This is a wonderful, edge of your seat birth story, so beautifully written by Vicki Moore. See her blog for her natural birth plan..Spoiler alert: it didn’t happen.
What did happen was something no one was expecting……
I had tried everything..this baby was staying put!
“Wednesday the 5th July… a mundane sort of day spent cleaning the house and doing the weekly shop. With Greg going back to work the next day I was determined to make sure everything was ready for when this baby arrived! I was three days off my due date and still hadn’t had one single sign this baby was imminently coming. I had been receiving messages from quite a few people asking if baby was here yet. I was getting fed up as everything I had tried to induce labour failed miserably and every morning for the last two weeks I woke up disappointed I wasn’t in labour! I gave up, walking didn’t help, pineapple made me sick and I was beginning to tire of the raspberry leaf tea. This baby was staying put.
In the evening I put Elijah bed, and we began to settle down for the evening. Fajitas had been served and consumed and we were then about to watch Die Hard 2. At around 9.30pm I began to get a pain across my stomach and down below. I thought nothing of it after all I had been getting aches and pains for 9 months straight. It passed, then another came, it passed, then another. I thought I may have an upset stomach so went upstairs. I was right and over the next 15 minutes I was getting pain every 2 minutes and rushing up and down to the bathroom. I began to track what were quite obviously contractions and they were 2 minutes apart. I told Greg that they shouldn’t be this close, and we made a plan to see what was happening in half an hour. (Currently John McClane was still waiting in the airport not even chasing the bad guys yet!) as it approached 10.00pm it was clear these contractions were ramping up and the breathing and ball were not helping (in between made dashes to the toilet), I came down again and was on all fours on the sofa only to throw up my fajitas which can I say is one of the worst foods in the world to come back up.
‘It felt as though the baby was coming RIGHT NOW’!
Once I was sick knew this was the real thing, I had been very sick when I was in labour with Elijah. I ran up to the toilet again, and Elijah had woken up. As Greg tried to settle him in the next room to the bathroom, I began to push. Something felt strange, it felt as though the baby was coming RIGHT NOW. I felt myself stretching and a pressure coming, it had only been half an hour and my waters hadn’t even gone. I was lifting off the toilet seat! Then, as tried to get up to help with Elijah, my plug came out, and I whimpered that I was bleeding to Greg. He came in, and I said now was the time to call my Nan down to look after Elijah. Before he went to call her, my waters broke all over his feet! Literally shooting out like in the movies! At this point I think although I could feel this baby was coming I was slightly in denial that this was it, but that confirmed it! I begged him to run me a bath and got in on all fours.
We were labelled as a high-risk pregnancy so when things got going we needed to call the delivery suite. It was decided that I would need to go onto a drip after previously haemorrhaging in labour with Elijah. After Greg had arranged a taxi for my Nan to get down, he was about to call them when I was pushing A LOT. I told him I think he should call an ambulance instead as this baby was coming and fast but I don’t think he believed me. I, remember him disappearing off to find the number for the delivery suite from the trusty Bounty pack and as I was on my own bath filling I turned over onto my back. Greg appeared, and was on the phone to the delivery suite and was asked to examine me, I was now screaming like a cow being taken to slaughter. I remember thinking that the window was open and that the whole street would hear! Greg looked down in the water and lifted my bum up and could see hair. He mistook this for me having a lot of hair down there… which can I say I do not have. A few seconds later I pushed and the head came out. Greg was in disbelief and this is where he began to turn a white and swear A LOT. On the next contraction and after some encouragement from Greg, Harlow Adam Nathan Cockerill was born at 22.27, delivered by his own Dad! This is where Greg may have freaked out a tad, in the shock, he thought the baby was going to drown, so scooped him up, unwrapped the cord from his arm and placed him on my chest, he began to cry which is the best sound in the world after just giving birth on your own in a bath with no pain relief in less than an hour! The bath was let out (it has only got to half way) and we were wrapped in towels.
Greg did not know what to do, and ran to get the neighbour whilst handing me the phone. Still sitting in the bath, I was dumbfounded I couldn’t find the words to describe how I was feeling. Then the lady on the other end, asked me is it a boy or girl? We hadn’t even checked! I peeked through the mountain of towels to see and for the first time in 9 months I found out I had another son. My neighbour came bounding up the stairs, and was then followed by an immediate responder who clamped the cord. Not long after my Nan arrived not even realising I had given birth! After all it was less than 15 minutes since we called her to say I was in labour. At this point I think Greg was very much in shock, he wasn’t quite sure what to do, and I remember calmly telling him where all the bags were and what we needed to do. He was later told to go and sit down and he was flapping about. The paramedics arrived after about 10 minutes and we had to try and get me out of the bath tub attached via the cord still to the baby. I then not only had to manage that but also get down my very steep stairs, out the house into the street (where of course Greg saw someone he knew, as well as another neighbour hanging out the window watching), into the back of the ambulance and strapped down. This was quite a feat after the fact a person had just been evicted from me at quite a considerable speed. Being attached still was the weirdest feeling in the world.
We made our way to the hospital..
The placenta had not come out naturally and I was beginning to get a lot of pain on the way to the hospital. We arrived at the delivery suite still bundled in our towels and a dressing gown (which was now also covered in pee courtesy of bubs), and arrived at the delivery suite but moved onto the Midwife Led Birthing Unit. The irony here was that I had ended up in the one place I wanted to give birth on so badly! The cord was finally cut and Greg got to hold his new son for the first time. Two or more hours had passed since the birth so the placenta had to come out, I was given the injection and as I had a pretty chesty cough, basically coughed it out with the midwife tugging on it! I began to bleed but nothing compared to what happened with Elijah. I was made comfortable on a bed and the baby was checked over and weighed, slightly smaller than his brother but 8lbs exactly. We had skin to skin and for the first time I breast fed him. I looked around the calming room and couldn’t believe it, he was here and I was okay. All the time spent worrying about what would happen seemed irrelevant now. A knock at the door also brought a lovely visit from a midwife called Zoe that I knew who had seen our names come up on the delivery suite computer after Greg had called in.
Things were not completely smooth sailing when after I was examined to be stitched up it seemed I had a pretty bad tear. A doctor was called and here was when the second person in not so much time had their finger up my bum (dignity lost) determining the scale of tear. Let’s just say I gave birth with no pain relief by the gas and air was wheeled out for this one. I had a 3A tear and needed to go down to theatre which if you have read my birth story with Elijah, I knew that this would be far less traumatic. I have to say the midwives after reading my notes, and abandoned birth plan were so mindful of my past trauma and were so understanding and kind. I will forever be grateful for how I was treated. I was wheeled off to theatre leaving the boys on their own, and I have to say I was slightly scared at this point, but remember trying to make a joke about having a ‘gunt’ for the rest of my life! The theatre team were great and less than 40 minutes later, some cracking anaesthetic and painkillers (plus a suppository up my bum for good measure) I was out and in recovery. Not long later I was reunited with the boys and we watched the sun come up on a ward to ourselves as Harlow fed again. I felt like this was it, I had got what I wanted with my birth. Closure.
Standard obvs and monitoring for both of us for the next few hours and the obligatory two pees in a jug we basically had one foot out the door and ready to go home. Later that day we were home as a family of four. Compared to 9 days in with Elijah, I had my baby home all within 24 hours. Should we be allowed? I mean surely this was too easy? Still in shock I think I was slightly delusional (it did not help I hadn’t slept in over 24 hours!) but being a NICU Mum first, it never really leaves you and our start with Elijah was just so different, to that with Harlow. Everything was an adjustment and we didn’t really have any experience of this normal malarkey. Everything that had happened was just so surreal, amazing but so surreal we could hardly believe it.
We attended the Birthing Tool Kit in hope that it would help put us in the right mindset after a traumatic first birth. We came away feeling so positive and ready to own this birth. It didn’t quite go to plan but I did use some of the techniques in the short 50 minute birth!”