I have decided to share Nylah’s birth story here, mainly because I always love reading other peoples’ stories – but also because after her birth I had many people asking if I was going to share it. Well here it is, in two long parts lol.
PART 1: The Build Up
Before I begin, I’ll recap stats from Kruize’s birth: 40+5 weeks. Spontaneous labour that began at 4am. Born by 5pm. Epidural. Vacuum (got in trouble for laughing while pushing which meant the suction cap lost its grip – woops!) 9pound1. 57cm long. Most beautiful chunk of caramel baby I’d ever layed eyes on.
This post is one that I had all the intentions of writing the moment we arrived home from hospital – not because I couldn’t wait to share my joy of ‘birthing’ another baby, but mainly so I didn’t forget the little bits of information that would be important to me and not so much to others (I sit here writing this 5.5 months later and am pretty sure those pieces of info are long gone!!)
Lets rewind back to when I was 26 weeks pregnant and my obstetrician gave me a warning (I’m going to call it an off the cuff comment now that I look back on it) to slow down, stop lifting Kruize, take it easy or ‘you’ll be at risk of pre term labour’. Of course, when a medical professional tells you that you are more than likely to deliver on the early side of 40 rather than going overdue, you hold their word like gold. I was convinced for the remaining 14 weeks that I would *go early*. To be honest, I wasn’t really phased as to when she would arrive, although because I had been given a false expectation that she would arrive early, I obviously began anticipating her arrival a lot sooner (this is where the notion of anytime after 36 weeks kicked in).
Now I’m sure I’m not the first, and certainly won’t be the last mum-to-be to ensure that all beauty regimes (fresh hair dye, mani/pedi, legs shaved etc) are up to date when the due date is approaching. However since I had anticipated this birth from 36 weeks onwards, this then meant that I was ‘looking the goods’ for an entire month. Basically by the time my first ‘pre birth prep’ mani and pedi had worn out, I was due for another, and baby was no where to be seen – I couldn’t bare the thought of having half chipped toe nail shellac when pushing *cause clearly, priorities lol*.
Apart from my ‘pre term labour’ self appointed bedrest, my only other concern during the last trimester was making it to 38 weeks so I could go see Kevin Hart (comedian) live. That was basically the goal the entire last month. Last long enough to see him, don’t give birth during the show, happy to give birth any day after it. Safe to say as HILARIOUS as the show was, it didn’t do the job in putting me into labour.
We said hello (and goodbye) to the 40 week mark, wondering when this little lady would make her entrance when at 40 + 6 I went into the hospital for monitoring (reduced movement). All was good. The following day I had my final obstetrician appointment, at which point in time he mentioned booking me in for an induction THAT NIGHT. woah woah woah! Hold up! I know I’m almost 41 weeks but I’m just not ready yet! He attempted a stretch and sweep (to no avail) and I was to return to the hospital at 9pm that night.
I was uneasy all afternoon. The idea of an induction didn’t sit well with me at all. I had heard many a story of tried and failed inductions, a lot of which consisted of long, drawn out labours, resulting in cesareans (which I really wanted to avoid). I felt as though if I was just given a few more days that my body would do it on its own.
That night, putting Kruizey to bed was tough. I was a *bit* emotional. This is our last dinner as a family of 3. This is our last bed time story as a family of 3. This is our last time putting Kruize to bed as a family of 3. *insert ugly cry face*. Off we trotted to the hospital, me with my 3 bags in tow, hair all clean, nails did, legs cleanly shaven, waterproof mascara on (cue half decent post birth photo).
Upon arrival I explained to the midwife on duty that I ‘wasn’t really down’ with this whole induction idea. I felt that it was more out of convenience (this was a Tuesday evening, and both Wednesday and Thursday evening were ‘booked out’ and inductions don’t occcur Fridays and Saturdays). After a quick exam she decided to discuss options with my OB. Long story short, he agreed to let me go home and wait it out (at this point a spot had opened up for an induction on Thursday evening) and if nothing happened we would come back and kick things off Thursday. I was feeling a lot happier with this decision – I felt more in control, like I was having a say in the process, and was giving my body that little bit extra time to get going.
PART 2: The Birth
The following day was quite uneventful. I was monitoring every little twinge, cramp and *sign* urging myself to go into labour. I was determined to beat this induction. Wednesday passed. Dammit. Nothing.
Thursday morning swung by. I woke to nothing but a few measly cramps. I had it in my mind that labour would begin similar to with Kruize, in the night/morning while I was sleeping. Because of this I basically gave up on thinking I would go into labour prior to that nights induction.
My husband had the day off, we went to lunch, did a few bits of last minute shopping in preparation for the trip to the hospital that night. During lunch I received a phone call from the OBs office asking whether I was attending the booked induction that night. ‘I didn’t realise I had any other option?’ – At this point I was pretty confused. I had also accepted the fact that now since I hadn’t gone into labour naturally that my only other option was induction that night (at this stage I was 41+1). But the fact that I was having this conversation added additional confusion to my already fragile state of mind. I contemplated putting the induction off to see whether it again ‘would happen on its own’. I had been feeling very crampy, things were starting to happen, just nothing dramatic. I decided maybe my body needed that little push to kick start things. So I hesitantly confirmed the induction. Aww shit!
So we repeated the whole ‘last night as parents of 1’ ordeal then trotted off to the hospital for the 4th time that week, but not before stopping for supplies (gatorade for me, V energy drinks for the hubby, magazines for all that spare time I’ll have, and lollies. Can’t forget our lollies).
LET THE GAMES BEGIN!!
Arriving to the hospital not in labour was a strange thing. Knowing that very shortly, you are going to be in significant amounts of pain (until your sweet anaesthetist arrives) is daunting. The unknown is scary. How will my body react? Will the induction be more painful than a naturally progressed labour? What if the induction doesn’t work? I much prefer the spontaneity of the experience – the ‘all systems a go’type where you can’t really back out of it. I’m pretty sure the entire 20m walk from the car to the hospital door I was having a whinge to hubby about ‘not wanting to do this’.
Upon arrival we were shown into our labour room, I was handed the most magnificent lilac (couture) hospital gown I ever laid eyes on (lol) and was asked to dress for the occasion. Now friends, this is where the PARTY began. If you have never had an internal for induction purposes – then my gosh are you missing out! *insert sarcasm and cringes here, here and HERE!*. The first internal was uncomfortable, but bareable. It hurt more to hear that I hadn’t progressed since two nights ago. But OH MY GOSH the internal to insert the induction tape almost sent me flying backwards into the room next door (If you can just picture superman punching someone and them flying backwards thats akin to what I must have looked like). Basically (I’m going TMI for all you nosey parkers) the induction tape needs to be placed as high (and behind) the cervix as possible. For some *unknown* reason to me, this meant, the midwife kept her hand *up there* for approx 5 mins. SHIT! Basically she was trying to stretch things open a little too. This was the single most painful thing I *had* ever experienced. It was actually quite comical – as she was elbow deep (or so it felt) we joked about the fact that her fingers were ALOT shorter/thinner than that of my OB so what he described as only 1cm dilated in fact was probably 2cm in midwife hands!
By the time the induction tape was all sorted, my period pains had become more consistent. We were asked whether we would like to move down to the ward. It was at this point I looked at my husband who was leisurely lounging on the recliner in our delivery room like he was watching sunday arvo footy. He looked mighty comfy in that chair. So I declined. Happy to stay in the labour room. I knew things were already beginning to happen, so figured hubby would be comfier in the recliner than a normal ward chair, and that we would be back here after not long anyways. So, lights were dimmed and I was told to get some rest as by this time it was 11pm. Rest didn’t occur. Contractions did. Magazines were not read. Multiple toilet trips were had. Snoring from husband akin to that of a helicopter, also occurring. I kindly kept quiet for a good 2 hours before waking him up saying something along the lines of ‘okay this shits hurting’. We hollered for the Midwife, she did another internal. 4CM yippee. She suggested it would be a good idea to call the man with the golden hands aka the anaesthetist because she anticipated that when my waters break, that it would be ON!
20 minutes later, in he trots, as if he was fresh out of the surf (total bed hair). By this point its 2am so who could blame him really. Anyways, for anyone that says having an epidural is the easy way out I can definitely reassure you it is not. Until you have had a horse tranquilizer sized needle rammed into your spine, whilst having your insides twisted AND being told to sit still, no judgement should be had. I have had epidurals for both my births. They have basically been the only solid thing within my birth plan. Everything else I was flexible with. Attempting to give birth without an epidural was not one of them. To be honest, it was my biggest fear that I wouldn’t have time to get an epidural. NIGHTMARE!
This time round, I was so blessed to have not one, but two epidurals! I guess thats what happens when you vomit midway through getting one. They pull the needle out and start all over again! *FML*. To say this experience was torturous is fairly accurate. I distinctly remember repeating multiple times over to Ava that ‘THIS IS THE LAST BABY, I CANNOT DO THAT AGAIN’ ‘That was horrid’ etc etc. In short. That epidural experience was not fun, not easy, not weak. The next few hours were spent nodding off between uncontrollable shaking (caused by the anaesthetic). 5am comes around, midwife checks me, announces that I’m 10cm. yay! She phones our obstetrician to come on in, and we prep to start pushing!
In rolls my OB, footy jersey and all. Which is cool because normally at our prenatal visits he’s dressed in a suit. I push (for what seems like an eternity, but funnily enough, nothing in comparison to Kruizes’ birth). Toward the end I told Ava to get down there and catch her, he at the time, was holding the camera, so I swiftly grab it, shove it toward the midwife and announce that she is now our photographer. (Ok, I probably worded it slightly nicer than that, but I do remember not giving her much of a choice – in hindsight I genuinely feel weird about this, because that wasn’t her job. awkward. anyways. I totally had the pushing under control lol). This birth was alot more controlled, calmer and personally enjoyable than that of Kruize’s, who was vacuumed out quicker than you can order a 10 pack of nuggets.
Our little Nylah Indi was born at 6:10am, 4th of March, without much fuss at all, and that is the way she has stayed ever since. Such a chilled out little baby, a good sleeper (thank gosh!) and such a happy darling.
The most uncanny thing occurred when I phoned mum half an hour later (who was looking after Kruize) to tell her the news. She said that Kruize was awake and having breakfast, I asked her what time Kruize woke up, and you would never guess it ! 6:10 am! (At this time he was normally waking around 7-7:30 am). I thought this was really beautiful, he obviously somehow knew that his little sister had arrived on the earth. An amazing edition to our little family.