Archive for the 'labour' Category

I love my boys…

So my lovely tweet-come-blog-come now actual real life friend Bec over at Beetroot and Gherkins (which if you don’t read, you should, because it is brilliant), tagged me with the “Share your favourite photo” meme, and I’ve been procrastinating over it, because frankly, it’s HARD!

I am a complete photo loony.  I LOVE them.  I always have a camera on me, I have a silly amount of pictures stashed on my laptop, several dozen cds, and many more albums. And I’m supposed to pick just ONE from the whole of all of time?? *brainmelt!*

But, I have done it. I have picked. Although I am going to add the disclaimer that it’s *one* of my favourites. So as to not upset all it’s little kodak friends.

So here is the lucky winner:

Most of you know I had a pretty horrible birth experience.  This picture was taken about an hour after I came round from the GA I had my c-section under. In all honestly, I barely remember taking it. (I’d been in labour for 14 hours and was under the influence of A LOT of drugs. I could have photographed an african elephant that morning and forgotten about it). The first time I really remember seeing it, LD was I think 4 days old, and I grabbed 5 minutes between feeds to download the pictures off my camera.  Soon as I saw this one, I promptly welled up & sat with a big goofy smile on my face, with big fat tears rolling down cheeks.  Hormonal tears.  Exhausted, sleep deprived tears.  Super proud new mummy tears.  Happy tears.  And not the resentful ‘why didn’t things go the way they should have done?’ tears I’d been shedding here and there up until then. Because looking at this picture, all the details and the drama, just didn’t seem to matter.  I had a beautiful baby boy, and an amazing man who’d been there with me every step of the way.  I had a family.

I still struggle with the memories of my labour & all that came with it.  I probably always will.  But this picture, and the real life versions of the boys in it, make it much, much easier to deal with.

I love those boys to pieces. I am super lucky, and super grateful to have them.  And I love this photo 🙂

As for tagging, you all know I’m rubish at that – I always pick people who’ve already done it, so I’ll say Emma JaneJosieClaire, Nat & Sian, because I don’t *think* they have, and anyone else who wants to share a favourite kodak moment – go right ahead! xx

Come on Squigler!!

Dancinfairy – this one’s for you!

Your update just popped up on my googlereader, and I figured that as you can access *your* google reader, I would send you some love & luck wishes via the gift of blogger… what an age we live in, huh?!

And, thought you might like to know,you’re practically a trending topic on twitter – everyone is checking up on your Mr’s tweets to see if there’s any news! (poor bloke – but at least you’re working on giving him the best birthday present ever! :D)

So, hope you’re doing okay – not too uncomfortable, and not going too loopy through boredom!!

Hope everything goes quickly & smoothly & that you’ll be gazing in wonder at your little squigler before you know it 😀

Sending you bunches of good thoughts and hugs – and good luck!! xxx

So apparently, pain in labour is a good thing.

Or so says Dr Denis Walsh in this article in The Observer. (Brought to my attention by the lovely & equally outraged Sandy at Baby Baby – her blog is great, go have a peek!)

Yes, that’s Denis Walsh, as in a male of the species, so probably not all that experienced in the field of childbirth.
Ah, but he is “a senior midwife and associate professor in midwifery at Nottingham University”, so y’know, he has watched a lot of women give birth. Well that’s okay then. HA!!!

The good doctor claims that:
“A large number of women want to avoid pain. Some just don’t fancy the pain [of childbirth]. More women should be prepared to withstand pain. Pain in labour is a purposeful, useful thing, which has quite a number of benefits, such as preparing a mother for the responsibility of nurturing a newborn baby.”

He sounds great, doesn’t he?
DEFINITELY want him on hand in the delivery suite if I ever have a second.
So that I can punch him repeatedly in the head.

Seriously, what a lot of nonsense. (That’s not quite the words I used as I was reading, but I’m trying to be polite!)

Obviously, yes, a natural, drug-free labour is the ideal situation.
But we don’t live in an ideal world!!
And yes, I appreciate that in ‘the old days’, women had no choice but to grin & bear pushing their babies out drug-free – but doctors also used to amputate limbs with no pain relief – should we go back to doing that too Dr Walsh? No, thought not.
And let’s not forget, in the ‘old days’, all too many mum’s & babies tragically died in childbirth – we have the technology to avoid that now – why on earth would we go backwards?

The fact is, modern medicine is constantly evolving & presenting pregnant women with options and choices. And that’s just what they are – CHOICES. Which should be respected. If a woman chooses gas & air, an epidural or even an elective c-section, that is her choice, and she should definitely NOT be made to feel any ‘less of a woman’ because of it.

A pain-free birth may negatively impact your bond with your baby?
Doubtful.
A wretched little man spouting nonsense about pain as a ‘rite of passage’ & making you feel inadequate for accepting help?
I’d say that’s more likely to cause problems. But then what do I know, I have no medical training or qualifications, I’m only a new mum who’s actually had a child.

And incidentally, my own birth plan had ‘Natural’ plastered all over it.
I wanted to grin & bear it & do things the old fashioned way.
But in the end, I did have an epidural (after dilating only a cm in 14 hours & getting utterly exhausted), which failed, and resulted in me needing an emergency c-section. None of which was in anyway fun, or an ‘easy’ option.
I had nightmares about my birth for weeks afterwards, which were not at all fun either.
I did feel inadequate because I hadn’t given birth ‘properly’. Again, not fun, not easy.
But I got through it. And not once did it effect my bond with my son Dr Walsh, if anything, it made it stronger. So there goes that theory.

And the ‘rite of passage’ involved with becoming a mother, is certainly not the pain.

It’s carrying your baby for 9 months & dealing with all that goes with that.
It’s holding your tiny baby in your arms & promising to take care of him for the rest of your life.
It’s changing your first nappy.
It’s gushing over the first smile, the first steps, the first words.
It’s a million other things on a daily basis that are nothing to do with being in agony for however many hours.

Mothers are amazing. How we bring our babies into the world, is irrelevant. We’re clever, strong, adaptable, resiliant and feisty.
And there are a lot of us.
So you should maybe keep your head down for a while Dr Walsh, because we can get rather vocal when provoked too!

(Can’t help but wonder if Dr Walsh is married? My guess would be no. Or if he is, his dinner will be in the dog for sometime to follow.)

Okay, rant over 😀

setting the scene…

as i said in my first post, my little boy is actually 5 weeks old already, but for the sake of continuity (i’m a bit neurotic like that!), i wanted to share my ‘story so far’. so, here we go…

my little dude, or LD , or the noodle (on account of his being all long & wriggly!), arrived on April 20th 2009. but let’s rewind 9 months (41 weeks and 3 days actually – he kept me waiting!), and i’ll give you the readers digest version of my pregnancy.

the daddy and I had decided, after much discussion, that we wanted to take the plunge. we wanted a baby. so, i stopped popping pills and started taking daily folic acid supplements instead 🙂
we didn’t want to get all obsessed with the ‘right’ dates and all that stuff, so we just let down the defences (hahaha!), and carried on with the good stuff (:D).

in august 2008, i missed an important visit from mother nature – got myself a stick to wee on, and then got the doctor’s confirmation that yep, we were having a baby!
we were absolutley over the moon, and spent the next few weeks just grinning at eachother like loonies 🙂

we were fit to burst after a week, so gave in and told a few close friends – the temptation to share the news with anyone who’d listen was immense, but we resisted and managed to wait till about 10 weeks to ‘go public’.

that’s when i felt really pregnant – saying the words out loud to people felt bizaare, but brilliant. everyone was so pleased for us – and i’m sure it was mostly hormone-induced, but it was a really special & emotional time 🙂

i was very lucky – hardly any morning sickness, no swelling, no headaches – just an unquenchable craving for anything cheesey!! i was really impatient waiting for my bump – it felt like i was at that ‘just looking a bit chubby’ stage for years – hated it!! but, just as everyone warned me it would, time went very quickly, and before i knew it, i was the size of a planet & having trouble getting off the sofa without help! i loved it though. i really bonded with my bump, as did the daddy, and of course it was lovely to have everyone tell me i was blossoming and blooming and glowing! (though i really didn’t always believe them!!)
by the end, this was me & my bump:
SPT: 2nd April: the final countdown...
that feels like years ago now!

i really did enjoy being pregnant though – i loved the midwife appointments, hearing baby’s heartbeat, the scans (amazing!), shopping for baby goodies, antenatal classes, visiting the delivery suite – it was terrifying at times, but so exciting 🙂

admitidly though, i did get impatient at the end. i was convinced i was going to deliver on my due date. HA! not likely. a week & 3 days i spent eating spicey food, having lots of sex, drinking red raspberry leaf tea, taking hot baths, cold baths, long walks, short walks, bouncing on an exercise ball, you name it, i tried it – all for nothing!

finally, on Sunday afternoon, I felt a twinge. I remember thinking ‘wow, if that was a contraction, this is going to be a doddle’. silly sily me!!
by 11pm, they were hurting, but manageable.
by 4am, I was screaming the house down & my man decided it was time to go to hospital.

my labour was NOT what I had planned.
the birth plan page in my notes was full of hope for a natural, calm, straightforward delivery. fate had other ideas.
by the time i got to hospital, i was 5cm dilated, my contractions were about 5 minutes apart, and i was getting very very vocal!
i got in the bath, i moved around the suite, i tried lying down, standing up, bending over, nothing was comfortable 😦 i ended up in the birthing pool (which i had sworn against!) for about 4 hours.
when i was re-examined, i was 6cm dilated.
ONE centimetre, in about 6 hours. i was exhausted, i was in agony, and I decided to cut my losses & accepted an epidural.
which failed.
what happened after that, to be honest, is a complete blur to me, but in short, every contraction I had was causing mine & baby’s heartbeat to dip, so the doctor decided an emergency c-section was needed.
i remember feeling like i was in an episode of ER, there were doctors & nurses whizzing about all over the place, i was crying my eyes out, the daddy was trying (and failing) to keep me calm, it was incredibly traumatic, and I think I’ve probably blanked a lot of it out, basically though, it got so bad, that they wouldn’t even let me be awake during the op, & the daddy wasn’t allowed in the room.
The next thing I knew, I was waking up, feeling very dizzy, and the first thing I saw was my man, holding a tiny little baby. Our son.

It’s still hard for me to talk about, but I do feel sort of ‘conned’ at not being able to deliver naturally, especially after working so hard. I hate that I didn’t hear his first cry, and that his daddy didn’t get to cut the cord. But, I have to make myself look at the bigger picture. It didn’t happen the way I wanted it to, but the end result was the same – I have a gorgeous, healthy, baby boy.
And he’s the best thing in the world 😀

And there you have it.
April 20th, 09:35am, my little dude joined the world, weighing in at 6lb 16oz, and life would never be the same again.
And I couldn’t be happier 😀


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