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Saturday, 20 January 2018

The toughest week of our lives: part one

It's taken long time for me to have a chance to wrote these posts and it appears having a newborn means you have absolutely no time to yourself.

After my last post about reaching my due date, I ended up going more than a week overdue. We never wanted to commit to Christmas plans as we didn't know when this baby would arrive. I was convinced that if she didn't come early, then she would want to come on Christmas day. Well Christmas eve (5 days overdue) came and she was showing absolutely no signs of coming so we decided to go back to Devon for Christmas. This felt a little risky really but we packed all the hospital stuff just in case; at the end of the day it's still only just over an hour away if we needed to get back.

We were only home from Christmas eve morning until boxing day morning but the whole time I felt really very rotten. So much so that we came back early boxing day so I could see my midwife to get checked out. I wasn't really sleeping and getting myself pretty stressed, mainly worrying about my blood pressure. It's been on the higher side for a while and when at home I used Richards BP monitor to check it just out of interest. I don't think it was very accurate really as one reading was pretty high, the other completely normal, but this didn't do much good for my stress levels! Anyway, when back and at the midwife's, she confirmed that my blood pressure was high and sent me into hospital to get checked out.

Apologies for how awful I look! I was soo swollen!

When we got there it remained high but I didn't have any other symptoms of pre-eclampsia so they didn't medicate me but offered me induction. After a pretty long discussion with Scott we decided that induction was probably for the best. I had felt rubbish for ages and the blood pressure was most likely due to my stress so what was the point prolonging it any more? I had been niggling for ages and ages but labour was nowhere near.

So I had the propess and off to the ward I went to wait for things to happen. Scott went home to get some rest and sort the dog out and I got some kip. The propess was a pain in the arse, I was having so much mucoussy show that every time I got up, it came out!! This meant I ended up with loads of examinations before I was even doing anything.

By the morning I was tightening pretty regularly and when Scott came back in at 10am I was uncomfortable enough to need my TENS machine. At points I think it really helped but it was also annoying too, more of a distraction that actual pain relief but still, at least it seemed to be doing something. The last time the propess came out (about 8am) they said that they'd be able to break my waters so I went on the waiting list to go to delivery suite.


By about 2pm, I was contracting 4:10 lasting over 1min. GREAT! Getting there, hopefully...

At 3pm I was transferred to delivery suite and they broke my waters. Despite contracting already, there had been no change in my cervix. Up until this point although the contractions were painful, I was fully coping with them and felt in control of what was happening. As soon as my waters went I felt like I was dying. I cannot explain how horrendous it was. I felt like my whole pelvis was being ripped apart, the contractions were back to back and I was having no break to recover in between. I was only 1cm dilated so to begin with I refused to use the entonox... It was my first baby and I was only 1cm, I had a LONG LONG way to go and my experience as a midwife told me not to use it.... That last probably about 4 contractions and then I was puffing on it like my life depended on it. Unfortunately for me, it did absolutely nothing for the pain but just made me feel like I was VERY drunk and VERY out of control. I was screaming the place down which was particularly awful as I was in the room next to the staff room so all of my colleagues would have heard me making an absolute meal of it. I'm soo embarrassed. I knew I would swear, and I swore A LOT! After just a few minutes on the entonox I was begging for some pethidine which they gave me straight away, This seemed to space the contractions out a bit and relaxed me in between but when they did come they were still excruciating. So much so that I was begging for my epidural straight away, which again I got pretty much in record time, they didn't waste any time. Probably desperate to shut me up. The anesthetist (who I didn't know) was great but she did take two attempts at getting my epidural in and then I had quite a high block. I didn't care, it bloody worked and I was finally out of pain!

Not the way I intended on labouring..
Soon after my epidural went in they reexamined me. I can't remember the timings exactly but it couldn't have been much longer than about an hour from them breaking my waters; I had gone from 1cm to 4cm. Not bad!! Maybe thats why is was so excruciating?

3 hours later I was 4cm again, and they ascertained that baby was deflexed OP position (back to back with her head at the wrong angle) and I started the synto drip to make my contractions more effective. I was also pretty sore down below which my midwife put down to maybe a latex allergy from the catheter? I was really swollen and sore looking. I hadn't realised I was sensitive to latex before, you would have though I'd known as I use latex all the time when working. My hands often get dry and sore after working but I always put that down to washing them regularly at work, not because of the latex gloves.

Anyway, 3 hours after starting the drip, I had only progressed to 5cm. I was feeling pretty downhearted. Again being a midwife, seeing that little progress and having a baby in the position that mine was, I knew the outcome was looking pretty bleak. I was lucky enough to choose the midwife looking after me and we had a good talk about what it all meant. I was ready to give up and request a cesarean. She said to me that I had only been on the synto for 3 hours and that I should give it more of a chance. She said that if I was her daughter, her advice would be to carry on for another 3 hours to give myself as much chance as possible. So that's what we did.

3 more hours passed, and I was 5-6cm... So decision made, we went for a cesarean section. This was fine by me, I understood and wasn't really scared of theatre. Id been on the other side a million times so knew exactly what to expect. The only thing I was nervous about was knife to skin. As soon as that was done and I didn't feel it, I was fine. Scott, however, didn't like theatre at all. Not surprising I guess as he's never been in a situation like that in his life; and a very different experience than just me, him and the midwife in a room on our own.



Philippa Mary Ware
28th December 2017 @ 03:37am
7lb 13oz

Done. In no way the way we would have liked but I can't exactly say I'm surprised. I always had a feeling that things wouldn't be straightforward. But I don't mind, we have our beautiful baby girl. It's all worth it. Labour was horrendous and I can't imagine ever wishing to do it again but I am so thankful for the amazing care we received, we couldn't have asked for anything more. 

I'd like to say that all was well from now on but that wasn't the case, stay tuned for part two of our saga!


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