Wren Anna Lee, 8lb 1oz, 20inches long - born January 10th, 2019.
I had the most incredible labour with this little girl, but let’s back it up, shall we?
At 36w6d I had been feeling very uncomfortable at work and just decided I was getting intense braxton hicks contractions kind of consistently. I was texting my sister who is a nurse and she thought it sounded a little bit more intense than just plain old braxton hicks, so after work I ran to the store to buy some last minute baby and postpartum things and could hardly walk through the store without being in pain from contractions.
I drove home, my sister met me at our house, and Kyle and I set off for the hospital just to get checked. When I got there I was already dilated to a 3 and having contractions on the monitor every 2-3 minutes! They had me get up and walk for an hour or so, and when we came back and they checked me again, I was still at a 3. This is when I learned that I was experiencing the horrible thing that is Prodromal Labour. The doctor basically told us I could go into active labour in a few hours or a few weeks, but that my body was in the early stage of labour (having real contractions but that were dilating my very very slowly). We left discouraged but thought for sure we’d be having our baby girl within the next few days.
I ended up having this early labour for 3 weeks, and didn’t go into active labour until 2:30am at 40w1d. I woke up in the middle of the night with really intense contractions, which was a very regular occurrence for me over the last 3 weeks, so I got up to take a bath to relax a little bit. At this point I was so discouraged, fully expecting to have to be induced, that I really didn’t think it was real labour, but as soon as I sat down in the bathtub I knew this wasn’t prodromal labour anymore, I could hardly crawl out of the tub and down the hallway to go yell at Kyle that THIS WAS THE REAL THING!!!
We called my mom and she came over to stay with the girls, and Kyle and I headed for the hospital around 3:30am. My contractions were back to back and I was so scared we wouldn’t make it there in time, because the day before at my doctor appointment, I was already at 4-5cm dilated. We made it to the hospital around 4am, and was at a 6! I knew this time I wanted to have a natural, non medicated labour, and because I wasn’t high risk like my last pregnancy, I was really confident in making it happen.
Thankfully, my labour and delivery nurse and doctor were INCREDIBLE. They asked me once if I planned on having any pain management medication, and when I said no, they didn’t ask again. I was so grateful for this, because had I been consistently offered, like with my previous birth, I may have said yes and that would have been so disappointing.
Kyle was beside me the whole time encouraging me, massaging me, and feeding me ice chips. He truly has been so incredible in both of my deliveries and I’m so so grateful for him. I progressed very quickly until I hit 9cm. Then I started to feel the urge to push, but I wasn’t fully effaced or dilated yet. We figured out that this was because Wren was Occiput Posterior (face up instead of face down - which is likely why I had prodromal labour for so long as well). My body felt like it was ready to push, but she just wasn’t in the right position. Every contraction felt like I couldn’t help but push, I felt so out of control like I couldn’t not push.
After a few contractions where I remembered to breathe upwards, and succeeded in not pushing, I was finally ready for the real thing. My doctor came in and I started pushing, I think maybe around 6:30am. The contractions were so so so incredible, and the feeling of the baby moving down was something I’m so grateful to have been able to feel this time. It was excruciating, but so empowering and incredible all at the same time.
Baby girl flipped face down right before she was delivered, and then she was crying in my arms at 7:13am, looking around with the strongest little neck I have ever seen! All I could think was that I couldn’t believe she was finally here, and that I did it! I did have to get a few stitches, and had a bit of uncontrolled bleeding, but otherwise I felt incredible. Wren nursed on both sides right away and was so incredibly strong, I could hardly believe it. And she was so big! The twins were 5lbs, so holding an 8lb baby was so incredible! Having these quiet moments together immediately after she was born with just one single baby will be a moment I cherish forever.
Wren, your birth was one of my most favourite days of all. I feel so connected to you, you are so incredibly special. I love you so much, my little birdie.