Our little girl is already 5 weeks old. Where does the time go??? It feels like yesterday, our new family of 4 (it still gives me an utter thrill saying this! We are finally a family of 4), was bundled up together in the car on our way back from the hospital. But let me start at the beginning.
I had a feeling that she would arrive a little earlier than her calculated due date of 15th January. Our oldest daughter was born at 37.5 weeks. The midwives kept telling us that every child is different and that our previous birth would be no indication of how this one would go. Call it mother’s instinct, but I just somehow knew, I wouldn’t make it to the full 40 weeks with this preganancy either. And I was not wrong.
I started to feel a few contractions in the evening of New Year’s Eve, but they were by no means regular or particulary strong. Just a few here and there. Overnight everything had quietened down and I felt absolutely fine by the next morning. Throughout the whole day, there was no further indidcation that baby would arrive soon.
The next day we had planned a meet-up with some friends at our local zoo – but we never made it. My waters broke at 9am just after we had finished breakfast (we had a little lie-in on that day).
Although we were pretty much prepared for Baby to arrive earlier than her due date, it still took us by surprise. We phoned our friends who would take care of our oldest daughter for us and set off to our local midwifery unit. There, it was confirmed that my waters had indeed gone and that I was officially in labour. Unfortunately, they wouldn’t keep us there as our oldest daughter had a low birth weight and we would have to go to hospital after all. We were a bit aprehensive about this as we were previously told the low birth weight would not be a problem as this pregnancy measurements were always on point.
Oh well, off we went. By this point contractions were coming in thick and fast, but slowed down as soon as I got in the car. Our town no longer has a maternity unit (therefore, the midwifery unit was our preferred choice) and the nearest hospital with a maternity unit is approximately 30 minutes away from where we live. I phoned ahead, but was told that we should stop at home and wait for contractions to pick up again. Which they promptly did as soon as I got out of the car. We stayed at home for about 45 mimutes before we set off for the hospital, In the meantime, I had walked around a lot and even cleaned the house a little :-). I knew I had contractions, but to be fair, they were never that painful so I thought I still had plenty of time. However, they became pretty regular and were not far apart from another. Back in the car, things slowed down a little. My husband and I were hoping that the hospital wouldn’t turn us away, we were afraid that my labour might have not been established enough and that they would send us back home – but we couldn’t have been any more wrong…
As soon as we parked up (luckily the 2nd January was a bank holiday and there were not many cars in the car park – parking at the hospital can be a bit of a challenge sometimes) and got out of the car, I was in quite a lot of pain. We made it upstairs to the labour ward and were told to take a seat for a little bit and that a midwife would be with us soon. All I remember is thinking, the baby is coming NOW! I voiced my concern, and was immediately put on a hospital bed to be examined. The midwife’s face told me everything I needed to know – I was in fact 10cm dilated and ready to push this baby out. I was quickly wheeled into a labour room (they were afraid that if I did any more walking, this baby would be born in the corridor). It only took a few more minutes until we got to hold our beautiful baby girl.
I still cannot believe that this labour was so quick and uncomplicated. I know I am definitely one of the lucky ones. We managed without any pain medication (well, there wasn’t any time) and I didn’t get to go in the pool. I really wanted a water birth this time around (but again, there was no time to even run the bath). I always wanted to take some bump pictures in the hospital before she was born (but again, you’ll get the point by now, there was no time). I had no idea that I was 10cm by the time we reached the hospital. If I had known, we would have definitley panicked in the car, but as it was we actually had quite a nice car journey :-). The contractions leading up to this point were really not that painful at all. The “pushing part” completely made up for that though – I had very much forgotten just how painful this bit is!!
We were able to leave the hospital 6 hours after our baby’s birth which was so nice. Spending the first few hours as a foursome is a memory I will treasure forever! Since then, we have nicely settled into some sort of a routine (apart from sleeping). My husband I couldn’t be any happier and grateful for our 2 gorgeous girls. Being parents to these two is just the best thing ever!!