Saturday, 12 May 2012 was supposed to be the baby's due date. I had on and off uncomfortable cramps since Thursday but none appeared to be the signs of labor. We had an appointment with the Ob/Gyn on that day and she said that if no signs of labor appeared until two weeks later, then an induction would be planned. My mother was induced when she gave birth to me and she said that it was harder than being naturally induced. Despite what the doctor said, we kept our good hope that the baby would arrive sometime sooner.
We went home after doing some groceries and in the afternoon, my mother and I decided to go to the nearest shopping mall just for a walk. On my 40th week pregnancy, I climbed the Skytrain station stairs near our place back and forth hoping that it would trigger the process. Later that night, just after dinner time, the 'show' occurred, finally. I was more than excited as this meant that the process was about to begin, while my husband thought that I was a little bit weird. Yes, I was so excited to meet our baby as he was already one day overdue thus I had no time to be nervous nor scared about the pains of giving birth.
On Sunday night at around 22.00 p.m., I felt stronger cramps coming and therefore called the Birth Room at the hospital. The lady at the Birth Room told me to wait at home and came to the hospital tomorrow morning, but should the pain never cease, I could come to the hospital that night. I tried to sleep with no success, the cramps were getting stronger. My husband prepared warm water bottle to ease the pain while counting the contractions. At the end, we were not sure whether it was false contractions or the real ones as the contractions were not regular and I only felt the pains in my middle abdomen instead of lower abdomen. I did not even experience any pelvic pressure since the last weeks of my pregnancy. I just could not sleep that night, not because it was painful but rather uncomfortable. So, off we went to the hospital at 02.00 am by taxi.
As soon as we got off the taxi, I was sent straight to the Birth Room and was told that I was already 5-cm dilated. As per our request, my husband and my mother were allowed to be with me all the time and luckily, that morning I was the only patient at the Birth Room. We had a very nicely decorated birthing room completely equipped with necessary stuff to help ease the labor pains, hot pool, shower and toilet, coffee and tea maker. Long story short, the first two hours I still managed to cope with the contractions, chatting with my husband and my mother and three lovely nurses who were with us. My Ob/Gyn arrived around 05.00 a.m. and she said that I was already 7-cm dilated and she suggested to break my amniotic fluid in order to fasten the labor to which I agreed.
The next hours were getting hard as I started feeling the pain at my back and intense stronger contractions. I took a plunge in the pool, tried the birthing chair, walked around the room, and felt that the baby's head was going down my pelvic bone. I was lucky to experience active labor in which I could move everywhere instead of only lying on bed during the contractions. However, I felt very uncomfortable that I even refused to neither hear lovely and encouraging words from my husband nor receive gentle touch from my mother. I just asked my mother to pray for me and my husband to be by my side while I concentrated to be ready for the next contractions that kept coming every now and then. Luckily, one of the nurses did a very strong yet really comfortable massage around my back and hip to help ease my pain. Considering the pain, I thought I was already fully dilated, apparently not. The hardest part was the progress between 7 and 9 dilatation, it felt like forever. I kept murmuring my prayers until I heard one midwife said that I could push whenever I felt the urge to push. I had experience the contractions until I was fully dilated, but for me, pushing was even more difficult. The three nurses kept supporting me everytime I had to push but I just could not do it properly. Thus, the baby was still quite far up there and did not give any sign that he would slide down soon. After two long hours of trying to no avail, the Ob/Gyn said that she would try the vacuum and if it failed, then SC would be the last resort. I was then transferred to other room, just beside the operating theatre.
Since the beginning, I aimed at having natural birth, as natural as possible without any painkiller such as ILA or epidural and my husband fully supported my decision. Therefore, I read books about hypnobirthing, did regular swimming exercise, joined the prenatal yoga class, and walked a lot. Few people thought that I was silly to choose experiencing pains which in fact could be avoided, but I did not care. I have my own wish of giving birth to my child(ren) and my wish is to give birth naturally, unless there are emergency or medical reasons. The other reason is because in Bangkok, the number of elective caesarians is high and honestly, I was afraid to be handled by persons who are into SC for reasons other than medical or emergency. I am not against caesarian, but having a natural birth is like a psychological and emotional achievement for me, personally, that is all. We are lucky to meet Prapee Tangnavarad, M.D. as she is very kind, patient, supportive, and cooperative. Overall, we are satisfied with her and the hospital's excellent service.
Having been moved to the other room, the contractions were shorter in period yet stronger. I was extremely exhausted after hours of pushing and I remembered that I even lied when I felt the contraction coming so that I could rest a bit and did not need to push. I almost gave up and was tempted to ask for SC at the point when I felt I could not push anymore. I said to my husband that I had no more energy left to push as I was too tired but my mind told me that I had gone this far so I had to fight a little bit more before being able to meet our baby. My husband tried to look for the doctor but she was not around. Later she came, checked the baby's heartbeat, and told me to try another fifteen contractions! I kept telling myself to give it a try as long as the baby was fine inside and it was also because of my husband's optimisticm that kept motivating me to try..love you loads, mon amour! Not quite long, I saw another doctor came, whom I firstly thought was an anaesthetist, and apparently she was not. She was the pediatrician, meant that I would give birth soon. My Ob/Gyn said that she would extract the baby using a vacuum but I still needed to push so that his head approached the birth canal. First contraction, I concentrated while she prepared the apparatus. Second contraction, I pushed as hard as I could and within second, I saw her pulling my baby out with his cord attached, Alhamdulillah. It was 08.30 a.m. on Monday morning, mid May 2012 when our baby was born after 40w2d of pregnancy. He was 53 centimeters long and weighed 3,94 kilogram.
When the doctor was working on me, my husband came with our baby, wrapped in a white cloth, sleeping. While he recited prayer's call (adzan) on his little ear, I thanked Allah SWT for everything. Ten hours of labor, a healthy and beautiful baby, supportive doctor and nurses, and prayers and love from my beloved husband and mother, speedy post-natal recovery (I did not feel any pains due to the stitches at all, thanks to my great Ob/Gyn), what else could I ask for?
Our baby was sleeping when I kissed his soft cheek that smells like heaven. My dear little boy, you have stolen my heart since I first felt your movement in my womb, assuring me that there is indeed a life inside, and I am in love with you since then. The feeling was just like Savage Garden song's title "I knew I loved you before I met you".
Thanks to Allah SWT for giving me the chance to be a mother, and with Your guidance, I wish I could be the best mother for my child(ren), aamiin.