Her Birth Story: from Maiden to Mother.
Remy John Bede McNamara was born on 30 November 2017 at 1.24pm, via emergency c-section.
He had chosen to make his entrance to the world on his dad’s Birthday. He weighed 2.89kg and measured 51cm.
Two days earlier, I woke at 2am to cramping coming and going. Just enough to keep me awake and induce the right amount of excitement. I waited until 5am, gently rocking every five minutes or so, before waking my husband Curtis up. A bloody show arrived at 5.30am telling us ‘YES this is legit and a baby is coming, pack a bag!’
Driving to the hospital was emotional as I started to listen to a playlist I’d created. My brain was of course thinking about all the variables of what was about to happen. A few weeks earlier while I was waiting for a coffee, the barista told me, ‘Labour is tough but it’s only a moment in time when you look at your whole life.’ This really resonated with me so I kept saying it to myself, with the thought that I’d be meeting our baby that night or the following morning at the latest.
Skip forward 24 hours and I’d been labouring hard. I remember thinking, ‘WTF! When will my moment in time end! And why the f*ck did I listen to a 35-year-old male barista’s comments and use them as my birth mantra?!’
I did use a powerful meditation where you close your eyes and visualise all the women in your life – past and present. You see their faces flash before you like a flick book. They are all smiling at you, strong and proud of you, as you are of them and all the hurdles women have overcome. You draw on their power. Maybe a face is paused for a moment and you take more strength from a particular person before you move on. I found this incredibly powerful and emotional before realising it just wasn’t gunna get me through hours and hours of labour.
On Thursday morning at 8am, after remaining at 4cm for what felt like forever, my doctor broke my waters and said she would return in three hours to see how I was going. Between giving my dyson a run for its money on the gas machine and standing in the shower those three hours were an eternity of pain.
Everyone says its goes fast yet it felt like time was at a standstill. I couldn’t wait and needed to know where I was at. There was so much pressure in my pelvis I felt it was either go-time or something wasn’t 100 per cent right. I was devastated when I was told I was still at 4cm and that Remy’s head was coning in my pelvis due to the pressure and length of time I’d been in labour.
The midwives and doctor were all so empathetic and supportive of me having the birth I wanted, but after this much time it was clear my body was not playing ball. They kept talking to me about my options and explained that at this stage it was unlikely I’d dilate further without assistance.
I knew it was the right thing at that point to get an epidural and then a drug that would make me dilate. Everyone agreed once that had occurred I would rest for an hour or two before starting to push. At all times I felt heard, safe and respected. I believe it’s the reason I feel my birth experience wasn’t traumatic, even though it wasn’t the outcome I wanted.
Curtis and my mum were told to go and get some lunch since it was midday and they looked like zombies. I told the anaesthetist we would name the baby after him and then passed out asleep. However, shortly after Curtis and mum left and I was resting, Remy had a reaction to the drug and his heart rate dropped instantly. The midwives also became concerned the cord was around his neck due to the results when monitoring his heart rate. When this happened the staff were very professional and calm.
By the time the doctor arrived to explain what was now happening, everyone was on hand prepping me for surgery. The only issue was that Curtis and mum were out lunching. Every nurse kept asking me where they were. I called and texted them both but because they’d been in the hospital, their phones were on silent.
The doctor told me we couldn’t wait and started wheeling me out the door when I saw Curtis running down the corridor. I knew then everything would be okay – well at least that’s what the drugs made me feel in that moment. And thank goodness for that!
Fifteen minutes later and there Remy was, of course it was him, it was always him. My little teacher, who has healed parts of me I didn’t know needed healing.
And there I was, completing my transition from Maiden to Mother.
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