An active pregnancy
I had a fairly good pregnancy. There were a couple of weeks when I felt like I had a foot in my ribs plus a couple of weeks of quite bad heartburn, but I think my weekly pregnancy yoga classes and daily back stretches, pelvic floor exercises and long walks really helped.
Booked in for induction
I was ten days late, it was a Friday, and I was booked in to be induced on the Saturday morning at 8am. I spent the day doing my final preparations for what I thought was going to be a long weekend in hospital, running around buying magazines and sandwich fillings!
I didn't mind being out and about, I actually thought labour couldn't be that bad and if I was out when it started I could just come home, get my stuff and go to the hospital. I arrived home at 4pm after going to look at a wedding venue as our wedding plans were underway. I was feeling a little tired so had a lie down on the sofa and began planning my last evening at home... a nice hot bath, followed by dinner and then an evening in front of the telly.
My waters break
At 4.30pm and still lying down, I heard a loud pop, like someone had just put a pin in a balloon and then water started pouring out of me. Luckily my partner was home finishing off some DIY in the kitchen and when he heard me scream, came running in. He immediately phoned the hospital, even though I wasn't feeling any pain yet. They said we should come in straight away.
I went upstairs to have a wash and get changed and was even considering making some food before we went, but as I reached the top of the stairs my contractions started. It was like a really strong period cramp and made me want to curl up in a ball to ease the pain. I did manage to have a really quick wash and get changed in between contractions, but the pain was getting worse, so I started to panic a bit and wanted to get to the hospital as soon as possible. We timed the next contractions and they were about two minutes apart, so we grabbed my hospital bag and left. We finally got to the labour ward after a number of stops where I was on the floor crying and groaning in pain - the hospital car park, reception, etc...
At the hospital...
Once there I was taken into a room with two other beds. A midwife said she would go and sort out my own room but first she had to deal with an emergency delivery that was taking place on the ward. The next half an hour seemed like hours, as the pain was intensifying and I kept being sick as well.
At that point I would have taken anything just to stop the pain. When the midwife returned she wanted to examine me and, once she had, told me I was already 4cm dilated. She then took me to my own room and straight to the gas and air machine. It made me feel quite dizzy but did make the pain bearable and it stopped me feeling sick too. I'd brought along my birthing ball, but didn't really use it in the end as the only position I could be in was on my knees on the floor leaning onto the chair and sucking on the gas and air. I'm really glad that we brought our own pillows, as the hospital floor was cold and hard.
Ready to push
Over the next hour and a half the pain got worse and the gas and air worked less. I asked the midwife for pethidine and she said to wait a bit longer so that I would appreciate it more when I had it. But that's when I started feeling like I needed to push.
The midwife examined me again and said I was fully dilated and my baby was ready to come out, and there was no time now for any drugs, so I lay on the bed and pushed and pushed for the next hour. At 8.09pm my baby boy Levi arrived weighing exactly 7lb, and the moment they put this gorgeous little boy in my arms I knew I'd do it all over again.
"I heard a loud pop, like someone had just put a pin in a balloon and then water started pouring out of me"