“It all started with my waters breaking while I was in the off license of all places. Luckily, it wasn’t a massive gush and I managed to leave without anyone noticing or getting any on the floor! I had to go in to the hospital to be assessed but the midwives were happy for me to go home to see if I would go into labour myself. Otherwise I was to return the next day to be induced.
I started getting contractions on the way home. Soon they were coming thick and fast. I took myself up to the bedroom and used ujjayi and golden thread breath which really seemed to help with the pain. Whenever I stopped focusing on my breathing to even just try and time the contractions I found it really difficult to cope. In the early hours of the morning, I then started vomiting and agreed it was time to go in.
Once I was in hospital there were highs and lows…
Unfortunately I had to be continuously on the monitor. For the first four hours they made me lie on my back for this because they weren’t happy with the baby’s tracing. I found this really difficult as all I wanted to do was walk around or sit on the birthing ball or have a shower and to make matters worse I kept being sick. If I hadn’t have had all the breathing techniques from yoga I don’t know how I would have got through it.
Luckily her tracing did improve and a really nice midwife got the monitor set up with me sat on the birthing ball which felt so much better. Also I was given gas and air which was fabulous… I think mainly because it gives you a focus to really control your breathing (like a louder ujjayji breath).
However, despite a good initial examination (I was 5cm dilated) when I was next examined I had not really progressed (I was just 6cm) and the contractions really tailed off. So unfortunately I had to be augmented with a drip. I was really disappointed and frightened about this as I had feared the drip and felt I would not be able to cope.
Sure enough, most likely because of my fears and negative attitude, the augmented contractions felt horrible and virtually continuous. What made it worse was that I felt I wasn’t coping but then each half an hour they would double the dose and things would get worse. At one point my uterus became overstimulated so I was not getting any respite between contractions and they had to turn the drip back down. The midwife was really lovely though and did remind me that there were lots of other pain relief options open to me but the pains seemed to be coming so quickly I just couldn’t think clearly about what I wanted.
I asked if I could have my next examination early to establish how the labour was progressing and help me make a decision about pain relief. The midwife agreed to this and found I was 8cm dilated. However after lying on my back to have the examination, I lost it completely and wasn’t controlling my breathing and had become really tense. I heard Ann’s voice talking about using the position sitting on the birthing ball leaning against the wall to help with focus and regain control. Although I wasn’t allowed to do this, I did manage to get myself into a similarish position leaning over the back of the chair while sitting on the bed and did my ujjayji breathing.
After regaining my composure, I decided that although I had made it to 8cm, I wanted some help. I really didn’t want to be spaced out on morphine, especially so close to the end, so I went for an epidural. It was brilliant, I would throughly recommend it. In Chester they do what is called ‘mobile epidurals’ so although the contraction pain went, I could still feel and move my legs and was able to feel the pressure and urge to push when the time came. It meant for the next couple of hours I got a bit of a rest while the midwife cranked the drip back up.
After a bit of huffing, puffing, pushing and moaning, at 1 min past 1 in the early hours of Sunday 12th Feb, 32 hours after my waters broke, baby Rosie was born. She was put onto my chest and suddenly I was in love!
And we all lived happily together ever after…“