Home Birth Story – The Berry

Well if you haven’t guessed by now with my lack of posts since last week, the berry has made their appearance! I’m sure you are eager to read my birth story, so here goes…

Friday 28th February

Today was my actual due date going by my scans, rather than my dates which I have been using in my diaries. Around 6.30 am I noticed mild pain leading me to think contractions had started. Hubby had already gone to work but I didn’t want to get him home just yet just in case it was a one off. They quickly got a little stronger though so I rang him at 7 am to come home from work as soon as he could. I got on the exercise ball to help a bit with the pain and started timing. They were coming anywhere from 5-10 minutes apart but I rang the labour ward anyway as I was having a home birth. They got in contact with my team of midwives who called me and said to call them when they were more regular.

When hubby got home I got in the bath for a while to ease the pain and he took little man to our neighbours to play with her daughter. After my bath, annoyingly the contractions eased off around lunchtime and I was only having one around every 90 minutes! I was still feeling really tired though so I was just on & off the ball whilst entering competitions to put people off the scent! I went for a nap mid afternoon as I was becoming irritated by now and I knew I would need some energy for later (hopefully). Little man came home around 4.30pm, had his tea & a play then went to bed. The contractions were still coming fairly randomly, but closer together again.

I was determined baby wasn’t going to keep me hanging on for as long as little man did so I sent hubby to get a hot curry! I must admit I wasn’t really expecting it to work but not long after I finished eating, the contractions started coming on more regular – around every 9 mins – though mild again. We were both tired so we went to bed at 8.30 pm and around 9.30 pm they were getting stronger, so I rang the labour ward again who told me to get in the bath to bring them on even quicker and stronger then ring back. They then started coming pretty regular every 5 minutes and really strong – I could also feel it in my back now so I rang them back around 11.30 pm and they got in touch with the on call midwife who rang me and asked me if I felt like I wanted her yet – oh yes! 

Saturday 1st March

Whilst waiting for the midwife the contractions got down to around 4 minutes apart and she arrived not long after 12 am Saturday morning. To my delight it was the same midwife who delivered little man – maybe it was fate! I was having a land birth rather than a water birth so I was just on the bed – I really didn’t want to move anyway! I’d taken 2 paracetamol not long before she arrived as the pain was getting unbearable. She went through what had been happening then examined me and I was 6 cm with bulging waters so she got setting up and bringing her stuff in from the car. She rang her student who wanted to take part in a home birth, and also another midwife. Meanwhile I was feeling the urge to push and I couldn’t help but do it – at this point my last ounce of dignity well and truly left left me, and well, the rest is TMI and the midwife had to clean me up!

The midwife asked if I felt like I needed the gas & air yet which I did, so her & hubby got to setting it up. Whilst they were doing this, around 1.30 am I was still having the urge to push though trying not to, then my waters popped and a couple of minutes later she told me baby’s head was crowning – I didn’t believe her as I barely felt it so I had a feel myself, and there it was (still as strange the second time around). At this point I said to them both I just know it’s a boy. The midwife told me on the next contraction to just do short pushes, and so on the next push baby’s head popped out. I continued pushing with each contraction and at 1.39 am out popped baby – it was all very quick so I didn’t even use the gas & air! I asked hubby what it was and he said a boy – mummy instinct again! So little man #2 was passed to me for skin to skin and we waited for the cord to stop pulsating before hubby cut it, then waited for the placenta. 

Unfortunately the student didn’t make it so the midwife called her, and I asked her to say sorry! I was examined to check for tearing and to see if all of the placenta had come away. The midwife thought I had a slight tear but she wanted a second opinion so waited for the second midwife, who arrived not long after. It turned out I hadn’t torn but it was little bit of tissue still in there, so I puffed on the gas & air whilst they got rid of it. I only had slight grazing on my perineum so didn’t require stitches – phew, I was dreading that again! 

The midwives left the 3 of us to have some time on our own whilst they went and had a cuppa and brownies which I’d made especially! When they’d finished, one of them helped me to the shower whilst hubby and the second one cleaned up, then I got back into bed. Hubby helped them load their stuff into the car, then they left at 3.30 am and we all went to sleep – little man slept through it all in the next room! 

Birth Story – Little man J

Can’t believe I am finally writing this! Be warned it’s a long one as I do like to rabbit on… 

Saturday 17th March
I was 6 days overdue now, and was getting mega frustrated as most of you know! Well about 3.30pm just as we were about to pop into town, I started getting awful back pains, and period type pains again. We went out anyway as I thought walking might help move it along a bit. We got home and hubby went to work so I spent some of the night bouncing on my ball as usual. Then we had a takeaway (oops!) when he got home and I went for chilli sauce as I thought that might help things along a bit too!

Sunday 18th March
I woke up at 8.15 with awful pains low down which didn’t feel like BH and felt worse than period pains, I thought ‘Oooh this must be it!’ so I rang hubby at work and told him I thought contractions had started, and then started timing them on my phone. They ranged anything from 3 mins apart to 25 mins apart so I thought it was another false alarm. I didn’t bother ringing the delivery suite as I was booked in for a stretch & sweep at 2pm at the midwifery centre anyway. The contractions carried on and hubby came home, I made sure everything was ready just in case, hubby did a bit of tidying up and I just bounced and walked about a bit. 

So we went for my check up and sweep, told the mw that I thought I’d been having contractions. She then did my sweep and said I was about 3-4cm dilated, so I was right, something was actually happening! She booked me in for induction on Wednesday anyway, though she said I probably wouldn’t need it! Just when we were about to leave hubby said ‘So what we having for tea?’ We both burst out laughing as it was so random in the middle of talking about induction and labour! Typical hubby though! 

When we got home my contractions started getting closer together and more regular, every 3-5 mins and lasting from 50-60 secs, and I had a bit of a show. So we rang the del suite and she said to get in the bath and stay there for half an hour, making sure the water was 2/3 up my bump or pouring water over it; they eased off in the bath but started again as soon as I got out. She said to do this as if I went and wasn’t any more dilated they would just send me home, though I told her what the mw had said and that I had had a bit of a show. My backache was really painful now and contractions kept getting more painful. So I rang back and they said to go in and they would check me over.

We arrived about 6pm, I had my BP checked which was a little high, and then I was examined, I was 5cm by now. Then the mw said ‘What do you want to wear to give birth in?’ and hubby said ‘Are we staying?!’, um yes, obviously! So he went and got the bags from the car, then I got changed. All the time contractions and backache were getting worse. They had the changeover and we had a really lovely MW take over. I got on the ball and bounced a bit but it was hurting a lot now, so I just walked around a bit instead. I went to the loo and had an actual proper big show, felt like it wouldn’t stop! I had to just get on the bed eventually, and hubby went and asked for some pain relief for me, so was given the gas & air and got laid on my side. Not sure of the exact time but it must have been about 8/9 o clock. The contractions and backache kept getting worse & worse. My waters still hadn’t gone by this point. Time went on and I started feeling like I wanted to push. 

Monday 19th March
She kept examining me and I was getting more & more dilated, again not sure of time (though I kept asking what time it was!) but sometime after midnight, I was 9cm, and stayed like this for a while and I kept saying I couldn’t do any more as the backache was horrendous by now, and she kept telling me it was just baby going further down. Anyway I kept on the gas & air (still no other pain relief), and hubby kept giving me water through a straw. Between contractions I kept falling asleep and nearly dropping the gas & air which woke me up! Sometime between half 2 & 3 o clock I was so exhausted and my waters still hadn’t broke and I was no more dilated, and I just kept crying and said I couldn’t do it, so she decided to break them for me. So around 3am I started pushing. At first I wasn’t doing it ‘right’ but soon got the hang of it, though it gave me an enormous headache and I also kept saying about my backache and that I just couldn’t do it any more! Baby’s head eventually started to show, and she called hubby to come and look, and I had a feel, which was amazing. By now his heart rate was going down and he was obviously distressed and she got a little firm with me (as did hubby) and said I had to get him out. I knew this but I was in so much pain, obviously! Still had only been on gas & air, and pushed a few more times… Eventually I gave a real big push and his head popped out and he started wanting to cry! A couple more pushes and he was born onto my tummy at 3.35 am! I burst into tears and looked at hubby and said ‘He’s beautiful’, I just couldn’t believe he was finally here! Hubby cut his cord which he had wanted to do. We had skin to skin then they took him away to get weighed (7lb 8.5oz!) and dressed, and the mw called someone else as some of the membrane of my placenta was still inside. They eventually got it out, and then she told me I had raggedy 2nd degree tears and had to be stitched up, and I started crying again! I was still crying and complaining of a headache and that I was sore.

So hubby had J whilst
 I was stitched up by 2 doctors. I was given a local anaesthetic but puffed on my gas & air while they injected it as I was so sore. In total they took about 20/25 mins, near to the end it started hurting again so they gave me more local. My BP was still high too.

When that was finished we had some breakfast and then we had a cuddle with all 3 of us and a couple of pics taken! We had some skin to skin and tried to get him to BF but it just wasn’t happening, so we left it a while. They had another changeover and the mw ran me a bath, but I had to go do my first wee before that. I could hardly do anything as it was so sore, so she said I could try again later. I stood up from the toilet and nearly fainted, I was so dizzy and my eyes felt all funny, I was going hot & cold, so just sat back on the toilet until it passed. We decided an assisted wash on the bed would be better for me so that’s what we did. Around 8.30am I was taken to the postnatal ward.

Anyway, I had to stay in overnight as my BP was still high, and my iron levels were low, so started on tablets. I had to stay in until Wednesday, and was only really allowed home I think because hubby kept nagging as I was in tears most of the day on Wednesday as I just wanted to go home! Especially as I was still struggling to BF which was stressing me out. We both decided in the end to FF. The doctor came to see me and said that everything apart from my iron levels had improved, and they were that low it meant either a blood transfusion or iron tablets were required, and obviously a blood transfusion isn’t without its risks so iron tablets it was. And so if the mw OK’d it I could go home. So at 6 o clock I was allowed home packed with paracetemol, diclofenac & iron tablets! 

As for me now, I’m still sore and still really tired and occasionally dizzy etc. from the low iron, but hubby is taking care of me and I’m getting there.

All in all, I had a 19.5 hour labour, with only gas & air for pain relief!

First family photo