The Final Push : My Birthing Story


10:30 PM, 13th November 2015

 

I had just finished publishing the post, Meet the greatest Man I know, something I had really wanted to write when it happened. It sounded almost like a champagne cork popping and I knew the floodgates had opened. My water had broken and our baby was on her way, two weeks early too.

 

I had been feeling extremely uncomfortable that entire day. Somewhere deep, deep down I think I knew it would be my last working day, before my maternity leave. So, on this hunch, I even brought back home all my personal stuff from work that day. Yes, seems strange but I think I knew.

 

Once I realised that my water had broken, I woke S up. For a moment, we just stood there, just for a fleeting moment to acknowledge the enormity of what was about to ensue. Almost as if life’s reel was being played in slow motion for one second but by the next, it was up to normal speed again. We called my OB/GYN and on her advice were to drive down to the hospital. The moment of truth, if you would call it, had arrived.

 

11:00 PM,13th November 2015

 

We got into our car, the bags carefully placed in its trunk but just then S realised he wasn’t sure if he had locked the door to our flat. So, he went back upstairs. Once that was taken care of, S had again forgotten his belt.

 

Now you would think this was no moment to keep forgetting things? But of course, it was. It was the perfect moment to do so.

 

This was just S being nervous. And who wouldn’t have been in his position? So, I asked him to calm down, go get his belt, lock the door to our flat and come down slowly. There was nothing to panic, everything would be fine. It was almost midnight so there would be no traffic as well. We would reach the hospital in 15 minutes tops. And we did too.

 

12:00 AM, 14th November 2015

 

I was admitted and moved to my room at the hospital, all the while leaking amniotic fluid. Trust me, it’s anything but comfortable. You would think that being a woman I should somehow have been familiar with such a leaking situation but no. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that when the damn amniotic fluid leaks, it pours. Everywhere I sat or walked, I left a trail. But that was just the beginning of the entire experience of childbirth, just the beginning.

 

I had felt the first contraction while on our way to the hospital. It was bearable and I for a moment floundered by wondering what the fuss was all about. It was nothing extraordinary. But then I reminded myself it was just the beginning and what did I know!

 

 

I was started on some drips and slowly, gradually I realised what the hoopla around contractions was. It was horrible. Initially, the time between contractions lets you breathe but as time proceeds it becomes impossible to do even that. Breathing, talking, sleeping or staying awake, everything becomes extremely difficult with contractions. Every damn thing.

 

Now before that day, I had not really given a thought on birthing or breathing techniques, natural or c-section delivery. I figured I would take it as it comes. Of course, I knew everyone preferred natural delivery but honestly I had given no thought at all. It was almost as if I was expecting a stork to deliver my child.

 

As the pain increased, I begged the nurse on duty to do something. When my OB/GYN came visiting, I urged her to do something, anything. But it was only after a few hours of me crying that they decided to give an epidural. Finally.

 

I was so relieved. At least, the pain would be bearable now. But there was a catch.

 

 

Dilation, of course. Did you know that they don’t give you an epidural unless you are dilated enough! So, I had to wait and bear the pain. Finally, after requesting for almost about 7 hours, the spinal tap was made to administer the first dose.

 

 

Was my pain reduced?

 

Of course not! I don’t know if it really works but for me, it just didn’t. Maybe after the first dose, the pain was slightly bearable for all of 15 minutes but not after that. Not even after administering it the second time. By then I was delirious. I wanted to take the baby out of me, c-section it out of me so that these God-forsaken contractions would finally end. But my doctor, thank God for her, wanted me to have a normal delivery. So, she waited for me to dilate further. Every time she would come and say let’s wait for another half an hour. Then they would administer something in the drip, probably to help me dilate but the pain would also increase exponentially.

 

 

I remember cursing S for being in that situation, for all the pain. Even him telling me that everything would be alright ended up in a curt rebuff from me. And he, like a darling, listened to everything quietly. Of course, he had to which he did because in his words I was the one tasked with bringing a living being out of myself not him. I could see how much he wished it was him going through the pain and not me. It was written all over his face. I had never seen him so shaken up, never.


Labour pain is unlike anything I had experienced before. And this coming from someone who had gotten burnt badly once in college, experiencing terrible pain. But this labour pain was zillion times worse than that. There’s nothing you can do, no position you can lie or sit in that can reduce it. There’s only one way to get rid of it and that’s to deliver your baby. But to get to that point, the journey is hard, extremely hard.

 

Consider this. Take getting burnt and cutting off your limbs while conscious and multiply the pain zillion times. What you get is not even close to labour pain.

 

The Dilation fairy finally waves her magic wand.

 

When I finally dilated to the point that a normal delivery could be attempted, I found myself surrounded by a number of nurses and doctors. Some nurses were asking me to breathe to make the process easier. Everyone was saying something and I didn’t know whom to listen to, whether to concentrate on pushing, breathing or holding myself in a steady position! But let me tell you something, no amount of breathing makes anything easier. At one point, I had almost given up.

 

It’s exhausting. Imagine a fully grown woman pushing your stomach with all her might. That along with the labour pain. I thought I would die. They urged me to push. I did but it was hard. Finally, they could see her head, crowning I think they call it? So, they asked me for my final push and put everything into it.

 
They told me my baby’s heartbeat was reducing, that she was in pain too. So, it was up to me to end both our pains. At that point, even S was in the room but he was horrified at the sight. The shouting, screaming, blood and gore, not an easy scene to witness.

 

The final push!

 

Somehow I gathered every ounce of strength I had, which wasn’t much, and gave my everything to one last push. It was so damn painful but I did. I almost felt that I would die it was so horrible. But nothing like that happened. The labour pain almost miraculously went away and I felt worn out. Almost like you do after a very high fever subsides.

 

The pain was gone and they had placed my baby girl on me. Of course, at that point, I was barely conscious. What I mean to say is, I was conscious but in a haze. I had given birth, I was a mum but everything was a blur except for these three words – It’s a Girl.


If I were to describe my experience in one word, it would be exhausting, truly exhausting (okay more than one word!).
 
Will I go through it again?

Well, the jury is still out on that.

That was my story. All you mothers reading this, do share your story with me. And the fathers, don’t fall back I’m sure you have a story to tell too.

 Birthing Story, Pregnancy, Labour


58 thoughts on “The Final Push : My Birthing Story”

  1. I think it's safe to say you've put off anyone planning to have a kid 😉 Having said that, I agree with the pain. It's like nothing you've ever experienced and is unbelievable in intensity. I wonder how they did it before hospitals. Those women deserve a medal and a shrine! But M makes it all worthwhile, right?

  2. Oh Man! You made me re-live my story. The feeling of relief as soon as the baby is out is just miraculous. Just as they show in movies…one moment you want to scream your lungs out and the next you have such a joyous and instant release with the words "Its a girl"

    Mine was something like that too and with the same words – Its a girl!

  3. Oh. The joy of motherhood can be seen on your face in that first photo, Naba. 🙂 Congratulations. When do we get to meet the li'l angel?

  4. You made me rewind my delivery experience. Congrats Nabanita 🙂 After delivery, there is only one thing in my mind – 'It's a boy' and nothing else.
    I too had epidural, pain reduced for 2 hours or so, but dilation didnt happen for long time and contractions were not strong enough and me, dead tired to push. So, had to undergo forceps delivery and the stitches, deep cut due to forceps made me suffer long time after delivery (3 months). Delivered second son by C section and it was smooth and i could enjoy happy moments with child immediately after delivery.

  5. Ok, this was as true as it gets and I agree with Shailaja that you have frightened any woman planning to have a baby. 😉 For me, the pain was intense. The water broke the first time around but beyond a point I wasn't dilating. It was already evening and I was exhausted and in terrible pain. That is when they decided to do C-section, gave me epidural which magically took the pain away. I was almost unconscious by then. I had endured so much pain and the nurse kept offering epidural and I kept refusing, Imagine! But finally they did the surgery and had the baby out in 15 minutes! 😀

  6. Oh my! This certainly brought back memories, not necessarily warm and fuzzy ones. Childbirth hurts like hell, no doubt about it. You described it so well. I could remember it all so clearly even though it's been 20 years.

    We lost our first daughter tragically due to her being in the wrong position and the doctor using forceps that caused her to die from a hemorrhage at 6 days old. No warning that anything was wrong either. She just died in her sleep. Devastating! I still think about her 24 years later and wonder about what might have been.

    I was a nervous wreck the next time around and didn't want an epidural in case it had contributed to needing the forceps. I had a TENS device which didn't help all that much, just numbed the pain but when my son came through, I felt every darn bit of it and howled in pain. I know why they call it the ring of fire!

    By the next son, I was calmer since it had all gone okay the previous time so I opted for that epidural which was great.

    Women are amazingly strong and resilient how we can do childbirth and keep doing it. Not sure men would do as well if it was them giving birth. It might help with the overpopulation problem!

  7. All Mommies deserve a medal, no two-ways about that! I went into my own flash-back scenes. I had an equally harrowing, maybe a worse time, what with being admitted twice for false labor pains and succeeding only the third time around, I spent five days of severe pains, yet not enough to be the 'real'ones! Uff! Congrats to you and your hubby!

  8. Congratulations! God bless you all! That photo speaks volumes about the joy you hold in your arms.

    I relate to your situation. I took the sabbatical 3 weeks early and had a restless week without work. Finally ended up playing literati on PC for three hours as I was restless, with a disturbed sleep to be woken at the early hours with an urge to use bathroom where the flow refused to stop and I made an emergency entry at the hospital and ending up with a baby 3 hours later.

    I don't remember the intensity of Pain but, the instance I held my baby is still fresh.

  9. A very honest, no mincing of words or feeling post from new mommy! Hats off to all the mother's in the world for bearing it all…Wow! Phew!

  10. Nabanita, you made me remember my first delivery. The only difference: my husband was out of the country at that time. Everything else remains almost the same. Just that I almost gave up when they finally helped me have a forceps delivery. But all in all, I don't regret having gone through it twice. The girls make it all worthwhile.:-)

  11. Ouch! So painful.. but good that you had a normal delivery. I had to have c-sections as I had no labour pains even after my baby was close to 10 months inside me. Doctors tried a a lot to induce pain, but no.. nada. It was worse than getting labour pains. So, lucky you for going through the process.

  12. Loved your honest post, Nabanita! It's true what they say about the pain…your memory of the pain is fresh as it was only yesterday. I re-lived mine too through your story and yet, having gone through it, I would still say that its every bit worth it when you have that tiny bundle of joy in your arms! The thrill of being a mother outweighs everything else. 🙂

  13. I m shitting my pants reading this 🙁 I may or may not b mentally prepared if and when the day comes
    Anyway hearty congrats to u both

  14. Oh my intention was not to put off anyone 🙂 Just wanted to talk about the pain, the experts and yes women do deserve a medal for going through this..

  15. AhhI wanted to take the baby out by going for a c-section when the pain was so so bad but thankfully my doctor chose to wait.. 🙂

  16. Oh Cathy, I'm so sorry about what happened with your first daughter… You are right, women are really strong & resilient to go through childbirth… I don't think men can bear so much pain

  17. Oh God! That must have been awful, Kala, the pain & that too 5 days of severe pains & not even the real one!

  18. Oh Rekha sometimes it's surprising how much strength we women have that we go through it and somehow remember it sans the pain 🙂

  19. Oh Lata, i have heard c-section is also very, very painful…the pain is something we just have to bear in both 🙂

  20. Thanks Afshan..I won't say it will be easy but I'll say this, we women have the strength to bear such terrible pain..somehow we just do 🙂

  21. Congratulations on your bundle of joy! Men are not even a patch on women. Incidentally, you made it read like a thriller!

  22. You told this so well, Naba. Someday, M will read this and appreciate all you went through to birth her. I'm sure she's worth every single bit of pain.

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