It’s Friday night and you’re…giving birth! With a bit of a nudge from an experienced midwife, one baby knew how to make his Mama and Papa-to-be’s weekend unforgettable.

After a little wait, all Frederick needed was a little nudge on Friday from the midwife to get him moving and then a last minute decision that Saturday was a better day to arrive into the world!

Frederick Charles Osborne was born at 00.25 on Saturday 21st May 2011, weighing 3.015kg. Duncan and I are both so pleased!

If you want the full (gory) details: At 41 weeks and 1 day (Friday 20th) I had a membrane sweep at the midwife’s at 12.45 p.m.  At about 14.00, I started having very mild aches (like period pains) which carried on till about 18.30, during which time Dunc and I had a walk round the Museumplein and bought some dinner at Albert Heijn.  Quite rapidly from18:30 onwards  (over a 30 minute period) I started having contractions, which consisted of heavy lower back pain and lower tummy pain lasting about 1 minute with about 1-minute gaps in between.  I found that standing in the bathroom over the sink (as I was nauseous and sick) and doing hip rotations while concentrating on the deep breathing was my favoured position.

For the next hour and a half, the contractions carried on the same and I said we should wait till 21:00 before calling the midwife as that would be 2 hours of regular contractions.  However, as I was only getting 1-minute rest between them, Duncan called the midwife (Loes) at 20.30 and told her what had happened.  She came round within 30 minutes and said I was 5cm dilated and we should go straight to the Vu hospital which was our first choice and they had space.  We did this and met Loes there.

We got to the hospital about 21.45 where I carried on with standing and hip rotating whilst deep breathing as the contractions got more painful.  All I wanted from Duncan was a cold flannel on the face and neck between contractions, as I was really hot and any massage just made me feel hotter.  Sipping some cold water through a straw was also nice, and he and Loes kept telling me I was doing really really well, which was good to hear!

I got on the bed then and Loes said I was 10cm dilated. At 22:30 they broke my waters and I started pushing at 22:50.  This was the hard bit for me as I think at the beginning I was still trying to breathe through the contractions to control the pain.  After about half an hour I said I would try standing again to push but that didn’t work as it made it harder for them to listen to the baby’s heartbeat.  Loes suggested I try to just wait for the urge to push rather than forcing it and also to have a wee so I went to the toilet and nothing happened.I think this did focus me a bit more so I went back on the bed.

After some more pushing and lots of encouragement from Dunc and Loes, the head was crowning but still not coming out.  After an hour and a half of pushing the midwife said that if nothing happened in the next ten minutes then she would need to get the Gynaecologist involved as I may need some assistance.  At that point I just gave a few almighty pushes and his head popped out facing down, then he span round to face the sky and then another push and out he popped. This caught the midwife a bit by surprise so I did get some tearing, but it was just the best feeling that he was out then, just 25 minutes into Saturday morning.

So my stats in total: not much prelabour, 3.5 hours active labour, 60 minutes transition, 95 minutes pushing, 48 minutes for delivery of the placenta (with oxytocin injection) and about an hour of stitching.

Best Friday Night Ever! After everything was done, we had some food and were told that the 3 of us could stay until 6 a.m. at which time they needed the room back.  At 5.30 a.m. they took my blood pressure again, which was a little high and they wanted me and Frederick to move to a room and sleep for a few hours while they did some blood tests and redo my blood pressure at about 8 a.m.  Dunc went home for a couple of hours and then came back in the morning as my blood pressure was back to normal. However Frederick’s temperature was slightly low so they got the hot water bottles out, had a cuddle and we stayed until about 12 p.m. before the hospital midwife signed us both off and we came home.

The Kraamzorg arrived later that day and has been amazing.  We are doing really well with everything at the moment and I feel so fortunate to have had such a good pregnancy and labour.  The aim now is to try and make sure that everything carries on the same way, and Duncan has continued to be the best husband I could ever wish for so am sure Frederick and I will do just fine.

photo credit: FH via Flickr cc

Kathy Osborne