I've yet to get my "notes" about the birth so will write something more organised later, but here is a quick story and some photos. Okay - blogger is having a hiccup so here are some links.
Not quite a day old
We went to church Sunday morning fully expecting to have a "normal" quiet Sunday and thinking I'd be induced the next day. After church we went to my folks (who were looking after Tim) and had lunch there and around 2.30pm after dessert I realised I'd sprung a leak...
We came home and I rang my sister who wanted to be there at the birth to come over. DH and I went for a walk in the hot sun around the block - my skirt got soaked from all the amniotic fluid... there was no doubt to anybody who we passed what was going on but frankly I didn't care. My sister arrived and we did another walk - cxs were around 5 mins apart but not very long. I decided to sit on the birth ball for a while and time some so we could inform the midwife what progress was happening. My main midwife K was off call this weekend so we called her backup B who for various reasons I'd never actually met. (This bothered me a bit before, but as it turned out B was great and I have to say I felt safe and secure in her care). We rang her first around 4.30pm (I think) and her advice was "when you not laughing anymore, give me another ring".
Around 6.30pm I had was starting to feel like I wanted to go to the delivery suite - things were getting painful, I had the TENs machine on and DH/my sister were doing acupressure to help me. I was also "vocalising" by this stage. We got to the delivery suite around 7.00pm and I was asking for an epidural. B checked me and said, "The good news is you're 9cm, the bad news is, it's too late for an epidural!" This wasn't exactly what I expected to hear & I really felt incapable of doing it all au naturel.
B bought in the gas for me which took some of the rawness out of the cxs but they were still very intense. After a bit, B had me get up on the bed leaning over the top part on my hands an knees. I wasn't there long and I started pushing involuntarily at the peak of the cxs. I'm not totally sure how long I was pushing before she crowned - it didn't seem that long. My sister and DH were encouraging me by telling me they could see the head etc which was great because I was starting to lose it. I got her head out and then her shoulders got a bit stuck so B got DH to pull the emergency cord ... things happened very quickly then. The room filled with at least 4 midwives, I got flipped onto my back, and that allowed her to come out at 8.19pm, an hour after our arrival to the hospital! Her cord was quickly cut and she was whipped over to the newborn station (DH called out "It's a girl!" as she went by) to have a bit of oxygen... but she pinked up within seconds and it was all okay.
I lay there totally stunned that I HAD DONE IT! With just gas, TENs and my support people. I still can hardly believe it. I can't help myself comparing it with DS's birth, and I have to say my recovery both mentally and physically has been so much easier.
I had 3 stitches.
Breastfeeding is going fine - she is a much mellower baby than DS and that combined with having done it before helps a lot. I'm at home now, and a little nervous but I have this confidence that we've done this before and while it won't be a cake walk necessarily, we'll get through these first 6 weeks.
Thanks for your well wishes I appreciate them. I'll post some more pics as we take them!