My labour started naturally with my waters breaking at 6pm on Xmas eve, this was 2 weeks before my due date so it was a big surprise!
Within 30 mins I had mild contractions, we arrived at SCUH and by 8pm I was 3cm dialated. Our baby girl was coming! The contractions at that point were coming hard and fast, I was immediately concerned that this didn’t feel like the early labour I had expected. We were moved to a birth suite and I laboured in the shower for a few hours. The hot water was calming and a big relief on the back pain I was experiencing.
After a few hours of very intense labouring we moved into the bath, this had been set up with dim lights and candles by my midwives. We had a bag packed that was still in the car with all of our calm birth tools and we had no time to set up the environment how we had planned so to come out to the bath full and the room looking calm was very appreciated.
I laboured in the bath for the next few hours, the contractions were so much more intense than I expected, they came hard and fast with very little rest in between and I was experiencing a lot of back pain thanks to our baby girl being posterior. I used my calm breathing techniques to try to get through each one. Sterile water injections were used to take the back pain away and my god do they hurt!! But it worked and I finally felt some relief in my back. At this point I also used some gas to try to take the edge off. I felt I could relax and really focus for a small amount of time.
I then moved onto all fours on the bed to try to turn her from a posterior position. I really felt the urge to push and felt relief feeling her move down. It’s after this point things get a little blurry.. I remember turning onto my back and all of a sudden the lights were bright and there seemed to be a lot of people in the room. Our baby’s heartbeat had slowed and we couldn’t get it to return to its normal pace. I attempted pushing on my own but I was so exhausted and in a lot of pain it was very hard to focus. Vacuum and forceps were used to assist and finally our baby girl Zara Jean Knigge arrived at 2am on Xmas morning! Unfortunately during delivery her shoulder had gotten stuck in my pelvis and her collarbone was broken during the attempt to get her out, I also had a 3rd deg tear due to this.
My labour was not at all what I expected and it ended in quite a serious emergency delivery however I used the breathing techniques and everything I had learnt to keep calm throughout even towards the end. Jeb was the ultimate support person and he was cool, calm and collected throughout. Knowing what to expect really helped us understand what was happening even when things didn’t go to plan.
Tracey- thank you for everything! The Calmbirth class is something I recommend to everyone, you equipped us with the tools to handle a very intense situation. We were also so lucky to have you in the room during my labour and delivery, your calm voice really grounded me and helped me to focus. I am beyond in love with Zara and enjoying every minute of Mum life.
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