Monday 24 March 2014

Birth Story

On Sunday 16th March I went to a drop in clinic at the hospital to see a midwife to get a sweep done - hoping to start labour off. I had one a few days before which apparently worked... however the one I had on Sunday morning was incredibly painful and caused me to bleed straight away. She said that I was 2cm dilated but only at the bottom... my cervix was opening but only the bottom and not the top of it - sort of like a funnel shape. Because I hadn't been feeling baby move as much as usual we were sent into maternity triage to have baby's heartbeat monitored to see if she was happy. After 30 minutes of being on the monitor a doctor came to see me and said even though baby's heartbeat is fine and she's very happy in there they have decided the best thing to do would be to induce me as I was already 10 days overdue anyway.

Induction = my worst fear (at the time). 

So we went up to the antenatal ward where I was induced using the gel, it hurt but it definitely worked - just like it did when I had it with Oliver, my labour with him was super short - 4 hours 45 minutes and 2 hours of that was just the placenta so he came out very quickly especially for a first baby. This labour wasn't going to run as smoothly as the last - I could just sense it.

Soon after I got into a nightie and a dressing gown 9pm arrived, visiting time was over and Michael had to leave, I knew something was going to happen and that he would be back sooner than 8am visiting started. I think he knew too. So soon after he left, pains started coming and going and being a second time mum, I recognized these pains. I couldn't just sit still so throughout the night I walked up and down an empty hospital ward, stopping to silently contract. I have this thing, when I'm in pain - I go quiet, I just breathe through the pain and the midwife didn't believe me that something was happening. (just like when I was in labour) She told me to go to bed and sleep - so I burst into tears and said how can I sleep when I'm in this much pain? I'm not annoying anyone by being awake. Evenutally she checked me and I was 2cm - all the way now, no longer just the bottom so I knew something was happening even if it was slower than it felt like.

So after a few more very long hours I asked her to check me again and she refused saying that they don't usually check for 24 hours to decrease the chance of infection but that I could have gas and air - Yes Yes. Now, I didn't want gas and air until I was 4cm but I really felt like I was there already. I didn't know what to do! I was speaking to the girl next to me and now my contractions were a minute and a half apart and lasted 30-40 seconds. I didn't know why she wouldn't check me. I texted Michael - woke him up, moaning that she wouldn't check me and he insisted I put my foot down. So I did and she finally agreed to check me, I was 4cm. She asked me if I wanted to go to the birthing centre? And I said yes! If I'm allowed but then she disappeared for what felt like forever and obviously being induced I wasn't allowed the birthing centre. I called Michael and said please come now, I'm 4cm and I think it's going to happen quickly. He took 20 minutes to get to me, which was amazing. I was just walking to the delivery suite when he arrived and walked with me and the midwife. She asked me if I needed a chair but why? So I can sit down and delay things a little... I think moving around helps things progress.

using the Elle Tens +
We got to the delivery room where I met my midwife. I can't for the life of me remember her name - she did tell me but I was on the gas and air! Michael put my tens machine on, I was using the brand new Elle Tens + which I had been sent to review and it was amazing. I didn't need the gas and air as much when I started using the tens machine, my separate review of this will come soon. All Michael done was made me laugh, the midwife said she loves labours like this and could see how close our relationship was. I squeezed his hand tight and then apologised - apparently I'm super nice during labour and no swear wears were mentioned the only word used was "sugar" once. See.. I go silent. Not usual for me being silent!
The baby's heartbeat was monitored continuously because I was induced and the midwife kept a close eye on my blood pressure. Then she checked my blood pressure and it had gone high so she went to get a doctor to come examine me, the doctor returned with the midwife to examine me and she said I was still only 3-4cm and she would break my waters to speed things up. The next bit happens very quickly.

The doctor broke my waters and I felt a warm gush in between my legs - yucky. Then the doctor looked horrified at the midwife and said something. The midwife replied with "You're joking?"... Then she pushed buttons, opened the curtains and people started appearing. The doctor started to push her hands up further into my cervix, which hurt alot she started to explain, the babies cord had come out and was infront of my babies head. I needed to go for an emergency c-section right now, I didn't have a choice, I looked at Michael and started crying my heart out, saying no. He tried talking to me but quickly, my bed was moving and I was on the way to theatre and then an anesthetist was next to me explaining they would be putting a spinal into my back so that they could do the c-section. when we arrived at the room, 2 seconds away from my room luckily. I had people all around me, holding my hand, putting a drip thing into my hand and putting an oxygen mask on my face - I thought this oxygen mask would be putting me to sleep but obviously that was stupid of me they were just trying to calm me down. Oh and let me mention the most painful thing of all, one midwife had to have her entire hand up my 'lady area' into my cervix pushing baby's head off the cord so that she didn't squeeze into it. Michael got dressed into scrubs but it was too late they didnt have time to give me a spinal. I heard a doctor say no time for that to another person. 

"Mary-Kate, we are going to have to put you under a general anthestic as we need to deliver baby right now". "ok" I replied -as if I had a choice anyway. All I kept saying was "please don't let her die", not for one second did me pass my mind, all I cared about was her being ok. Michael wasn't allowed in the room obviously but at the time I didn't know that I still assumed he would be next to me but thank god I didn't know because if I did I would of just panicked more. A lovely doctor held my hand as he was talking to me I obviously fell asleep as I can't remember anything else about it.

When I came around it was around an hour later, I remember looking to my side to see Michael holding a baby and doing a double take. It almost didn't feel as if I had had a baby because I hadn't witnessed her actually being born, if that makes sense? But she was gorgeous and I was so happy she was ok. Even more happy that she was given to daddy to cuddle instead of left beside an unconsious me, Michael insisted he wanted her so he could hold her and she wasn't just on her own. They explained that I had a cord prolapse - something I'd never heard of but it's one of the big emergencys that needs promt delivery of baby.

Let me tell you what Umbilical Cord Prolapse is...
It occurs when the cord slips into the vagina after the membrands have ruptured but before the baby descends into the birth canal.The babys head can put pressure on the cord which reduces or cuts off blood flow from placenta to baby - decreasing their oxygen supply. It is rare but baby needs to be delivered promptly as can result in stillbirth or brain damage. Pressure on the cord therefore needs to be relieved immediately. There are things that increase the risk of cord prolapse: breech position, preterm labour, umbilical cord too long, too much amniotic fluid, artifical rupturing of waters, delivery of twins vaginally.

Luckily my waters didn't go at home? I feel like such an idiot for trying all those different ways to induce labour naturally and I am feeling so very lucky that my waters didn't go when I had no doctor's/midwives near me to save my baby girl.

Duration of labour: 3 hours 14 minutes

Duration of third stage: 1 minute 
Analgesia: General Anaesthetic
Mode of delivery: Vertex-Grade 1 - Emergency Caesarean
Indication for Caesarean: Cord prolapse
Other information: Cord prolapse, Meconium Liquor, blood loss 300ml

Baby Girl born at 6:14am 17th March 2014 weighing 8lb 6oz, 11 days overdue.

Lenght of umbilical cord? 100cm. Twice the lenght it usually is!!!

I feel incredibly lucky to have my gorgeous little girl, her daddy and big brother are absolutely smitten. We haven't had any visitors yet, only my mum and Michael's parents have met her so far and she's a week old today! But I haven't felt upto it yet and my blood pressure has been high so they've been keeping an eye on that. I am the luckiest girl in the world though because Michael has looked after me as if I'm a princess, he's waited on me hand and foot and made it so I have nothing to worry about. Currently as I'm writing this I'm breastfeeding Isabelle, I feel I should say a massive thank you to all of the delivery team that helped me and saved our little lady because without them my world would be broken. Impressed at how quickly they reacted to the emergency and how caring they were to me even thought they were rushing about.

Our first photo together
Oliver meeting Isabelle
Michael brought me a present <3
First photo with Daddy x
Mary-Kate, x



  1. aaaw, i was reading it and had tears in my eyes, must be so stressful, congratulations she looks lovely! I have to wait a little bit less than 3 months until I finally meet my little girl

    My Little L

    1. It was but they were so good on delivery suite and super quick. Thank you :) she is lovely. Ahh exciting! It will go very quickly x

  2. congratulations to you, Michael and Oliver!! A terrifying birth, and she was actually quicker than Oliver although she did get a helping hand :) xx

    1. He was 2hrs 45minutes... Just the placenta took 2 hours so made his labour longer. Thank you :) x

  3. Oh well now I'm sobbing everywhere. Bless your heart. Congratulations again. She is beautiful and you look glowing in those pictures, honestly! What beautiful photos to look back on.

    Cord prolapse is blood scary. It just reminds me of an incident mentioned in the first Call The Midwife book, it's sort of hilarious in it's setting but cord prolapse is clearly no laughing matter. So glad that you're both safe and well, but take time to adjust to what happened. Always around to talk xx


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