I love the way Kyra describes her birth experience as euphoric! I remember feeling like that after my VBAC. A couple of years ago we posted Kyra's first birth story - now you can enjoy her second story...which is just as beautiful.
Image by Dan Durango
I’m going to start off by saying WOW. Aislinn’s birth was euphoric and I felt like that for days afterwards – there must have been some pretty intense endorphins hooning my body! The birth was mostly always how I’d imagined giving birth naturally to be. I was on such a high for days after the birth, I felt so good. So much so, that I’m almost scared to give birth again as I don’t know how anything could top that experience.
I’d reached 39 weeks gestation and was having another scan to measure the fluid levels (my firstborn had ultra-low fluid at 40 weeks and had to be induced). We walked out of the room with some so so results, the fluid levels were borderline. And here’s where the rollercoaster ride started. I won’t go into too much detail but it involved a lot of monitoring, another scan, pushing from the hospital to be induced (which I refused as I trusted my midwives judgement that it wasn’t needed at this stage) and a lot of back and forth over whether the obstetrician was going to let me ‘go’ any longer.
Wednesday rolled around (40+1 weeks) and I started getting a bit of a show and irregular but strong Braxton hicks. They stopped and started and would get regular for about an hour and a half and then fizzle out again.
Thursday I was feeling quite blue, very emotional and just achy all over, I just had a really bad day. It was the first time in the whole pregnancy where I felt completely over it and just wanted baby out. I wonder now whether it was hormonal related.
Friday morning I woke up feeling a lot better about it all. I went in for more monitoring in the afternoon at the Waihi Annex. I’d been getting more Braxton hicks all day, they weren’t regular but they also hadn’t stopped completely. Jan picked up the braxton hicks and looked a little excited and reminded me when I should call her and that all the Braxton hicks were a good sign. We both were hoping things would get underway as we’d been given Monday as the deadline and I was booked in to be induced Tuesday morning.
That night we went to my brother-in-law’s engagement party, I didn’t really feel like socialising and got quite sick of people telling me it would be over soon. Of course I knew it would be over soon! I had a feeling this was the start of things but we hadn’t told anyone that the Braxton hicks were hanging around, Darren and I had decided not to tell anyone until it was certainly all on. I went home early to get a good night’s sleep.
I woke at about 6.30am on Saturday and noticed that they were starting to come at about 20 minute intervals. I tried to time them in the morning but they were still too irregular. They were starting to get stronger though and there were a few where I had to catch my breath and lean on the kitchen bench.
We had a family lunch at my husband’s parents to farewell BIL and his finance as they were going back to the UK for 6months or so. While we were there my contractions started to come on even stronger, there were a couple of times where I had to get up from the table and go into the kitchen to breathe through them. At about 2pm they started to come at 10 minute intervals so I thought I should sneak off home with Lena. Darren went off to watch a local rugby game and I managed to put Lena down for a nap. I tried to do a few things around the house but I suddenly thought I should time my contractions properly as I was getting a few double-whammy’s. So I jumped online to use contraction master and found that they were actually 6 minutes apart! At this point I texted Darren and said “I think you should come home now” He arrived home a minute or so after I sent the text and another contraction later I checked the timing pattern again and they were at 5 minutes so I called Jan to go into the Annex (this was about 3pm). She told us to get Lena sorted and to call her back if they were still 5 minutes apart so we called Darren’s mum to come pick her up. Called Jan back as they were still 5 minutes apart and she asked if I felt ready to come in. I was still feeling pretty good at this stage but I was eager to get in and check bub so we jumped in the car and made our way to Waihi.
On the way over there was the most beautiful rainbow in the sky and I had no doubt then that baby was on her way!
We met Jan at the Annex and got hooked up to the monitor. I was thinking at this stage, “that's right I forgot how much this hurt,” they were about 4 minutes apart now. While on the monitor Jan found that during the big contractions bub's heartbeat was dropping a bit. Because of the fluid issues it meant that the cord could be getting compressed, so she decided that we should go to Tauranga straight away - normally they wait until labour is well established.
On the drive over the contractions got closer together again. The drive wasn’t quite as bad as I thought it would be but I was definitely making some noise by the time we reached Tauranga! By then they were about 3 minutes apart. Up in the room, Jan did some more monitoring while I was swaying on the swiss ball, luckily bub's heartbeat was looking better. Jan did a check after and found I was 5cm dilated (at 7.25pm). At this point I was thinking “oh wow, these are way more intense than what I remember with Lena, I hope it's not like this for hours!” Jan said she thought we'd be done by midnight.
But, 5 minutes later my waters went, I could actually feel bub pushing down on them to get them to break. 20 minutes later I had the urge to push and thought it was way too early but my body started pushing involuntarily, Jan called in another midwife and said to go for it. 13 minutes later at 8.07pm Aislinn Louise was born! I gave birth standing leaning against Darren (who had to be seated as I nearly pushed him over) and I saw my baby girl slide into Jan’s hands, just like in my dream. My legs were like jelly at this stage so they got me to lie down and I delivered the placenta 4 minutes later, Jan was astounded at how long the cord was. Established labour was 4 hours 20 minutes all up. I was so stoked that Aislinn came naturally, no pain relief apart from some numbing to fix up a 2 degree tear (because my body wouldn't stop pushing even though I was panting, eek. My midwives notes say the uterus was expulsive…)
We had some nice long skin-to-skin time and Aislinn latched and had a long snuggly feed. Afterwards they weighed and measured her - 7lb 7ozs and 51cm long. Darren dressed her while I had a shower. We stayed the compulsory 2 hours at the hospital and then made our way back home.
We got home to a big ‘Congratulations’ and ‘Happy Birthday’ banner with some flowers and balloons which was a nice surprise. BIL and his fiancé got to meet Aislinn at about midnight before they flew out at 3am! So she listened after all and made it just in time :0)
Aislinn Louise ~ 16th April ~ 8.07pm ~ Tauranga Hospital ~ 7lb 7oz ~ 51cm ~ 40 weeks 4 days gestation