I’m delighted to say that our beautiful baby girl, Elsie, came crashing into the world, weighing 8lb 11oz, on Saturday 21st May 2016. 

After two days of mile contractions and symptom spotting labour signs I finally felt the real deal not long after going to bed on Friday 20th May. I woke up about 10:45pm and told hubby “it’s time!” and he got straight on to his Dad so he could come and sit with Florence as she was in bed and I called the birth centre. Matt jumped in the shower which I was most disgruntled about as I really felt quite panicky and wanted to get off ASAP albeit we had to wait for Matts dad anyway. 

I was shivering like it was -15 degrees and the contractions were coming thick and fast every 3 minutes or so. 

We eventually got on our way and arrived at the birth centre at 11:40pm. We were immediately shown to our room which had a birthing couch, sofa and birthing pool. The room was ensuite and was dimly lit with mood lighting and fake, flickery candles. The radio was on low volume and we were provided with ice water, straws, tea and coffee. By this point the contractions were around 1-2 minutes apart and the birthing pool was being filled, much too slowly for my liking! The midwife, Beth, checked my blood pressure and felt baby. I jumped up and had another contraction; Beth asked if I wanted any pain relief yet and I said “I don’t know” (duhhh!) I breathed through my contractions and as cheesy as it sounds I really did just think about those amazing moments immediately after delivery to get me through each tightening. 

After that contraction had passed I asked for gas and air. Beth provided it immediately and I stood by the pool swaying; waiting for the next pain. It came and I suddenly felt the sensation that I was wetting myself. It was the pressure. She was coming. I basically peeled my clothes off immediately and jumped in the birthing pool which was only partially filled. I kneeled down and puffed on the gas and air as the next contraction came and that’s when it all happened. The pressure was immense and I just pushed down with all my might. The next words out of my mouth were “the heads out!” followed by “the shoulders are there” and with any push she was born, at 12:02am-just 22 minutes after arriving at hospital! Thank goodness it wasn’t a Saturday lunchtime as I think I would have had her in the car!

The placenta took some time to come out, about 38 minutes I think my notes said. I had to get out the pool in the end and sit in the toilet. That sitting position seemed to get it in just the right place. It doesn’t hurt when you pass the placenta, just like a very heavy, spongey lump! The midwife then checked me internally, gas and air required, but all was in tact and just a small graze seemed to be the worst of my injuries. 

Finally it was time to sit and enjoy our baby girl whilst the midwife did her paperwork. I breastfed her and just stared at her in shock of how quickly life just changed. 

We stayed at the hospital until 6am and then headed home. Florence had only just woken up when we got back so you can imagine the shock on her face when daddy carried a baby into the house! 

I’m filming our first week, in parts, and I filmed some bits in hospital. I did plan on filming the labour but it happened so quickly I couldn’t get myself together to sort the camera out! I’ll pop it up here when I finally get around to editing it.

Elsie feels just as part of the family as Logan or Florence. Yes, we’re tired, my boobs hurt and our laundry pile has doubled, but we’re totally in love!

   
    
    
   

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It’s 2009, it’s 7th June and I am awoken at around 2am in desperate need of the toilet.  Sorry, but yeh, I needed a poo.

I noticed my tummy was contracting, so without waking my partner, I went into the lounge of our one bedroomed apartment and began jotting down the times I contracted.  I was 40+3 and knew I could go into labour any day now.  The contractions were 3-4 minutes apart and lasting about 30 seconds each.  Some longer, some shorter.

I was beginning to feel a little more uncomfortable, and scared, so I woke up my partner who helped with the timing.  I rang the hospital and was told to come in for an examination.  After all, this was my first baby and I didn’t really know what to expect.  We arrived at the hospital at about 4:30am and I was only a couple of cm dilated.  At this point I felt deflated and more scared then ever.  If the pain was this bad at this early stage, how bad was it going to get?  Oh naïve young child….

I was offered pethidine but declined.  I was moved onto a ward surrounded by women in labour or women cradling babies and cooing.  I didn’t want to hear either.  By 10am I was rolling around on the bed in agony (if I’d known what was to come I wouldn’t have described it as agony), but at the time, it felt like agony.  I was eventually moved into my own room at about 11am and given some gas and air to use.  I was re-examined and was reaching 4-5cm.  Slow progress.

By 2pm the midwives suggested they broke my waters with what appeared to be a knitting needle.  With a quick prod and a pop I was emptied out like a water balloon.  I bounced on a birth ball and water trickled down it like a water feature.  I remember the water looking a little…..gritty?!  Perhaps in hindsight I should have mentioned that.

Anyways, the lack of cushiony fluid certainly made my little mans head bear down like a pestle in a mortar….GRIND, GRIND, GRIND.

It was finally time to push, chuffing away on the gas and air I squirmed and squealed.  I remember trying to shuffle up the bed in agony, trying to get away from my own vagina. It burnt, why is my baby giving me a Chinese burn? Swearing and moaning like those annoying women on OBEM I pushed and complained that I couldn’t do it.

Eventually, much to everyone’s delight I’m sure, I squeezed the little man out at 17:35pm.  The relief was quite literally the same as having a poo.  Funny how my day started needing a poo and ended with the relief of having had one.  I hadn’t but you what, some people do.  Its A-OK!

He was perfect in everyway and latched on for a feed and skin to skin.  It was total love at first sight.  Until I saw the placenta and wanted to spew.

So that’s the story.  I could do on and moan about the care in the hospital but that’s just a bit dreary so I’ll spare you.

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