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Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Marcus' Birth Story

I had a fantastic pregnancy with very few issues. We did have a fright after his first ultrasound, as my OB/GYN had trouble finding a heartbeat, and when found it was very low. We were advised to come back in two weeks, and either the heartbeat would be stronger.. or it would not be there. You can imagine the agonising wait, as I stressed and shed many tears. Thankfully, our next appointment revealed a very strong heartbeat. He was already living up to his namesake, and reminding us how 'fortunate' we were.

My only other issue was I had to have clexane injections through the pregnancy, due to developing a DVT the year prior. I remained active through my pregnancy, and worked hard to keep off as much weight as possible. However, from 30 weeks my belly grew at an alarming rate, and my OB/GYN started mentioning that I was going to end up with a large baby.

A 38 Weeks

As I was using Clexane injections my OB suggested that I may want to consider an induction date. It was revealed that if I went into spontaneous labour within 12 hours of my last injection I would be unable to have an epidural should I want it. Given that my Dr was expecting at least an 8 pound baby, he suggested I may want the option. I readily agreed, although I had not used an epidural with my Daughter, however I was unsure how different this labour would be.

As my induction date neared I felt very nervous. The baby was still high and not showing signs of moving down. I was questioning whether I should be forcing bubs out if he was not ready, and was worried about having an induction as my last labour was spontaneous. I reread my birth skills book 'Birth Skills' by Ju Ju Sundin and chose a few coping tools that I would use should I be induced. 

Finally the night before my induction came around. I was to go in the night before and have tape inserted to soften the cervix.  Once we were settled into the delivery room a midwife completed an internal. She informed me I was actually already 3cm dilated, and said she would call my OB to see what he wanted to do. 5 mins later we were told to go home and come back in the morning! 

The delivery room

As we already had arranged for our Daughter to have a sleepover at my Parents place, Hubby and I decided to enjoy the evening and go out. We stopped off at our local town centre and enjoyed dinner and gelato, before heading home to relax. I was actually really lovely to spend that quality time together.

The next day we arrived at the hospital again at 7 am and were again set up in the delivery room. I was checked again, and had the syncatocin drip inserted. My OB arrived to break my waters at about 8:20 am, and within 20 minutes the first labour pain started.

At first they were mild, however the gained in intensity rather quickly and I started using my birth skills. I found when I had my daughter that if I could distract myself from the pain and focused another sensation then I could cope with pain much better. As a contraction built I tapped my fingers on the side of my monitoring machine, concentrating on the sound and the pattern of my tapping.  Contractions were consistently 2 minutes apart and lasting for 30 seconds for the next hour, while building in intensity. I started using more tools, such as a rattle that I would softly shake with one hand and shake harder as a contraction built, concentrating on the noise. I found standing was most comfortable, especially because my waters leaked continuously throughout. I later moved onto my knees , resting my head and arms on the bed and closing my eyes to rest between contractions. This stage of my labour had been going for about an hour and a half hours, before  I realised I had not used any gas yet! 

As I was nearing transition stage the labour pains became very strong. I used the gas, shook the rattle near my ear and had Mike rub my lower back. I finally got to a point where I told Mike I really could not take much more pain, and I needed to know how far I had progressed. He called the midwife and she checked me. I had progressed to nearly 8 cms, however bubs was still not engaged and was too high. She told me we were going to have to start working really hard together to get him down and we would need to start the pushing stage.

This stage I struggled with the most.  As a contraction would build she would push my cervix down in an attempt to get it below Bub’s head. I had to help by pushing . The pushing sensation was incredible but painful, and I struggled with getting the push right at times because the pain got the better of me. She told me I was going to have to keep working very hard, and I heard her call for another midwife and inform them she felt there would be issues with birthing the shoulders.This concerned me a bit, but I tried not to think about it.

 At points the pain overwhelmed me and I was telling Mike that I was scared and that I needed to know it was going to be over soon. He pointed out that it had been very fast, that it was nearly 11:30 and that I was doing so well to be at this stage already.

Once he was down far enough the Midwife called for my OB to come, so I knew it was near the end. This part is very much a blur for me, even though I had not used anything other than gas, and had stopped that a while ago, I was in a bit of a daze. Several midwives were called in to assist, and there was more discussion about the head and shoulders. My midwife told me I had to really really push, and really concentrate on it. She mentioned how it would be best for them not to have to use forceps so I had to work hard.

The midwives were helping me hold my legs my by this point, and with each contraction pushed my knees up almost to my shoulders while I had to push down really hard. Again, I started to feel a little overwhelmed and needed encouragement to concentrate on getting the pushing right. I tried to visualise how my pushing would be moving my baby down and out, and I found this helped.

 I kept going until they told me the head was coming out, but then I was told I had to stop pushing.  I know things were a bit frantic around me as they held my legs, and I asked them to guide me in what to do. My OB was reassuring telling me I was going great just to not push, that I was doing incredible. All I am really aware of at this point is the pressure and the intense burning sensation as Bub's head was partly out but they had me stop.

Mike later told me my OB had to use his hands to reach in around the head and hook into the shoulders to twist and tug him out. I just felt the burning sensation and pressure build and then finally an almost popping relief as my baby was pulled out.

Baby was put instantly on my chest and rubbed, and I looked to see that I had a baby boy! Marcus was breathing but was a bit dazed and in shock himself. They quickly weighed and checked him then gave him back for me to cuddle.

Meanwhile my OB was also having to tug out the placenta and he commented he hadn't had one that difficult to remove in a while. He then told me I was ‘incredible’ and that I had only one minor graze and that I had been very brave. Truthfully I still was not fully aware of what had happened other than there was a bit of trouble with the shoulders.

Physically I felt sore, my hips in particular really hurt, but after an hour I was able to get up and was escorted to the shower. I felt sore all over, but was on such a high. I was proud that I had achieved another epidural free birth, without any tearing.

Marcus did get a fractured collarbone due to getting stuck and being pulled out. However he seems fine and other than being understandably sore I am also fine. Best of all, I have a BEAUTIFUL baby boy to squeeze and enjoy!

Marcus Fortunato Xerri  was 4.3 kg when born, his head 38cm , and was born at 12:08 after about 3.5 hr labour

1 comment :

  1. He's huge. Congratulations. You are a champion. Hope his little collar bone is settling.