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Birth Story of Oliver Alexander Robinson - 8lb 6oz 29/02/12

On the 19th February I went into hospital at 37 weeks with contractions that were 2-3 mins apart lasting 40-50 seconds and they were hurting! I was put on the monitor and given an internal and told that I was 1-2 cm. At this point a mother would usually be sent home but because I was 'high risk' with GD, antibodies and a heart murmur they decided to keep me in for two nights and monitor me. I honestly felt like a prisoner as by the next morning I was still contracting every 10 minutes but they were not bad at all so it was obvious nothing was happening. I went home on the 21st and continued to contract mildly every 10 minutes until my scheduled induction on 29th Feb. During that time it wasn't too bad but on 3 occasions the contractions really took off again for 4-5 hours and then stopped. I also felt the baby move down and engage twice which I didn't expect! These 10 days were really tough and working with my breath and taking time out every day to relax as in class was so helpful in keeping my mind positive, it did become hard to believe that each contraction was taking me closer to my baby when it lasted for Oliverso many days!

On the 29th February we went in for the induction. At 9am I was put on the monitor and could see that it was still picking up my mild contractions which was nice (so I knew it wasn't all in my head!). At 9.30am they gave me an internal to see what they needed to do. I couldn't believe it when they said I was 3-4cm (the contractions WERE taking me closer to my baby) and she then broke my waters so easily. We were told to go for a walk and come back at 10.30am for a check and then again at 11.30am if I wasn't 6cm by 11.30am they would start the drip.

We went for a walk across to the hospital shop and on the way there I probably had 3 contractions and each one was stronger, on the way back I had about 8 and they were stopping me in my tracks at one point in the middle of the road! I was really having to breath through these, it helped my keep control knowing that in 4-6 breaths it would be over. I went to the loo in the main area of the hospital and the pain felt different! I told my hubby that we needed to go back up and put the tens on. It was only 10.15am at this point.

We got upstairs put on the tens and I was pacing, leaning over the bed and trying to breath through the pain, I did feel a bit panicked at one point but being told not to panic helped me refocus by breath and get through it. The midwife came in and was amazed how quickly things were kicking off, she offered me some paracetamol, when she came back with the pain killers she said she was going to start me on the g&a. Whilst also giving me a sheet to read about epidurals which at this point I was happy to have ? I believed that my pain thresh hold must be incredibly low to be in this much pain so soon. The g&a was nice and put a glow on things, it gave me something to concentrate on which helped and it didn't hinder my controlled breathing. When she next came back she took one look at me and decided to move me to the delivery suite, luckily they had a mobile g&a tank available as I would have rather given birth there than leave that! I felt bad for the 3 other ladies on the induction suite (in between contractions) as they weren't even in early labour yet and I was giving them a show of what was to come!

We arrived at the delivery room, and this is where things do get hazy, but I believe this was about 11:15am. The new midwife wanted me straight on the bed for checking - I couldn't understand this as surely I had ages to go! She had me kneel on the bed and felt around my tummy and bikini line and declared I was almost ready to push. I then realised I wasn't getting an epidural, I kind of went into myself to deal with this realisation and just get through it. Turns out I must have a high pain thresh hold ? who knew! It had been annoying me when hubby and the MWs had been telling me how well I was doing as I thought 'how do you know?! I might still be 5cm and being rubbish!'.

So after about an hour of contractions and getting things ready we were ready to push. That feeling of pushing is something I thought I would never forget, but it seems to be fading in my memory already. I felt more like my insides were pulling and I was going with it rather than pushing and in between contractions we had to keep pushing me back up the bed else I would be on the floor. My MW was excellent telling me to listen to my body and do what it says. My little boy was born after 30 minutes of pushing and Gareth got to tell me that our yellow bundle who everyone thought was pink was blue! We had skin to skin straight away and we waited for the placenta which literally flew out after 18 minutes, the MW just caught it as it was about to fly off the bed which wouldn't have been good as it was still connected to Oliver!

My quick labour seemed to have shocked my body as unfortunately the placenta was followed by 3 pints of blood and suddenly there were 7 docs and nurses around me. I didn't really know what was happening but it gave Oliver and Daddy some skin to skin time. So after a recorded 2 hr 23 minute labour, a transfusion (6.2 iron levels) and 2 nights in hospital we are home and so happy.

I can't believe how quick my labour was for a first baby and some people have said to me that they were sorry it was traumatic. But I don't think it was, I was convinced I would have a long or failed induction and am so happy and proud of myself. I would never have thought I could deliver on g&a only and never really expected myself to. The breathing techniques helped as did knowing to focus the sounds I made lower for pushing and my husband kept reminding me to do this. Looking at it in hindsight I can see how an epidural would hinder labour and know that the fact my labour was so active without strong pain relief made it quicker.

Oliver is amazing, breastfeeding like a champ and melting my heart every moment I look at him. He came out with the most beautiful red hair which is now turning blond and I cannot describe his smell, I wish I could bottle it!