Birth Story - Natalie and baby Jesse

Reporting from cloud 9 this morning!!!

Saturday evening I commented on a picture that I was 41+1 and planning on bouncing on the ball all evening. We were expecting baby number one.

I had already had a few twinges Saturday lunchtime / afternoon, so drank my raspberry leaf tea, carried around a tissue with clary sage and got the take away menu out for a curry Saturday night! By the time we had finished our curry, we knew baby was on the way and had started timing contractions.

We set up our ‘nest’ at home and as I was unable to sleep through or in between the surges, we lit candles, watched friends on tv, had lots of cuddles and massage, and I kept focused on the up breathing and affirmations.

By 3am we were on our way to the MLU which is 40mins away from our house. I put the tens machine on at this point to help with the journey - I would highly recommend this! I also played the affirmations loudly in the car to help my focus.

At the MLU, the team were fab. I said I was happy to be checked, and they confirmed I was 4cm dilated and suggested a bath while they finished cleaning / preparing the pool delivery room for us (it was a busy night for them and all rooms were in use). I happily got in the bath and it felt amazing, my boyfriend helped me maintain up breathing and an hour later I was feeling in the zone.

My boyfriend then heard a pop and looked into the bath, my waters had broken and it was clear to see meconium in the water with me. 2 midwives came to help and supported me as I stood up and out onto a pad. I was taken to the labour ward and advised there was a considerable amount of meconium (and of a certain consistency) that gave them cause of concern and they wanted to monitor baby. We knew this would mean a certain amount of restriction but we talked it through together, used our brain and agreed.

We also talked openly with the team and asked them to support us in continuing towards a vaginal birth (even though we knew water birth was now out of the question). The team were great, talked us through our options and we ‘laboured on’...
I started using gas and air and got completely in the zone - I think I looked at, and talked to only my boyfriend for about 4 hours while I followed his lead on the up breathing. It was a bonding experience between the 2 of us that I will cherish forever; and I’ve never felt such incredible closeness and connection with another person.

The team praised me throughout for staying calm and several people made reference to a very low resting heart rate - apparently I stayed below 60bpm and they couldn’t believe it. I don’t have many memories from this stage... it felt a little ‘other worldly’ and really quite magical! After 4 hours we had progressed to 6cm but then babies heart rate started dipping, we were shown the charts and talked through our options. We used our brain and decided to go to theatre for c-section.

I used the head and face relaxation recording as well as up breathing to keep focused and stay calm, baby was with us 20mins later. Lots of skin to skin time with mummy and daddy and breast feeding within 30mins.

So, our labour and delivery were not at all as we had imagined, but we felt informed and consulted throughout the journey, we stayed calm and collected and worked together as a couple and as a team with the hospital staff... and ultimately came away with what had always been our goal - a happy healthy little boy.

I’m so glad and grateful that we came across the digital pack on Instagram; leading up to the labour it helped me feel in control, informed and excited for what was to come, and even though our ‘ideal’ birth plan wasn’t able to happen this time... we successfully navigated a plan that was right for us and our baby at that moment in time.

Born Sunday night at 11.13pm weighing 9lb. I didn’t know love like this existed.


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