Moms’ Stories: My Labour Story
I’d like to share my labour story with all mums-to-be, especially any young mums-to-be.
I was 20 having my daughter, and it’s a very scary thing thinking about how you’ll cope with labour and what pain medication you want, etc – but I’m hoping this story keeps you calm and speeds up labour for you!
First of all, I just want to add that the estimated weights of babies are only estimates. I was told my baby was weighing six pounds at 30 weeks, which made me panic – I was thinking my baby would be a 10-pounder! But at 40 weeks and 3 days, my baby girl was born weighing 8lbs 4oz. Wait and see, they can never tell you for sure.
On December 3rd 2012 (my due date) I went into the hospital for a sweep, which are not as bad as people make out. Just breath through it. They are a bit uncomfortable, but that’s all. I was told to expect spotting and cramping, and both of these happened. As soon as the sweep was over I started getting cramping, this lasted 3 days, until December 6th. I was lying in bed at about 12pm and feeling fine, then I went to the loo and sat down and I felt a POP! My waters gushed into the toilet, followed by slight cramps – straight away I knew this was it, and the baby was coming.
We got up and rushed around getting my bag and everything ready, then I rang the hospital who told me to take my time and come in when I was ready to check if it was my waters. My brother arrived at 1pm to bring us to the hospital. By the time I got to the hospital about 15 mins later I had a constant, mild period-type cramp, and when I got up to the maternity ward they could tell I was in distress and was having discomfort.
They brought me into a ward on my own, my boyfriend had to wait outside, for what reason I’m not sure. They put two stretchy belts around my bump, one was to measure the intensity of my contractions and the other was to measure the baby’s heart beat. This lasted for 20 minutes and was the most uncomfortable time as sitting upright and not being able to move much just made the cramps seem worse. One hour later, I was still sat there waiting for a nurse to come round and examine me when all of a sudden, I just started pushing!
I shouted for a nurse, knowing if you push too early you can cause more damage than good. She came running, I told her that I needed to push, so she checked my contraction rate and said I was having a few “niggles” – I felt so disheartened! I wanted the epidural as soon as possible, at the time I was coping with the cramps very well and I didn’t want any pain meds, but when she said that it made me think I was only 2cm, or not even! But when she started walking away, I started pushing again, I couldn’t help it!
The midwife said “oh my goodness! I’ll examine you now!” – first she had to check my waters had actually gone, she barely touched me with the test and it turned green indicating it was my waters that had gone, which was good! Then I saw her face turn from calm to shocked in seconds, which made me panic, but it turns out she was shocked because I was actually 7cm dilated and my contractions were barely measuring on the monitor. I was also dilating very fast.
She put me into a wheelchair and brought me into the delivery room. I was sat wanting to push, but having to fight the urge. I couldn’t so they gave me gas and air to stop me pushing, which it did, but it also made me feel sick and dizzy so I decided to just fight the urge myself.
The midwife then told me, “you can start pushing with your next contraction”. I was terrified because it all happened so fast. I had only been at the hospital for two hours and already I was pushing! I pushed for one hour and 45 mins, it’s tough work! Make sure to bring a face cloth with you to keep you cool.
Then out came my gorgeous baby girl, Eve, at 5:02pm on December 6th 2012 weighing 8lbs 4oz, with lots of dark hair and big alert eyes. She was perfect! Completely healthy and it was like looking into a mirror as she was so like me. Instantly they gave me an injection into my leg to help the placenta come away, which I didn’t even know about because I was staring across the room at a beautiful baby girl getting weighed and dressed.
I had to get two lines of stitches on the inside, which you don’t feel at all because they numb the area, but you don’t even feel that injection because you’re too focused on your baby. Getting wheeled down to the ward and seeing my mum, dad and sister waiting for us was just lovely. Nothing mattered now because I had my perfect little family.
I hope this story lets you see that not all labours are really slow and excruciating like you see on the television! Just go with the flow. You’ll be fine. Trust your body. Trust in yourself. Breathe. Everything will work out for the best in the end. Once you have your baby in your arms, you become a stronger person and you realize that you will do anything in your power to protect your baby.
They change your life forever as soon as they are born, for the better. You will then understand the true meaning of love at first sight and unconditional love.
My daughter is now 18 weeks old and she is the best thing that has happened to my boyfriend and I. We love her so much, she makes everyday so much brighter.