Where do I start? I know these birth stories are supposed to be positive and for the most part mine is, but I also wanted to add the niggly bits, the bits I didn’t want to happen but had to because I want to tell the whole story and be truthful.
If you haven’t heard me harp on about hypno birthing on Instagram and my blog, then I can tell you that was my saviour. I was petrified of ever being pregnant and giving birth, which is why we haven’t done it before now. I’m scared of having medical procedures so giving birth where I might require some kind of intervention, was pretty scary!
Hypno birthing however, calmed me. It taught me all the things that might happen, how the body adapts and gives birth, breathing techniques and that we always have a choice in how we want things to play out.
This is why we chose a home birth. Home is my safe, place not a hospital. And safe means oxytocin which in turn means no adrenaline and hopefully a lovely natural birth.
My birth story started on Tuesday June 16th at 3am. I woke up with aches which then disappeared and came back every 15 minutes or so. I didn’t wake Richard up I just tried to relax in bed. When he woke up I’m not sure either of us believed it was starting. We weren’t due until June 20th and first babies especially in my family have always been up to two weeks over. Maybe it was the big walk we’d done the weekend before or the Thai curry I’d cooked the night before 😀
The cramps never went away and I needed to go the post office to post some Depop clothes so we turned that in to a walk around town to keep me moving. I called my mum and dad as the covid 19 rules had now changed and we could have someone in our bubble. I needed my mum to come for the birth. My sister had laughed thinking I’d be like this for a few days yet.
By my mum arrived at 6pm I was on the birth ball getting what I now know we’re contractions (or surges in hypno language) every 4-10 minutes. At 7pm we’d had to ring the midwife to get ready to come for the home birth.
Richard set up our birthing pool so tranquil and cosy. It was dimly lit with candles everywhere…. in our kitchen! The midwife checked my cervix on arriving and I was 3cm dilated. We’d bought loads of labour snacks like cheese, fruit and nut bars and crisps as knowing myself, I thought I’d be snacking all the way through. Shockingly I ate nothing only a crisp they forced me to try and have which immediately gave me nausea!
Now I can’t remember a lot of details but I know my waters wouldn’t ever break which didn’t help later on. Once I reached 5cm I progressed quickly to 10cm and was allowed in the pool by early hours. That’s when I needed some gas and air. The issue I had was the waters and pushing. By 5am, baby was getting tired and so was I. The midwife rang an ambulance which immediately made me give up on the situation. It was the right decision though for us both and they were also worried the baby was going to be tiny.
The thing I really didn’t want to happen though was now happening. I was getting blue lighted to hospital. Richard followed in the car. I was exhausted and too busy concentrating on contractions in the back of the ambulance to panic. We were seen immediately in the emergency room by an amazing doctor who straight away offered me an epidural, episiotomy and forceps until she saw one of my contractions and the baby crowning and opted for ventouse instead (thank god). Thanks to hypno birthing, I politely declined the epidural I was adamant I never wanted and an episiotomy was carried out under local anaesthetic, which was absolutely fine! I was actually able to discuss with the doctor how vets do the procedure in cows as she cut 😂
It was the aftermath where things got frightening. Wilfred entered the world at 5.40am to my shock at him being a boy. I didn’t even have chance to see his face properly as he was placed on my chest immediately with no issues but my placenta followed too quickly and that’s when I haemorrhaged. I couldn’t see but I could hear it happening and the doctors and nurses shouting for coagulant drugs we use in veterinary medicine. The first two injections didn’t work and I was feeling hazy so I had to have a continuous infusion which eventually stopped the 1.3 litre haemorrhage.
All was ok! Wilfred was healthy with no issues at all and I was eventually ok. They say the tea and toast post birth is the best ever but I was exhausted and still nauseous. Richard was allowed to stay for a coffee only due to covid, but then I was on my own, having to stay in because of the haemorrhage. He didn’t see me or Wilfred again until 6pm on the 18th when we were eventually allowed home.
One thing I’d say is I think I got quite fit for me during pregnancy only thanks to having the time in lockdown, walking loads and daily yoga and Joe Wicks. I honestly think it all helped me get home quicker from hospital.
I’m so glad I did 26 hours in my own home with Richard, my mum, a lovely midwife and a warm pool and I’m so glad the ambulance was available and the doctor was amazing. The fact I never wanted to go to hospital is absolutely ok because it was still a such a positive experience, still a natural birth with a bit of help and that to me is amazing. I have no idea why I needed to be so petrified.
“He is a belter”
Wilfred Alwyn Tubb, June 17th, 6lb 8oz
The Vogue Vet