Birth of Ned (04-01-17)
I was about 20 weeks pregnant when I decided (after a lot of researching) to have a homebirth! I met with Jasmijn for the first time with my (then) 3 year old son, Liam.
I had my first baby at the hospital and despite having a natural birth, it was far from what I had envisioned. After breaking my waters at home, I ended up with an induction as labour failed to progress. In addition, I had antibiotics and an epidural. I felt so detached from what was happening to me straight after his birth.
In my early 20’s I had gone through 8 months of chemotherapy for cancer, so I also don’t associate hospital smells, noises and lights with a positive experience. Due to this experience, giving birth in that setting was never going to be the best environment for me to relax.
Despite my husband Ray not being in favour of a homebirth, I soon convinced him (did he really have a choice?) that this was my wish for our second baby and that all would be wonderful!
When my waters broke at night, I just told Jasmijn and we met with her the next morning for a check-up in the antenatal clinic. Labour was slowly commencing but I couldn’t feel much yet. After the check-up and a conversation with the doctor on call, we decided to go back home to await progress. Late that morning the contractions started getting more noticeable and stronger. Both Jasmijn and Jenny arrived soon afterwards. Labour continued to progress, but slowly. After hours of contractions, not much was happening- except feeling lots of pain! I used essential oils and acupressure points to relieve the pain. Accidentally wiping some peppermint oil in my eye also distracted me for a while!
After many more hours, I was convinced I would end up at the hospital to be augmented for failure to progress again. No!! At that stage I was in so much pain, I just remember wanting it all to stop.
At about 9pm Jasmijn and Jenny suggested transferring to the back-up hospital for further management. At this stage I should have been feeling the baby coming down and the awful pain I was feeling at that point, was not the same as the pain from the contractions. Ray was also worried about me- screaming in pain and still no sign of a baby!
Shortly after, we decided to head off to the hospital which was about an hour’s drive away. Jenny and Jasmijn had called an ambulance that we would meet on the way there, so that they could offer me some pain relief on the way.
I felt so disappointed. I felt like I was failing.
I didn’t want to end up in the hospital again and wished I could’ve stayed home. However, I agreed that our baby might need some help coming out.
Off we went in our LandCruiser. In convoy, with Jasmijn driving ahead and Jenny behind us, we set off to meet the ambulance in Railton. Ray was driving pretty fast to get me to the pain relief! However, Ray didn’t quite hear which post office the ambulance was waiting at (wrong town!) and kept driving… pretty fast! The midwives called him a few minutes later to ask where we were while we had raced past them. Suddenly I could feel that intense pressure feeling that they had been talking about!
“I think I want to push!” I said, between lots of screaming! Ray turned the car around to head back to the midwives and ambulance, but we could only make it to the entrance of the Cement Works Plant in Railton before I felt the overwhelming urge to push! The baby was definitely coming this time! The midwives and the paramedics swiftly met us there on the side of the road. The paramedics were ready to help if necessary, but stayed in the ambulance on the side of the road while Jasmijn and Jenny set up quickly for the birth in the backseat of our LandCruiser!
My husband Ray supported me in the backseat while our second son arrived! The birth of the placenta felt more painful than the baby! From that initial urge to push, to the delivery of the placenta was less than 10 mins.
With baby skin-to-skin and covered by a towel in the backseat with me, we decided to go back home! No need to go to hospital anymore. No need for the ambulance. Ned had arrived safe and sound- in his own time, in the back of our car!
Once back home, the midwives tucked me into bed and Ned had his first breastfeed and gentle baby check. Liam and my mum came to meet Ned. I still remember this moment- feeling like I was surrounded by so much love and care.
I was also feeling so amazingly good!! I was on a high dose of love! (Without drugs!).
I had made it! I had no issues with breastfeeding and bonded straight away with my second little baby boy.
Ray is also still so proud of the adventurous arrival of our second son, born in the back of our car. He claims his driving is the reason why Ned decided to arrive in the car!
Despite our unusual birth experience, Jasmijn and Jenny were both just amazing. Calm and caring. I would recommend them to anyone seeking an empowering birth experience!