling private and secure. We were excited but apprehensive about this being real labour. I went to bed and would wake up every hour or so with a contraction.
Monday 25th March 2013
Gestation 38 wks +4
Contractions – early labour
Next morning I told Chit that I was sure I was in labour now, and not just my uterus practising. Chit decided to stay at home with me and create the baobab tree space in our bedroom. This involved lots of cushions and blankets down by the side of the bed, with glow lights, birthing ball and Natal hypnotherapy music playing. The contractions were becoming more intense and I started relying on my breathing to help with the pain, deep breaths in through the nose and out the mouth as I learned. Chit also helped by massaging my lower back with every contraction ( I later learnt that Myla was slightly back to back and that was why the pain felt like it was in my back/bum!) We tracked the contractions with an app, and kept checking if there was any progress. The contractions were not consistent and would vary in strength and time. Chit knew it was important to keep my strength up and would make me great filling meals. In the night I could not sleep at all this time, and spent half of it jumping out the bed and waking chit up to massage my back, and the other half on the floor grabbing onto the bed with every contraction.
Tuesday 26th March 2013
Gestation 38 wks +5
Contractions – early labour every 5 mins
The contractions were still inconsistent for most of the day, and chit gave me a bell to shake for every contraction so he could run and massage my back! In the afternoon, the contractions seem to be picking up pace and were coming every 5 mins, so Chit rang the hospital and they asked us to come into triage. Once in hospital, they put me on a monitor to check Myla’s heart rate and my contractions. My contractions just about stopped when I arrived in the triage – I believe this was again about not feeling safe. As the contractions were every 5 mins and not consistently long enough the midwife sent us home. As soon as she said we could go home my contractions hotted up there and then! That evening I spent a lot of time in the bath, particularly in the night as I was getting no sleep. I found being on all fours or leaning onto the bed really helped with the pain.
Wednesday 27th March 2013
Gestation 38 wks +6
Contractions – 3 in 10 mins
By Wednesday I was getting tired and in the morning I started crying and retching to be sick. My contractions were 3 in 10 mins so Chit decided to take me back to triage. By 8am the midwife had checked me and I was fully effaced and 4cm dilated… so taken up to delivery suite (the birthing centre was still closed for refurbishment!) once there, chit set up the room with cushions, blankets and lights to make it feel more like home. He brought my bed pillow which was really great as I had my head in the pillow with every contraction and the familiar smell was comforting. He put up my photos of Sri Lanka and affirmations on the wall so I could focus on the beach which was my relaxation place. With sandal wood oil and forest sounds playing I felt much more relaxed! The day progressed slowly as I was only contracting half a cm every hour. Although the midwifes were concerned and wanted to discuss options every 4 hrs, I still did not want any intervention/drugs and felt positive that my body could do it. The midwife kept checking Myla’s heart rate and my pulse very 15 mins, and Myla was very happy throughout the whole labour. I could not lie down at all, so stood up with my body leaning over the bed. Although I was getting exhausted, this was the only position that worked for me. As Myla was slightly back to back I rocked and rotated my hips, and did some bouncing on the birthing ball to move her round. By the time I was 6cm I was allowed into the birthing pool. I had decided that I wanted a water birth, as water was such an effective pain relief for me. The pool was amazing and I did not want to come out the water. Chit stayed by the pool side and comforted me. I also had some gas and air but found it quite distracting from my breathing techniques. The breathing really helped with the pain; a vocal outlet came very naturally to me. Once I was 9cm dilated the midwife decided to break my waters to speed up the labour. As soon as my waters were broken, everything got very intense and felt the need to push. My contractions were slowing down as my uterus was tired and I had to make every contraction count and push for as long as possible. I had both midwives and Chit screaming at me to push, it sounded like a rowdy football match, but it worked and Myla came out 7.09 pm with cord wrapped once round her neck. I gathered her up from the water into my arms, and suddenly I felt like normal me again… talking to Myla and not tired in the slightest.
3rd stage Labour
I got out the pool to deliver the placenta while Chit had skin to skin with Myla. Myla was alert and peaceful all while she was having her checks and I was getting my stitches sutured, she only gave a little yelp when the vitamin K injection was given. As it was now late we had to stay overnight in the hospital. Chit had to leave so I was left alone with our new baby and tried to sleep (unsuccessfully as I was so concerned and fascinated by Myla). The next day Myla had her paediatric check, which she was diagnosed with slight Jaundice and her hearing test which she passed.
I was so pleased with Myla’s birth as it all went to plan and I got the natural birth I wanted. I attribute the mental strength needed to the natal hypnotherapy training I had, and it really helped reduce the pain. I believe the birth experience all helped towards Myla’s health and calm personality! I would even go as far to say … bring on baby number 2!
Helen – Watford