Max’s birth story

Max’s birth story

Now that Max is now 10 weeks old it’s time for me to slowly get back into blogging. What better way to do it then to share his birth story with you. I’m very happy to say that this story is completely different to my first birth story with our first child, Jake.

At five days before my due date I was completely desperate to go into labour but I was fully expecting to go overdue as this is what happened with Jake. So at first when I started feeling a mild ache in my bump I put it down to Braxton Hicks which I had on and off for the last couple of weeks.

Jake and I went to my Dads for tea as Jamie was at a work meeting. When we got home home and I got Jake to bed I was still having the ache, which I described to Jamie as going from a mild period pain to a strong period pain but nothing more then that. So I still didn’t think anything of it. At Jamie’s insistence I phoned the maternity ward to ask them how I could tell the difference between labour pains and Braxton hicks, this was at about 7pm. They advised me I need to be having regular pains that were four minutes apart for at least four hours to be considered to be labour so to phone them back in two hours with an update.

At this time I still really thought I wasn’t really in labour. Over the next hour the pains got more regular and more intense, so I had a shower and got the last minute bits of my hospital bag ready just in case. By 8.30pm my ache had progressed to a manageable pain. We phoned the ward and said we wanted to come in. It then took us just under an hour to get Jake out of bed and drop him off at Jamie’s parents house before making our way to the hospital. In this time my pain levels had shot up and my contractions were now three minutes apart and causing me to moan in pain.

The walk from the car park to the maternity ward at hospital seamed to take forever and included three stops for contractions. We then had another two contractions in the waiting room of the ward before anyone came to see us. At which point I was almost in tears and cursing the hospital for saying stay at home as long as possible, as if you do that they should expect you to be in need of pain relief as soon as you get there.

When I was finally examined I was already 4cm dilated and told to go straight through to delivery, cue another walk through the hospital with two more contractions on the way. When I got into the delivery room, I went straight onto the gas and air with gusto! We never even opened my maternity bag so I never had chance to change my clothes or put on our music.

The few hours went by in a complete blur for me. I never let up on the gas and air and was very effected by it, feeling completely high as a kite and finding it quite hard to communicate with Jamie or the midwife. Throughout the next few hours I had two injections of pethadin and towards the end started pleading with the midwife for an epidural, despite saying I didn’t really want one in my birth plan because of my fear or needles. However the midwife informed me it was too late for an epidural.

At about 2.30am my body naturally started to push. It took me some time to get the hang of pushing as I kept screaming at the same time with was making my pushing less effective. Eventually the midwife took the gas and air off me, which I really wasn’t happy about, I was trying to hold onto it with my teeth when she was trying to take it away! Apparently I was too focused on getting the pain relief to really push.

Without the gas and air clouding my head I was able to push much better, but it also hurt a lot more too. The midwife was just about to give me a cut to help me deliver the head, when the head was born naturally, and one more push and Max entered the world.

Max was born at 3.14 am weighing 8lbs 4oz. We are now one very happy family of four : )

A day in our life: with a 17 month old

A day in our life with a 17 month old is still very similar to a day in our life with an 11 month old as we now have some good well established routines that haven’t changed much over the last six months. The biggest difference is that Jake is much more independent and often wants to play on his own without input from me. Here is how our day usually pans out..

7.30 am. Jake wakes us up. He is now generally waking up a little bit later which is really nice. We take it in turns each day to get Jake out of his cot, change him and dress him.

7.45 am. We all go down stairs. Jake has his milk followed by a bowl of weatabix with saltanas. He now eats his weatabix on his own with a spoon! Which is lovely to see and makes him seem so grown up! During this time Jamie and I both get dressed and have breakfast.

9 am. Jamie goes to work.

9am – 12pm. Jake and I will either go out somewhere either to a baby class (we currently do baby signing and toddler yoga) or will play at home in the livingroom. Jake is much more independent now when he is playing which gives me more time to do some housework / watch this morning : )

12pm – 1pm. Jamie comes down from work and we all have lunch together.

1pm. Jake will go down for a nap, he sometimes has a small nap in the morning, if so he will nap for about an hour. But if I’ve managed to keep him awake all morning he may have up to a two hour nap. During this time I get some housework done or sometimes have a little nap myself ( I am pregnant so think it’s justified! )

3pm. Jake wakes up and we either play at home or go out to the shops or for a walk.

5pm. Jamie comes back from work and plays with Jake while I cook dinner.

5.30 pm. We all eat dinner together.

6pm. More play time. Jamie tends to take the lead at this time of day while I enjoy watching their antics from the sofa. It usually involves lots of running around and screaming!

7pm. Jake gets his PJ’s on and sits with me for 15 minutes of quiet time with his milk before bed.

7.15pm. Jamie takes Jake up to bed and does a couple of books with Jake in his room.

7.30 pm Jake goes to bed.

So there was our day, over in a flash as usual!

Things I’ll be doing differently with baby no2

As they say hindsight is a wonderful thing, this probably couldn’t be more true when it comes to raising children as the whole process just feels a lot like guess work and blind dumb luck. With this in mind there are a number of things that I would try to do differently with our second child to hopefully make the process of having a newborn a little easier for us second time around. Here’s the list of things I’m hoping to do differently:

1) Don’t hold the baby while he’s sleeping.

I think this by far was our biggest pit fall with Jake, we held him while we got him to sleep and then during the day as I was just resting and recovering from the c section I would continue to hold him the whole time he slept. I enjoyed being close to him, watching him sleeping and breathing in and out and falling in love with him, but I can see now that this is the reason why he also demanded to be held while he slept through the night also. Meaning Jamie and I slept in shifts so that one person could always be awake and holding Jake. This is not going to work for us at all second time around! So the baby will only know sleeping in a Moses basket / crib, of this I am quite determind.

2) Expressing some bottle feeds.

I intend to breastfeed again as I did with Jake. However due to family circumstances there were a few times that Jake had to be away for me for a few hours at a time, so I expressed his feeds into bottles. However as we weren’t regularly giving Jake a bottle feed he really struggled to get any milk and the whole process was very traumatic for both Jake and the person looking after him. This time round I intend to give the baby more expressed bottle feeds, perhaps one a day once we have established breastfeeding so that if circumstances do arise beyond my control I don’t need to be as concerned about the baby going hungry. This also will likely be helpful with me getting some more sleep as it will allow Jamie to do one of the evening feeds.

3) Have the house more prepared in advance of the birth.

At the time we felt we were prepared for Jake’s arrival, the house was clean and all his clothes we’re put away ready etc. We didn’t however have any frozen meals or easy to cook meals stocked up in the house in advance as we failed to see how difficult feeding ourselves was going to be with a newborn, as it turns out it was surprisingly difficult. We didn’t manage to get out and do a proper weekly shop for about the first month so Jamie had to keep rushing out to the local shop to buy a few bits here and there to see us through the next couple of days. This just added extra stress and cost to a time when we were too tired to think clearly. This time round I intend to have the freezer filled to the brim with pre made meals ( I’m sure some ready meals may creep in) as well as having my cupboards fully stocked with tins and dry goods and plenty of healthy food for Jake.

4) knowing when to say no to people.

Of course when you have a new baby in the family everyone wants to meet him and you want to show him off to the world also. However there were a few times with Jake when I was just so so so tired that having visitors in the house was actually painful for me to force myself to stay awake, look happy and not cry. This time round I know that the people who are visiting are all people who care for me and my family so they should understand if we have to cut a visit short or if I say they are welcome to stay and baby sit for as long as they want, as long as I can go to bed ( this would actually be quite ideal!)

Everyone says that having baby no2 is a lot easier then it was the first time round and I’m really hoping that they are right and that if we do manage to make these changes to how we do things it will makes things go as smoothly as possible for us. Only time will tell…..