I want to apologise first off for being MIA these past few months. I’ve recently returned back to work after taking maternity leave and am getting used to juggling work and a baby. I’m slowly getting there with it all so wil hopefully be posting on a more organised and regular basis. Todays post is all about my delivery of my little boy Harry. Even though he will be turning one in a couple of weeks (where has the time gone!!) I still wanted to document and post all that I had gone through during his birth. The post is pretty long so if this is something that doesnt interest you, please skip over or ignore this post. Lets get into it.
It seems odd writing this nearly 12 months on now from when I gave birth to my little boy but I really wanted to share my story with you all in order to try and show that a c-section delivery isn’t as bad as it may sound. I also want to log as much detail as I can from my sons first year so that in years to come, he can sit down and read through what we all did.
My pregnancy as a whole had been a really good one. There was nothing unto ward occurring and baby was progressing well. Both scans I had showed a very active little man who loved nothing more then using my bladder as a trampoline. The only real difficulty I had throughout was a burning sensation just under my ribs which would radiate round to my back. This wasn’t very pleasant and made sitting in work all day pretty uncomfortable. My midwife had told me that this as due to baby kicking my rib area and also pushing my organs all up under there. Gaviscon came to my rescue and helped ease the problem a little.
At my 34 week appointment, my midwife was a little concerned about the size of my bump. It was measuring a little under what it should had been at that point in the pregnancy. None the less babies heartbeat could be heard loud and clear and there was fetal movement going on. I was booked in for another two weeks time to see how my bump size had progressed.
Arriving for my 36 week appointment, I found that my surgery did not have me booked in on the system. Luckily I had the appointment written don in my pregnancy folder. The midwife on duty was happy to fit me in and it turned out to be a good thing she did! On measuring my bump she was also concerned that it hadn’t really progressed and so phoned the maternity unit at the hospital to arrange for me to be seen there. I knew in my head that something wasn’t quite right as I hadn’t felt my little boy kick as much in the two weeks since my previous appointment.
On arrival to the maternity unit, the staff were fantastic. They took me straight through to a ward room where I was hooked up to a fetal heart monitor to listen out for babies heart and kicks. They took my BP and measured my bump again. The consultant on duty advised that I should have a scan but unfortunately it was too late in the day to have one there and then as staff had already finished for the day. I was to ring fist thing the following morning but could not be guaranteed a slot as patients on the ward took priority if they needed urgent scans.
That night I didn’t sleep much at all. In the morning I sent my partner Chris off to work assuring him that he didn’t need to come with me as I would be home soon after the scan…..that was if I even got one that day. My mum had offered to come with me anyway as she had the week of work. Before I had chance to dial the department number, my phone rang. It was the maternity unit offering me a scan appointment. They told me that they were ringing patients as they were really organised that day. (personally I do wonder if someone had re-checked over my notes the night before and decided that I was an urgent case to be scanned).
I was due in for 11am but had to wait a while as others were seen. When we finally went in the sonographer was very quiet during the scan. She mentioned that my amniotic pools were low and there wasn’t much water for baby. I remember looking at the screen and seeing a lot of blue colour instead of the usual mix of blue and red indicating oxygen levels. I was asked to wait whilst she wrote some details and enveloped them up. I was advised to go back up to maternity and be seen there.
The next bit was such a blur. The unit quickly fell into action. I was being undressed and gowned up. A consultant came in to check my cervix in order to see if my waters had broken causing the low pool levels. I was then popped in a wheel chair and sent through to delivery. They were telling me my baby was going to be delivered in the next 2hrs. I couldn’t get my head around it all. He wasn’t due until the 21st September, it was now only the 27th August and I was only just over 36 weeks pregnant.
Once again I was placed in a bed and hooked up to fetal monitors when I arrived in delivery. My assigned midwife kept coming in and out checking on me and baby. My mum stayed with me the whole time. I rang Chris at work, getting through to reception I asked them to tell him to come to the hospital as I was going to be induced. The insertion of the pessary was one of the most uncomfortable things I have ever experienced. I think this was partly down to me being so scared and tense, but it was not an enjoyable experience. Soon after this was inserted I had another nurse come in to start putting a drip into my hand. She told me she was doing this in case I needed to be whisked off to surgery.
Chris finally arrived, just as I was updating him on everything that was happening another consultant came into the room dressed in purple scrubs advising that we were going to surgery as my babies heart rate was falling rapidly. This is where I suddenly felt so cold and numb. Its at this point I realised just how much I loved the little person who had been growing inside me these past 9 months. Hearing that there was a chance he could die chilled me to the bone. I was willing to do anything to make sure he was going to be okay.
I was transferred onto a surgery trolley and wheeled out of delivery. I remember seeing my mum and Chris’ face as I went out of the doors. Even though I was shaking inside, I smiled and told them we were going to be okay. Chris had to wait outside whilst the anaesthetist placed the epidural into my spine. This took 20 minutes but luckily they managed to get it into my spine. The thought of being put to sleep scared me, plus I didn’t want to miss getting that first glimpse of my little boy. The epidural is such an odd feeling. You go numb almost instantly from the lower chest down.
Surgery was finally ready to start. Surrounded by a big team and Chris at my head, the surgeon explained that I would have delivered my baby within five minutes. I felt no pain at all during surgery, just a lot of tugging and pressure. One of the nurses said other women liken it to having your insides shoved into a washing machine. It really did feel like that!! That moment I saw Harry, I felt overwhelmed with love for him and couldn’t wait to cuddle him. Unfortunately the cord was wrapped twice around his neck and he weighed just 3lbs 10 ounces. This meant he had to be admitted into SCBU. Cuddles had to wait. The team as a whole were brilliant. They worked so fast getting the cord away; Harry was soon crying and wrapped in a little blanket. Chris bought him over so I could see him before he went to SCBU. He was so tiny!! After being stitched up, Chris went with Harry to SCBU and I was sent into recovery before I could be allowed on the C-section ward.
That evening I slept very little, I got to hold Harry for around 20 minutes that night as he needed to be kept warm due to being so small. I was monitored throughout the night, with regular BP checks, oxygen boots on my legs to help prevent clots and doses of painkilling meds. I was allowed home after 2 days, but had to take regular painkillers and self inject clexane into my stomach to prevent clots forming. Harry stayed in SCBU for roughly 2 and ½ weeks in which time I spent most of time sitting in a chair next to his incubator…..not the most comfortable place to be after surgery but there was no way I wouldn’t have been there for him.
We all started life properly as a family together on 14th September 2015. I can safely say we havent looked back. Harry has surprised us both from day one. Hes come on so well and is now a healthly almost one year old!! I cant believe how fast the time has gone. My recovery was luckily fairly steady. I’m left with roughly a 7 inch scar across my lower abdomen which I’ve now become proud of. The first few months I hated looking at it as I felt like a failure at not being able to deliver my son naturally. However as time has gone on, I’m glad I did what I did as it means my son is now a healthy, thriving boy, who if I had delivered naturally may not be walking round now next to me as I type this.
I’ll be eternally grateful to all the staff that were involved in my delivery and cannot thank them enough for what they did. I’ll finish by saying to all the ladies out there who have delivered via c-section, please don’t be ashamed of that scar you wear. There are some nasty people out there that enjoy making you feel like a failure, but you are not and are far from that. You risked your own life to save the life of that very special someone who calls you Mummy and loves you so much.
I always love to hear from you all, so please leave me a comment 🙂
Thanks for reading