Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Monday, 24 August 2015

Griffin's Birthday

Griffin's original birth story got lost, since the page it was posted on got removed. I finally found a right up of it, so I am reposting it for my own records now.

He was born on 12 November 2001. I was 27.

Griffin's Birthday 

I had another healthy and uneventful pregnancy, and stayed fit and active right to the end. My due date was estimated to be 15 November, but due to the fact that Quinn was born large (and overdue) we monitored the size of the new baby. An ultrasound at 38 weeks estimated that the baby weighed around 3.9kgs already! With gains of around 250g per week I was not keen to go overdue again... 

So at 7am on Monday 12 November, Richard and I met my midwife Kate, at Vincent Pallotti Hospital to attempt an induction. We deliberately arrived early, to ensure that we'd be able to use the labour ward with the birth pool, as I wanted to have another water-birth. 

Kate inserted the prostaglandin gel at 7:45, and after 45 minutes of monitoring, we were sent out to walk around to stimulate contractions. The walking did help but the contractions were not very strong or regular. By 11:45 I was dilated to nearly 3cm, which was enough to allow Kate to rupture my membranes - releasing a flood of fluid which sounded like a running tap!  

Once the mighty flow abated we went out walking again, and the contractions were stronger, but still not very regular, or intense. Once back in our ward Richard lit some candles and placed some of our aromatherapy labour oil in a burner, while Kate massaged my lower back and bump with some of the aromatherapy oil. 

Four hours after the AROM, at 3:45 Kate again checked my progress, and found I'd only dilated to 4cm. I found this very disheartening, as by this time with Quinn's birth he was almost ready to be born... Kate mentioned that with such slow progress we may have to consider a Pitocin drip. I was very against this, and asked if there was anything else I could do. She phoned my gynae who agreed that we could wait another 2 hours, and then access the situation again. 

I could feel the intensity of the contractions increasing, and was starting to have to concentrate and breathe through them. I alternated between standing, leaning forward against the bed, and sitting leaning forward in a chair. I mostly focused on my own and squeezed stress balls (one in each hand) during the peak of contractions. 

At about 5:15pm I told Kate I would love to get into the birth pool - thinking I was still making slow progress, she suggested I wait until 5:45, when the additional 2 hours would be over, when we could access my progress and make a decision. 

That half hour seemed really long, and I was really having to focus during contractions. I was feeling a bit disappointed, and felt that if I wasn't at at least 7cm by 5:45 I may not have the strength or courage to continue. In the mean time I started feeling really drowsy, and was almost nodding off during the short time between contractions. I laughed and said that if I wasn't in labour, I could have quite happily gone to sleep. Kate said that was a sign that my oxytocin levels were high, as a side effect of oxytocin is drowsiness. 

Finally 5:45 arrived, and Kate suggested I empty my bladder before the internal. She came along with me and I had 2 big contractions while out of the room, and had to hobble back. 

I then climbed onto the bed, while Kate readied herself with gloves etc. Richard, who had not been feeling well since mid morning, and had an upset stomach had been sitting and reading on the side. 

As I got up onto the bed I curled up into a foetal position on my side and suddenly felt a change. A powerful force overtook me and I suddenly felt the urge to push. I yelled that I was pushing, and Kate hurriedly grabbed her phone to call her assistant mid-wife who was meant to be there for the birth. I shouted that I wanted to be in the bath, and Richard leaped up and started filling it.... I could not control the incredible pushing force and felt very out of control on my back, I yelled for them to help me up.. She then ran back in and placed a pillow in front of a chair and told Richard to sit in the chair. She then helped me off the bed, and got me to kneel on the pillow and lean on Richard. Kate then dashed outside to ask if one of the hospital mid-wives could assist. 

I put a hand down to feel, and felt the baby's head crowning. I called for Kate, saying the baby was coming. Before she got back from the door, and without any pushing from me, with the next contraction I felt the baby's head coming out. I felt again and could feel that the whole head was out! I was breathless and a bit overwhelmed by how quickly and suddenly everything was happening. Kate got down behind me and told me to push. I said I wanted to rest and wait for the next contraction - she said, ' This baby wants to come NOW', so I gave 2 pushes and felt the burn of one shoulder then the next and then the slither of the rest of the body coming out. Richard said 'It's a boy'. 

I sat down on the floor and held the precious little boy. I was still in complete disbelief at what had just happened, and was trying to catch my breath. 

I checked the clock and it was still before 6pm. I asked Kate what time he had been born and she said, '6 minutes to 6 - and you only got up on the bed at around 12 minutes to 6!'. 

A hospital mid-wife then popped in at the door to see if we needed help, but it was already all over. Once the chord had stopped pulsating, it was clamped, and then Richard cut it. The placenta was delivered, without much fuss, and then the assistant mid-wife Glynnis rushed in saying, ' I got here as soon as I could'. 

I got up on the bed again to have a few stitches put in, as I had torn slightly when the shoulder were born as they were slightly stuck. It was then that I realised that we hadn't even used the birth-pool, and had no birth photos! 

We named our newest family member Griffin. He was indeed big and weighed in at 4.46kg, which is just 10g lighter than Quinn was, but 12 days earlier! He was 54cm long, and has a 37cm circumference head. His apgars were 8 & 9 - losing points for colour and initial breathing. 

Richard then went home to fetch Quinn so he could meet his brother. 

When they arrived I had been moved to the maternity ward, and as Quinn arrived he said 'Baby! Giffin!' which was very sweet. 

I sent the night in the hospital, and went home after breakfast the next day.

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