I joked with a friend prior to her birthday party on Saturday 3rd October 2015 that I was uncertain of my attendance, as I might be in labour or in hospital…Instead, I attended her party, became the photographer for the day & everyone there couldn’t believe you were due in the next few days
I had joked on Facebook on Sunday 4th October 2015 that I was now ready for your arrival after sleepless nights, twitchy legs and an overall uncomfortable feeling.
On Monday 5th October 2015, I awoke at 4.30am to run to the bathroom for my umpteenth night pee when I suddenly realized that there was liquid running down my legs before I had even got to the toilet. My first reaction was *I pee-ed myself*, my second reaction was *I thought there would have been a popping sound if my water had really broken and that I would have felt it at least*.
So I waddled through to our bedroom (as those days, I would often move to the spare bedroom in the wee hours when I couldn’t sleep, worried that my tossing & turning would affect HIM’s sleep.
HIM was already awake – almost ready for me to say *It is time*. Instead I said “I think my water broke, do you think we should go to the hospital?”, while his response was “you think? Of course, we go”.
But before we could leave, I had to peel off my wet pajama pants (which I placed into a plastic bag to take with to the hospital, as I had read that they can test the liquid) and take a shower. Lets be honest, who wants to go to the hospital with dirty hair? And of eyeliner… and before you ask, No, I wasn’t having contractions and the hospital was all of 5minutes drive away.
At 5am, we arrived at Ixelles Hospital, got buzzed into the delivery ward and were greeted by a wonderful mid-wife (who thankfully spoke English as well as French). She checked me out and informed us that my water had not broken but I did in fact have a tear and was 5cm dilated.
My response: “Can I go home”, to which she laughed and told me that I would be having a baby that same day.
They then moved HIM and I into another delivery room and got us settled, taking my blood pressure (which was very high), putting me on a drip, putting 2 monitors on me (one around my belly for the monkey’s heartbeat and one higher up) and then bringing us both a cup of tea (mine was super sugary, but I was told that I would need the energy later).
At this point, I had a few contractions – but what I would like to describe as *bad curry cramps* and they would come and go. When they came, HIM and I would stare at the monitor screen and guess the number that would be associated with it. Sometimes I would say “oooh, this is a strong one” and then we would see if the number was higher than the previous contraction.
At my last check up, my Doc had asked if I wanted an epidural. I didn’t. I was 99% sure that I didn’t want one. HIM was against the whole concept but was completely supportive in a way that if I needed one, he would understand. I also knew that I had no idea the level of pain and I couldn’t be 100% sure that I wouldn’t ask for one… but figured that I would cross that bridge when I came to it. My Doc had smiled and was pleased with my answer, and had said that the thing with labour pain is that you know WHY your are in pain and you know HOW LONG it will last (i.e. contractions are normally 1minute long) and active labour being a few hours at most, whereas with other pain in our bodies, we don’t know the reason or for how long it will last.
At 8am, the mid-wife came in check on me – to find that I was 8cm dilated and said that I was *textbook* (1cm for every hour). That pleased me 🙂 And they were now going to get the room ready for your arrival! I wasn’t convinced that you were going to be coming so soon – but what did I know.
In order to get the room ready, they asked that HIM walk with me up and down the corridor in the delivery ward, but as I took a step outside the door, I started to feel very nauseous and HIM went to fetch me something to puke into if I needed it. I needed it. Within a minute, I was puking. So much so, that I rushed back into our delivery room, into it’s bathroom and stood over the toilet puking. And suddenly, like a balloon being popped – my waters really did break!
What a sight… liquids spewing out the top & bottom!
The next 2 hours are a bit of a blur – I remember being on my all fours on the labour table, holding onto the head of the bed. I remember HIM mopping my brow with a cold wet cloth. I remember contractions rolling over my whole body and grunting out the funniest noises. I remember HIM giving me words of encouragement, telling me how brave and fantastic I was, telling me that I wasn’t only his Princess, but I was now a Queen. I remember the pain in this position becoming so overwhelming that I had to turn over and lie on my back. I remember my legs shaking uncontrollably and the midwife telling me that it was because you were moving your way down.
And then, with my legs pushing against the mid-wives shoulders, she told me to keep my bum on the bed but to push… and I did. Nothing. But her words of support and encouragement “that is one less push to do” along with HIM’s gave me the strength to do it. And before I knew it – this great release happened and suddenly you were there.
They placed you on my chest while they encouraged me to give birth to the placenta. This was probably the hardest part – you were here – so in my mind, the job was done. But I had to dig deep and continue pushing. I did not want the mirror to see you being born, but I was interested to see the placenta when it finally came out. They cleaned me up and then took your measurements.
5 fingers, 5 toes