Second celebrations

It’s my baby’s second birthday.

Two years ago, at this time, I still had a bump. An uncomfortable bump at that!

It was a beautiful sunny day. I remember playing in the garden with dd, then 3 1/2. We were practising playing catch, and she had just about got the hang of it.

About 5 o clock I decided that the twinges I’d been having signified something was really going on, and woke up dp who had been having a nap. As is tradition in this house, this meant he needed to build the (new, bedside) cot :)

We called our friend who had offered to be ready to look after dd if we needed to go to hospital (planned home birth) and she asked if dd just wanted to go spend the night. The answer to that was yes – she was waiting at the door with her bag packed in minutes! I was a little disappointed, had had visions of her happily greeting her little brother within moments of birth, but this did at least mean I could concentrate on what was going on. Dp took her off to her friend’s house and I made myself a teacake.

Called the hospital to ask them to pass a message on to the oncall midwife. By now contractions were regular and uncomfortable probably 3-4 minutes apart, but still manageable with breathing and moving. Midwife called back almost instantly to say she was on her way, about 20 minutes away and not to do anything without her! Turned out this was because this was her first home birth since coming out into the community and she was absolutely over the moon to be involved. Not that she did much, as she said, she was just going to sit in the corner quietly and only get hands on if requested – what a fantastic woman.

So by now it’s after 7pm, and I’m feeling increasingly uncomfortable. We laid out my birthing place – an old futon mattress – on the living room floor, and covered it with a mattress protector. I put on my tens machine and some relaxing music (Eva Cassidy, Songbird) and moved from place to place, sitting on the birthing ball, kneeling leaning on it, just trying to find a comfortable place, listening to bumps and crashes from upstairs ;)

Not quite sure how I ended up lying on the floor on my side, but eventually I did. Midwife offered to do an exam to see how far along I was, and promised faithfully that she wouldn’t break my waters. Not particularly good news, although I can’t remember the details. This was the only bit I wasn’t happy about – she offered to do a stretch and sweep kind of while already doing it – not really something I could do much about.

It did make things move along rather. By now I’d lost track of what was really going on. I recall the second midwife being called and arriving, and being introduced to me as the person trying to go to sleep on the floor. Sleep seemed like a really nice idea – I guess this might have been transition? I was sipping from my iron brew with nice bendy straws every now and again as well, although I think about now I asked for water instead. Tim was there, sitting on the couch next to me, and I was holding his hand.

Came time to push, and Tim could help me hold my leg up, as I was getting pretty tired. Small was born reasonably easily I think – not more than a few pushes. Really would like to get copies of my birth notes at some point, have a look at what they say about times and so on. My first comment when looking at him was to ask if he was bigger than dd had been. Er yes – she was 7lb 5 at birth, he was 9lb 9! Cord wasn’t cut until it finally stopped pulsing, quiet a while after birth, and so he’d spent his first half an hour cuddled up to me, and screaming I think. Well, I don’t think he screamed for the whole half an hour, but he was certainly born awake and angry about it! I think it was 11.18pm, but could have been later, I can’t remember now.

Took my tens machine off to get the wires out of the way, and handed Small over to a midwife to get checked over. Started feeling really uncomfortable, with pains in my back for the first time. Hadn’t realised that that was what a contraction feels like without the tens machine! Natural third stage, and minimal blood loss, placenta coming away intact, as midwife was pleased to see :) Somewhere around this point we called Tim’s dad to let him know that he had a grandson. He was a bit chuffed, especially as we chose a nice sensible name (including his middle name as baby’s middle name).

Midwives cleared up, we took piccies and then they left. I had a bath, while Tim cuddled the baby, and then we all went to bed.

Two years ago. Wow.

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