After having a difficult first birth, full of interventions; episiotomy, forceps, very roughly done stitches & a very slow recovery, I was eager to have a calmer birthing experience this time around. My baby arrived at 40 + 1 but she certainly did not want to arrive calmly!
At about 6 am I woke feeling crampy but it wasn't unbearable so I went back to bed for about half an hour. I woke again with a pain but still wasn't sure, as the pain was very much on my front whereas my first labour mainly consisted of back pain. However, we called our sitter for our toddler as they are 30 minutes away. In the 30 mins it took them to arrived things had progressed significantly, the contractions were coming in fast. We went to the car to leave for Cumh, approx 50 mins away & by the time I got to the car I needed to push!! The pressure was unreal!! My partner was on the phone to the midwife in CUMH & they told us we had 2 options, get me into the car & get a Garda escort to Cork or call an ambulance! There was no way I could sit so he called an ambulance. A rapid response arrived approx 20mins later & the ambulance followed shortly after, they decided, with advice from Dr Jason to try take us as close to Cork as possible.
We set off in the ambulance, I was up on all fours in the back and the contractions were getting stronger & stronger. I concentrated on my breathing & the affirmations. I was given gas & air but didn't have the patience for it & the mouthpiece kept falling off, so it was just annoying. We only made it about 20minutes over the road, when we had to pull in & my little girl arrived. All of this was in the space of 3hours. It was stressful & it wasn't ideal but I never once doubted my body or my baby.
The paramedics were amazing, they took the time to check my birth plan, most of which had to be disregarded, except the delayed cord clamping & skin-to-skin. The cord was around her neck & I had a significant bleed in the ambulance so I was so grateful they were there. My partner did skin-to-skin after she was born & while the team got my bleed under control. We headed for the hospital, I needed stitches, as I did after my first (due to episiotomy) but I definitely feel that the tear was far less painful having naturally occurred! I was very sensitive when getting the stitches & in shock, (given the speed of her birth), but the staff were so fantastic & respectful given my previous negative experience! She was weighed when we arrived at the hospital, 8 pounds 7 ounces. I was home the next day & have found the recovery a lot easier this time. While I didn't get the gentle birth I had hoped for, I definitely feel GentleBirth helped keep me grounded & calm amidst the madness.