It’s a boy!
Tate William was born on 23rd November 2015 at 4.27am. He was an unexpectedly big boy at 4140g (9 pound 2 ounces) and 52cm long.
Tate kept us waiting an extra 8 days past his due date, the longest 8 days of my entire life (my 30th birthday occurred in there somewhere too!). Now this next part I have tossed up whether I include, but I feel like I want a record of this for myself, so here goes, this is the story of my son’s birth!
From the moment I found out I was pregnant I started reading up on the process of labour, how it would start, what I could do (if anything) to make the process less painful and avoid interventions. I had never experienced serious pain, never broken a bone etc. but wanted to experience a natural labour if at all possible. How my labour panned out though, I could never have imagined!
I was due on the 15th November, for some reason my husband and I never imagined that I would still be pregnant on this date, or any day after, silly really as first time pregnancies regularly go overdue! So when the 15th came around and I went to bed with not even a twinge we were both pretty disappointed. Overnight I woke with cramps that, when timed, actually became quite regular! They were still mild so I tried to rest, thinking it might be the start of a long labour. Imagine my dismay when I woke the next morning to zero pains, zero contractions of any type? I had an appointment with my obstetrician that morning, who despite my desperate concern, did not seem at all worried that I was how overdue (by a whole day!).
On the night of Wednesday the 18th I again had cramps that became regular, then petered out to nothing by the next morning, which happened to be my 30th birthday. This was a day I did not enjoy, I was emotional, in pain, enormous and so very impatient to meet my baby. Little did I know that all these mini contractions were adding up to a drawn out pre-labour.
I went to bed on Sunday the 22nd determined that I would be asking my obstetrician for an induction at my appointment the next morning. I had read up on the pros and cons and decided I couldn’t possibly wait another day! At 11.56pm I felt what was undoubtedly a ‘real’ contraction, maybe I wouldn’t need that induction after all?
The contractions continued, I could no longer lie in bed and time them, as the intensity increased I jumped in the shower when they were about 4-5mins apart. At about 1.30am I woke Michael up and asked him to call the hospital, just to let them know we would probably be coming in that night. The shower was no longer working, so I jumped out, contractions continuing to get stronger and closer together. It was at about this time that I vomited e v e r y w h e r e !! I was also experiencing some bleeding, not a small amount either, think post delivery type bleeding. We called the hospital back and when I explained this, they asked us to come in. So at about 2.45am we packed ourselves into the car, made sure the dog had food and water until the morning (well I didn’t, I was a little occupied) and we made our way to hospital. Now this trip normally takes 7 minutes, but with contractions coming every 2-3 minutes that I couldn’t sit through, we constantly stopped for me to walk them out on the side of the road. There is one particular bus stop that I can’t drive past now without flashbacks of a feeling to push!
Once at the hospital everything became a bit of a blur, I was taken to a delivery suite straight away where I was hooked up to a foetal monitor due to the bleeding, that put an end to my pacing or using the shower for relief. With just a fit ball next to the bed to bounce on, I was very apprehensive when the midwife offered to check how dilated I was. If I was only 4cm how was I ever going to continue without serious pain relief? To everyone’s surprise I was 10cm! I had pretty much laboured at home for the whole thing, arriving at the hospital just in time to push! I ended up on my knees on the bed, leaning over the raised end for the whole final stage. I have no idea, but I think I pushed for about 30mins before my 4.1kg (9.2 pounds) son was delivered straight into my arms at 4.27am, I got to announce his sex and hold him first, which was pretty amazing!
So in summary, I was very very fortunate to experience a 4.5 hour labour without any drugs or other interventions and delivered a healthy baby. I did lose quite a bit of blood overall and ended up with a 2nd degree tear, but immediately after I felt like superwoman! My husband cut the cord and we enjoyed several hours of skin to skin time alone in the delivery suite that morning, getting to know our new son.
The days of pre-labour and 41st week of pregnancy were both worth the pain in the end as I experienced a low stress, fast birth where I was able to manage the pain and trust my body, this is something that I am very grateful for.