It had been a long day. It was thirty-one hours since my water had broken and I still wasn’t in labour. Our appointment at 1:30 was to listen to Norah’s heartbeat to make sure she wasn’t in distress. We headed to the place where they do ultrasounds and I was hooked up to the heart rate monitor. She was beating a little fast so we started singing again and I turned on my side. That seemed to calm things down a bit.
Despite all the drama it was so great to spend all this time with Myles. We spent a lot of time just chatting. In between all the bits and pieces there was a lot of waiting. Waiting for doctors, waiting for heart rates, walking to and from the hospital. We chatted about all kinds of things. Baby things and life things. It was nice to take my mind off worrying. We joked around and kept things light. It was nice.
They gave us the ok and we headed down to the birth centre. Back into the room we went and the midwife came to check. My contractions had all but stopped and any that came weren’t strong. It wasn’t a good sign.
So we had the chat. The midwife gave me my options. Because of all the other factors they were a bit worried. I could go straight to surgery, have an induction or keep waiting. I wanted to give it my best shot. I decided to induce. It seemed that if our girl hadn’t come after more than 24 hours it was unlikely she would come without a bit of extra help. This meant once more leaving the birth centre. A familiar path to tread.
Off we went to settle in. We dimmed the lights and put on our music. We made our little room our home. We met our midwife who was lovely and the same age as me. She told me I would need to be monitored the whole time and that the wireless monitor was not available. Oh. I asked if I could have it as soon as it was figuring that with a non existent first time labour and a twelve hour induction timeline I would be there for a while. Our girl was doing well. Heartbeat normal but happy to stay inside.
A nurse came in to put my canula in for the drip. She tried my left arm and missed. Of all the needles you can get, this is not a particularly nice one and when it goes in wrong it hurts like billy-o. I practiced my calm birth. Easy breathing, stay calm. The nurse went to get someone else. A doctor came in to have a go. Bingo, in it went but when the midwife flushed it with water my arm started to swell up. She’d got it in my tissue. Weirdest feeling ever. Easy breathing, stay calm. I was starting to get nervous and we hadn’t even begun. Another spot on my arm, another bruise, another doctor and it went in. They gave me some fluids and said they’d be back with the induction drip.
Myles and I chatted and hung about. We listened to Norah Jones and sung along. They started the drip at about 5pm. Here we go. The contractions came slowly. We could watch them on the machine. The numbers went high when the contraction came and back down as it faded away. Up to 20 and down. Up to 30 and down. They were really gentle. The midwife mentioned something about a gown and I ignored her. I had this I thought. I was standing and swaying and dancing and breathing to practice for when they became more intense. After about an hour I decided to lie down and rest. I was in for a long night.
When I was lying down the heart monitor started to loose the plot. The monitor is a couple of big plastic disks they place on your tummy. Every time I moved they seemed to loose position causing the machine to stop reading our little ones heartbeat. Most of me did not care a toss. I resented the continuous monitoring but the doctors needed to make sure she was ok because a dip in heart rate is the first sign of uterine rupture. The contractions started to get stronger and the monitor was flipping out. My nap was short lived. I couldn’t lie down anymore. I had to get moving.
The hours passed by so quickly. All of a sudden it was 9pm. I had been working hard, breathing and moving. Our midwife has said she would come in at nine and see how far I had progressed. It was the moment I had been waiting for.
I was to be disappointed. I was only two centimetres dilated and barely effaced. On top of all that, the midwife thought that part of the waters hadn’t broken and said she would need to manually break them. It felt like a kick in the guts. I’d been working hard and my body was just not doing it for me. I felt exhausted and imagined the hours that stretched ahead of me. If four hours meant two centimetres then I supposed it would take me another day to get to ten. My confidence began to waver but I’d read the books where marvellous speedy dilations happened. I kept telling myself that my body knew what to do, just go with it, trust the process.
I promise the next one will be up very soon.