I will start with a little about us. My partner and I had been together about three years, and I have always wanted to have kids and my partner as well. In my mind there was going to be no discussion about who was giving birth to any and all of our children as my partner, whilst she did want children, she did not want to give birth to them. Me on the other hand, I was so desperate to have children, that if I had to give birth to them myself then so be it. It was a very easy straight forward discussion that went something like this: she just got home from work and I said, “I want to have a baby. She said, OK make the appointment” and I did! I fell pregnant first go from IUI (intra uterine insemination). It was that simple.
Anyway, pregnancy was easy for me, I had no morning sickness, heaps of energy but I was huge. I was huge when I fell pregnant, but I got bigger and I was really uncomfortable, so as far as pregnancy goes I was uncomfortable, but had no worries or concerns at all.
I went into labour on the 08/04/2010, at about one thirty in the morning I think it was. I wasn’t totally sure it was labour so I hung out. I was really excited I chatted on Facebook to friends that were awake for a couple of hours. I was too excited to fall asleep, so at about three thirty I went into to my partner to let her know that I was in labour.
She told me to go to sleep and that we could get up later as it was probably just a tummy pain. As she rolled over I told her I had been in labour for about two hours she got up looked at me like why didn’t you tell me, then started hurrying and getting ready.
The Mrs. thought this was going to be a quick process so we called our birth support and by about 5am she was all set to go but I wasn’t ready to go. Labour was ok; it hurt but I was good. When my birth support arrived (our dear friend Lisa) we hung out a little longer and worked through contractions – problem was every contraction I tensed up and every time I had a break I feared the next contraction, but I was doing it and for a first timer I thought I was going well.
I felt I wanted to go to the hospital, and since it wasn’t too far from our house I went in early in the morning to have a check. They wanted to make sure the baby was engaged, as at my appointment the day before she wasn’t, so they tried to push the baby’s head out of the birth canal – that was very painful and helped to really kick the contractions along again.
After that was done they advised that because we lived so close I could just go home and come back when ever I felt I needed to, so we all got in the car and went home again. As I walked through the door I felt some fluid leak out; I think it was from the good push my babies head had just had.
I continued to labour at home with my partner and our friend Lisa. She made suggestions like a hot shower and laying down, but most of all when I had a contraction they both held me and helped me through it. It was awesome – we were doing it, all three of us.
Things are a little hazy but I remember at some point I wanted to be alone and to lay down. I was so tired and needed a rest but alas, this was labour, and my partner wanted to be near me, so my lay down was not to be. We did a few different things to try and get comfy – we had hot showers, bounced on the fit ball and stood on stairs at funny angles, but I was losing my cool again and wanted to go back to the hospital.
So we all got in the car went to the hospital. They advised that I could take some Nurofen Plus, and they also offered me an experimental pain relief option. I was assured that it would help with any back labour (of which I had none), but I was sore and willing to try… BIG MISTAKE! I know the sterile water injections work for a lot of people, but for me they were agonizing to get and provided almost no relief. As the injections were given I screamed in agony and was left lying over the bed in fits of tears as the pain was that bad. It wore off quickly, but it was absolutely horrendous. For me it felt like being stung in the spine by the worst sting you have ever felt (I squeezed my friends hands so hard I bent the rings on her fingers),so never ever again. They did however provide a small amount of relief once I had gotten over the stinging sensation, not a lot though so I would never do it again.
I went home again and by the time we got home (things start getting very hazy here; as a reference of time I went into labour at 0330) it was now I guess about 1730 approximately. I was tired and hungry, but couldn’t eat. I was thirsty and I could drink, so it was decided that my birth team would get our stuff together and have a bite to eat, I would have a shower, and we would go to the hospital for a final time.
I think I arrived at the hospital sometime around six thirty or seven (once again it’s a rough guide). As I was out into the birthing suite the most amazing midwife sat me down on the bed – she sat on a fit ball and massaged my feet until I was relaxed and as calm as I had been in earlier labour. I will never ever forget her – up until that point I had no one coach me on how to breath I was just going on instinct – she told me to blow out as hard and as long as I could so that my only option was to breath in, it worked very well and I was calm again. She left not long after that, as her shift had ended.
I continued to labour with my team. The midwives really just sat back and watched, they had no interest in interfering with something that we were clearly doing very well at. We continued like this – sometimes I bounced on the birth ball, sometimes I wanted the shower. And sometimes I wanted it all to stop – I was scared and the pain was getting really bad.
We kept going and I was really tired. It must have been about 1130, I was falling asleep between contractions and was so over the pain. I had asked for the drugs but my birth plan was very clear that an epidural, if required, would not be entered into lightly. I asked a couple of times, and was refused a couple of times. The midwives were great, they knew better than to give in to me, so we laboured on. During this time we had changes of shifts, and some training doctors come to look at me while I was in labour. I don’t think that they saw many women actively labour, so I had a few. One of the doctors, while I was having a bad contraction, came and kneeled beside me and thanked me for allowing him to be into he space with me – he stands out, none of the others do though.
I’m not sure how dilated I was – I wasn’t too worried about that. I knew that I was beginning to lose control. I was emotional and I started resenting my partner, and I was beaten. It was about 1130pm that I finally convinced the midwives and my support team that I needed an epidural. I waited while they prepared (very impatiently I might add – I was well and truly over it!). The doctor came and I got the epidural – my god the relief it was incredible. In all honesty, had I kept going the way I was I might have had my baby on the 08/04/2010. However I had the epidural I had a sleep and then when I woke about 20 or 30 minutes later I was ready to push.
So I started to push, very ineffectively – the epidural was way to strong I could not hold my legs up, and I was put into stirrups. I pushed and finally I did it correctly. The midwives at one point told me to stop pushing and have a break. I was so close, I couldn’t stop. I knew she was close as they told me they could see her head. I continued to push and she was born very quickly – out came my baby at about 1245 and the most primal scream of pure emotion I have ever expressed in my life. It was a relief of nine months of pregnancy and the last 18 or so hours. I was so glad to have my black haired baby in my arms and my tears flowed.
My little girl Lucah Charly Fox-Cashin was here – the piece of the missing puzzle that I never knew was missing! She was 8.1 pounds and 52cm long. She was very sleepy and clearly displeased to be brought out into the cold! She settled quickly on me, but was rudely removed and jabbed and cleaned up and dressed, while I was put back together (Ouch!).
We are planning another new addition in the future and I can’t wait to write that birth story.