Monday, 2 March 2015

Share your birth story - the unplanned home birth

This Monday I felt like sharing my birth story. Yes you read it right folks, things didn't go to plan and bub was safely delivered in my living room.

The unplanned home birth

This was bub #3 and everyone else who was pregnant along with me, had birthed their babies already and here I was twiddling my thumbs and eating pineapples by the handful. My gracious midwife could see that I really just wanted to have my baby so I was scheduled in for a membrane sweep. Sweep was done at midday and based on previous labours we were in for a 6-12 hour haul.

I was sent home so I would feel more relaxed and comfortable. Contractions pretty much started straight away every 15 minutes. Good. Great. Ok we got this.

Then things got wacky. My contractions kept getting stronger but the timing was way off. Midwife was waiting for them to be every 5 minutes and lasting for 1 minute. Mine were every 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 7 minutes, lasting anywhere between 20 seconds to 1 minute.

I called the midwife and explained my contractions were not making any sense and I needed to come in for some gas. We had a water birth planned and I really just wanted to sit in some warm water to help ease the pains. Considering this was at 3pm she reckoned I still had a while to go. So I basically had to keep labouring at home for a little longer. We had a plan on who would drop me and hubby to the hospital as parking is awful and who would watch the kids. My parents came home from work early to check up on me and this was at 4pm. They live around the corner so I sent them home to just freshen up after work and wait for my call.

By 4:30 pains were untimeable and I NEEDED to come in. I called my midwife and all I was doing was screaming in pain into the phone. She told me to tell my husband to call the ambulance. Don't get angry at my midwife because she kept me cool and focused in amongst the chaos. All she said to me was "you know what to do." And I did. I breated through the pain and waited for the urge to push. I was kneeling on the floor and leaning on the couch for support. I felt around down there and felt the babys head crowning so it was clearly show time.

The emergency services lady was on the phone asking my husband if the head had come out, so he tried his best to see what was going on down there but he didn't know that I was pushing. And like that babys head popped out. My husband jumped back in shock and started shouting into the phone "The head is out! The head is out! THE. HEAD. IS. OUT!" The lady on the phone calmly  reminded him he would have to get ready to catch the baby very soon, and one more push and baby was out! My midwife and I had already agreed to keep the umbilical cord attatched for a while so I knew I had to maximise skin to skin contact and keep bub warm.

My husbands job was to find towels and to keep me and bub warm. At this point I was completely naked to maximise skin to skin contact so I was quickly getting cold myself. For some reason my husband could not find anything to keep me warm except for the white throw that sits on our bed, to which I shouted "NOW IS NOT THE TIME FOR WHITE SHEETS ! JUST GET MY ROBE!"

The operator informed us the ambulance was very close by and she would wait on the line until they arrived. My midwife was still on the line as well ready to chat to the ambulance guys once they got there. Soon enough two big men storm through my door and promptly tell me to lie on my back so they can cut the cord and wrap baby and get the placenta out. My midwifes plan was to keep me and bub attatched and do all that stuff at the hospital which was very close by. But no. They told my midwife they would take care of it and hung up the phone.

Hubby cut the cord, bub was wrapped and it was placenta delivery time. I was exhausted by now. Baby was born at 5pm so I had been in labour for 5 hours and I was tired. I begged for the injection which makes the placenta kind of come out by itself with a few tugs on the cord. But no. He insisted I rest my feet on his shoulders and push the damn thing out. Mind you I'm still butt naked! Everything was happening so quickly. My husband had already called my parents who ran over as fast as they could and yes, my dad walks in right when my legs are in the air and I am grunting for dear life trying to get my damn placenta out. Nice.

My mum runs in and sees that my house is obviously less than fabulous. "Sorry guys, it normally isnt this messy." Haha gotta love mum. After how many pushes placenta is out and I'm told to get dressed and that I have to walk to the ambulance which is at the front of my complex. I live on the third floor of my apartment by the way. So I slowly get into some PJs and my parents and hubby all carefully help me walk down the stairs and all the way to the ambulance. Of course all my neighbours see an ambulance in the driveway and everyone is sticking their heads out of the window to see whats going on.

We quickly get in the ambulance and the lights and sirens are full blast and this causes me to panic."Is there an emergency? Is everything okay? Is baby going to be okay?" Apparently all births which occur out of the hospital are treated as life and death situations so I was happy to cut through peak hour traffic and we get to the hospital very quickly. My husband was asking the workers how their shift had gone so far today and how many babies they had delivered, and apparently they had just come from an old mans house who had just passed away. As he said "one checks out, another checks in."

Luckily I was wheeled into the birthing centre where me and bub were checked by midwives, to which I hear, "Sweetie, theres still a bit of placenta in there. You're going to have to push it out."

Really? I was exhausted, nearly delusional. Hub had to hold baby skin to skin to keep her warm whilst I was on my back grunting away trying to push out some placenta that turned out to be the size of two chicken nuggets. In all my lovely naked glory, midwives are checking to see if any membranes and left behind, and in walk my inlaws into a dark room with a spot light on my goods down there. Nice. By then I just did not even care anymore.

I ask how many stitches I'll need and my midwife says none. Woohoo! At this point I just want to have a shower and go home. Hospital policy is that unless there are complications ladies and babies are discharged 4 hours after birth which for me was 9pm and now. I'm showered, handed dishcharge papers and we are home before 10. It was then that it hit me that I had just had my baby. The whole day seemed like a blur but I was just happy she was home, safe and sound.

This litte girl turns 2 very soon, and I sometimes miss the early days. Sometimes.

Step 60, Sarah.



  1. I love the way you've written this! I was laughing and cheering you on. However, my partner is now terrified and told me I best not give birth at home! x

    1. Hahha this is actually very edited down, the whole storybis EXHAUSTING to tell. most of my friends who hear the full story say it sounds like a scene from a movie haha thank you for cheering me on! Lesson from this story is if you want to go to the hospital, GO! Thanks for commenting :)

  2. Holy Dooley ! What a story! I just laughed and laughed about hubby getting the white throws - such a hubby thing to do! Well this is a birth you won't forget in a hurry!! My daughter was born recently and my husband fainted in the delivery room - yes! He got more stitches than me and had to be stitched up by the dr so he could stay for the birth and stay overnight in hospital! Ahhh the things that happen !

    1. oh dear, he fainted! poor thing, poor you!! but yes birth, anything goes and anything can happen :)

  3. Haha oh dear thats funny and not funny at the same time. No the stain on my living room carpet is a permanent reminder. Thanks for commenting :)

  4. Your story gave me goosebumps. I could feel your pain, see the baby and laughed through all your naked glory.

  5. I'll be honest--I found this thrilling and terrifying and amazing all at once. I would love to do a home birth, but the idea of having to push out placenta on not just one occasion but two... again, I know every birth story is different, but I'm glad that in the end everything worked out. Even if everyone saw your bits and pieces. I think it's par for the course (I will say those parts of the story made me LOL, totally something that would happen to me, too). XOXO

  6. You have written this post so well I was actually laughing reading it (sorry!) I am glad it all worked out fine in the end x

  7. I had an unplanned homebirth too! In november 2014. I woke up for a wee.....but a baby came with it :) its on my blog xx


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