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24 Season 2: A very long engagement

After a 27 hour ordeal, it’s all finally over. And via natural birth too! I’ll describe the experience at length later, but here’s how it went.

12 July 2009, Sunday

10.00 – Admitted to the hospital for Induction, hooked up to the CTG machine to monitor the contractions and baby’s heartbeat.

12.00 – Prostin Inserted. Not fun at all.

14.00 – Irregular contractions. Brought up to the ward to rest. I was all like “if this is how contractions feel like, I don’t think I even need epidural. No sweat at all.” And then I spent the afternoon watching movies on my laptop.

18.00 – Hooked up to the CTG again. Contractions 7-8 minutes apart, but still irregular.

22.00 – Supposed to go for second round of Prosstin to increase contractions, but managed to escape since contractions are up to once in 3 minutes. Wheeled in to delivery suite.

22.30 – Abused by psycho nurse who came in to check my cervix (only 1 cm). I was absolutely livid with rage.

23.00 – Had to eat my words – in loads of pain. Injected with Pethidine (in my thigh) for pain relief.

13 July 2009, Monday

01.00 – Epidural inserted. HURTS LIKE HELL. Epidural sucks.

03.00 – Oxytocin injected to induce contractions again. Contractions still fluctuating between once every 5-8 minutes. By this time, I was kinda drifting in and out of sleep. Cervix still at 1 cm.

09.00 – Gynae dropped by for a consult. Cervix at 3 cm. He says it’s gonna be a long labor, as if it’s not been long enough. If there’s no sign of progress in 8 hours, I’ll have to go for another c-section.

12.00 – Somehow the epidural only got channeled to the right side, and my entire left side was in excruciating pain. Contractions coming hard and fast and I was all worked up screaming for pain relief. I seriously thought I was about to die. Literally.

12.15 – Hot, young anesthetist came with more epidural. Pity I didn’t notice because I was having a near-death experience. The husband says he’s hot, and that I wasn’t dying. But he obviously doesn’t know anything cos he wasn’t pushing a baby out of his bits.

12.30 – Cervix at 9 cm. All I could think about was that something feels like it’s dropping out and I need to take a massive crap.

13.30 – After a lot of pushing and shoving (and an episiotomy), Kirsten finally came out with a plop.

It was totally surreal. And kinda awesome.


Somebody please tell me how to make the baby come out

Seriously, the waiting is KILLING ME. I’ve tried every natural birth induction method (except acupuncture because you will have to kill me before I’m allowing anyone to stick needles in my body) since friday and none of it is working. I have been more or less confined to the toilet for some serious business, but other than that, there isn’t even the slightest sign that Kirsten is coming out.

It’s probably way too comfy inside, what with all the goodies I’ve been feeding her and all that water to swim around in. It’s like a permanent spa. Come to think of it, I’d probably not want to come out if I were her.

I haven’t the slightest clue what labor feels like and I’ve been asking everyone who’s ever given birth to describe it to me. The forums aren’t that helpful either. Some say it feels like you need to take a massive crap, and others say it’s like the mother of all menstrual cramps. It’s supposed to be a dull, throbbing pain that comes and goes every few minutes. Mostly, the consensus is that the pain is so bad you lose all control of your mental faculties.

Not that helpful, cos my stomach feels like its in knots all the time. And with the amount of laxatives I’ve been taking, I seriously can’t tell the difference. Every time I feel some tightening in my stomach, I wash my hair and prepare to fly down to the hospital, but apparently, none of it is the real thing. I’m still here and Kirsten is still inside. And now I’ve got really clean hair.

When I last checked on Thursday, she’d already hit 3.3kg, which is already bigger than Tru was when he was born. At the rate she’s going, I’m going to have to squeeze a 4 kg monster of a child out of my thing, which also increases the risk of a wound rupture, which means that I could end up waiting all this time and having to go for another c-section. Gah!

I’m so desperate I’ve even tried to go all new age and visualize my cervix opening up like a flower, (complete with the nirvana music, as I would like to call it) although half the time I’m giggling at how retarded the mental image is.

Now I’ve missed the 4th of July and I can’t show off having an independence day baby. I’ll just end up having my kid on another boring, non-cool date. I hate it when that happens.

And it’s all thanks to my uncooperative cervix.

Funny or So I think, lists you should paste on your fridge, pregnancy, sexytime, stuff best described as not safe for parents

Birth induction methods you may (not) want to try


a glass of wine may help

It was exactly this time during my first pregnancy that I gave birth to Tru. 38 weeks on the dot. But that was a c-section so I could pick an auspicious date to give birth. Waiting for the contractions to kick in is totally different. I feel so powerless. I’ve got my baby bag and all the baby stuff all ready and packed and it’s like waiting for Santa Claus to appear on Christmas eve. The anticipation is killing me. It’s my control-freak nature kicking in and I  just need to know exactly when it’s gonna happen.

Apparently for VBAC, a medical induction of labor increases the chance of womb rupture so it’s off limits. But I hear there are a few ways to induce birth and give the baby a little push as it were. It’s called ripening the cervix (it’s true!)

1. Acupuncture

It’s a tried and tested method by the Chinese and it’s supposed to be highly effective. Back when women used to bind their feet and slice off their pinkies, they realized that somehow jabbing a bunch of needles into various parts of the body triggers the contractions. It’s ingenious, don’t you think?

But seeing that pain avoidance is one of my life’s goals, acupuncture is in my list of Top 10 things NOT to do before I die (along with bungee jumping and eating fire).

2. Castor Oil

It’s a quick and painless method. Just take a few spoonfuls of it neat and wait a few minutes for it to take effect. It’s primarily a laxative, so there’s that nasty side effect where you lose all control of your bowels and start crapping involuntarily. It’s probably good if you hate the gynae/nurse and want to use it as a way to give them nightmares for days.

There’s no guarantee that it will work though, so you may just end up with a severe case of diarrhea.

3. Walking

This sounds pretty harmless. How it works is that it puts pressure on the cervix, causing it to dilate. Anyway it’s the kind of thing you can try without worrying about nasty side effects.

4. Nipple Stimulation

Touted as one of the most effective methods of natural induction, it’s definitely one of the most wildly popular. Mostly because no dude will turn down an invitation to engage in some nipple stimulation – “Boom-chica-wow-wow”.

But seriously, this causes a release of oxytocin, which causes contractions and lead to labor. (See, I’m not a total airhead, I actually know words like oxytocin)

5. Sexytime

As they say, what gets it in also gets it out. (who says that kind of thing anyway?) This is the next most popular method of birth induction, following closely behind the nipple stimulation.

The difference is, while most women are willing to tolerate some mild discomfort to the boobs, certain invasive methods at 38 weeks of pregnancy are too much of a hassle. There’s also the whole foreplay thing to contend with, and by the time there’s any action, you’re way too exhausted for the time to be the least bit sexy. And the focus is to get something out of there, not put something in, if you get what I mean.

I suppose the best thing to do is to sit around and wait till the baby is good and ready to come out. There’s a Chinese saying that goes something like “When the fruit is ready, it will fall off the vine”. Meaning that there’s no point rushing nature, cos all you’re going to end up with is an unripe fruit. Don’t ask me what that means. It’s too deep for my 38-week-pregnant brain.

If it’s up to me, Kirsten will be born on the 4th of July. So who knows, there might be some serious action on the 3rd. Woohoo!