Friday, 22 November 2013

And then there were three - Our birth story


Sunny Baby came into the world on Monday the 28th of October, at 9.16pm surrounded by an operating theatre full of buzzing doctors and nurses. It was not the delivery we had been expecting, but it was an entrance fit for a baby girl who kept us on our toes for the entire 41 weeks leading up to the big event.  And it was perfect; in all of its surprise, intensity and wonder. It was the perfect way to welcome our first child, our daughter, Grace. 

Grace was delivered via emergency c-section following a tense consultation with our OB on Monday morning. I had developed toxaemia and pre-eclampsia over the weekend and had been feeling less than wonderful. I had not slept at all the night before and spent much of my waking hours praying for labour to start and my waters to break. But come time to head into town for our appointment neither had happened. I was a misery-guts of exhaustion and discomfort. I had been encouraged by my sister, during a phone call I'd made to whinge about it all, to take my bags in case the doctor chose to do an internal and my membranes broke. I told myself that I was taking my bags with the intention of refusing to come home until this baby was delivered. I would sit in his waiting room and protest until I got my way. But it turned out that none of that was necessary. Our OB rechecked my blood and urine results, as well as my blood pressure which had shot up to 180/99, and immediately decided it was time to get the baby out. We were given two options: start induction medications and wait for labour to progress overnight or have an emergency c-section later that night. 

So many things ran through my mind in those next few moments. I was simultaneously frustrated, scared and relieved. I was frustrated that after everything else I was potentially going to lose the experience of labour and birthing my baby because my body was no longer coping with carrying; scared that she could be in trouble and that we'd waited all weekend for results that should have been read to us and acted on three days earlier; and relieved that either option given to us meant that our baby girl would be in the world within 24hours. Hubby and I had no idea which was the better option so we left the final decision to our doctor. He chose c-section and I cried. 

We were taken straight to the maternity ward where I was admitted, showered, shaved and starved for several hours prior to the big event. Hubby kept me entertained while I sulked about how hungry I was. We called our parents and informed them of their impending grandparenthood. Hubby got to play dress up in a pair of hospital-issue green scrubs, and then we were collected for theatre. Everything from that point on is a bit of a fuzzy blur of events. 

I didn't do all those things you're meant to do, or meant to ask for. I didn't get her placed directly onto my chest for skin to skin. I didn't ask them to allow the cord to finish pulsing before it was cut.  I didn't ask hubby to take photos. We had decided that after everything that had happened, and with no idea of what to expect next, we needed just to present together throughout the birth. He would not leave my side until she was safely delivered, and I would not feel as scared because he did.  I remember Hubby holding my hand while the spinal block was administered. I remember getting in trouble for flinching when the anaesthetist jabbed me in my spine. I remember feeling like my legs were in the air the entire time and asking Hubby if I was breathing properly because I couldn't feel my lungs moving and my face was becoming hot. I remember panicking slightly that I may fall asleep, miss the birth of our first child and never wake up.  

But despite all of my fears and anxieties, with Hubby sitting calmly by my side stroking my hair and holding my hand, we finally heard the slurping of suction and a tiny, startled cry from behind the drape. A cry that I instinctively and instantly recognised as from one of my own; as if I'd heard it a thousand times before. And within a blink she was being presented to us fresh and warm, pink and new. Our baby girl was finally here.   Hubby was taken aside to hold our daughter for the first time, cut her beautiful life-giving umbilical cord and watch as the midwife and paediatrician confirmed what we already knew; she was perfect.  All the while I watched from a few meters away as her little legs kicked in the air and her Daddy beamed over her.  She was then brought over to where I lay waiting, placed on my chest and opened her eyes to look straight into mine.  In that moment I fell in love.  In that moment I knew the most important purpose of my life was to now be her parent; her mother.  In that moment I felt absolutely, soul-liftingly complete.  Our little bubble of two was now a family bubble of three.


  1. Beautiful, lovely story. Thank you for sharing with us. We are indeed lucky infertiles.

  2. congrats! so glad she,made it safe and healthy. so happy for you!

  3. What a beautiful story with such a happy ending. Congratulations on your miracle!