Okay, Birth Story Time...
I had been having days of serious Braxton Hicks and then days of nothing - it was infuriating LOL - I would think "Yes, this is it!!" then after 5 hours, it would peter off to nothing. ARGH!!
Then on Monday the 5th, the baby's actual due date according to ME (the doctors kept telling me that women never really know their due dates for sure unless they were IVF - pfft! What a joke!!) I had a lazy morning in bed as DragonPapa had been home for a week - it was lovely.
But I got up at 11am to have a shower and felt my waters run. No pop with this baby. So showered, got the birth pool ready (we had already trialed it the day before) and I kept moving this time. Spent lunchtime watching the storm roll over the city and getting photos of the lightning - well, trying to LOL. Got lots of lovely dark stormy weather photos at any rate :D
By 3pm, it was still just crampy nothingness - catch your breath kinda of thing. But we got to 4pm and suddenly, it went from catch your breath to Holy CRAP *sobbing* nnnnoooooooo! level in 2 contractions.
So I decided that it was time to get in the pool and see if that made any difference - nope. I normally head straight to water when I am sick or in pain and feel an immediate relief, but for some reason, labour just doesn't get relief in water - I have no idea why!
There wasn't as much water in the pool as I originally wanted, so maybe that was the reason?
So I was in the birth pool, in transition - sobbing and snotty are usually good indicators, lol. I turned to DragonPapa and said "Something doesn't feel right" - I couldn't put my finger on it, I just didn't feel 'right'. It was really hard to explain, especially as I was trying to explain it to DragonPapa in between very fast contractions.
Then suddenly, I felt my heart skip a beat. It is a very definite feeling if you have ever had it happen before. And I have. Thinking I had imagined it in the heat of the transition contraction, I continued on as normal. After two more contractions, it happened again and I found it hard to catch my breath.
By this time, my main support person had arrived. We discussed it and she agreed with me. Even if it was nothing, I was worried and not feeling 'right' so we made the decision to go to hospital.
Now, I am very much a believer in birthing where you feel safest. For majority of women, that is at hospital. For a handful of women, it is at home. But you must listen to your body and your instincts and mine were telling me that something was "off". So I got out of the pool, checked how far along I was - I was only about 4-5cm dilated, which told me that I was probably going to be a little while longer (if not quite a bit longer) even though I was feeling a little pushy.
In between contractions, we called the hospital to let them know that I was coming in and got dressed. I was already chuckling over how I was going to cope with contractions in a car. Ouch!
By this time, my other support people had arrived - we needed them to be here to watch Dragonett Lad and Lass. I had already managed to calm a panic attack before it got started, at having to go to hospital. I stood up to go to the car and promptly felt very faint and lay back on the couch. It was then that I felt my heart do its funny little skip again and it was decided that we should call an ambulance to be on the safe side.
While my support people were on the phone to the ambulance, I was feeling really crappy AND still having transition contractions - only now they had ramped up and were PUSHING CONTRACTIONS.
I was laying on the couch on my side, feeling very spacey and in awful labour. I remember my support person saying something about her being told to tell me NOT to push, the ambulance was just pulling up....pfft - I had NO control by then LMAO!
DragonPapa had been staying away helping with the kids, but he stepped up to help take off my pants - yeap, I was still wearing my pants from before, lol - and promptly got screamed at by me (sorry honey :D ) but off they had to come as Hatchling was on the runway. One leg out and held up, my support person was still on the phone to the Ambulance people. She was being told "On the next contraction, support the head" she was saying "Nope, already out..... nope, shoulders out too ...whoops gotta go, baby's completely out!" and literally dropped her phone (from her shoulder) to catch our Hatchling. I will always remember how it feels to have a baby move through my birth channel, it really is like nothing else.
Two massive pushes and Hatchling had arrived!! Born at 6.27pm, a whopping 2.5hrs from the first proper contraction, 7.5hrs from waters breaking. Born on her Due Date! And the Stickiest Vernex bubba I had EVER seen!!! Looked like someone had covered her in an inch layer of zinc from head to toe!!
The ambulance team arrived as my support person dropped her phone. They immediately got to work, checking me over. My wonderful support people held my space beautifully - skin to skin, delayed cord cutting, but I was out of it. I passed out for a minute mere seconds after Hatchling was born. But the ambulance team was brilliant. They did everything they needed to, yet still respected my birthing wishes. Perfect!
But I was still quite out of it, even after I came to. But I quickly regained myself and started to feel fine. I birthed the placenta nicely and the ambulance team got a lesson in home birthing as well - YAY!! They, along with my support team, checked over the placenta and then me and everyone agreed that I looked fine, bubba was doing perfectly. Minimal blood loss, my stats were looking good - so they felt fine about me staying home and off they went to their ambulance to finish up.
By this time, I realised that I was STILL wearing pants.... well, one leg anyway, lol... and I needed to rearrange everything under me - hadn't planned on birthing on the couch AGAIN, lol - so I stood up to remove my now birth-yucky clothes and collapsed back onto the couch.
Ambulance team were called back in - thankfully they were still sitting in the driveway, but this time, they couldn't get a good BP reading and I was feeling quite spacey, so it was decided that it would be best for me to be transferred. By this time, they had called another ambulance team in and as the reality of the situation hit me, I went into my first of many panic attacks. I was definitely going to hospital, I'm neither stupid nor a hero, but the thought of being a home birth transfer to the very hospital that instilled the first birth trauma on me combined with just giving birth AND feeling really bad meant I was NOT coping.
But the ambulance teams were perfect. My support team explained my situation to them and they were fantastic in supporting me as well. The storm had hit without my noticing and I barely noticed the rain on the way to the ambulance.
I was also given one of those green sucky pain sticks.....OH MY GOODNESS!! They are a bit nice, aren't they?? lol... to help control my after pains and my panic attacks. The Ambos kept me grounded and calm ( with the help of those lovely green sucky sticks lol) They even went into the ER first to give all my background to the ER staff to ensure a calm and smooth transfer for me. I was honestly truly blessed by the people around me that night!
DragonPapa followed with Hatchling in our car as Hatchling wasn't a patient herself, just me.
I ended up spending two days in hospital and we discovered that I had a blood count of 6.6 - the 'average' person should be up around the 10-11 count - basically, I had an unexplained and sudden haemoglobin drop - my iron bottomed out. It had all the markings of a massive bleed, but without actually HAVING a bleed - that's me, the Medical Head scratcher - lol.
So three bags in a blood transfusion and a nice count of 9.2 and off home I was sent.
It truly was a healing experience for me - and my support team as well. We all had our issues from past traumas, but this transfer was seamless and smooth and just as lovely as a transfer can be. ;)
From the Ambulance teams, to the ER doctors to the nurses who cared for me, everyone was calm and caring and supportive. All my issues were respected and my requests honoured. I felt in control and supported the whole time.
And my wonderful, wonderful support peoples - I couldn't have done this without them. From their physical support, to their mental support and even their families’ support, I can never repay them all. L, J and C - thank you from the very bottom of my heart, Thank You!!
But most of all, to my Husband, without whom none of this would have been possible. You are the rock on which I build my life. You are the life in this partnership and I love you with all my heart and soul!
Welcome Hatchling and know that you are loved!!
(as always, I will updating this as I remember things - this is simply a retelling of what happened, hopefully I can come back soon and fill it out with feelings and emotions later)