First time mum Kristina and her partner Sam share their positive birth experience at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Greenwich (London).
- 28th September 2023
- 1st baby
- 8lbs 1oz - arrived 4 days early
- 6 hour delivery with no interventions
- Delayed cord clamping and Golden hour
- Minor tearing, minimal drugs
I started getting leg cramping and what felt like mild period pains. I felt it was the start of the labour but didn’t want to stress so had something to eat, had a warm bath and relaxed as much as I could.
The surges seemed to have progressed so rapidly, I didn’t have a chance to process. My waters had not broke and attempting to count contractions was difficult, although the breathing techniques I learned did help. I also kept moving throughout which to this day I know helped things progress as quick as they did.
I went into hospital triage as contractions were close to one another. I was examined by a trainee who said I was 3cm dilated. To check I was then examined by the head midwife who said I was one 1cm dilated, which at the time was deflating as well as confusing. The contractions seemed to have slowed down probably due to car journey to the hospital and having to lay down on my back to be examined and other stress factors. I was asked to go home and call back at 10pm when I had progressed further.
I had strong contractions throughout the car journey home, when I arrived home I was run a warm bath and tried to stay as calm as possible, continuing with breathing exercises. I was feeling more and more pressure with each contraction and my intuition telling me it would not be long. Because of this I wanted to be in an environment where I could get assistance if I needed it so called the midwives again and was asked to go back to triage.
This time I continued to walk around while I waited to be examined, I could not talk at this point and my legs were shaking ( later found out it’s a second stage of labour sign) My waters still had not broken by this stage but was told I was 6cm dilated and taken straight to the labour ward (I don’t think even the midwife’s expected me to progress so quickly for a 1st baby and felt up until this stage I wasn’t really listened to by triage midwife’s).
By this point I was zoning out and focusing on myself and the baby.
I was given gas and air which helped ease the surges but also made me feel sick so I tried not to use often. The midwife overseeing my labour was kind,calm and listened to me. While she set up she had me continue to walk around and also sat me on the exercise ball, within minutes my waters had broke. Not long after I was asked to prop myself on the bed in a position comfortable for me (the knees together feet out came in handy âºï¸)
I was examined again and told it would not be long and to tell her when I feel the need to push.
I had a small moment where it all settled and I didn’t feel as intense surges as before. I had a drink and was fed some skittles by sam which turned out to be the wrong choice as they ended up being brought up when baby’s head was crowning ð
Everything else was a blur, I was told I was pushing for roughly 1 hour 20 minutes before he arrived at 11:56 that night. I did not find out what I was having and when I was able to bring him to my chest and find out myself I knew it was the best decision and that got me through each push.
I had no music, calming lights or birthing pool as I had pictured but it was the birth I needed. My boy arrived quick, safely and healthy.
I’d like to think we got each other through the whole experience together.
Huge congatrulations to Kristina and Sam - thank you for sharing your story to help other parents-to-be!
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