Right!! The morning of Feb 23rd arrives. I still have my curtain drawn around my hospital bed, but i’m listenning and peeking through a little gap in them from my bed at the rest of the ladies on Ward 10. Infact, one girl could see me peeking, but lived her life anyway. I had been given pain killers through the night. My tummy ache had become more frequent and at this stage ‘moaned’ at a very ouchie period pain like agony. The staff was wonderful to Me. I refused to eat anything but cornflakes. I couldn’t move my body too well. My phone was bleeping at me off the hook. I swear it was a million messages a minute.
I was waiting for Pete…who had failed to show up at 8am. This obviously upset me and made my blood pressure rise out of fear of doing this whole shindig alone. However, he was existing in a nervous stage of ‘all over the place.’ In bits and pieces he was. He eventually turned up, 20 minutes later. I was sooo relieved. Relieved enough to undraw my curtains and be a bit more chatty with the other women on Ward 10..(who adored me ) I remember one telling me i wa s ‘posh‘ because I was wearing pyjamas? Lol. My mum eventually arrived also. Followed by Andrea from the BBC, a lovely bundle of excited midwives and Dan the camera man. I finally felt like I could breathe. Then i oddly watched a couple of the preggos on my ward, nip downstairs for a ciggie. Bizarre much? I loved them. Even though they were a bit chavtastic.
It was all very boring and very merry at this point. Pains. Big pains. Had another ‘sweep and stretch.’ Then was told that even though i was in baby sized agony, i hadn’t yet dilated..but my baby’s head was very low and engaged. Anyway, we drank lucozade, ate Fruit Gums, picked at grapes, had a bit of banter with the other ladies, charmed the midwives with a politeness that they’re not used to and waited…calmly, not knowing what was actually happening? My contractions began to hurt and i mean really really hurt. (I will say that I was weirdly coping well. Which means pretending, I was okay.)
Things went fast. OUT OF NOWHERE, my tummy pains began to feel like the most awfully hidieous aches of terror, that, my entire body trembled, broke down and i whirled into a haze of my OWN awful agony! It was probably the most pain I had ever been in. I can’t even describe it and it was only the very beginning. The midwife handed me painkillers..ones that didn’t seem to work. I grumbled at my mum and Loverboy with eyes of desperation. I couldn’t even have the baby monitor strapped to me anymore. I was screaming and rolling around on my bed in utter utter agony. It was the worst feeling ever. A constant pain, where you feel like dying could be a bit better than living the pain, that you could not run away from because it was TRAPPED inside your body. It didnt get fun. I was given gas & air. I have NO IDEA what was happening from this point on.
I don’t know how much time passed? I don’t know who was around me? I have no idea what was begin filmed? I have no recollection of the people around me? All i heard were noises from the Ward. Faces kept hazing infront of me, that seemed to be asking me if I was okay? The staff at Pontefract were being very very lovely to Me…but I was gone..completely lost in my own agony. My gas and air wasn’t working. I was crying, screaming, still rolling around my bed uncontrollably to the point where after 4 hours from the last ‘sweep & stretch’ I was wheeled to a private room away from the cameras and other people for another.
In 4 hours you’re meant to be 2cm’s more dilated. The midwife, who was lovely, but firm and laughing at the fact that in my moments of agony, I would crack a sarcastic comment of ‘funny funny,’ had a bit of a look…and instead of going from 0cm -2cm…in 4 hours. I had gone from 0cm to 7cm. (You only need to be 10cm to have your baby.) All of a sudden, there was a thunderous panic from everyone in the Ward…and i was plonked in a wheelchair without my gas and air. Then wheeled across the corridor to what i was told was ‘THE LABOUR WARD.’ I think I was screaming and having an awfully painful natural birth. How dare I? The funny thing was that my wheelchair had higgledy-piggledy wheels on it…haha…i can’t help but laugh. I was utter pain. In utter labour and being wobbled into doors and walls accidentally in a wheelchair whilst laughing between tears! Everything turned up a notch. The pain I was going through stole my memories. It hurt that MUCH!!!
Don’t know what happened, but I found myself begging another lovely midwife for an epidural and her granting it for me, due to my state of pain. I was with Pete and My mum and sat on the side of a bed, having a Doctor stabbing my back with a giant epidural needle. Everything that could go wrong did. IT HURT!!!
My epidural took 3 very painful attempts to get right. Another Doctor had to come and have a go. I think the cameras terrified everyone. Or my presence? They always say thatwhen you’re in labour there’s always ONE point, where you look up, see a face an think that you really cannot take any more. I wanted to pass out. The pain was sooo unbearable and i had been on every type of pain relief going. Every memeber of staff was helping the Wunna Team and well hours of this pain had passed…until I finally *deep breathe* got my epidural. THANK GOD!!! It completely kicked in and like the calmest kitten in ALL OF THE LAND…the madness came to an immediate halt and i could breathe. I COULD ACTUALLY ENJOY…labour. The fine art of having a baby. (I felt bad for the doctor doing my epidural. He felt all worried because he couldn’t seem to get my needle right in all the panic. Everyone was panicked.)
Okay, long story short…you get the pain thing. But like I said from this point onward, anything that could go wrong…well DID. My blood pressure was too high. Then it was too low. I got very poorly, very fast and we were running out of time. Remember my baby had to be born within 24- 48 hrs of my waters breaking in order for it to survive. (The whole entire time I was being filmed. The midwives kept shoo-ing the BBC out due to major problem labour complications.) They wouldn’t tell me what was going on. Yet i noticed a lot of ‘eyetalk’ and panic around me. I also noticed a lot of people running off to get other people, who they thought could help. I think I was losing a lot of blood? I also had about 5 different tubes coming out of my left hand leading to a drip. Infact, I also remember a Doctor rushing in and trying to take my blood. Yet placed the needle in the wrong place…where there was no blood. Haha. I have the bruise to prove it. I remember telling the labour room…which was now my audience that it was typically ‘just my luck.’
Anyway, time flew by. I was no longer in pain…(no longer in ANY physical pain.) But i knew that everyone around me was NOT OKAY. No-one was telling me anything? I had my Mum and Pete by my bedside. Pete looked worried and my Mum was praying in Burmese. Lol. (When the help of Buddha is being summoned, you know you’re in trouble.) Lots of medical staff where now in my labour room and then a lady doctor ventured in, with a small sized doctor. The lady doctor had a rummage in my vagina to feel the baby, who had weirdly not dilated any further??
I was sewn up…blood was apparently everywhere. It looked like i had been butchered. I lost a lot of blood, became quite poorly and had to stay in hospital for the next two days to recover and get me back to a stage where i could mend. I apparently had inappropriate blood clots in inappropriate places..which is life threatening. When i stayed in hospital i had to wee into a bag that was tubed into my bladder and I pooed myself repeatedly. Like a puppy, i had an incontinence pad laid on my bed, incase i ‘oopsied.’ I had a drip attached to me at all times. Blood tests done every few hours and my entire body felt ‘OUCHIE.’
However the point is, i’m fine now. I’m home now. Pete and I are doing sooo well. We have our baby Ruby…alive, healthy and well, weighing 6lbs 13. We’re in love and I don’t think life could be any better.
Above: Photos hours after the birth, at around 7am…when we first woke up. Pete slept in a recliner next to my hospital bed. It was freezing.
Let me formally introduce you to our little miracle. ‘Ruby Isabella Wattis.’ Life is amazing.