Wednesday, 23 February 2011

The Second

After the trauma of my first birth I have to admit that I lied about the date of my last menstrual period when booking with my second. This was to buy me some time in case they wanted to induce me again - no way. I had researched natural births and had a pretty good idea how to make my second much more natural and hopefully less painful. I woke up with painful contractions at 01.00 Hrs. at term + 7 days. I went downstairs and started doing my relaxing as outlined in a previous post. To my amazement the contractions stopped hurting but still kept coming. I made my way to hospital alone, my husband was minding our first born. The labour ward was very busy with an emergency so I was assessed and left in my room. This suited me well cos I was able to sit in the padded chair and do my relaxing. The contractions did not hurt at all and I have never felt so relieved and happy. The midwife came back and told me that she did not think I was in labour as I was far too comfortable, but she wanted to check my cervix anyway before I went to the AN ward. I was fully dilated. She was amazed. I had no urge to push so she left me on the chair to relax. Half an hour later I wanted to push. It was a struggle as he was bigger than my first. I was put in a position I now know as McRoberts cos he was coming too slowly. The midwife passed a catheter to empty my bladder -OW - that was the most painful event of the whole labour. I eventually pushed out my gorgeous big baby boy and I felt elated, I had achieved exactly what I had set out to. A pain free labour (if you don't count the catheter). I could have skipped home the next day if I hadn't had a new born baby in my arms. I now knew that if I chose to have a third, I could look forward to a fabulous pain free labour. O dear Lord. How wrong can one person be?

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Hypno Birthing

After just watching last weeks OBEM I had to look into this hypno birthing lark. It seems to be an American thing, You Tube have some very convincing clips. One of the docs in a clip said "They are not pains, they are contractions", music to my ears. However, you don't have to be hypnotised to have a pain free labour, my methods work just as well. Sandy, the young lady on OBEM, who was striving for a hypno birth made one fatal error. She did not remain upright. What, is there a water shortage in Southhampton, the birthing pool was only half full and Sandy had no choice but to lie down as she would have gotten cold otherwise. No wonder she was begging for a dose of Pethidine. When she was more upright I noticed that she coped a lot better. My method of relaxing is perhaps not as deep a state as hypno birthing, but as long as it reduces your adrenalin output, it will give you a pain free labour. As long as you remain upright. Plus, if I had my mum gripping my head, like Sandy had, whispering tosh into my ear as well as having to listen to bad Chinese restaurant music, then there is no way I would have remained relaxed. I would have pulled her into the pool to shut her up and run off screaming just to get some peace. The hypno birthers have nearly got it right. Relaxation is the key but staying upright so that the uterus is not working against gravity is an important factor. Now then, for anyone out there who is related to me - you are feeling very sleepy, you will send me lots of pressys and cards for my birthday next month, OK, you can wake up now. He He He.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

The First

My first pregnancy ended, as many firsts do, with high blood pressure leading to induction of labour (IOL). I did not need a prostin pessary as they were able to break my waters and I was started on an oxytocic drip. From that moment on my whole world changed as I was brutally introduced to extreme and unrelenting pain. As a defensive mechanism I curled up into a fetal ball and escaped into the apparent safety of my own mind, hiding there away from the trauma being inflicted on my pregnant body. At one stage I remember opening my eyes to peep outside my refuge to see my husband eating the packed lunch that he had brought with him. As I watched him munching on his tuna sandwiches I marvelled at how the world was able to carry on turning unperturbed in my hour of need. I decided that it was safer inside as the pain was still there so I closed my eyes and went away. Not long after this I felt a sharper pain in my leg and found the midwife injecting me with something. I never did find out what it was, pethidine perhaps? It was amazing how during the 1980s you could be given any treatment without your consent. My concept of the world became fuzzy after that as I settled into an even deeper catatonic state. I surprised everyone then by proceeding to push my baby out in record time resulting in bi lateral 2nd degree tears that took an hour to suture. But I had done it. I had survived. My reward was a beautiful little boy who I fell instantly in love with. After this trauma I set out to find another way to labour. There was no way I would ever allow myself to be tortured during childbirth again. My findings led me to discovering the hidden truth, labour contractions are not meant to cause pain. I vowed that my second labour would be different, and it was.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Staying upright

One of the most important steps toward a pain free labour is to stay upright. Don't worry, it doesn't mean that you have to stand up for hours on end. Sitting in a comfortable chair or firm couch will do. You can also kneel on the floor leaning forward on a chair or bean bag, this helps with an OP position (baby has his back to your back instead of to your front). The reason that you must remain upright is that if you lie down then your uterus is working against gravity and the contractions have to get stronger and so start to cause pain. You will have to lie down for a vaginal examination (VE) by your midwife to find out if you are in labour or not. This position should not be held for long and as soon as the examination is over then you should get upright again. If you have to be put on a CTG machine to obtain a print out of baby's heartbeat then you do NOT have to stay on the bed, you can still sit on a chair or birthing ball to labour, let the midwife worry about the trace. Remember, this is your birth, you are in charge.