To hear about other people’s birthing story is expected when you’re expecting. Typically, mothers would recount how they endured labor pains, how they delivered their baby, and how they were postpartum. When I was pregnant, I heard countless of birthing stories from my friends and relatives, and although no two stories are the same, each of them is special and beautiful in their own way. Now that I have Lucas, I guess it’s my turn to share mine.
No one ever expected that on December 10, I will be rushing to the hospital to give birth to Lucas, not even my OB. I had my 39th week check-up the day before and my OB sent me home after we learned that I was only 1cm dilated just as I was the week before. She told me that if she will see no progress on my next appointment, she’ll be forced to get me admitted and induced.
So Mc and I went home and spent the day the usual way. I slept at 10pm and woke up 2 in the morning to grab something to eat while Mc was still in front of the TV busy with his PlayStation. Mc joined me on the bed a couple of minutes later and at exactly 3:45 in the morning while we were having a nice talk, I felt a sudden pain—a different kind of contraction that was stronger and sharper than I used to have. It was followed by a sudden gush of fluid.
My water broke!
Since all our stuff was already in the car (thanks to Mc), the only thing left for us to do was freshen up a bit, change, grab our phones and go. While getting ready, I could feel my knees shaking. I was not in a rush or anything and I knew I still have TONS of time in my hand. I could still sit down and have breakfast if I wanted to but I was a bit panicky because to be honest, although I knew this day will come, part of me still wasn’t prepared. I mean even though I learned this and that from “What to Expect…”, experiencing everything firsthand for the first time is a different story.
On our way to the hospital, I could sense in the way Mc drove that he was excited yet nervous. He was grinning and was being extra careful at the same time. I thought I was ready for this but I was not. In my mind, I was like “Bahala na.” Just like Mc, I was excited too, however, part of me was just pretending to stay calm. So to regain my composure, I prayed and started calling our family to let them know the most awaited time has come.
We arrived at the hospital 4:30 and went straight to Pre Labor Room. I was only 2 cm dilated and there weren’t any pain at all–what I felt was more like pressure—but there were lots of fluid coming out of me and it felt weird. I stayed there for about an hour and a half while being assessed. Then they transferred me to the Labor Room and by 8am, I have progressed to 3cm. This time, I can already feel the pain. My OB allowed me to have light snack so Mc sent me some sandwiches and bottled water but the pain was overpowering that I lost appetite for food. An hour later I requested that Mc be allowed to stay next to me because I needed his support. Thank God they let him in. He was my rock!
After another hour, I was up to 4cm and that was when I asked for my first epidural shot because I couldn’t bear the stronger contractions anymore. It was such a relief to get that very first shot. I was glad it made the pain manageable. I slept every time I received the drug and only woke up every time I felt it wearing off. I was able to regain a little energy, Thank goodness! I honestly think that if it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t have the energy to push.
When I was already 8cm dilated, that was between 3 and 4pm, my contractions were stronger and I could feel the pain even when I got continuous shots. I held Mc’s hand. My breaths were deeper and my grasp was tighter. It was a very tough moment–a true test of endurance, courage, confidence, patience, and most of all, faith.
While waiting for crowning, my doctor and I practiced pushing. I was so tired already and the pain kept getting stronger. In as much as I wanted to get one epidural shot after another, I restrained myself so I wouldn’t get so numb. I needed to feel some pain to help me push.
At around 5pm, they moved me to the Delivery Suite and everything happened so fast from that moment. There was a team of doctors and nurses and hospital staff and everyone was so busy—each of them had a crucial role to play, my OB/perinat leading them. Everything went by like a lightning—my anesthesiologist was on my side explaining something to me, while someone was doing something down there, someone was busy taking off my glasses and keeping them for me, someone was stroking my arm to calm me down (it wasn’t Mc), while almost everyone in the room was coaching me to “Inhale…then push..1..2..3..4…….10” as if they were chanting. Mc was there too, blending into the team and becoming part of it. The most important part that is.
After 7 pushes, I felt the head. Then on my 8th push, there were shoulders. Obvious shoulders! At exactly 5:36pm, my perinat announced Lucas’ time of birth. When I heard the words, “baby out”, all the pain and exhaustion went away as if nothing happened. One of the doctors laid Lucas on my chest and there, I finally met my precious son for the first time.
I cried. This strange, beautiful emotion filled me. I don’t know what kind it was. Even I who felt it couldn’t explain it. It was beyond relief, beyond happiness, beyond feeling blessed.
It’s been more than two months now since I gave birth to Lucas yet I can still vividly recall everything that happened that day from the time my water broke until I held Lucas in my arms for the first time. It’s been more than two months now but I still can’t believe I was capable of bringing such a wonderful thing into this world.
I’ve heard lots of birthing stories and each of them is different yet unique and beautiful in their own way. Now that I am a mother, I have my own story to tell, and this is my story.