Our little girl arrived yesterday at 10.20 am. She was 7lbs 15 oz in the end and quite long at 54 cm – she’s just the sweetest thing. I am so happy with how the birth went and wanted to thank you hugely for all your help in preparing me. My waters started to break at 3.30 am yesterday and contractions started. They got quite close quite quickly so we headed to the Whittington around 5am. I was just 2cm dilated, so used one of the antenatal bays to get more established. By the time the shift changed and I was examined again at 9.15 am, I was 6 cm and the surges were coming very regularly. I knew she wasn’t far away and became quite anxious to get to the birthing centre. Patrick helped to keep me calm. I didn’t get a chance to put the tens on or get into the swing of it with the gas and air so it was all very natural – and empowering to feel all the force of her and my body opening!
She took it all in her stride – her heart rate was steady throughout and so they were happy for me to head to the birthing centre. I had some obs taken then got straight in the pool and had the urge to push and went with it. I told the midwife and she encouraged me to go with the flow. At 10.20 am she popped out! The midwife was just amazing, telling me to follow my instincts and push when I needed to until she said otherwise. She said it was amazing how alert I was – I think that was the rest and be thankful phase before the pushing started and I zoned out! I felt her crowning and instinctively began to pant to slow it down – then her head came out. After her head I didn’t feel the urge to push again for a while and so they pulled the orange cord for the head midwife to help, so I just started pushing and that made me get the actual urge to push, she slipped out before the head midwife arrived. I sat in the pool with her on my chest – totally overwhelmed. Afterwards the midwife had said her head had been out for 3 mins and 5 mins is usually the max they allow – she had thought I was pushing but nothing was happening – whereas I wasn’t pushing at all – just waiting for the urge to!
As my notes had said she was going to be big they thought maybe her shoulders had got stuck and the head midwife would be needed to get me into a different position to help dislodge her – but she wasn’t that big after all. I had a small 1st degree tear which they stitched up. We were discharged later that day and home in time to introduce her to her big brother before bedtime. I’m so proud of the way she handled everything in her stride – like she’d done it all before.
Thank you again for all your help and guidance. I really think that’s what got me through the downward stage. Patrick said it was so incredible how my hips opened and body widened. It was all so instinctive, primal almost – the most empowering experience.