Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Labor & Delivery Story: Lily

This post is an honest account of what I can remember from my labor & delivery with Lily. There are no 'gory' pictures to scare you off  :) I've tried to keep the accounts as 'nutshell' like as I can

My foot/ankle swelled up the day before labor started, it wasn't at all painful, just a pins & needles sensation.

It was around 7:00 a.m on the 15th of April 2009, I'd just gotten up to use the bathroom for the 6-7th time and as I laid back down in bed, I immediately felt a little like I'd gotten off the toilet prematurely and by this point (39 weeks pregnant) I wouldn't put it past my body to wet itself a tiny bit. I always expected (thanks entirely to movies) that when my waters 'broke' it'd be this moment of "ARGH! MY WATER JUST BROKE."

I remember sighing thinking awesome, now I'm forgetting to stay on the toilet long enough not to wet myself. Half asleep still, I stumbled to the bathroom and decided since I was now up, and had most likely peed myself I would just have a shower and get ready for the day ahead.

After the shower I felt great; I straightened my hair, and remember thinking to myself while doing so, wow! I am having an awesome hair day!! After 20-30 minutes though, I noticed I was still...'leaking.' Like any normal person I woke Luke up and told him, Googled my symptoms and discovered that this was actually the 'start' of labor and the 'leakage' was indeed my water. I remember being so calm, so..placid about it all, like I had just accomplished utter peace through meditation. 

Luke was just waking up when I went into the room, and I asked if he'd had a good sleep, still half asleep himself he nodded yes, to which I replied "oh that's good, because I think my waters broke half an hour ago..." Luke went straight into 'Call the hospital/ Should we go there now?' mode. The hospital told us to come in immediately as I wasn't experiencing any contractions yet my water had broken, they wanted to monitor me and the baby. Before you could say "we're having a baby" we were on our way to the hospital.

Lily wasn't 'progressing' on her own as much as they [midwives] would have liked, so they hooked me up to a drip and carefully monitored Lily via a monitor strapped on my belly (see the picture below.)  There was talk of inducing me at one point, however I soon started to feel 'cramping' without any assistance, thinking these semi-painful cramps were my contractions I was happy that they didn't hurt nearly as much as what I had anticipated. I was soon informed they were 'practice contractions'.

I went from not feeling comfortable that my hospital gown exposed my underwear at the back, to leaning over the bed waving my hips madly around in a circle, like I had a hula-hoop in a matter of minutes ha ha. My midwife informed me it would help ease my backache..I can't remember whether it did or not. I decided not too long after the contractions really amped up that I'd 'try' some gas, but honestly it just made me feel quite drunk (although I became extremely attached to it!) I also came to the conclusion at one point (thanks to the effects of the gas) that the midwives had secretly turned the gas off and were seeing if I'd notice (they'd hadn't..)

I remember wanting to use the bathroom when my contractions were quite painful and the midwives were insisting that I just use a bedpan, I'm not sure why or how I still had my dignity about me as I'd heard you 'leave it at the door' but I devised this idea in my head I could use the bathroom in private and return back to the bed, all in between contractions....turns out I could not.

I had a really bad contraction as I sat down in the bathroom and remember not wanting to let the midwives or Luke know they were right, so I bit my lip and squeezed the roll of toilet paper with all my might. I came out and tried to act very casual, but I'm sure they all heard me cringe in pain.

The main reason I didn't opt for an epidural was the thought of a needle near my spine. That is until it came time for delivery, when my midwives were telling me 'it's almost time, stick with it' and I was telling them 'It's TIME FOR THE EPIDURAL!!' It was too late for it, however they did offer me a shot of pethidine which would apparently take the edge off my contractions, at that time time I would have taken a smack to the head or done a naked dance to escape the contractions. I don't remember the needle in my thigh, or it taking the edge off, because Lily arrived unexpectedly 20 minutes later and not the 2-4 hours they were expecting.

Sadly Lily was affected by the Pethidine due to arriving so shortly after it being administered. She  didn't 'attach' when I tried to breast feed her (I even had 2 lactation consultants try to help) which left me feeling really miserable and disheartened as my entire pregnancy all I was fed was "breast is best! babies benefit more from breast milk!" I think there should be more talk about when you simply can't breastfeed and how formula sometimes is the option we then take, so mothers don't feel like they have 'failed' in any way. I expressed milk for as long as I could until my body was just beyond exhausted and we opted for formula. 

Lily had to stay in the hospital for 7 days in total as she had also swallowed some fluid on her way out and it was not just affecting her feeding but making her breathing a little shallow. I stayed in the  mums room in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) which made the anxiety of not having her home and 100% more bearable. Luke visited us every single day (as he wasn't allowed to stay in the ward) and on the 7th day we were able to take her home as she had made a full recovery :)


Luke was so great through the whole experience, no matter how 'drunk' I felt on the gas I remember him being really attentive and nurturing through all of my moments of insanity (thanks a bunch gas!) Something that I really didn't know would happen straight away was Lily immediately bonding with Luke, it made being able to have a nap or even just 5 minutes to brush my hair so much more plausible! They have always been like 2 peas in a pod.

 After her week stint in hospital she made a full recovery and we've never looked back. I am to this day, really grateful for the stay we had at the hospital (although at the time I felt miserable) I racked the midwives brains on just about everything from what to expect with Lily's eating and growth to my own recovery time etc. By the time we left the hospital I felt as confident as ever about bringing Lily home, it was still daunting being my first child, but I felt more than ever ready to face each day.

The hospital didn't have any pink dummies at the time, and unfortunately Lily became quite attached to this blue dummy until finally we were able to take it away. Until that point we always had people asking (even when she was head to toe in pink!) whether she was a boy..

We were beyond words lucky to have such a happy and healthy baby after her stay in hospital. Lily slept through the nights from around 3 months and we never had any issues with the transition to solid food. She has always been happy just to relax with us or go for car trips and explore new places, which made the transition for me into parenthood at a young age more rewarding then I could ever blog about.

I'm curious as to what my Labor & Delivery Story with our son will be like...

Did you find this interesting? Let me know x

Until Next Time,


  1. I don't comment here at all, but can I just say that I really enjoy your blog. I read every post and find them really informative.
    Have you ever watched that documentary One Born Every Minute?

    1. Thanks so much Jasmine! I haven't watched One Born Every Minute but I have been wanting to as I always here that it's worth a watch



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