Hello everyone! It's been a while since my last blogpost and here I am typing this in between managing my 3 kids. The last 2 months have been really interesting and exhausting transiting from a mother of 2 to 3. Every single day passes even faster and by the time they all get to bed, I find myself just zoning out, scrolling mindlessly on Instagram. I'm officially back at running Lully Selb so reviving this blog page with my overdue birth story.
My given EDD (estimated delivery date) was 22 March. Many around me had warned that baby no 3 could come earlier and faster and given my previous super fast labour that happened at the void deck, I was paranoid of the what-ifs too. I had my hospital bag ready a week before 22nd just to be sure I won't end up with a sudden birth again. Almost everyday, my hubby and I spent our nights at Changi Airport to walk around hoping that the labour would start naturally. I would feel mild contractions and get excited but it'd just go away after an hour or so.
Days and soon weeks went by and I still didn't get any labour signs. I even skipped my week 39 appointment as I was so confident I would give birth soon. Come week 40, and still nothing happened!! I started to feel worried and slightly frustrated so I called my gynae to be checked. Btw, my last visit was at week 38 to ensure baby head has turned or she had wanted to do an ECV to manually turn baby (all my babies tend to turn late). Thank god baby head was down and the procedure wasn't needed at that point of time.
I managed to fix one on the 1st of April, Thursday which was my week 41 + 4 days.
So here goes my birth story...
1st April, Thursday 4pm
My gynae Dr Citra did a VE and membrane sweep. I was about 3cm dilated but not in labour yet.
I was on the CTG machine and I started contractions about 5 mins apart. I had no pain at all and was feeling very normal still. I went to see her again and she had advised me to check in and see if labour progresses.
"Your water levels are a little high, your baby might bounce up, why don't you just check in..."
But I told her I'd rather just walk around and see if the contraction continues. And in my heart I was like, nahhhh I don't think the baby will turn again.
6pm to 9pm
So me and my hubby went to have dinner at the food court then walked around NUH area. We also walked over at the university premise where we found a quiet spot to time contractions. We even did our prayers there. It was about 9 plus that my hubby suggested we should check in.
My contractions still continued to be 4 to 7 mins apart, not so strong and I was in control. I was hesitant to go up to the delivery suite but I could tell my hubby was getting anxious.
"Don't tell me you want to give birth outside the hospital??!"
We decided to check in around 10pm. I knew I wasn't in active labour yet but I thought just listen to my hubby after what had happened with baby no 2.
The medical team on duty checked and I was still 3 to 4cm dilated. My heart sank as I thought I had progressed to maybe 5 to 6cm. But the worst thing was baby's position was off, like almost transverse again (side lying). I couldn't believe what Dr Citra had said earlier was actually happening. The doctors suggested to do an ECV to make the baby head go down as they worry that if my contractions got stronger and baby still in transverse, it would be a problem. After which they would administer oxytocin and then break waterbag to speed up the whole process. It was all a big No No for me as I really wanted an all natural birth, like my 2nd born, because it felt really good when you let your body do the work. I was so upset they had to start to intervene but at that point of time, I also decided to just let it go.
A dose of relaxant was administered to pause the contractions so they could do ECV and turn baby to make it head down. I was a little afraid but I told myself to just relax and keep breathing. At first baby head's went down and seconds later, it bounced up again. The doctor went the other way and finally baby stayed in that position. They then injected small doses of oxytocin to get the contractions started again. All was under control, each contraction came in nicely at a regular interval of 5 to 7 mins.
1am, 2nd April
Doctors came in again to do a check. Yay, baby head engaged better but still not as low as they wanted it to be. I was so glad but the minute I heard they wanted to break the waterbag, I was again a little annoyed. I kept thinking to myself, what if I had wait out and laboured myself, would things be different?
Then I said to myself, let goSelma, just let go. Trust in God that all would be fine. I could feel a sharp pain as the waterbag was poked. As soon as all the fluid was out, the contractions started to get stronger and intense. They were SO SO SO painful. As each surge came, I could feel it more than the previous one.
After about an hour or so of intense contractions, unknowingly, I started grunting. I wasn't ready to push but the pain made me want to push. It felt rather unnatural and confusing as my mind, heart and body wasn't aligned. But luckily the midwife on duty was quick t o respond to my reactions. She was so calm, gentle and guided me through the labour. "Don't worry mama, just push whenever you are ready." She knew that I felt uncomfortable in bed so she allowed me to stand, go on all fours on the bed so that I could manage the pain better. The surges got stronger and she did the VE on me for a few times. "Ok now you're about 6 to 7cm." After a few surges while I was on all fours on the bed, she did another check - YES! I'm about 8 to 9cm. Everything went fast and furious.
*I wasn't sure of the exact time*
Before I knew it Dr Citra came in. The midwife got me in position ready to push. I was in a squatting position on the bed as by then I couldn't lay down. "Ok next contraction, let's push." As I tried very hard to push, Dr Citra said, "Position is LOT" My heart sank again. Apparently, this is not the most ideal position of baby to come out. Dr Citra then suggested I go side lying. "Ok have a drink before the next contraction," she said in the most calming, relaxing voice. The next contraction came, and I could feel the ring of fire for that short bit with her voice at the background, "Good goood, all the way Selma, you can do this... Very goood..." Gynae in front of me, hubby on one side and midwife on the other side. Before I knew it, my baby boy was out at 3.17am.
Tears rolled down my cheeks as they put baby on me to do skin to skin. We managed to do a delayed cord clamping and mins later my placenta came out. I was so relieved everything went smoothly although to me, it was not as natural as I had wanted it to be. But the next few sentences that came out of Dr Citra's mouth made my whole birth so worth it and I was so thankful for the team's effort in making my overall experience a positive one.
"You don't need any stitched Selma. Well done. All is good."
I couldn't believe my ears and just gave thanks to God. Indeed, this was one good thing that came out of my birth that was below expectation. Unlike the first 2 that I had stitches done.
The next hour or so was spent with the baby in the delivery suite while they prepared the ward for us. I knew it felt all so surreal just like any other births but now as I'm writing this blogpost, all I remember was being REALLY hungry after the push and enjoying the simple taste of hospital biscuits and milo.
My next few months will be very challenging as I try to juggle motherhood and work. I'm really blessed to have family and friends as my "village" to raise my kids and a strong team of trio to run Lully Selb. Speaking of which, catch our next IG LIVE on Saturday, 12 June at 2.30pm. We'll be showcasing some shawls and tights for sale!
Lots of Love,