Saturday, February 24, 2007

So I had my baby...

I thought I would post the email I sent out to everyone, mainly because someone said today that it's such a wild story that I ought to publish it. Sorry if you've read it before...

Well, I've been very remiss and neglected to write an epistle for some time. This is because I have had some issues with the pregnancy; mainly I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes at 28 weeks and I was fighting going on insulin for some time, especially as baby was measuring small for gestational age. Anyway, this meant a lot of my energy was being expended in following a dietary regime which was hard for me (low carbs on a mostly veggie diet? Impossible!) as well as the usual rigmarole of bringing up a young family, moving into a new house and getting it in order and just the drain of being pregnant!

I was also diagnosed with being positive for Group B Strep. For those of you who haven't had babies, this is a potentially fatal infection for baby though quite a normal infection of a lady's down there bits! About 25% of the population have it at any one time and the only time it is relevant is at birth. The upshot of this diagnosis is that you have to be on an antibiotic drip during labour so that the strep is essentially blasted while baby is in the birth canal.

Anyway, the purpose of this email was not to whine, whinge and moan about how awful pregnancy is and what a horrid time I have had. No, the purpose of this email is to tell you all about the good bit of pregnancy. The baby!

Gabriel Anthony Stephen Dodd arrived at 3:20am Friday 17th November, 3 weeks early, weighing a reasonably healthy 6lb 2oz and measuring 47cm (18.5 in).

There now follows a birth story. If you really don't want to read it, skip to the bottom and look at his photo!

I had been pretty crampy all day, more like period pains than anything else. Then I started getting pretty strong BHs since about 2pm, but nothing 'productive' or unusual to what I'd been having the week or so before. Nothing regular anyway. However, at about 9:30 I took my second bath of the day to try and get them to stop and they didn't...again!

I was still denying the fact I was in labour until, ooooo, about 12am, when the contractions finally started coming at a reasonable klick (I actually slept between 10:45 and 11:45!). I got in the bath to manage the pain and waited for them to get close enough together to warrant calling the hospital. At about 2:30 I decided that the time had come. They were finally about 5 minutes apart so I got out of the bath and went to print off my birth plan. Luckily, I'd already written it for the doula, so it was ready to go.

Then I woke Sean up and sent him to get the girls up. I then had about 5 more decent, hard contractions. To be honest, they were the nastiest bit and the only bit where I really thought that I was not going to be able to make it through the rest of my labour in hospital without some kind of pain meds. Then I sat down on the loo because I really needed to go! At which point, everything stopped...

This, ladies and gentlemen, was what is known in midwifery circles as 'transition'. It's the 'rest and be grateful' stage. It's the tiny spoon of time between full dilation and 'oh, shit, this baby is coming, call 911'...

So, there I am, sitting on the loo, yelling away every two minutes or so, with my husband desperately trying to get the girls out of bed and dressed. The problem was, every time I yelled, he came running in to see me to make sure I was OK, at which point Miranda climbed back into bed! About twice through this farce, I finally realised that the contractions were pushes and told him very sheepishly that he should call the ambulance, which he duly did.

He finally got the girls dressed and sat them at the window to tell him when the ambulance arrived. Me, on the other hand, flushed the toilet (because there needs to be a clean pan, you know...God knows what I was thinking!) and reached down to find bulging waters. Which went pop and a head appeared. Sean is now going "What do I do? What do I do?" over and over...I'm going "I don't know" over and over! He gets me on my feet, relevant bits still over the bowl. He makes sure the baby's neck is free of the cord, something he watched the midwife do with Miranda and we wait for the baby to turn, which he duly does, like a little spinning top. Out came the shoulders and whoosh, Daddy catches his son and goes "It's a boy!" in a tiny, sheepish voice.

Then manfully recovers his composure, dumps his son on my chest, turns his wrist over and says, "Well, we'll call that 3:20 shall we?"

The EMT arrived about 15 minutes later and cut the chord and transported me and my baby to Danbury Hospital to be checked over, stitched (me) and warmed (him). Because we didn't have the IV antibiotics for Group B Strep, we had to stay in for observation for two days, which was nice as it meant I got some peace and quiet to contemplate this whole thing!

And I'm pretty proud of myself!


Angela said...

LMAO! Love the bit where DH turns his wrist and says 3:20! & a clean pan?! lol, whats that about! Wow! Such an amazing birth story. You should be proud of yourself for coping so well & DHshould be proud of helping to bring his son into the world. Well done x

Kristina said...

Great work.

Tryer said...

Nice! Brings back memories!