The Safe Arrival of Lucy Nola

The Mother Hood birth stories have been lovingly shared by mums. In their own words, they have told the story and experience of their child's birth. 

Please read and respond with respect and love.

Parents: Natalie and Bryce Jones

Baby's name: Lucy Nola Jones

Baby's date of birth: 7th June 2017

Where do you live? 

Where did you plan to give birth? 
Whangarei Hospital

Where did you actually give birth? 
Whangarei Hospital birthstories

Tell us about your pregnancy:
After having a missed miscarriage in May we got pregnant again in September.
To say I was nervous was an understatement. Every twinge, ill feeling was met with fear. After one little scare at 11 weeks with a bleed (a scan confirming everything was fine), the pregnancy was smooth. We opted to not find out the gender and we were just happy to hear a heartbeat at every midwife visit (while still being hideously nervous each time).

I suffered pretty bad heartburn at night but managed to renovate our house through the whole pregnancy so must have felt ok!! I never felt a lot of movement but with having nothing to compare it to I just thought it was normal. It was the one time in life when you get test results back and are excited when they are average. Heart rate - average. Blood sugar - average. Blood pressure - average. Measurements - average.

At my 37 weeks check my midwife wasn't confident she was feeling a head or a bum down so a scan was booked in to confirm either way. Well, this baby was breech, very breech! Her little bum was nestled deep in my cervix and she was folded in half with her feet either side of her head which was lodged up under my right ribs. This explained the little movement and not being able to feel head from bum as her feet were stopping her head moving like usual. Discussions around options started there, and ALOT of Google research.
We were given the option of an ECV to try and manually manipulate bubs around and figured it was worth a shot. It's probably good to note here that I had a very loose birth plan. Ideally, I wanted to labour at home as long as possible then head to the hospital, ideally no pain relief but I wasn't opposed to drugs if it's what I needed. I wanted Bryce and my midwife, Jo, there and that was it.
Little did I know!

The morning for the ECV came and we walked to the hospital (We lived straight across the road….I'm not that crazy!) 

We’d been told to bring a bag as there was the chance it would cause labour but we figured it was just across the road so no need. I also really didn't feel my baby was coming that day. After a quick scan to confirm the same position, it was, I was given a relaxant to assist and the bed was tipped with my head lower than my feet to help with dislodging. I was comfortable through the whole thing and was told: “If this baby is going to move it'll happen easy and if not I won't push it”.
With a few pushes around my belly, there wasn't any movement, baby was comfy and not moving. 

While I was monitored for half an hour as a precaution our options were presented to us. 1) Try other ways to flip bubs and go into labour naturally 2) Elective section. I can honestly say I NEVER thought of a cesarean, never. But without even looking at Bryce I knew what we were both thinking…”What is the safest way for our baby to be born, for me and bubs”. Caesarean it was. 

My only negative thought was that my baby wouldn't get to choose their birth date unless I went into labour prior which meant a trip straight to the hospital. So we had a date!
For a week away!!

We chose not to tell anyone this, mainly due to hoping I could go onto labour earlier but also wanting it just for us. I also tried acupuncture in that week but I felt like my baby was so settled nothing was going to budge her. I had no Braxton Hicks, no nesting, no anything that gave me the feeling she was ready to come. 

The night before was surreal…..We were having a baby TOMORROW!


The Birth - Talk about a strange morning! 

Waking up early (no sleep in on surgery day!) Knowing everything we were doing was the last time we'd be doing it just the two of us. After a final bag check, we walked up the hill on a dark cool morning to maternity. We gave our names then sat in the waiting room with two other couples. After being checked in we were told we were first on the list! 

Still no nerves!!! I got robed up and then it was a really little wait and we were getting wheeled through the hospital to the theatre. When Bryce and I were separated in the pre ok room my stomach lurched a bit but the midwives and nurses were fantastic talking me through everything that was going to happen.
After a few attempts they got the line in my hand then I was wheeled into the theatre. We had a few training midwives, surgeons and a nurse taking notes as well as the surgical team….not quite the number of people I'd planned on!
Sitting on the side of the bed I was given a spinal then got laid down before I lost too much feeling. They put in a catheter and these weird pulsating cushions around my legs to help blood flow. Because I couldn't see these I freaked out a bit at the feeling but was reassured. It was only now that my blood pressure went up…..understandably!
Then it seemed all go.
They had the sheet up and around my tummy and Bryce wasn't there yet!
Soon enough he was by my head, stroking my head and trying to be brave! The feeling of a cesarean is odd. 

You can feel tugging and pulling but no pain. They spoke to us all the way through but I honestly couldn't tell you what they said. All I remember is that first little cry! And my heart opened, I started to cry….it was incredible. She was held up over the screen and we got our first glimpse of our little baby. After delayed cord clamping, she was taken to the table to be cleaned up.
Bryce was invited over to find out if we had a son or daughter. In his excitement, I got “it's a girl…..boy…..girl”!! A girl it was 😁.
Over the next 15 minutes, she was having trouble breathing but her heart rate was strong. With a team around her, all we could see was her little hand waving.
Bryce got to take her out to recovery while I was stitched up. I remember being wheeled to recovery to see him sitting so proudly with our baby in his arms ready to start our parenthood journey. The safe arrival of Lucy Nola

Did you go to the hospital or stay at home?
I stayed in the hospital for 5 days.
I healed well from the surgery but struggled with feeding so waited for my milk to come in and get a bit of a plan

What things would you do the same?
Remaining calm, having a loose birth plan and trusting the professionals. But also being strong in voicing if things didn't feel right.

Would you do anything differently?
Have Bryce stay in the hospital the first night. He stayed every subsequent night but that first one was tough on my own. 

 What advice would you give to other mums?
Be flexible. Birth is unlikely to be everything you wish it to be. Remember it's the result that counts. How your baby comes into the world has little impact on the rest of their lives.. And cherish every moment. The first 6 weeks are hellish but also the most special time. Use the village around you too.


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