· By Tiny Hearts Education
Meeting Primrose Oceia
Amidst the pandemic, we reached our 38-week midwife appointment, and it was the first hubby was allowed to attend. Despite this being our third baby, there was still a lot of anxiety and excitement.
My first two pregnancies I had pre-eclampsia and hypertension (resulting in fast labours. I'm talking 40 minutes for the first and 60 minutes for the second). This time my blood pressure stayed at a high normal stage, so I had extra scans and urine tests throughout. I had told Matt the evening before it felt like the baby's head was sitting in my vagina, I could barely sit and gave up on my exercise ball.
For the past six weeks, I had terrible reflux and leg cramps; I had barely slept. We went in for our appointment and was scheduled with a doctor (public hospital) to make a plan of being induced in case of another fast birth. As he checked baby's head, he said I was "very, very engaged" and organised for me to be sent up to get a CTG.
There were no signs of contractions, so one of the midwives did an internal audit, which ended in a stretch and sweep. I was 2cm dilated, and cervix was thick. Not taking any chances, they advised me to go for a walk and come back in 2 hours.
As I did laps of the hospital, slight cramps would come on but then would go once I stopped. 2 hours later there were still no contractions, so I was sent home but told to come in the next morning to be induced if nothing progressed that evening. They wanted to be able to control my birth as much as possible. The next morning, we went to be induced with kisses goodbye and excitement from our other two babes (4-year-old boy and 2-year-old girl).
I was induced with my first, and it was a very intense painful birth, so this time I went in prepping my husband that his one job was to get me an epidural finally. The other two we had no time for any drugs. The doctor assured me that this labour would take longer as I hadn't had my blood pressure issues and would expect a baby by the evening or possibly early the next morning.
Our midwife was a pure angel. At 9 am, she introduced herself, made some jokes, and straight-up asked if I wanted any pain relief. YES YES YES! She went off to call the anaesthetist, and he wanted to make sure I had the epi in before any drips were started to bring on contractions and my waters broken.
At this point, I was only 3cm dilated, and cervix was still thick. As I'm leaning over the bed to get my epi, hubby is meant to be holding me, so I don't move, (as we were instructed, any movement is bad and I needed to be as still as possible) - yet my body wouldn't stop moving. I looked up only to find my hubby on the verge of passing out from watching the whole process. In came another midwife to look after him, so the first midwife could take over holding me up!
At 10:30, my waters were broken, and the midwife said baby's head was so slow she was wedged in, and it took a bit of manoeuvring to break them. Apparently, she was so low that women start pushing from there! I was 6cm, but my cervix was still there, although it was thinning.
Bets of baby coming before the doctor got out of his meeting at 12 were being placed. I was told I would feel the pressure in my bottom still when the baby was coming but not the pain. I couldn't feel any contractions even though they were showing up on the CTG. This was sweet! They told me once I was in active labour, I would get a full dose of the epi - I just had to let them know when the contractions were coming in.
Matt, by this time, was sitting up in his chair with colour back in his face. It was 10:45 am when I started feeling intense pain in my vagina like my pelvis was being pulled apart. But no bum pressure. I just kept saying to Matt, oh yep I can feel pain like really intense pain, maybe I should tell them and get more relief.
When our two midwives came in to check on me, I told them, and they decided to check my dilation before any more pain relief. They said it was weird I was getting the vaginal pain but had one lady who had this and was in active labour. So as they checked me, I got the look, the look followed by the words "no more drugs, the baby is coming!"
Hey, I was just glad I had drugs this time and didn't feel every single inch of pain! There's something so empowering about giving birth! I feel like superwoman, and it helped I had amazing midwives that were so calm and allowed me to really listen for when to push and when to breathe. It was at this point another midwife popped her head in to see how her colleagues were doing to find I was pushing the baby out.
She asked my hubby if he'd like her to take photos for him (he was up patting my head like an animal at the kids petting zoo, he really doesn't do well in these situations! Not the best birth partner haha). Not only did I get photos, but I also got to pull the baby out myself.
And there was our sweet little Primrose Oceia in all her glory. Arriving at 11:44 am after 59 minutes of labour.
She went straight on the boob drinking for the first 2 hours of her life. I came through with just a graze and no stitches this time around. Georgia from Sutherland Hospital, if you're reading this, thank you again for empowering me and allowing me to have the most incredible experience of all three of my labours. I said this was my last, but maybe I want to go again now haha!