I was cleaning my house frantically before having to go int o the hospital at 1pm for some monitoring. I had slept in and wanted to have a spotless house qnd zero laundry as I had an appointment for an induction the following morning. I had gotten a sweep don e the previous morning and the doctor told me I would come into labor that night or the next morning and that I probably wouldn’t make it to my induction. I prayed he was right as the thought of induction terrified me. But the baby wasn’t moving at all now and I didn’t really have the choice of waiting for things to progress naturally. I was 39 weeks and 6 days so the induction was scheduled for my due date.
I was late, arriving at the hospital. I got put on the monitor for almost an hour until they were happy enough to send me home for the night. Just as they were taking me off of the monitor. I got a contraction. I didn’t take much notice as I’d been hqving these contractions for the past couple of weeks now and it didn’t really progress. As I sat for half an hour waiting for my notes, they kept coming and going and I pulled out my contraction timer app to see if they were regular. They were around 5 minutes apart and felt like strong period cramps. Reem who was with me was hungry so we stopped for lunch. We got the bus home and stopped to run some errands. I also wanted to keep moving to hopefully have things progress. It was around 3pm at that point and the contractions were too painful to walk or talk through them, still around 5 minutes apart. I would stop walking and just breathe through them. I stopped at McDonalds for a milkshake as I thought it would be the last time in a while before I’d be able to come back. At around 5pm I arrived home and they were pretty bad contractions at this point. They really picked up just as I arrived home which was pretty good timing as no one wants to be in labor and obviously in pain in public. I had texted my husband who was at work around an hour away and told him I was having contractions but not to panic as this could carry on for quite a while, but after an hour at home, I didn’t want to be alone so I told him to come home because I don’t think labor was going to stop now. I put some make up on in hopes I wouldn’t look like a total mess in the pictures we would take after delivery. I prayed and tried to stay on my feet as sitting during a contraction made things 100 times worse. I was most comfortable leaning onto the staircase. I started to freak out a little as my first labor was 10 hours long and they say second babies come much quicker. Contractions were 1-2 minutes apart and lasting for a minute. I called my uncle who was going to drop us off at the hospital and take Reem with him. Him and my husband arrived at the same time at around 7.30, I had gotten Reem dressed and grabbed our chargers and last minute bits before we headed out.
The midwife who had put me on the monitor earlier was the one to triage me and she was surprised and asked me what had I done to send myself into labor! She examined me and said I was 6cms! I was so surprised and happy as I expected to be around 3 or 4cms. She then asked me if I was opting for a more natural birth in the pool etc or if I was wanting pain relief. She explained that they had two separate wards and on the natural ward I wouldn’t be able to get much pain relief. I couldn’t commit to that so they send me down to regular labor suite. My two midwives came in and changed me into my gown and hooked me up to the gas and air which was absolutely amazing. I was laughing for no reason in between the contractions and eventually relaxed and was dosing off between each contraction. They asked if I wanted the epidural and I said yes but not for now. I was handling it pretty well but I didn’t want to feel the baby come out. They said it would take time to get it as the anaesthesiologist was in surgery and they had to take bloods and tests my platlets first to make sure I was healthy enough to get the epidural. Fast forward to a couple of hours later, my epidural was finally ready. They examined me before she put it in and I was at 8cms. I’d say it was around 1am at that point but I sort of had lost track of time. The lady doing the epidural had a hard time finding the correct place to put it in. Turns out pregnancy had bent my spine. She tried 4 times and thankfully on the 4th time she found the space and managed to put it in. I’m not sure how long it took but it took what felt like ages. Half an hour later I finally started to get some relief. The baby’s heart rate wasn’t too happy so they broke my waters to speed things up and the midwife who did it gave me a very thorough stretch and sweep which was absolutely horrendous. The epidural had worn off and the top up hadn’t yet kicked in. My blood pressure was low so they couldn’t give me a top for quite a while. But that top up never seemed to kick in. My legs were numb but I was still feeling the contractions and the head descending. Pretty quickly I started getting the urge to push and I was starting to sound a bit like a cow because the midwives immediately asked if I was needing to push. I said no because I was scared. I wasn’t numb from the epidural. He cant come now! I just need to not push. But I obviousl y failed as when baby is ready nothing will stop them! I was pushing and was really hysterical at that point. The midwife was begging me not to scream because I was going to damage me vocal cords. I told her I didn’t care. As soon as I felt the burning, I would stop pushing, wanting the baby to stay in there forever. I was screaming so much a senior midwife came in to see what was going on. A few contractions later, and after lots of pleads from the midwives and my husband, I finally just pushed past that pain and our baby boy was born a few minutes later, at 2.54am weighing at 7lbs 12oz, on his due date, September 30th, 2018. I had never felt so relieved in my life and he was absolutely perfect. We did skin to skin as they delivered the placenta and stitched me up. I got second degree tears both internally and externally and managed to tear a vein that a senior midwife had to come back in to sew up.
My husband informed both our families who were all lovingly asleep except for my dad who phoned us instantly and was very relieved baby Safwan was here and we were both doing fine.
I managed to get up around an hour after he was born and I had to go to the toilet despite having the catheter in. I had had 3 units of saline pumped into me so it all made sense. However, needing to wee 30 minutes after having your vagina stitched up is more terrifying than giving birth. My husband accompanied me and alhamdulileh it didn’t hurt at all.
Recovery was harder this time around. The 4 epidural attempts left my not toback feeling really sore. That lasted for around 5 days. I did indeed damage my vocal cords! My throat is still really sore 4 weeks later. I had major incontinence which got really tough on me emotionally when I got up to get some food around 4 days post partum and started weeing myself and couldn’t stop it. Nothing quite embarrassing having your mum clean up your urine at 22 years old while you’re sobbing. And then getting not so subtle comments from your husband the next day before you’re about to go out, “Did you go to the toilet?” He is clearly terrified of that happening again on the bus. Ah, men! Not to mention my traumatic experience with breastfeeding that deserves a post on all its own. Baby blues with a toddler is super fun. But alhamdulileh some people have it way worse. My mum stayed with me for a week and then my sister has been with me since. They’ve both been life savers!
And yeah, that is it. Me being super real and no sugar coating.
Until next time xoxo