I cannot believe how long it has taken me to find the time to sit and bring you up-to-date. Actually. Thats a lie. I can. It’s been quite hard to a) find the time and b) put it in writing. Here’s why.
Jan 11th. That was the date of my last post. January the 11th 2016. Rather ironically, that post was about antenatal classes and how excited I was looking forward to a normal birthing experience. Exactly four weeks later my waters broke.
The “birth plan” was to stay home as long as possible once my waters broke so when I called the hospital to tell them they’d broke and they told me to get straight there, I panicked. The water was brown which meant the baby could be in distress but could also just be common as I was five days overdue. I immediately starting being violently sick and overwhelmed with panic. This was not how it was meant to be. My TENS machine and soothing massage oils aren’t even opened. As I was soon to find out, there really is no such thing as a birth plan.
Outside, there was a huge storm, Storm Imogen was hitting the South West and my boyfriend was even more stressed about driving his anxious, wet, puking girlfriend to hospital. I am sure we had some sort of guardian angel that night because as soon as I we finally got in the car, the gale force winds and rain quietened and we got to St Micheals Hospital safely. Once inside, thunder and lightning began and I don’t just mean outside.
The pain was crazy and I didn’t feel at all prepared. It was only when the midwive told me what was going on that I realised why. The baby was back-to-back and I needed an epidural, fast. The one thing I did not want in my “plan”. Typically, the first epidural was placed in too far and only worked for 30 minutes (Best 30 minutes of my life though! Didn’t feel a thing!) and meant that the pain came back even stronger than before and I now couldn’t move the top half of my back. They gave me a much stronger epidural and lo and behold, that didn’t work either. Two failed epidurals and one screaming soon-t0-be mamma.
This post is getting long, so let’s cut to the chase, 24 hours of labour later I was ready to push. It sounds weird but the pushing didn’t hurt. It was exciting. I was going to finally meet little Snowie and see what they were! Everything was going great and I was getting the baby out naturally, when suddenly 30 people filled the room.
Midwives, surgeons, doctors, angels all rushed in. I had shoulder dystocia. The baby was stuck under my pubic bone. It’s extremely rare (two in every 100 births) and I was totally unprepared. The doctor managed to get the baby out by cutting me (ouch…) and the baby came out bright blue with the cord around its neck and no crying.
I have never been more scared in my whole life and doubt I ever will be again. Thankfully, I didn’t see the baby bright blue as I don’t think the image would ever leave my mind. My poor boyfriend however, saw everything. Me screaming and bleeding everywhere, doctors trying to calm me and stitch me up, surgeons trying to bring our baby round. I couldn’t stop looking at his face. Praying to see something that told me it would be ok.
Six minutes. Six long long minutes. That’s how long it was before we heard her cry. Her. Our little girl. She’d not been able to breathe on her own, was extremely distressed and couldn’t move her right arm but my girl was here.
The relief was unbelievable and I still cry recalling it now. That’s why it’s taken me so long to write it down. The few hours and days that followed where a bit of a blur. I couldn’t breastfeed as my body and the baby had suffered such trauma and she was diagnosed with Erbs Palsy on her right side but I was just so grateful to have her.
When I started this blog, I wanted to tell you ladies that you could do it. That no matter what people say or how your mind tells you can’t, you can. Whether you are plus size or not. That still stands but I can tell you that had it not been for my weight, the epidural may have been successful and the labour may not have been 24 hours and so painful.
If I EVER considered having a baby again, I’d definately lose weight first. Lots of it. I’m already 2.5 stone down…
I will continue this blog into my plus size parenthood and see where we go. Thanks for sticking with me. Here she is.
Dorothy Rae Wakeling. Born 2.31am on Tuesday 9th February 2016 weighing 9lb 14oz!!!
Dottie-Rae to her friends.
PS St Michaels Hospital staff are incredible. We both owe them our lives. You’d be very lucky to have your baby there.