Birth Stories - Birth Story: Baby Harper
Congratulations to Tracy and James

Birth Story: Baby Harper


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Congratulations to Tracy and James

"I wanted to let you know that we welcomed Harper Ruby Lay into the world on the Tuesday 18th July! We have survived the first 6 weeks – yahoo. Below is a little run down of how it all played out. 

I had a stretch and sweep on the Monday afternoon and was awake pretty much all Monday night with consistent cramps. I think I put the Calmbirth tracks on at about 3am when I was so annoyed with not being able to go to sleep. Little did I know that these were early signs of labour and my waters broke at about 6:45am on Tuesday morning. Contractions started ramping up after that and were about 4-5 mins apart straight away so we called Cabrini and they told us to come in so we arrived about 9am. I started doing the birth breathing as soon as my waters broke and I now understand what you mean by labour land!

I was put onto the monitoring machine when we arrived and by then I was having about three contractions every 10 mins. They couldn’t get a read on the baby so I was on the machine and therefore sitting in a chair for about an hour before we were moved into the birthing suite and could get more comfy. I still had to be on the machine for at least another half hour but I was able to be on all fours on the bed which was better than sitting in a chair. The midwife checked me for dilation around 11am and I was 4-5cm, to which she was surprised and thought I would only be 1cm. Probably because I wasn’t screaming in pain and was just super focused on my breathing. 

I moved from the bed to the shower and sat on a fit ball in there for what felt like 15 mins but James said was about 1.5 hrs and nearly flooded the birthing suite in the process as I was covering the plug hole with the fit ball! Oops! It was in here that I think I hit the crisis of confidence moment and with the contractions becoming so intense I realised that I didn’t need to be going through this pain and relief was available and called for an epidural. To James’ credit he did try to talk me out of it but I replied by telling him I knew what he was doing :-)  

Had the epi about 1pm and my OB came in to check me at around 2:30pm – I was fully dilated, ready to push. I couldn’t believe it! When I was in the shower my contractions felt like my body was pushing but I assumed that we were still many many hours away from meeting our baby.  

Harper was born at 3:55pm after over an hour of pushing and nothing will ever beat that feeling of when she was put onto my chest and we became a family of three. The whole labour and birth was such a good experience and one that totally exceeded all my expectations and I have you to thank for that! There was nothing traumatic about it which I am certainly preaching to anyone and everyone seeing as we only ever hear about people’s traumatic experiences. I do not know how I would’ve coped without the breathing [techniques], it was crucial to remaining calm and just letting my body do its thing."

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