The Birth of Jasper

Two weeks ago, I was nervous and excited about the impending arrival of our little boy. I was focused on two basic things; having the spinal work to avoid a general and a safe delivery for our bub and myself. I was practically obsessed with the whole spinal thing. A whole lot of energy was spent, on my part, focusing on it being a success. I visualised, prayed, talked positively to myself and breathed through my moments of panic. I wanted nothing more than a better birth experience than I had with Kahlei.

So, at 5.50-something-am on Thursday the 11th of November, I gave my girls tentative kisses and left the house.

As the midwives went about settling us in (in the observation room due to someone being in the room I was going into) and getting me ready, I tried to stay calm. Each new midwife I saw asked how I was and I would reply “Nervous.” and each one would exclaim that I have done this twice before. “What’s there to be nervous about?” I don’t know, just something about being cut open gives me the jitters…

Finally, the midwife that was going to accompany us to theatre and a student came to take me away. The sides of my bed were put up and I was pushed out of maternity.

Being pushed along the corridors, watching the lights pass, feeling the thumps and bumps is a strange sensation. I noticed more on this journey than the first two times and I remember thinking I need to remember these little bits and pieces, but already I have forgotten those things that seemed important to retain.

At 7.30 I was pushed over the red line and James was left behind to put on some scrubs while I was taken into a little room across from theatre. People came and went, I was introduced to so many different people who were going to be doing something during my procedure or were going to be observing I lost count and felt somewhat overwhelmed. Every person told me “We’re just waiting on Dr. Brown.

It seemed an eternity before the anesthetist turned up and I was wheeled into theatre. An eternity to hope and think and pray that the spinal would work. An eternity to get more and more nervous. An eternity to wait to meet my precious boy. But, at 8.25am Dr Brown arrived and it was time.

In front of what seemed like a room full of students (there were about 5 plus the midwife I had met earlier) I got half undressed, sat on the hard operating table and waited for a success or fail with the spinal. And on the second attempt it went in. I felt the warm sensation  flood my bum and then my legs as it worked.

Hallelujah.

I would be awake to meet my baby, awake for that first fragile cry and able to feed him within his first moments of life.

The relief was instant, all my tension left me and James was brought in, wearing his spunky blue scrubs, to sit by my head.

As my Ob put in the catheter I asked the anesthetist if it was normal to still be able to move my toes, as I was sure that my legs were like dead-weights by that time when I had Ellie, but I was assured it was perfectly normal. And so the operation began.

You know the kind of sound you hear inside your head when you pull a tooth out? As the scalpel cut into me, I had that kind of noise fill my head, no idea why considering it was my belly and all… Then the tugging began. I felt so much of that initial tugging and was sure it wasn’t the same as when I had Ellie, but I decided that my memory of three and a bit years ago may be a little hazy. It started getting quite uncomfortable, which I told Dr Brown, who simply nodded.

And then I started getting twinges. I looked at Dr Brown and said “I keep feeling like it’s hurting, but I don’t know if it’s in my mind.” and he explained that it’s normal to think you’re feeling a little pain in conjunction with the tugging. I took a deep breath and told myself it was perfectly normal.

Not too long after I was groaning in pain, but being told I wasn’t really feeling any. I set my jaw, clenched my teeth, took breaths in through my nose and out through my mouth while repeating ‘it’s all in my head’ to myself , after all the anesthetist should know what he’s talking about, right? Plus, it should all be over soon, right?

After what seemed like forever but possibly wasn’t he conceded that I may, in fact be feeling slight pain and decided to give me Nitrous to “take the pain off”, but it just made me feel woozy. He seemed to think I was just being an over reactive whinger.

Every tug, every pull had me in agony and the murmurs of the doctors on the other side of the sheet soon became clear and I discovered that it wouldn’t soon be over. Due to my two previous c-sections there was a whole lot of scar tissue and adhesion’s which were making it difficult to get to the baby. I heard “If I go any further this way I will get the bladder.”

Panic. I looked at James in pure fear as more discussion went on until the Dr doing the operation decided he was going to hand over to my Ob (who I had thought was going to be doing it all along). I was in pain, left open on the table, terrified of what complications lay ahead and was still being told it would be okay to continue on with the spinal as my pain relief.

I think, if my Ob hadn’t come around to me and told me it was going to get worse and practically insist I be put under I would have begged for a general at that stage. Oh how things change.

As the mask went on, I looked at James and offered up one last prayer that I would wake up to meet my baby and see my husband and girls again. Not knowing exactly how bad things were, what the problems were and if my being awake had created more complications I was going to sleep having no idea what would come next.

Thankfully, I woke up (are you surprised?) and thankfully, the midwife who had accompanied us into theatre was a big believer in bubs getting a feed as soon as possible and he was there when I awoke – skwarking for a feed. There wasn’t that terrible moment, like when I had Kahlei, where I couldn’t remember that I had had a baby, there wasn’t more time before I met my little man.

I wasn’t very with it, but I saw and fed my gorgeous boy and was relieved that he was, in fact, a boy because I wouldn’t have to suffer such a pregnancy and birth ever again.

My recovery is taking longer, my insides are still bruised and sore and my incision practically goes from hip to hip. Apparently there was a whole lot of tissue to cut out and it took some time. In some ways I feel like the decision to have a fourth child has been taken from us. I was relatively sure we wouldn’t go again, but then I assumed it would be a choice we would make. Now, I don’t think there is anyway I could cope with going through that again.

But, in the end I got my Jasper Phoenix. My perfect, warm, permanently feeding, miniature grumpy old man.

P.S. I started writing this yesterday, which is why it starts on Wednesday – in case it’s confusing!
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10 Comments

  1. Oh Becky, I have tears in my eyes that you have had such a terrifying birth experience, especially for a planned caesarean.
    As a midwife, I have been at one caesarean similar to yours and that has left me traumatised that I couldn't stop this happening to my 'lady.' I'm so glad Jasper was there when you woke up and not whisked off to your ward.
    Take care of yourself, and that little man of yours is gorgeous x

  2. oh becky! what an ordeal! Lots of hugz to you! Glad all is ok. xxx

  3. Crikey – what an ordeal – you poor thing! the things we do (hmmm, like try to type comment with a squirmy pooey baby on your lap *ahem*!!)

    Hope the healing is speedy (remember, everything does heal, eventually!) xxxCate

  4. Crikey – what an ordeal – you poor thing! the things we do (hmmm, like try to type comment with a squirmy pooey baby on your lap *ahem*!!)

    Hope the healing is speedy (remember, everything does heal, eventually!) xxxCate

  5. Man, what can I say except "That sucks!"

    Good luck with your recovery & enjoy your new little man šŸ™‚

  6. Fuckity fuck, I am wriggling all over squirming with your pain. If you are still in pain please go and get some more relief from the gp and check for infection, this kind of pain can really get you down with a new baby. I thought it was something I needed to just push through, thankfully the health nurse set me straight, the pain relief was huge.

    Xx

  7. I feel for you that you had such fear at a time when it should have been different. Thankful all has gone weel, hoping you are healing well and so glad you have your lil man (so nice after 2 girls isn't it!)

  8. I had a very similar experience with my third…why is it that they wouldn't believe a woman saying she can feel the pain? It was only when my blood pressure went through the roof and set off the alarms that they believed me and gave me a general…
    It was three hours before I got to see my baby girl šŸ™
    With my fourth I went in and was a broken record about not wanting to experience that again…and it worked! I only had about 45 minutes without him šŸ™‚

  9. What a story! So glad you are healing and loving that boy!

  10. Thank you all for your kind words! I so appreciate them.
    Pene – HOW did you go back to have Jeremy after a horrible experience? You are just amazing šŸ™‚

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