The Birth of Brooke
Brooke's was a 'text book' first labour both in progress and length. Contractions started slowly - I was so excited! I did squatting by the bed, walking around, went to the loo about a thousand times and my brother who was house-sharing with us at the time asked whether something was going on and I don't think my reply was all that generous - I didn't know if anything was going on!
Contractions gradually increased. I had a show. Contractions started to get that I could time them, so I woke up DP and he and my brother seemed to be racing around doing things when I'm sure I'd already organised everything and the lists were in place! It was really quite sweet. I went out the front and just walked up and down the middle of the road... it was late so there was no traffic...
I had been packed and ready to go since 3mths pregnant with everything else already done... all that I was waiting for was the little person to fill our lives!
On the way to the Birth Centre we stopped to get bottled water at a servo and I was kneeling facing away from the windscreen on the front seat (who can SIT at that time!). THe serivce station attended asked if I was ok and DP calmly said oh she's in labour and the servo man said - where's the ambulance! My DP said 'I am the ambulance!' He said he did 40km all the way but with the window down, the wind blowing through (which felt great) and me getting through contractions it felt a lot faster.
Rang my Mum, who said she'd meet us at the Birth Centre.
Got there, and over the course of the night things progressed pretty standard. Did the ball in the shower (bliss!) but forgot to try the bath which I always wanted to do.
Then things slowed and the midwife said would you like to get out of the shower to speed up the contractions... what are you kidding!!!
But I did.
The midwife, (who was a relatively new-to-it-all midwife) was being so sweet saying I was doing really well which by this stage I was doubting. I said to her can you stop saying that. She said well what would you like me to do tell you you're doing terrible and you'll be here forever?
Mmm, ok. She really was a sweetie - I made myself a promise I wouldn't yell or swear at anyone which I didn't and that's the closest I came to saying anything negative.
My Mum read somewhere that massaging feet can releive constipation (which can stimulate the uterus) so she did that and I just did not have the words to tell her not to please because it's really distracting and I don't want it!!!
Contractions building and building etc etc and eventually (after saying while in transition 'can't you just cut me open and take her out!' - and I only said that once, promise) I was up for another internal - are you serious!!! Flat on my back trying to get through contractions and have someone's HAND up THERE!!!
(I didn't know you can ask for no internal and/or to have one done while standing, kneeling, leaning forward etc.)
Anyway, they said there was a bit of membrane in the way holding everything back and would see if moving this would help. I'd had half feelings to push for a while. Well as soon as that was out of the way, gush came the rest of the waters and whammo - PUSH!!! Managed with help to get to the end of the bed where I had planned to kneel on the floor and lean over it - well my body had other ideas and just stood up!
In hindsight, that 'can't you just get her out' was the 'transition that everyone speaks of, and while at that point when you think 'I can't do this any more', it's actually meaning you're really close to the pushing part.
So in that sense, I am thankful for the internal and realising my tough membrane was just 'in the way', because I was ready to push.
I delivered Brooke while standing, (one arm around my Mum, one around my Partner and w each contraction my feet lifted off the floor!) no drugs, all good. She was born at the Family Birth Centre in WA
Brooke James Grace (plus surname) was born at 4.11pm, 7lb 12oz At her birth was her Nanna, and immediately after, her Uncle and our two best friends, one of whom video'd immed after she was born.
In hindsight, I had half feelings to push and on doing an internal, it was decided the membrane sack was sitting on the cervix stopping the last little bit - the second that was pushed aside I was PUSHING in earnest! Given that I think Brooke's labour could have been a couple of hours shorter if we'd sorted out this tough membrane earlier. I also decided that if baby's heartbeat was fine with my next labour that no one was doing internals.
With Brooke I think I also got a little dehydrated as nothing much appealed to me except strawberries (which were lovely). Sipping water was just gross. I remedied this with Jake by having half a watermelon and a tea-spoon right there in the kitchen at the Birth Centre which I just helped myself to in between contractions - food and hydration