At 40w + 3d (Fri, 25 Jan), I have checked in to Mt Alvernia as planned for induction.
We arrived at late night on Thu (24 Jan) and went up to level 3 where I was brought to the delivery room. I was told to remove all my clothing and put on the hospital robe which was tied at the back. When the nurse led me to the bed, however, she untied the robe so I was actually lying on the bed with the robe on my top 😂.
I was asked some questions...typical ones like do you have any allergies to drugs, was it a complicated pregnancy so far, bla bla bla.
They then strapped the CTG machine to monitor the fetal heart rate and my contractions ( same as what your gynae would do in your last few sessions! ).
At around 12mn, B was told to go down to settle the administration/check in matters.
No need for induction in the end!
While B was away, another nurse came in to do the infamous cervix check. She told me she would give me the pill, and in one hour’s time, I would have to clear my bowels. Gynae would come around 7 to check in next steps.I breathed in DEEP to relax as she stuck her finger up😂. She announced the best thing ever! She said I was already 3cm dilated, so no need for the pill for induction.
On Wed morning for my last check-up, gynae said there were no signs of baby coming out, dilation only 1cm.
After our gynae check, we went for lunch nearby and when I went to the toilet, I saw discharge similar to mucus plug photos online! I was so hopeful and went back to the clinic excitedly 😂. When I showed the gynae, she said it was normal due to the cervix check and to take note if release of water was felt instead.
I was disappointed, thinking labour signs were finally presenting themselves to me. I usually get spotting/reddish brown discharge after cervix checks so I thought this was diff!
By luck, I started feeling the following in the wee hours of Thur morning:
1. A tightening in my lower abdomen (area below belly button)
2. The need to poop but no poop.
I started tracking them since 5am and they were felt consistently till 11pm when I checked in to be induced! I didn’t get my hopes high that those were contractions because they didn’t increase in frequency and intensity, and were very bearable pain.. like aiya just a pain in the ass kind.
The tightening I felt had an average length of 38s and 16 minutes apart on Thursday! This pic was at 6+ in the evening but I think the average didn’t change much even till 11pm.
*End of Throwback (TB)*
Clearing of Bowels
Lol this was epic and actually pretty challenging! The nurse came over to insert some solution into the A-hole, as if flushing or cleaning it for you. The thing I didn’t expect was that I had to hold it in for 15-20 minutes, before reliving myself?
At 11++ minutes, I RAN for my dear life to the toilet. The last thing I wanted was to soil the bed.
Dilation from 3cm to 5cm
This took place mainly from when I entered to 5am for me. During this period, the contractions increased in intensity and frequency and B and I were trying to find different ways to overcome them!
We did some breathing exercises. I don’t know why but I need to have B counting together with me for these to work, or I would just be focusing on my own pain.
My favourite was actually walking around the delivery ward. We also took a ball to bounce on!
I didn’t have epidural for this period, and was getting quite happy I was dealing with it better at 4 plus! Do take note - our gynae never expected us to walk around / bounce on yoga ball. She told us we didn’t inform her of such a birth plan and she expected us to be in bed all the while! So you may want to inform your gynae in more detail of your birth plan? Not sure what difference it makes though..
Surprise visit & bursting of waterbag at 5am
While B and I were walking around trying to overcome the contractions, our gynae suddenly appeared (that’s when she made the comment on us not informing her of what we were doing)!
I had to go back to bed, she checked my dilation, and proposed bursting the waterbag to quicken the labour by bringing about faster/more frequent contractions. I was so taken aback cos I was not on epidural yet, and only expected her at 7am!
The other option was to wait for waterbag to burst by itself (more time).
I asked B, who said my choice.
I looked at the nurse (this shift one was fierce 😂), and told me sternly it’s your decision, if not you just go ahead with your gynae’s proposal.
I asked my gynae how pain it would be, because it sure sounded like a lot. She took out this round tool and said “ oh its just gonna be like a regular cervix check and we use this thing to...”. I looked away and told her “it’s ok I dont need to know the procedure!”😂😂
I decided to go ahead with the bursting, and to get epidural after because I wasn’t sure how fast the contractions would come after.
I was too anxious to realise what I felt during the bursting, but suddenly there were gushes of water! It felt so out of control and I was trembling a lot out of fear 😅. I asked my gynae if I could still take epidural at the rate I was trembling - would the anesthesiologist be able to insert it accurately?
I honestly can’t rmb her reply or if she replied to it at all, but she said to call for it soon before 6am or they would all be booked for other deliveries. So that I did.
Insertion of Epidural
The anesthesiologist came in slightly before 6. She looked so cool like she’s done it 10 million times before. She had this small sling on n I bet she was off for some delicious Macs breakfast after 😂. Anyway, she briefed me through each step before actually doing it. I wasn’t paying attention in all honestly I was just hoping it won’t hurt too much. The insertion was really ok! She felt my spine and found some nice fengshui spot, then inserted a jab, followed by another I think.
She asked me to curl my body up (abit like how a baby would in your womb), and told me there would be some electrifying / tingling feeling. I didn’t really feel anything shoot me but neither was the pain relief instant! She told me it differed for different people n could take up to 20 for some. The worst part was that I felt so much like shitting when I was curled up so I moved and shocked her for abit 😁. I told her I felt like I was gonna shit sooooo bad n she said likely due to baby’s head.
Dilation at 7cm
By early morning, I was 7cm! The fierce nurse even told me she thinks I would be done by lunch....
But I was stuck at this for the next 2 cervix checks which spanned across 6 hours ish. During the first check, I told myself to just relax and let things be. During the second check, I was quite anxious. I received a call from the gynae shortly, telling me I have to prepare myself for an emergency c-Sec if things still didn’t speed up. I tried to stay chirpy on the phone but cried so badly after.
Put on hormone drip
Shortly after the phone call, the nurse came in to tell me the gynae had instructed for me to put on a hormone drip (sorry can’t rmb what’s it called, oxytocin?). This would make the contractions stronger and more intense and hopefully help with the dilation. This would also up the pain level, and she commented that “lucky you are on epidural!”.
Reaction to increased epidural - my worst nightmare!
For epidural, you can adjust the level that enters your body and the range is between 7-15 on average from what the nurses told me. I was on 7 all along, and managing ok with the side effects (bad trembling) while feeling nothing below.
With the hormone drip, the contractions got more painful. I requested to up the epidural level to keep the intensity of contractions status-quo.
This was one of the worse decisions😕. I didn’t know then, but I couldn’t tolerate the side effects! My trembling got much much worse, and unlike contractions, they wouldn’t go away. It wasn’t even trembling, but almost like continuous spasms to me! I felt my temperature rising, and was jabbed with smth to keep it in control.
* Cont’d next post*
Friday, 25 Jan 2019
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