Wow where to start?
What a journey.. From the start I knew I wanted a home birth after a traumatic first birth.
I suffer pregnancy related tachycardia and this was a battle I had to fight to prove a home birth was the best place for me. I had a birth matters session with the head of midwifery who could completely see the benefits of home birth and was so positive and supportive and signed it off at around 33 weeks..
Then Corona hit!
Well, I did what I could and again spoke to another senior midwife who again was pro home birth who assured me she would do all in her power to help..
Due date week arrived and home births are back on!
On the morning of Saturday the 25th my lovely home birth midwife came to see me, I was 40 weeks and 4 days.. We discussed how everything will work, she told me the days she was on call and that Saturday as in tonight was one of them.. No pressure..
So we went for a walk to one of our favourite places and played hide and seek in the woods and chase in the fields!
The evening came and we put our son to bed.. Normally this is a 2 hour battle of going in to tell him to lay down or give him this and that.. Not this time.. He took his 2 dinosaurs to bed.. Played for an hour and fell asleep.
I got a bath and my contractions began! It was 9.30pm and I was contracting 50 secs every 3 mins… My husband suggested we got the pool going at 10pm as we have terrible water pressure worst case we could just empty it again tomorrow. Everything was good until I sat down.. My contractions stopped, an 8 or 10 min gap! But then the next time I stood up I’d have the biggest surge!
We decided at midnight ish to try sleep and if it was the real deal then surely id still contract. I managed about 45 mins of rest and in that time I had 3 strong and painful contractions. With the last one I decided to get up. I checked the pool to see it was really full! Our room was roasting too. I went out to turn the hosepipe off.
I had used hypnobirthing and the freya app to guide me with my breathing. At 2.40pm I rang labour ward to ask for advice as although the contractions were strong they were irregular and spaced out, plus if I sat down they disappeared.
After facing a difficult conversation with triage over whether I was allowed a home birth and her needing to read my notes she agreed to call my midwife. I was really angry about this but my husband encouraged me to let it go as to not affect my zone. At 3am my midwife rang and said she would come out. She arrived at 3.30am and just sat and observed. She rang for another midwife around 4am and she turned up around 5am.
I breathed through my surges with the help of my husband rubbing and applying pressure to the bottom of my back.
I was classed as in established labour at 5.15am when I asked for the tens machine putting on. I lasted for 30mins with the tens machine before deciding at 5.45am to get into the pool.
I went to the toilet one last time before deciding to get into the pool and I said I wanted to know how far dilated I was but I also didn’t want to know either. My midwife was perfect, she explained that she didn’t feel it was necessary, the plan wasn’t going to change and if I wasn’t established and we felt the water was having a slowing effect then I could just get out. This made complete sense and I got in. Wow the relief!
I had a contraction that felt so much better in the water, it made me regret not getting in sooner but then no more than a minute later another came. But it hurt! Something clicked and she dropped right into my pelvis, I transitioned.I said I couldn’t do it and I knew straight away what was happening. I asked for the gas which my husband presented to me at 6.10am.. It was heaven. I then had the most amazing experience, I felt everything. I felt my baby girl in the space of 1 or 2 contractions move through my birth canal, I have to admit, I did say after this movement “that better be her head out!” it was a painful sensation that felt like my whole body was opening up, however the pain was an amazing feeling. Indescribable. The midwife replied to say she could in fact see the head. During the next surge my body pushed her head out, the relief. My waters also went. The next minute I spent feeling my little lady turn, I felt every little bit.
The next minute 6.30am Brooke Erin entered the world!
It was so perfect. I leaned back and picked up her very little slimy body all 6lb 1 oz of it. The cord felt short and I felt I couldn’t lift her up enough to see what gender she was so we just rested.
Eventually, I gained the courage to reposition her little body and revealed she was in fact a girl!
I really wanted a physiological 3rd stage in the water but with the short cord felt I was best out of the water. I moved to the sofa and after nearly 40 mins my husband cut the cord and I asked for an injection. I was worried that my son had normally woken by 6.30am and if he was to come down now the environment wasn’t as I would have liked. I wanted to get cleaned up and any surgical equipment away. The placenta was delivered and I was checked to see if I needed any stitches. This check was the first time I had been examined through the whole thing so took me by surprise but I understand it was necessary and I had occurred a small graze and a 2nd degree tear. These were stitched whilst my husband tied her cord tie and we had a 20 minute feed.
All was cleaned up and put away, and I got some pj’s on just in time for my son to come down. Never in his life has he slept past 7.30am.. Yesterday he got up at 8.30am and didn’t come down until 9am to meet his baby sister! It was as if he knew.
There is probably some detail I have missed out but I just wanted to share with you my experience whilst I can remember the most amazing experience in my life!
Both my home birth midwife and the community on call midwife were perfect! I have to give special credit to my HB midwife/photographer! She captured the whole thing, I have images I will treasure forever!
I had an amazing golden hour with Brooke and she wasn’t weighed or checked over for almost 2 hours which was just perfect. We declined vitamin K as the birth was completely perfect and uncomplicated.
Victoria and Kelso, Batley