Birthing Experience No. 2 and Other Stories

I say and other stories because I can’t seem to manage making a quick comment without giving a horrendously long back story.  This basically covering my arse for any prolonged waffle that ensues.  I don’t know how much I can say about birthing experience no. 2 because for a lot of it…well, let’s just say it wasn’t a normal day in the life of Claire.  For many months, I was adamant that I was not going to be having a birthing experience no. 3 but I’ve been quite broody of late so who knows.  Just to warn you I swear a lot while giving birth so don’t read if you don’t want to see my bad language.

 I was somewhat…hormonal for the whole of my second pregnancy.  I didn’t see my doctor until I was about five or six months along, I had only told my family a couple of months before that but they had already guessed apparently.  They could have told me.

Just want to interrupt to say something about my son.  He goes to speech therapy but he can say swear words as well as me.  He calls his private parts a penis and sometimes, if he wants to show off, he pulls out his waistband, points down and shouts, Look!  My penis!!  It can be a teensy bit embarrassing.  My partner is sitting beside me reading a newspaper right now.  He mentioned in a semi-quiet voice that a celebrity on the reality tv programme, I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, had to crocodile eyes and some sort of animal penis in a challenge.  A little voice from the bedroom shouts out, “A penis?!  Where penis?  Oh my God!”  He doesn’t understand these words, he just likes to say them and I can’t tell him not to say that because I’m just happy that he’s saying anything at all really.  Anyway, my point is how is it, that a child can be in another room, not listening to adults talk yet manages to pick up on the one word in the sentence that you are least likely to want them to shout about??

 Back to my birthing story.  I know you are all going to be horrified but while I was pregnant, I didn’t go to the hospital until I was 38 weeks along.  I had a reason for avoiding the hospital.  I have a huge fear of blood tests, I feel weak talking about them, I used to pass out quite frequently at the mention of the “B” word, ya know that stuff that runs around your body.  Blech.  I already had a huge fear of blood tests but after my first son, I was determined to never get one done again because he was born a month prematurely on the day I was due one.  I was very stressed out at the thought of it for at least a couple of weeks beforehand and I am certain that it at least contributed to his early birth.

My doctor is a very nice man, I actually asked for him to be my doctor on my ante-natal visits because my mother had such great experiences with him.  He was incredibly understanding and unlike like some of the nurses, he could see that giving me a test would put me under undue stress and he didn’t try to force me into it.  He did tell me to pack my bags because I was ready to pop.  I had an appointment for a week later but he told me I wouldn’t make it.  He was right 🙂

I experienced Braxton Hicks for the last couple of months of my pregnancy.  People always say you know when it’s the real thing especially if you’ve given birth before but I sure as hell did not.  I had no idea because my Braxton Hicks felt like the real thing and therefore my real thing felt like my Braxton Hicks.  I had some pains one night, so I ran a bath to ease it as I often did.  That worked.  For a while.  Then I noticed the pains seemed to be quite regular.  I called my partner and told him I thought this was it.  He said okay, went back to bed and fell asleep.  Do you see the pattern here?

I stayed there for a while, got a whopper of a pain, had a show, got out of the bath.  This was at about half six or seven.  I forget.  Time wasn’t relevant for me at that stage.  Of course, neither of us had credit on our mobile phones so he ran down to the shop to get some, rang my mother asking could she take our son who was in the sitting room watching cartoons.  I was lying on my bed at this stage, actually afraid to move.  While he was gone, I suddenly felt like I had to push and my waters broke at that instant.  I had a real, oh, crap sensation.

He comes back, I say, my waters have broken, could you be an absolute dear and ring the hospital for me for I am unable to talk right now.  I communicated this using grunts and hand gestures but he understood me.  He gets me.  He rings the hospital and tells them the story.  They tell him to bring me in.

 I scream at him.  “Are you fucking stupid?!  I just told you my waters broke and I have to push, tell the fucking midwife that I have to fucking well push right now!  You twat!!”

So much love in our home.

He starts stuttering and tries to relay my message but I’m pretty sure the midwife heard my version.  She tells him to call an ambulance.  This bit I don’t get.  Why the feck can’t I ring a hospital and get them to send me an ambulance, do they not know I’m having a baby right now?!

He calls the ambulance.   The pain is unreal.  I’m cracking up.  “They better give me something, they better give me something…” became my mantra.  It felt like they were never going to arrive.  It felt like my body was actually ripping itself apart.  I nearly expected a scene out of Alien to take place in my bedroom.  Mr. Claire really outdid himself on the stupid comments that day.  Did he not learn from the first time?

He stands by the bed, looking at me, then says, “do you not want to get some more clothes on?”

Where did he think the baby was going to come out of, my mouth?  By the way, I had to force him to ring the ambulance and let them in.  He wanted me to walk down the stairs.  Walk down the stairs from the top floor while a baby was just about to come out of me??  Idiot!  Why did he not want the ambulance people to come in?  Because the flat was a complete mess.  Great.  I was too far gone to be ashamed.

The ambulance crew arrived.  5 minutes after we called them.  A man and a woman.  They stood there, looking at me, debating amongst themselves whether they had time to take me to the hospital or not.  I gave a couple of hard pushes, nothing happened, I started to doubt myself because those two couldn’t tell if I was about to have the baby.  I freaked out.  “Oh my God!  You two don’t have a clue what you’re doing!!  Jesus, help me!”  I screamed at them.  I felt like something was wrong.  I don’t know how or why, I just didn’t feel like things were right.

The paramedics got all jumpy and started pretending to do stuff.  I told them I was going to make it easier for them.  “I’m not moving out of this bed, we’re having this baby right here.”  Please remember my darling little boy was still patiently watching cartoons in the next room.  On my first labour, Mr. Claire was really useful, he calmed me down, helped me along.  But this time he was useless.  He kept wandering off and I had to shout at him to get back in.  Everytime I asked him for ice or “For the love of God, do something!” he would ask sulkily what he was supposed to do.

I now pity the paramedics, I was a monster.  I asked them for some precious gas and air.  They seemed relieved to just have something to do.  They fought over who could go and get it and who was stuck with me…glaring at them.  I know this sounds long but from first push to last it was only about 30 or 40 minutes.  I sucked that gas and air dry by the way, they had to replace the canister for me 🙂

Things get a little bit wierd now.  They tell me I passed out and the paramedics didn’t notice until Mr. Claire told them.  They started to panic, they could see the baby, they got the forceps ready.

My weird ass version of events:

 I fell under, into darkness.  There was no pain, it was peaceful.  I smiled to myself because I knew what I had to do.  A spectrum of sound slowed down everyone’s speech but I knew that they had already finished talking.  The words were drawn out for so long but I knew that when the sound stopped, everything would be over.  I was preparing for one last push.  I could hear the voices again, panicking, they didn’t know I was in control.  I heard the word “forceps” and realised I had to get back before it was too late.  I held on tight and pushed my daughter into the world.

Back to reality (aren’t you relieved):

They told me that I woke up pushing just before they tried to assist me.  They had tried to wake me but couldn’t.  The cord was wrapped around the baby’s neck.  It was very fortunate that I hadn’t gone into labour by myself or my daughter could have died.  I shiver when I think how close it came.   I wanted to stay home but girl paramedic said we had to go.  I couldn’t give birth to the placenta so had to wait til we got to hospital.  I couldn’t stop shaking.  It was a freezing february morning when they carried me and my daughter out to the ambulance.  I was so cold but I was so happy it was unreal.  It was pure bliss. 

In the hospital, the midwives all thought I was off my head because I had just given birth at home but I needed gas and air to help me sit through getting a needle.  Everything after that was a bit of a blur.  It still felt like a dream, it had been too easy.  I felt like I was going to wake up and still be pregnant.   They put me in a room on my own, took the baby for a long time then gave her back and left us alone for two days until we went home.  It was brilliant.  I hate nurses messing around near me so to be left pretty on our todd was heaven.  The bad part was my son.  He had been scared when I was taken to the ambulance.  He wouldn’t even look at me when he visited me in hospital which was a bit heart breaking but he was back to his old self when I got home.

I have never tried to explain what birthing experience no. 2 was like because it was completely surreal.  My baby was a healthy 8lbs 8oz by the way.  And she was beautiful.  And she was a good baby.  And I was the luckiest Mammy in the world.

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2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    cardiogirl said,

    Wow, that is one huge baby to deliver at home. That’s so wild the description of the gas and what you were feeling. What an interesting point of view (to hear from your perspective) opposed to what Mr. Claire had told you.

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. 2

    clairec23 said,

    When he told me I passed out I didn’t believe him, he said they kept slapping my face and everything, I thought that was amusing. He tells it like a funny story but I’d say he was shitting a brick when it happened.


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