Birth story - Daisy and baby Arthur

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I had suffered with gallstones since 28 weeks pregnant which was confirmed by ultrasound. I only had 2 attacks from 28-38 weeks pregnant, however from 38 weeks till delivery I had around 11 attacks (I'm currently in hospital waiting to have the thing removed!).

On 26/09 I had a bad attack and went up to triage which was advised by the midwife. We went home the early hours of 27/09 (around 2.00am). At that point I was 3 days overdue. I remember saying to my partner "I bet you any money I go into labour now". I was right! We got home and into bed and I went to sleep. At 4.50am I was awoken by strong period cramps and knew this was it. Weirdly I was also in the middle of a dream where I dreamt I was on the labour ward! I lay in bed for an hour and timed them, they were roughly 7 mins and around 45 seconds long. I said to my partner that I thought this was it but told him to stay in bed and I was having a bath. I felt really calm and so happy using my up breathing through the surges. My partner shortly came in very excited and began prepping down stairs with my birthing ball and candles.

My contractions began to get closer together and longer. I sat on my birthing ball with my candles and Disney classical playing and had a bowl of cereal. At 9am my mum came and surges were around 4 mins apart lasting approx 50 seconds. At this point I rang labour ward just to inform them. They told me to wait till 3 in 10 lasting a minute and to carry on doing what I was doing. I carried on being UFO on my birthing ball till around 5pm when my surges got to 3 in 10 min. I went to triage and accepted an internal to find out I was only 1.5cm dilated. I didn't let this dishearten me and went back home, had another bath and continued my up breathing (which was honestly a god send and kept me really calm in my entire labour!).

At around 8.30pm my waters broke, I went to the labour ward and accepted another examination. At this point my surges became more intense but I was still only 2cm dilated and they were only 2 in 10 mins. I was sent home again, I was frustrated at this point as I had a not particularly compassionate midwife who had asked if I had done any NCT classes and if I knew about latent labour! I quickly told her I had done a hypnobirthing course and was perfectly aware 😂 the surges continued to 3 in 10 mins till around 4am. I had a bit of a wobble as I was completely exhausted- I hadn't eaten much due to my gallstones and hadn't slept properly in over 48 hours at that point from being in hospital the night before from my gallstone attack.

I finally phoned labour ward out of desperation and they let me in where I had a lovely midwife who offered me gas and air and admitted me. I was so exhausted at that point that I accepted pethidine to allow me to sleep. I absolutely did not want this in my birth plan but if there's one thing that labour has taught me is that things don't always go the way you want them to. The pethidine allowed me to relax and rest which I was grateful for. Unfortunately this meant I couldn't have my waterbirth but using my BRAIN me and my partner knew it was the best option. My progression was still slow at this point (I now know this was due to babies position not ripening my cervix fast enough). I had a consultant come in saying that if I hadn't delivered by 4pm I would be having a hormone drip. This panicked me as I was so exhausted I was just about managing the surges with gas and air so requested an epidural. The first one failed and my surges really intensified (this was around 1pm). I was then administered a second one, which kind of worked but I still felt pretty much everything- something I am kind of grateful for now!

I was examined again and was around 4cm dilated, at this point babies heartbeat couldn't be traced so a clip was put on his head. At around 3pm my body began to involuntarily push. My midwife was surprised at this and after examining me I had a small lip of my cervix left so I got on my side which eventually allowed me to be fully dilated and I was set to go! After 27 minutes of downward breathing my little beauty Arthur John was born!

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My gallstones played havoc in my pregnancy and are still messing me around now with me being admitted to hospital. I do wonder if I had not had an attack the night before I went into labour whether it would have progressed any differently as I was fairly dehydrated and exhausted from that anyway. However the positive birth company allowed me to boss labour for 32 hours with no medical intervention, just upward breathing and being entirely informed and positive about my birth ❤❤❤

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