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On the night of the 10th April, I woke in the night with some pretty ouchy contractions. They seemed to be coming regularly but I was so tired that I didn’t have the energy to go and check a clock. By the morning they were much milder, so I assumed it was early labour – but I knew something was happening. By the afternoon the contractions had stepped up again and I started timing them at about 7pm. They started at 16 mins apart and reduced to about 7-10 mins apart and stayed that way. The contractions became more intense and I was in so much pain overnight, so I had a shower and asked John to call the hospital. I was so deflated to be told that there was no point coming in, as I hadn’t had a show. I was frustrated too, as I knew so many people that had not had a show, or not had one until they had internals etc. I think this was about 11-12pm. She suggested taking Panadeine but all I had was Panadeine forte, so I took one.

I went to bed and could not sleep, as the intensity of the contractions were making me groan out loud – I could almost cry, especially with John snoring his face off the whole time! With every contraction I raced to the loo – I had to go with each contraction! I was sure that I was in labour. I called the hospital again and said that I was in soo much pain, couldn’t sleep and the Panadeine Forte I had wasn’t working. I was then told that there was no point coming in until the contractions were much less than 5 mins apart and to have more Panadeine Forte and go back to bed! I was not happy to say the least! I couldn’t believe she didn’t ask me to come in, at least to check how I was going. She was also very antagonising, I wondered if she had been in labour before… anyway… of course I still couldn’t sleep.

By late morning the contractions had slowed just a little and I went for a walk around the block with John, who I had asked to take the day off – I said that I knew something was going to happen that day. I had to see my Ob at lunch, so I figured that I could hang on until then and see if he would get things going for me.

Got to the Ob’s office at 1:30pm on Thursday the 11th April, luckily I had the first appointment and he wasn’t running too late from his other office. He took one look at me walking into his office when I stopped and lent on a bench in pain and asked if I was contracting, and I sighed and said I was and could he help me pleeeeeeeeeease!!!!

He had me hop right up on the bed and checked me and I told him of my overnight calls with the hospital. He said, -Well you are five centimetres dilated!’ I was relieved that finally I had ‘justice’ and didn’t feel like I was being stupid all this time! He rang the hospital and gave them some stick over what happened and I just laughed. Anyway, he told them that I was coming over right now – his offices were right next to the hospital. It hit me like a tonne of bricks that I was going to have the baby and was well into labour! My Ob told me I would have the baby that night and I was so happy to hear that.

Got across to the hospital and was put straight into a delivery room, while John raced home and got our bags – we didn’t expect to be checking into hospital today! The midwives didn’t really bother with me much, just took basic details and were awaiting my Ob arriving to assess the situation after he’d finished work for the day. My contractions were still around 10 mins apart but they were beauties. I felt blessed that they were far apart but intense so I could have a break in between and they still were doing their job! At this stage I was confident I could handle a pretty drug free labour but then started to notice my contractions were starting to stop. I was starving hungry at this stage, as I didn’t have lunch or dinner, so I had some hospital food. Yum. (not really!).

My Ob arrived at about 8:30pm. He said that my labour had not progressed past 5cms and I would be best to have my waters broken. He did this and baby had passed a meconium, he wasn’t stressed about it and said that it was common for babies to do this in long labours. He also then recommended a Synto drip. I was very against having one and asked if we could just see how the breaking of the waters went, but I took his good word that it was the best thing to do and agreed. I was hooked up to be monitored so I was in bed the rest of the labour. Did I say drug free labour earlier?! Well not the case now. Contractions came hard and fast, increasing with each contraction. I started on gas, and this did nothing but make my face numb and make me feel very out of it. Very soon I was screaming for an epidural (amongst other things I can’t mention!). Poor John was apologising to the midwives for my swearing, and they were just like — hey don’t worry it’s totally normal!!

They finally found the anaesthetist and they had me turn sideways and hunch over a chair. Not very easy with all the contractions, they had to give it three shots to get it in, as I couldn’t help moving with the contractions. I then threw up what I ate earlier. Ewww. The epidural took affect in about 15-20 mins, and I could feel my right side a little, but nothing that hurt. I then felt able to enjoy the rest of the labour. I even watched ER on the t.v.! Not the best thing in labour but I couldn’t care less!

Later, the midwife put in a catheter and checked my dilation, I was told I was nine centimetres, oh joy! I started to feel the contractions stronger on my right side again, and told her, but said not to worry too much since I was so close. She suggested I go for the top up as it would be terrible for it to wear off now and before the birth!

Epidural was then topped up. It got past midnight and around 1:50am Friday 12th April, and I was ready to push. I didn’t have the urge, but the midwife helped direct me with how to push. I was asked to use each contraction for three pushes, so we watched the monitor for each contraction — the only time I was wishing for contractions! I quickly could feel her head, which surprised me, I couldn’t feel my legs but I could feel her head coming down. I told the midwife and she said it was great, but didn’t expect me to push so well. She panicked and told me she could see the head crowning. She raced to get some gloves on and grab a mirror for me. I was initially squeamish about a mirror but so many people told me how motivating it was, so I decided to go with it. I also found this invaluable as I could see when to stop pushing so I could stretch, with the midwife helping with warm pressure compresses. I never tore at all and my ob never made it as I had pushed so well. So at 2:32am on Friday April 12th, my gorgeous daughter Marisa Kate was born weighing 6lbs, 10oz, head circ of 33cms, length 49.5cms and apgars of 9 and 9 — she had patchy cyanosis. The placenta came out very quickly so I didn’t even need a shot for that. They took a sample of her cord blood to establish her blood group (I am rhesus negative) and she was positive so I did have to have that anti-d injection!

Marisa is now 6 days old and I soooo love being a mum, I feel very blessed to have such a beautiful girl in my life. I never thought I would say it but I do miss that feeling of bubs moving in my tummy and knowing I am pregnant. I was so emotional seeing my belly missing after the birth!!! So all ended well, and every midwife that saw me after the birth couldn’t believe I didn’t have stitches.

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