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A positive water birth experience

"I had period pain like contractions start on Sunday evening, it was on and off so we didn’t think much of it. Every day I had an hour or so of inconsistent early labour pains. I had an appointment with my midwife on the wednesday, at my previous appointment she had discussed doing a stretch and sweep at this appointment. I told her about my cramping so she decided not to do it and said to me that she thought I would have a baby by the weekend. As I was driving home I started to have pains again, this time they were stronger. By the time I got home they were still going. I texted Blake, my husband, and told him the pains were back and more consistent this time. He was on his way home from work and thought he would be home soon so neither of us were concerned. While I was waiting for him to get home I had the music cranking and was walking around through each contraction. Blake got stuck in traffic and by the time he got home I was swaying side to side through each contraction, needing to really concentrate on my breathing. I think it was around 6pm at this point. Blake was shocked when he got home and realised that I was in actual labour, he quickly showered and got a bag packed for the hospital. While I was pregnant I read a book called “Birth Skills”, let me tell you I was using most of these skills to survive labour, by the time we left for the hospital around 9ish, I was swaying side to side, I had juggling balls I was clapping together and counting 1,2 through each contraction. Trying to decide when to leave for the hospital was so hard, we didn’t want to get there and then have them send us home because I wasn’t far enough along. My contractions weren’t very consistent, sometimes they were 2 mins apart then 5mins apart and then 30 seconds, it was all over the place! After calling the hospital a few times without them giving us a definitive answer we decided it was time to go in and that car ride was absolute hell!

Once at the hospital I couldn’t remember how to get to the birth suite so we went up and down in the lift a few times before we worked it out. As I was checking in at the front desk, I heard a pop and then water rushed down my waters had broken on the carpet at the desk! It was a real movie style waters breaking. I was then taken in to be assessed, which was very hard for me to lie down on the bed, moving was how I was surviving. I was 7cm and so relieved! We were then taken into the birth suite. I swayed and clapped my balls and counted 1,2 as they filled the bath for me, I remember at one point getting angry at Blake because he wasn’t swaying with me, he was just counting. Getting in the water was such a relief but I then didn’t know how to move in the water, once I worked out my rhythm I had Blake with the hose on my back and my mum in front of me keeping eye contact with me and my sister feeding me and giving me water and cold cloths on my head. I had a full crew there! I was in the bath for another few hours before I felt like I needed to push, the contractions started to change. My midwife got me out and wanted to assess me to make sure I was ready to push and she was happy for me to start pushing. It took an hour and a half of pushing to get this baby out of me! I was so worried about passing my bowels in the water I wasn’t pushing properly for a bit and then I just didn’t want to push anymore, so I just ignored some contractions and rested. When his head finally burned his way out we realised he was posterior which is why I had so much back pain and it took so long to push him out. But he was finally here after a solid 12 hours of pain.

I was able to do skin to skin and breastfeed him while they assessed the damage to my vagina. Eventually, I was taken to theatre to be stitched up, I had some internal tearing that they thought would be better to stitch up in theatre. Blake and I laughed at me going through 12 hours of labour with no pain relief to go and get a spinal block, I should have just had that to start with haha! To be honest though, I thought and still think it was a beautiful birth. Pretty much everything went to my birth plan."

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