Cristian's Birth Story
It was 4.30am on a Thursday morning when Marc’s alarm went off for work. As I rolled over in bed I felt a click in my bladder and a really urgent need for the toilet. This urgency was not out of the ordinary at over 37 weeks gestation, so I stood up ready to go. As I stood up I felt that trickle feeling down my leg. “I’ve either wet myself or my waters broke,” was all I could get out to Marc. I knew pretty quickly that it was the latter as it continued to trickle the whole way to the toilet. I was super lucky to not get that gush because I was on carpet!
I knew once I sat down that this wasn’t going to stop. I was in complete shock as I had only just started my mat leave and still was two and a bit weeks off my due date. I’m not sure how, but we managed to remain calm. I guess the fact that I didn’t have any pain (just some dull period pain) and no contractions at this point. We made the phone call to the hospital and were advised to call the hospital again at 5.30am. They told me to keep an eye on the fluid. Perfect, we thought to ourselves. Marc still needed to make arrangements at work so we decided he could head in and organise himself and then return home to pick me up. This seemed like such a great idea at the time as nothing felt out of the ordinary for me. I thought I’d make myself some breakfast and just chill in front of the TV until Marc returned.
At this point it’s important to note that Marc’s work is over 45 minutes away from home. We were bursting with excitement and all good to go. Marc reassured me that he would be back soon and we would go to the hospital. “Yeah, I’m fine, don’t worry. I’ll just sit down and relax until you get back.” That was my last calm sentence for a while. I sat down with a piece of toast and a cup of tea, ready to just try and relax for these last few moments but I was so nervous and excited that I couldn’t even manage to eat that.
By the time Marc was driving back home from work, the pain hit. And boy did it hit hard. It actually felt like someone was ripping my lower back into a thousand pieces. I actually couldn’t really feel the contraction pain in my stomach at all, it was all in the lower back. And this lasted one minute and came every five minutes from the get go.
I called Marc as he was driving back and we timed and counted every contraction and poor Marc would’ve probably been so concerned by the sounds I was making. The pain was so intense, every time I knew that it was coming, I would begin to worry and stress. What happened to the early labour pains I learnt about in prenatal classes? What happened to that slow build up? What is happening to my back? I was not prepared for this kind of labour.
The minute Marc walked through the door, we needed to go. My whole pregnancy I had hoped that we would not be driving to the hospital in peak school traffic, but sure enough that was exactly the situation. Just sitting in the car felt hard enough. Every contraction came, and I am truly not sure how I didn’t break a window because I was pushing and punching anything I could. The drive felt like it took forever. In the meantime, we called our closest family to tell them I was in labour. I didn’t really get a word out because I was concentrating on each contraction.
As we pulled up to the emergency department, there was no chance I could walk through those doors. I sent Marc to get a wheelchair and a nurse. Yes, I was one of those people. I am a complete sook when it comes to pain so for me this was next level. A nurse approached the car with Marc and the wheelchair. Of course, I got a contraction just as I was trying to get out of the car. But I eventually made it into the wheelchair and we started making our way into the hospital. It was such a surreal feeling, how was I already at this point? I couldn’t believe this was it.
As soon as we entered the birth suite I was asking for my obstetrician and asking for pain relief. I was open to an epidural during my whole pregnancy and at this point I needed the pain to stop; I was not coping at all in that moment. The lovely midwife went on to tell me that I could not have the epidural until the obstetrician arrived and that he was on his way. I’m pretty sure this broke me, the thought of any more contractions in such pain was horrifying to me. At this point they offered me the gas and a fit ball to sit on. The midwife also alluded to the fact that the baby was most likely posterior and that was the reason for the pain being so strong in the back.
Marc slowly helped me move to the fit ball and they handed me the gas. This was not helpful at all. If anything, I felt like this made everything worse. I got dizzy and faint and felt as if I was going to fall off the ball. Lucky Marc was behind me so he helped me stay stable. There was no way I was going to keep going with the gas. I needed the epidural and I wanted it straight awa