I went for my weekly check up on that day. Waited almost a whole day for the sake of 10 mins of meeting Dr.Citra. She was super busy that day. And she went for a delivery in the middle of lunch time. My appointment was scheduled at 11 am, and there were already a lot of people in front of me.
Don’t assume that everyone will have the same amount of time to consult her. It really depends on your baby’s condition. I don’t really mind the waiting time because well.. if I were the mother with such difficult pregnancy and complicated one, I will also want to have more consultation time to make sure everything is ok.
I digress a bit, uh. Where was I? Ah yes, waiting almost a whole day.
I only applied for half day leave since I thought it’s going to be done before 1 pm. I usually always have a very quick check up with Dr Citra anyway. But due to the hectic situation on that day, I had no choice other than applying for another half day leave.
I was supposed to have an important meeting at 4.30 pm that day and was ready to reschedule. But luckily, my check up was done just 30 mins before the meeting was supposed to start.
According to Dr Citra, everything was fine – baby’s heartbeat etc. He was quite low and engaged – sign of getting ready to be born. I wasn’t that surprised to hear that because it was the same result from last week. I figured that he would be the same case like his brother – would only came out nearing the due date.
My due date was supposed to be on 19th Nov. But Dr Citra told me she would be away on that weekend. So if I indeed gave birth on my due date, she would not be around to deliver my baby. I was a bit disappointed and secretly hoping that I would gave birth earlier so Dr Citra could be around to deliver him.
And so, like the saying goes, “Be careful for what you wish for”
The early maternity leave
After I was done with my check up, I took a cab to office. Zal who accompanied me to the hospital with Husband cried so loud when I jumped into the cab.
My heart broke million times seeing my boy cried.
I was planning to have my maternity leave on the 16th, but hearing the result of my latest check up, I decided that I would just take my maternity leave few days earlier than what I planned before. It’s only few days of buffer but I could also use those extra days to go out with Zal and have a mother son bonding time with him before his brother came along. My boy deserves this.
Reached office. Had the meeting. Told my boss I would be off starting next Monday.
I worked until 7 pm that day to finish off some important stuffs.
Later that night, while I was nursing Zal before he slept, somehow I felt a really bad cramp. Told Husband to start packing up his stuffs into hospital bag (yea, we hadn’t had hospital bag at all at 38 weeks!) and I would pack mine tomorrow.
Went to bed that night still with a bad cramp.
I woke up at 4 am, and my cramp was getting worse. I was still hoping that these were just false contractions – I hoped that I could reach 39 weeks before giving birth. So I moved around hoping that the contraction would go away.
But no – they were just getting stronger.
By 7 am, I just knew I needed to go to hospital. I gathered what I could and shoved them into hospital bag. Luckily I have packed important documents days before. So that left only clothing for me and my baby.
Before I called hospital, I knew I needed to time my contractions first. So I downloaded the contraction timer. And imagine my surprise when I saw that I was having regular contractions for 40 seconds every 2-3 mins! It meant that I was already in active labour!
I remember I whispered to my baby, “It’s OK, honey. You can come out if you are really ready.”
Once the hospital bag was ready, Husband called NUH, and immediately they asked me to come. We tried to book a cab. To no avail. It was morning peak hour. And it was raining quite heavily. Should have known that there was little chance we could get a cab.
We tried Uber. And although the fee was exorbitant (38 bucks!), we took it anyway. Our ride arrived shortly afterwards. And with the rain, came a traffic jam. It took us about 30 mins to reach NUH, and we were already on express way!
The real labor
Finally reached NUH at 9 am. Husband wheeled me to delivery ward. At this point, I was quite exhausted. I didn’t get enough sleep last night due to contractions.
Once I was at delivery suite, I changed to delivery gown and waited for doctor’s observation. Hooked my belly to scan as well to monitor baby’s heartbeat. Some midwives came and went – but there was this lady who visited me the most so I assumed she would be the one helping me during delivery.
A doctor came and did VE. Luckily it’s a lady. Seemed like she’s doctor on duty.
“You are 6 cm dilated! Fully effaced!”
That sent us to a shock! Sure we were expecting 3-4 cm dilated, but SIX? No time for epidural then? 😝 Lol. By that time the contractions were getting stronger. I don’t think even laughing gas will help.
An hour later, since I kept screaming I want to push, another nurse did a VE, and I was 8 cm dilated! The midwife mentioned something about my water bag that was not broken yet so they will let me progress on my own until it breaks.
I was kinda furious. I was in so much pain and I just wanted to push. With Zal, Dr Citra broke my water bag when I was only 5-6 cm dilated – why can’t they do it again this time?
The midwife explained that they are merely respecting my birth plan. I was like huh? Where in my birth plan I said something about waiting for my water bag to burst on its own? But it’s no use to debate so I continued fighting my contractions.
Again, I screamed that I wanted to push another hour later. Another VE, and I was 9 cm dilated! One more freaking cm and then I can push. But that water bag is still there.
However this time the midwife said, if I had the urge to push, do it slowly and it will break my water bag.
…Honestly, even though I said I wanted to push, I don’t know exactly HOW. People said it’s going to be just like when you poo. Yes I had the mega urge to poo, but my body suddenly forgot how to push a poo.
(Oh my, I sounded like I am comparing my baby with a poo)
I tried several pushes when the contraction came, and the water bag didn’t bulge at all! I was so mad at myself. It’s a freaking water bag, how come I couldn’t break it?!
After several failed pushes to break the water bag, I could feel that my energy was almost gone. I knew I needed to get my baby out before I ran out of energy. Few pushes afterwards, and then my water bag popped! Literally. I really felt like it was a water balloon!
So after my water bag broke, nurses were busy prepping for delivery. Dr Citra was still on her way so doctor on duty (who was male, wth) needed to take over for a while. I was ready to push when instinctively I rolled my body to my left. I don’t know why, I just felt like it’s the most comfortable position.
It was pretty similar like Zal’s. I felt like there’s something that wanted to go out badly. I tried to push when contraction came, but I think because I was running out of stamina, I didn’t realize that I also pushed when the contraction was not even there.
The nurses were telling me not to push when there’s no contraction at all. And at some point they even told me to hold from pushing because the baby’s heartbeat dropped. My heart sank. I didn’t even use epidural and there I was again – at the same situation like when I delivered Zal two years ago. Why must my babies go through the same thing? :’(
The nurses and doctor on duty also told me to slow down my pushes otherwise I was going to have a big tear. I was like, what should I do then?!
In the middle of maintaining my breathing and waiting for contractions, I heard Dr Citra’s voice and somehow it’s really soothing. She immediately took over from the doctor on duty and I could feel that her presence made me feel calmer. I can do this!
I did few more pushes. And before I knew it, I saw a baby being taken away from me. I remember asking, “Why isn’t he crying?”
And Dr Citra calmed me down, “Don’t worry. He’s healthy and he is crying.”
As soon as I heard that, I also heard my baby cried loudly. Alhamdulillah. I cried. Alhamdulillah.
I did another push to get rid of the placenta and soon afterwards Dr Citra stitched me. I was bleeding worse than when I delivered Zal hence Dr Citra gave me an injection to slow down my bleeding (I guess).
My baby apparently pooped inside so there was additional things to be done by the nurses. They went to check if my baby swallowed any of the poop (!!!) and I think they were checking his lungs as well. My poor baby :’(
Fortunately, there seemed to be nothing major happened to my baby – although one of the nurses said that they may need to monitor him a bit more closely later.
Then they brought him to me for skin-to-skin session. The super bad cramps that I felt few hours ago were gone – and finally my baby is here.
We were quite surprised that the labor was really fast. He was born around 1 pm – so it only took 4 hours! Zal’s was 14 hours and I was injected with epidural and he was vacuumed because I didn’t have enough energy to push him.
Maybe it’s because I was ‘forced’ to be active while I was pregnant with this #2. I didn’t even need to have a chair to help me while doing my prayer. And a month before, my helper was off for one whole month so I was taking care of Zal as well as maintaining the house.
Alhamdulillah, praise to Allah. Our second prince was born healthy.