When we found out we were pregnant I was over the moon, it is something I had wanted for very long time.
My pregnancy went smoothly, I had no morning sickness, and towards the end of the pregnancy as my bump got bigger and I got more uncomfortable I was just excited to meet my little girl.
As my due date come and went I was getting more and more nervous that the water birth I had my heart set on would not happen. 5 days after my due date and still no baby I went to see the midwife for a sweep, and was booked in for an induction 4 days later. I knew if it got to induction that blissful water birth was out of the window.
A few days after my sweep I started to lose some blood clots when I went to the toilet and my bump felt heavy. I called the maternity ward and although they said it was normal I said I wanted to come in to be checked on, little did I know I wouldn’t be leaving for another 4 days!
Once in the hospital they said my blood pressure was very high, and I was in slow labour. I was moved to a room and given a drip to get things moving & had my waters broken, so far none of this was going how I had planned.
As the day went on & the evening set in my blood pressure was going up, and my contractions getting worse I was advised that they would recommend an epidural as it can help lower blood pressure, and would ease the pain. By this time I was ready to try anything. Once the epidural started to work I tried to get some sleep, and kept thinking not long now and she will be here.
By 10.30am the next morning I was still only 6cm dilated and they advised that due to my high blood pressure they recommend an emergency C-Section. This was the absolute last thing that I had wanted, I wanted to bring my baby in to the world the natural way, not like this, in my mind it was like my body was letting me down. However I knew it was the best thing to do to bring my daughter into the world safely so I agreed.
Within minutes I was wheeled down to surgery with Paul by my side, I knew he was trying to put on a brave face, but I knew he was just as scared as me. In theatre they got me ready, and I could feel the nerves kicking in, and thought if my blood pressure wasn’t high it would be now.
At 11.18am on 14th January 2014, Miss Chloe Sandra Devere was born, and she was perfect. As soon as I see her I loved her. As I was taken to recovery and handed my daughter, I put her to my breast and she latched on straight away, I really thought I had this mummy stuff under control and I could do this. And then I realised that although she was latching on I was not producing any milk, and it felt like it was just another sign of my body letting me down.
As I was taken to a ward to recovery it suddenly sunk in that I had a baby. The first night felt like I was in a bubble, especially as I was still pumped full of epidural so moving was increasingly difficult and Paul had gone home to get some much-needed sleep. In my mind when I was pregnant I thought I would know what to do when the baby come along, and that would be the easy part. In reality, I didn’t have a clue and I was petrified.
I was in hospital for 2 more days until my blood pressure went down and I was allowed to go home. Being in hospital on a ward with people who seemed older than me, and this was not their first child, made me feel even more that I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. I reasoned with myself that when home in our own place I would feel better and would be able to relax, but that wasn’t the case.
When we were finally home, I was in agony from the operation, and trying to care for a newborn when you feel like your body is broken is not an easy thing to do. I would find myself crying at the slightest thing, not being able to sleep, even when Chloe was asleep, and my appetite disappeared. When the midwife come round when I had been home a few days she said it was baby blues and that it would go in a few days and was normal. With this in mind I tried to get on with things as much as my body would allow.
Then it come to Paul returning to work, and I realised I would be on my own with Chloe at night, what if something happened to her? I found myself looking at her constantly throughout the night, checking for anything that seemed new, and listening to her breathing and then consulting the internet, which is never a good thing.
After about 5 weeks of me bursting in to tears at the slightest thing, included waking Paul up in a panic because Chloe had done a massive poo and was crying and didn’t know what to do! We discussed me going to the Dr, in my mind I knew it was the right thing to do, but then at the back of my mind i kept thinking that it made me a failure as a mummy, and that first my body had let me down now my mind was.
I went to the Dr’s the next day, and explained how I was feeling and he said it was normal for new mum’s to feel like this. They asked about my labour and the birth and we discussed if any of this was how I had planned it, and it made me realise that the birth not being how I had planned had partly been to blame.
2 years on and I don’t even recognise that person. It somehow feels like that person wasn’t me. And I hope that Chloe doesn’t remember her mummy be like that for the first few weeks of her life.