Billie's Labour and Delivery Story
I LOVE a good labour and delivery story. In fact I like a boring one as well, not that I find any of them boring. I often think I should have studied midwifery and it's such an interest of mine. Although I have watched so many episodes of 'one born every minute' and 'call the midwife' that I'm sure I could just start delivering babies. 😂
Billie was my first baby. I had a straight forward pregnancy and my plan for the birth was not to have a plan. I had never done this before and whole heartedly trusted, and still do, my obstetrician Neil. If anyone is in the Melbourne area and looking for a good obstetrician, I CANNOT recommend him HIGHLY ENOUGH.
I had been having a Braxton Hicks (pretend contractions) for what felt like months. I also had Pelvic instability (PI), which in short, feels like someone has kicked you in the vagina any time you walk more than 5 metres. The best part about it is that you are completely fine whilst walking, so you think your all good, then the minute to stop the pain begins.
A couple days before my due date we were with a group of friends and their kids. We had some brunch followed by a very slow walk along the beach whilst the children sped up and down on their rollerblades. In my head I knew the pain would come from the PI, but I didn't want to be the nag that made everyone stop. We returned home in the afternoon and I had some more Braxton Hicks, but was so used to them that I didn't think much of it.
At 5pm we met some other friends and their kids for dinner at Taco Bill, classy, I know. I continued to feel the Braxton Hicks although at this point started to realise they might be a little more. I didn't want to say anything in case they weren't. My darling husband Matt and our friend decided to start drinking Margaritas because we were at Taco Bill. I did mention that my due date was in a couple days (hint, hint) which he blew off saying this baby isn't coming before the due date...
We finished dinner by 8 at which time we got in the car, Matt commenting how I should definitely drive home because he was definitely over the limit. At which point I turned to him and informed him that I was definitely in labour. Knowing that it would take ages, we went home and Matt jumped on the treadmill. He ran for about an hour to try and sober himself up. 😂 I think it's difficult for men to know what to do at these times. He was excited and nervous and couldn't sit still.
10pm. The pain continued to get worse although I was confused about my contraction. I was having 2 side by side, then a longer break. I didn't know if I should be timing between the 2 close together, or the longer break. I was on the couch then moved to the bed to try and get more comfortable. My comfort movie is Harry Potter. I watch it when I'm happy, sad, angry, tired, hungry and in labour. Matt at this point was in his undies, cleaning the bathroom.
All the pain was in my back and I got Matt to start getting me hot water bottles which he replaced every half an hour. At one point he came in with a wet tea towel on his hand, when I asked him he just mumbled something about a little burn and continued to ask how I was going.
Midnight. I continued to watch Harry Potter and move through the contractions. We called the hospital and they said to basically wait until it was unbearable. Matt at this point was vacuuming the house.
1.30am. I decided that it was time to go and we got into the car. It was raining and I noticed that Matt had his window open and continued to collect the rain off the top of the car and put it on his hand. At this point he confessed that while filling up hot water bottles he had accidentally poured the boiling water directly onto his hand.
Once we got to the hospital they checked me and I was still only 3cm!!! Obviously pain is not something I tolerate well. The midwife was monitoring me and after checking the machine asked me if I had been having coupling the whole time. Apparently that is what it's called when you have the 2 close together, which is a sign of back to back labour. I asked for an epidural.
In my head I was a horrid bitch to everyone. the swear words rotating in my head were disgraceful. My midwife came and visited me a few days after the birth and told me that she had never had a more polite mother in labour.
After I had been given the epidural the pain decreased with every contraction until there was none at all. Matt at this time, knowing I was more comfortable now asked the nurse if she had anything for the angry burn on his hand. She said that they didn't because they were a maternity hospital. The only thing she could think of was giving him some of the perineal ice, which looks a little like a condom filled with ice...
The next few hours were very cruisy. I continued to watch Harry Potter (thank god for so many movies) and Matt had a sleep. Otherwise we chatted with the midwife about funny things we'd heard or seen and basically just hung out.
1pm. My midwife checked me and told me that I was 10cm but Neil, my Obstetrician was in theatre and would I mind waiting. I was so comfortable and my body was just naturally doing it's thing so I was really happy to wait. About half an hour later he came in and told me to start pushing. He explained that it could take a while because I had the epidural and it was common to need a little help from forceps or a vacuum. He left the room and I started pushing with the midwife. After the first set of pushes another midwife came in to see me in action. She left before I finished and about 2 minutes later Neil was back. He watched a set of pushes and told me that the next contraction the baby would be out. And just like that she was on my chest. 1.59pm. The rest was a bit of a blur. I held her, and absorbed this little person.
Neil had turned the epidural off after the birth and about an hour later I got up, a little shaky but was able to have a shower, get dressed and walk to my suite.
The whole experience was magical. I feel so lucky to have had this as my first birth experience. To this day, Matt still believe that he was in more pain than I was during the birth of Billie.