A tale of a faithful trip, that started in this uterus!
First off, I would like to thank The Almighty for blessing us with our precious baby girl and for seeing us through these pass few months. I am so EXCITED to introduce Nabiha Dhillon to the world and tell my labour/delivery story. She was born on the 19th of September 2016 at 5:19 PM. She weighed 3.9kgs and was 52cm in length. I was meant to give birth on the 2nd of October 2016 but our little girl decided to come a little earlier than expected – 2 weeks to be exact.
I woke up on the morning of the 19th of September at around 7:30 am to use the toilet. Before I got back into bed I said to my husband as a joke “I think we having our baby today”. About an hour into my sleep I started feeling light cramps in my lower abdomen area and back which reminded me a lot of period like cramps. At the time I didn’t realise that these were contractions. The pain was mild- exactly like period cramps. I didn’t think anything of it and I just asked my husband for my hot water bottle and I continued to relax in bed.
Eventually at about 9:30am I got up to have breakfast – I was starving – had a walk around the house and bounced a bit on my birthing ball because this is what I did towards the last few weeks. I was still experiencing the same cramps but still thought nothing of it. At about 11am I decided to have another rest while listening to my positive birth affirmations and meditation soundtracks. These really helped me remained calm, confident and positive throughout my pregnancy. I eventually fell asleep to the sounds of whales and waves and woke up at 1pm. I woke up with a strange craving, I wanted paratha and cheese. It’s so funny because I hardly had any weird cravings during my pregnancy.
At this point I started keeping track of the time between contractions on my phone because the cramps were becoming more regular. My mother-in-law suggested we need to go to the hospital because she felt that these are contractions. I was hesitant because there still wasn’t a consistent pattern or any agonising pain – like I was expecting. We then all started getting ready – I had a shower while my husband packed our bags in the car. We left for the hospital around 1:45pm. I got about 3 cramps in the car on the way and it got a little stronger and closer each time but the pain was still mild and a few deep breathes got me through it. I was still not convinced that I was in labour.
We arrived at Cuban hospital just a little after 3pm, it was a long drive, and made our way to the emergency section where they hooked me up to monitors to check my contractions and baby’s heartbeat. The monitor was showing that I was in fact having contractions. I was so confused at this point. The doctor on duty checked my cervix and it turned out that I was already 8cm dilated! I was in complete shock. I didn’t know I was in labour and now I was about to give birth to our little girl. My “contractions” had still not gotten severe or extreme at this point.
I was then put into a wheelchair and taken to labour and delivery, they had me put on a gown and told me to lay on the bed. I was then again strapped up to machines to monitor baby’s heartbeat and my contractions. I felt content, excited and overwhelmed. All I was thinking was, I’m about to do this without an epidural!
The doctor came in, broke my water and said we need to get to 10cm. Once my water was broken (which I didn’t feel at all) I was told to have a walk around in the room to help move things along but as soon as I stepped off the bed I felt a STRONG urge to push and I did! I pushed! It was about 4:20pm. The nurses helped me back onto the bed and told me that the baby is coming. They calmly coached me through the best pushing technique – “push like you have a poo”. With every urge I pushed. The nurses were all so calm and encouraging throughout it all. It was 5pm and even at this point I still wasn’t in any agonising pain which confused my husband more than anyone else! He was expecting me to squeeze his hand, maybe scream the place down or even swear BUT there was none of that. I was so calm and I was just happy that he was there with me. It was surreal, I felt no pain while pushing. I took deep breathes, held it and pushed while counting till 10 to myself every time I felt the urge.
In between urges to push I repeated a few positive birthing affirmations I’d been practicing during my pregnancy. It really helped me to remain calm and confident. I remember feeling really thirsty and asked for ice cold water. I had sips between pushes. The nurse offered me some gas but I couldn’t work it out at first and I’ve been pushing without it all that time, I just put the mask down. At about 5:15pm the head finally showed and the nurse said to give one strong final push and I did and out popped our little girl. It was the most out of this world experience. I screamed a sigh of relieve at this point and I just laid there processing what had just happened as I delivered my placenta and got super doped up on gas which I eventually worked out how to use. The gas is amazing, I cried my heart out and thanked everyone in Spanish and I don’t even speak it!
Once that was done the doctor and nurses stitched and cleaned me up before moving me to the recovery room. Our baby was here. They took her away to clean her and give her vaccinations. I just couldn’t wait to see her as she was not given to me immediately after birth – I was really sad about that. Everything happened so quickly, I went from having light period pains to “BABY COMING NOW”, there wasn’t time to remember to give my birth plan, it was all over in an hour. I now know that I had experienced what is known as a silent labour, soft and gentle.
Our first family picture.
Feeding our little girl while she was in NICU.
The day we took her home.
She attended her first birthday party.
It’s been 3 months since. It hasn’t been easy but I am enjoying motherhood. I am learning something new myself and my baby everyday. It’s such an incredible experience that I wouldn’t exchange for anything. Getting to be with her all the time is so special and knowing that she’s all mine – there is no better feeling in the world. My labour and delivery was a very POSITIVE experience that I will forever be grateful and proud of. Thanks for all of your comments on Instagram and Facebook. They are so heart warming.
If you still read my blog, thank you. I am so excited about sharing this new chapter with all of you.
Keep well and keep smiling,
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