The day finally arrived on the 39th Week and 6th Day.
01 February 2016:
2:49am – Woke up to take the usual pee break and noticed a small blob of blood. Immediately, alarm bells rang in my head and I knew that labour was imminent. Still, I remained calm and tried to go back to sleep while waiting for other labour signs like the rupture of my water bag, contractions, or more blood (also known as the bloody show).
6:45am – Awoke again to pee for the second time and noticed more blood. Great. I’m really having a bloody show but still no contractions. Since we had a scheduled gynae appointment at 8:30am, the husband and I decided to stick to the plan and seek our gynae’s advice instead.
7:45am – Left the house and felt mild cramps at regular intervals. I remembered wondering if that was how contractions should feel like.
8:15am – Told my gynae what happened earlier this morning, and upon checking, he strongly advised for me to be admitted since I’m already having labour signs i.e. bloody show. However, though my cervix was soft, I wasn’t dilated yet. Knowing that we are pro-natural birth, he recommended for me to have a CTG scan to monitor my contractions, and check if I was dilated thereafter. If I wasn’t, then I would have the whole afternoon for my body to go into labour naturally. If there are still no further signs of labor by 8pm, then he would induce me.
Great. Sounds like a plan.
9:45am – Went for CTG scan at the delivery ward. After one hour of monitoring, the nurse mentioned that I was still not dilated and only having irregular contractions. Bummer. So they checked me into the normal ward for observation.
4:30pm – The waiting game made us restless and more impatient. I couldn’t rest well, and the husband was surely getting bored and kept cooing baby girl to come out quickly. Perhaps we should have just induced her in the morning right after my CTG scan.
8:00pm – It was finally time. No matter whether I’m dilated or not, now is the time for the action to start. I was still surprisingly calm though.
09:00pm – The nurse finally inserted the pill in my lady part to start the labor process. I remembered psyching myself to “keep-calm-and-bring-it-on”.
10:00pm – The contractions started getting more regular and intense. How does contractions feel like? It honestly felt like cramps plus someone trying to break my spine. The feeling was bearable but uncomfortable and tiring.
02 February 2016
12:00am: The pain was getting more intense and my energy levels were dropping. Desperate for some pain relief, I asked for laughing gas but other than making me high and groggy, it did not serve its function on relieving any pain. But before I wave the white flag and ask for epidural, I asked the nurse to check how far I’ve dilated. She checked and said “Hmm, about 1 – 1.5cm” Crap. After 2 hours of contractions and only 1 to 1.5cm dilated? I’m definitely won’t be able to last through the night. As such, I finally called for epidural.
12:15am – I was pleasantly surprised at the quick arrival of the anaesthetist. I was then instructed by the nurse to lie on my side in a foetal position, curl up like a prawn and stay very still. It was quite an arduous task; imagine feeling the contractions yet having to lie completely still?! Regardless, the anaesthetist finally administered the epidural and soon after, I started feeling the effects of drug: numbness in my legs and the uncontrollable shivering.
The shivering got so bad to the point that I felt like I was having fits. So I asked the nurse to lower the epidural dosage a notch down. Aha! Finally I felt comfortable.. in fact too comfortable that I actually fell asleep. Epidural = Happy-dural.
5-ish am – I was awoken by another nurse who came to check my dilation. You cannot imagine my delight when she said “Oh, you are about 7-8cm dilated. When Dr Lee comes at about 7+am, you can push already.” WOOHOO!! So I guess the epidural not only provided complete pain relief, it also allowed me to sleep which made my body my relax, resulting in the fast dilation of my cervix. I’m so glad and thankful that my body was responding well to the induction pill and everything was going as planned.
7:30am – My gynae’s presence put a smile on my face. He checked on me and said that I am fully dilated and can push anytime now. But for a more efficient delivery (and to prevent me for wasting additional strength in pushing) he would want baby’s head to drop even lower before asking me to push.
8:00am – More nurses started coming into my delivery suite and prepping the relevant equipments. My epidural dosage was lowered so that I can feel the contractions (but no pain, just the tightening part of the contractions) and push. Finally, Dr Lee came all dressed up in his medical gown and told me the word I was waiting for: P-U-S-H!
Ok honestly, the pushing part felt as though I had to take a huge dump after years of constipation. There wasn’t any pain, but just some pressure here and there. After 4 pushes and vacuum assistance, my baby girl came out!
So meet our little one – Shay Laurianne Chew – weighing 3.5kg and standing tall at 50cm, born on 2nd February at 08:20am.
I can’t believe that we finally get to meet her after almost 10 months. And as we held her in our arms and gazed into her inquisitive eyes, it was love at first sight. I don’t know how to describe this feeling of affection and protection towards a tiny human being which you have created, and the immense love and care for every aspect for her wellbeing.
I guess this is what they call .. parenthood.
With that, the Chew family is officially three.