We all have a story to tell about the births of our babies, whether they were early or late, on time or simply unexpected. That’s why stories like mine and Perlita’s that I’m sharing with you today are so important. Births can often have an element of the unexpected.
Here’s Perlita’s story about the birth of her son at 25 weeks (get your tissues ready)
My own story is a little different. I had a rough pregnancy, from the outset. I had nausea so strong that I watched the entire winter Olympics from the couch with the aircon blasting cold air at me. I was hospitalised for dehydration, and ended up on medication due to the intensity of my morning sickness (which lasted the entire pregnancy).
Walking into the supermarket made me feel unwell and the train to work assailed me with smells that I couldn’t cope with. No-one warns you that you can be that sick, or that the tablets that keep you from ending up in hospital cost $10 each.
By 36 weeks, I was so grateful to be going on maternity leave. When I finished work, I called my Dad and asked him to pick me up from the office as I couldn’t walk to the station. My baby was breech, she’d been that way for the last eight weeks and wasn’t moving anywhere; there was no room left.
I’d planned a natural birth and I watched my plans disappearing out the window as the time got closer. We had just finished our antenatal classes the week before and I was set on a due date of 10/10/2010.
The next day I got my haircut and eyebrows waxed and wallowed in some television at home, enjoying my mat leave… seriously… it’s awesome! The next morning I went for a routine appointment at the obstetrician and was admitted for monitoring for the day. My liver function levels were not good, so he wanted to see what happened overnight.
After very little sleep, I had more bloods done and they didn’t come back as good as he had expected. I was heading towards liver failure. Next thing, I was being told that I was having a baby within the hour. My obstetrician calmed me down as tears spilled down my cheeks and I called Mr Kidgredients to get to the hospital NOW! An hour later, my OB had scrambled together the team he wanted and I had a c-section.
My daughter was born at 36 plus 4 on 17/09/2010. She was born crying but had some breathing difficulties and was whisked away to the NICU for monitoring. She stayed there overnight.
My first memories of holding her were amazing, but at the same time, we felt separated when she was whisked back to the NICU. I remember the next morning holding her properly for the first time and she turned blue. We pressed the panic button and the nurses came running. She was returned to the NICU and monitored closely.
That afternoon, the paediatrician did scans as she hadn’t passed anything since birth and saw something wrong with her bowel. There were phone calls made, and next thing she was being whisked away across town to the specialist children’s hospital. I remember crying uncontrollably as she was strapped in to the special bed with cords and cables attached to her.
Hubby rode in the ambulance and I had to stay at the hospital. I was only 24 hours post c-section and the pain of sitting up and watching my newborn being taken away was hard enough to deal with. Upon arrival at the hospital, my daughter passed a bowel movement, but she was kept there for a few days as she needed a bowel biopsy and other tests done.
Those five days in hospital by myself were the longest of my life. I guess most people don’t want to visit if there is no baby to see and hold. When she came back to me I felt like I was finally a mum again. It wasn’t the start to motherhood I was expecting, but as I said earlier, it’s the unexpected elements that no-one talks about!
I want to ask you: did you have any unexpected moments in your birth story? Who took care of you?