By Tiny Hearts Education

Meeting Gabriela

It was 22 June 2021, my due date, and there was no sign of bub arriving anytime soon. I was booked in for my last appointment with my midwife at 9 am that morning.

We spoke about how I was feeling, last-minute things to pack in my hospital bag, the possibility of being induced if bub hadn’t arrived in the next few days, and then I had the routine assessment. Bub was in the perfect position, and it was evident I was having quite a few Braxton hicks contractions. My midwife checked my blood pressure, and this is where the story begins!

My blood pressure was super high, and I was found to have protein in my urine. This raised alarm bells for my midwife, and I was sent straight away for another blood test and sent to the antenatal ward for a further assessment as I was told there was a high chance I had developed pre-eclampsia. The blood test results confirmed there was a spike in protein in my blood/urine. I was up in the antenatal assessment ward, and a doctor had come to talk to me about induction and recommended that I stay in hospital and be induced that night, at 5 pm. I called my husband straight away and explained what had just happened, and he left work right away, stopped by home to get my hospital bag and met me at the hospital soon after!

Things were happening! And fast! I had never felt so shocked and unprepared. I was struggling to wrap my head around that this was actually happening. I was about to have my baby!

5 pm came by, and I was induced by the cervidil tape. I was told I would be checked in the morning to see how my cervix was progressing. I expected the contractions to kick in within a few hours, but to my surprise, I felt nothing. It was 6 am, and my midwife came to check on me. The cervidil tape had fallen out of place, which meant nothing had happened. My cervix was soft but still closed. My midwife repositioned the tape and said she would check on me in a few more hours. We waited another 6 hours, and at 12 pm, I had another check on my cervix, and to all of our surprise, I was only 1cm dilated. I was then told I needed to be induced with the balloon and have that in place throughout the night and in the morning. If I was dilated enough, they would be able to break my waters. I had the balloon inserted around 6 pm that night. It was the most excruciating pain to have it inserted as I had a posterior cervix, so I was given the gas for pain relief. That made me feel super high and nauseous! I was exhausted! This is when the contractions really began to get a lot stronger.

I was labouring in my back which was unbearable for me. Since I wasn’t in active labour, I was only able to have a heat pack or use the shower for pain relief. The shower was my best friend at that point. It was then 10 pm, and I was drifting to sleep when I felt a gush of water! My waters had broken!! I was moved to the labour ward straight away, and I asked for the epidural! The team of midwives and doctors were amazing and administered the epidural within 10 minutes. I was then placed onto the hormone drip, put into all different kinds of positions with the peanut ball and was hooked up to the CTG monitors. The epidural was instant pain relief, and I was able to get some much needed rest throughout the night. I was told Thursday would be the big day!

My cervix was checked in the early hours of the morning, and to my disappointment, I was still 1cm dilated. This was the first time the possibility of a c section was mentioned to me. I had never processed that this would be a possibility for me before, and I was asked how I felt about it. I asked if we could just up the hormone drip and wait a few more hours to see if anything else happens. That’s exactly what we did! A few more hours passed, and it was 8 am. My midwife checked my cervix again (to which I was so excited I would be at least 3/4cm by now). I was around 1/2cm. Not the progression my midwife was hoping for. I was gutted!

She called in the doctor, and I was told there was no other option but to opt for an emergency c section. Within minutes I was being prepared for a c section. I had the spinal block inserted, hubby put on his scrubs, and I was wheeled to theatre. Due to all the drugs I was on, everything was a bit of a blur at this point, but I was relieved and excited I was minutes away from meeting my baby girl. It was 9.34 am on 24 June 2021, and I heard my baby’s cry for the first time. I had finally given birth to my beautiful baby girl, Gabriela Aliyah Ross.