Woohoo... It's the big day. *dancing in joy*
I woke up at 6.30am feeling stomach pain, something like menstrual pain. I didn't know if this was sign of labour yet, as mentioned earlier in part 1, I had never experienced any natural labour. The pain was very mild and I went back to sleep and woke up again at 8.00am. The 'pain' came every 15 minutes and I waited patiently until 8.30am to call Wai Han to ask her if my labour had started. I didn't want to call her too early as I thought it was not very polite to do so. After asking me a few questions, Wai Han confirmed that my labour had started, hahaha... :) She ended the conversation saying, "call me again when your surge (contraction) is 5 - 10 minutes apart." :)
I quickly sms some close friends asking for prayers. A few of them called me back and prayed for me through the phone and some sms-ed to show support. Papa Bear came home from sending the kids to school and I told him this was the day. Papa Bear got so excited and panic at the same time. He didn't know what to do next and I reminded him to get 2nd floor ready for me. I had my breakfast, took a bath and put on some light make-up (hehe... I wanted to look good in the video and pictures welcoming my baby, ok!) and I went up to 2nd floor. I sat on the gym ball rocking gently, breathing through each surge very comfortably. I laboured alone while Papa Bear went out to pick up our part time maid who comes on every Friday. I managed to cut my finger nails in between surges and told Papa Bear to go get his lunch while I was still doing ok without him.
The surge got stronger and it was 3 to 5 minutes apart at 11.30am onwards. I told Papa Bear that I needed him to be with me and performed light touch massage on me during each surge. The light touch massage and breathing really helped me getting through each surge comfortably. The surge got stronger and I remember Wai Han told me that kissing, hugging and touching each other would help, so I told Papa Bear I wanted a kiss. :) He did and which I pushed him away and asked him to go get his beard and mustache shaved. He looked at me feeling puzzled when I made such request, as I never complained about it so far. LOL Anyway, he knew he should not offend a woman in labour in any way that he quickly got it done and came back to be by my side in an almost unbelievable speed. LOL
My labour progressed very well. I went in and out the bath tub, rolled back and forth on the gym ball, went on all fours rocking my belly back and forth gently, with worshipping songs playing at the background. I felt I was doing ok until Papa Bear asked me to try changing my position to have my belly faced down when I was in the water, so that I could be more relaxed. I did and I heard a 'pop' sound - my mucus plug came off! After awhile, I began to feel that I could not breathe well while I was in the water and I came out and continue to go on all fours while resting my head on the sofa bed. Wai Han arrived soon after. Being an experienced birth companion, she didn't say anything but just went ahead to massage my back. She then told me to try going into the water again, as my back was very sore. So I went back to the bath tub and Papa Bear turned on the hot water to ensure that the water is always warm at 40 degrees Celsius.
This was when the peak of the labour happened. Wai Han saw lots of blood in the water which she said it was not normal. I asked her if I needed to go to the hospital and she nodded her head and said yes. I said, 'oh no...', I was very disappointed. She then suggested that we got out from the water that we could see the amount of blood clearly to decide if we needed to go to the hospital. I continued to be on all fours and blood kept coming out as I breathed through each surge. After 10 minutes or so, Wai Han told me that I needed to be prepared to go. I told her I didn't want to, as the medical team would make me lying down on my back or even cut me open to get my baby out and so on. She told me she would go with me to ensure everything would be as gentler as possible. I dragged going to the hospital and I tried to breathe through each surges which were 2 to 3 minutes apart. Blood still kept coming out... I then knew that I needed to go to the hospital. We moved from 2nd floor to 1st floor to get myself dressed and I needed a pad as I was bleeding quite severely.
Thanked God that I actually went for my final prenatal check up to ensure that my baby was engaged correctly for birth just a few days ago and my gynae had given me the admission slip which I chucked aside on my work desk thinking that I would never need this. I found it easily luckily. We proceeded to ground floor and which I was still quite reluctant to go to the car - I could hardly walk too actually, as the surge was 1 minute apart, I needed to concentrate in breathing through each surge. Papa Bear could hardly get himself ready too, as I would want to hold his hands so tight during each surge! It was a very beautiful memory that kept playing in my head that my husband was the anchor that held me so tight in time like this! Wai Han continued to massage my back, my part time cleaner too came to help to massage my back and prayed for me, I continued to bleed following each surge. I asked Wai Han again if I really needed to go to the hospital. She told me that she was not sure, as she had not seen blood of this amount before during childbirth. She said she would support me if I decided to stay home. I turned to Papa Bear and he didn't say anything but I could read from his eyes that he was terribly worried. I pulled myself up and walked into the car.
We reached the hospital within 10 minutes - baby didn't come out in the car as we hoped for. The A&E team greeted us with the rollaway bed and I was rolled to the delivery room. They asked hubby and Wai Han lots of questions, such as 'Who was my gynae? Did I have a record there? How come I ended up so bloody? How long had the labour started...' Argh... I didn't like this and I couldn't bother to answer - thank God for hubby and Wai Han to help answering all these questions.
Soon, we were in the delivery room. The midwives came. I think there were at least 4 or 5 of them. If you ever wonder why so many of them and whether I was a VIP or so, haha, wait till you finish reading my story. :P
The medical team tried to get either hubby or Wai Han out. I said I needed both of them. They asked me who was this 'Wai Han' and Wai Han answered them gently but also firmly, "birth companion". She kept repeating this whenever they asked her who was she. LOL She never let go my hand, not just for a second, ever since we went into the delivery room. Hubby and Wai Han held my hands tight (err... I think it was me who held their hands so tight! Haha...). Hubby and Wai Han kept telling the medical team that I needed them and the medical team kept telling us that they could do Wai Han's job and I needed only hubby and them. The battle went on and I was still 'indulging' myself in my own labour, breathing through each surge, I kept changing position (turning from left to right on my side) and I still bled following each surge. Wai Han held my hand and kept talking to baby and me very softly and gently, while hubby continued the battleship with the team. The surges got stronger and it got harder for me to concentrate in breathing through each surge that I finally got myself out from the 'indulgence', and I found the surrounding noise irritating. Guess what I did? I shooed at the midwives, "shoo... shoo... quiet, quiet, I need to breathe..." LOL They paused and looked at me and the Chief Nurse (yes, the Chief Nurse!) finally said, "ok, we will wait for Dr. to decide whether she (Wai Han) shall be out..."
The drama didn't stop here. They did a vaginal examination on me and I was 9cm dilated and Dr. had not arrived. The midwives kept telling me not to push first, which I ignored, as I knew I would have to follow my body clues that my baby would decide when she needed me to 'push'. I stayed focus to breathe through each surge and one of the midwives tried to put the gas mask on me, which I turned my face away and Wai Han then be my spokeperson to tell them that I did not want that. Wai Han really knew what I needed. :) One of the midwife attempted to close my legs to stop me from pushing, which I refused and I kept opening my legs, and which Wai Han then held one of my legs high up and leaned her head against it, as if she was the Koala and my leg was the tree. LOL Aww... I love you, Wai Han. :)
All the above seemed long, but the fact was that it was only 10 minutes! Dr. arrived. The midwives 'complained' to her about her uncooperative clients - us. She didn't say anything when she saw the clients were Papa Bear and me. She sort of knew we were planning for a homebirth - a natural birth. So Wai Han stayed. :)
Dr. told me, "ok, dear, you push when you feel like pushing ok.". I then 'warned' her, "Dr., no episiotomy, no cord clamping before cord stopped pulsating, ok?" She listened but she didn't nod, so I repeated myself again and this time she nodded and said "yes". It was amusing actually that a woman in final stage of labour could actually be so calm to tell her doctor what not to be done. The room was full of noise and I didn't know what noise was that as I was focusing on my labour. I could hear my gynae telling the midwife not to attempt to put the gas mask on me, as I didn't need that. She told the midwife that I could breathe on my own very well. Now, I wondered if Wai Han felt proud of me or herself that she taught me well and I learned well. :P
My gynae folded her arms waiting (yup, she really folded her arms!). She offered me nipple stimulation to speed up labour, but I declined, no one except for my babies (big and small, hehe) would be allowed to touch my nipples, ok! :) All of us didn't have to wait too long, as soon I felt like I wanted to pass motion and I felt like pushing. I quickly breathed down very hard, Baby Bear's head was out. Stop for about a minute, the strong urge to push came again, Baby Bear was OUT completely after a big surge, 20 minutes upon arrival at hospital. I didn't experience the 'big' pain during crowning as many moms fear of, in fact, I felt good. I achieved the orgasmic birthing I wanted and had been preparing for.
We told the doctor and midwives that we didn't want them to bath Baby Bear and we wanted her to be on my chest doing skin to skin contact immediately. I had my beautiful baby on my chest, she didn't cry, she wasn't in a hurry to breastfeed, her eyes were looking at me, she was SO BEAUTIFUL. I cried praising the Lord and I kept telling hubby and Wai Han how beautiful Baby Bear was...
Besides not bathing/cleaning Baby Bear, we also didn't vaccinate Baby Bear and we chose to go home right after birth. Yes, RIGHT AFTER BIRTH. :) Knowing that we were actually planning for a home birth, my gynae agreed to 'release' us home. Papa Bear went home to take my changing clothes and also baby clothes. Wai Han left after she had helped settling me down. Papa Bear then came with a cloth diaper and a receiving blanket without baby clothes! :P He thought that wrapping the baby with blanket would do. :) He paid the bill and we discharged from the hospital with our new baby 2 hours post birth. :) Oh yes, we brought the placenta home too. Papa Bear then buried the placenta at our backyard.
Nurses from delivery and maternity ward came forward to congratulate me and they asked me lots of questions, such as 'was this my first? how I had a quick labour? how I could be so calm during labour? why I didn't want to bath my baby? why I didn't want to vaccinate my baby?' and so on... I did share with them a little about the hypnobirthing class I attended and they went, 'ah... oh...' :)
We went to fetch Sister Bear with a new baby in my arms. Sister Bear was so happy and proud that I will never forget the smile on her face when she first saw her little sister. We then went home.
My part time maid cried in joy when she saw us home. She hugged and kissed me on my forehead. I felt so touched. Papa Bear went out to fetch Brother Bear and Brother Bear was surprised to see his new sister when he reached home. :)
The timing was perfect that labour started after kids left for school and the baby came out just in time for us to fetch the kids back home from school. God is great, isn't it? He knows what's best for us. Many people asked me if I felt disappointed that my home birth wasn't successful. My very honest reply was 'yes, I do'. But I got over it very quickly, as I know this is God's plan for us and it's Baby Bear's wish perhaps to be borne in a hospital. Further to it, the reasons I wanted homebirth were to have a natural, drug free and gentle birth for my baby and I didn't want to leave my 2 elder kids with anyone. So I had achieved all these, though the place had changed from home to hospital. But we 'fixed' the situation back almost immediately that we went and came back real soon. :) i
Baby Bear's birth marked a date that on this day we become a family of 5 and I'm a mom of 3. :)