Subconsciously I knew I was pregnant the day you were conceived but never fully sure having not felt this feeling before, 3 weeks passed and I was driving home from work and knew I needed to check for sure, it was a solid positive! I called your dad at work straight away and he burst into tears, a moment he had been waiting for for months, you were perfect with every check up and every scan, I was also healthy never had sickness just forever hungry and tired, something changed at around 34 weeks which seems so obvious to me now but you weren’t moving as much and I was becoming more and more tired I could sleep all day and still be tired, I would get a bit dizzy at times but thought it as normal pregnancy as I was still scrubbing floors and cleaning windows ? you were measuring a little small so I was sent for a scan but they said you were ok, 4 more weeks passed with plenty of checks in between but at our 38 week check my blood pressure was through the roof and we needed to get to hospital for observation… at this point I still thought I was fine I felt fine just tired and a little bit dizzy and big but that’s pregnancy right? wrong! the doctors phoned me after results were back that I had preeclampsia and we needed to get you out early… i wasn’t prepared for this mentally! I was induced which was good as it gave me time to get my head around what was about to happen, my only wish was for us both to come out of it healthy. 14 hrs passed with balloons in my cervix (ouch) I started having contractions but then they began to petter off, I was moved to birth suite which we sat for another 4 hrs and was examined 3 times, the 3rd time they said I was 4cm dilated and broke my waters I was so excited and ready, I then had an epidural which was thought to help my blood pressure but my blood pressure was still through the roof and doctors were concerned, they gave me blood meds intrevenously and started hormones to help me contract, as the contractions got stronger baby’s heart rate would drop and on 2 occasions it drop so low the head midwife and doctor came running…. I wasn’t sure what was going on as they obviously didn’t tell me to try and not raise my blood pressure but it was clear baby was stressed and in that moment I was given the option to try 1 more time or go in for an emergency caesarean, in that moment I felt like a failure I so desperately wanted a vaginal birth and never thought I would have a caesarean even though I never had a plan to begin with I just thought I would be text book… i looked to my midwife to ask for advice which she was on the verge of tears as she could not answer that for me, I choose the emergency caesarean because I knew something wasn’t right with my baby, I was scared to the point I could not stop shaking the adrenaline was racing through my body, my midwife was amazing so calm she grabbed a warmed blanket and put it on me this calmed my body instantly, I was put in a room while they organised theatre adrenaline still racing, when I was taken into theatre they tested to see how numb I was… i could feel the ice packs over my lower belly and I was so scared but you wouldn’t have known looking at me I just had to trust them, they gave me more and more epidural and tilted me almost upside down until finally I was numb, they started surgery and it was the weirdest pulling sensation, I waited and prayed everything was ok with our little boy, out he came and the doctor gasped “oh your just a little guy” my supposedly 3.5 kg baby was only a tiny 2.4kg I burst into tears when I heard and saw him because he was perfect although so tiny he was whisked away and then I got to hold him wrapped up briefly enough time to get told off for trying to lean forward to look at him while they tried to stitch me back up ? he was then taken off with dad to the neo natal ward and I was placed in what seemed like a massive recovery room with nobody in there but me, it felt like hours, I could not sleep I could not stop thinking about what just happened and all I wanted was to see my baby and husband, a lady and man came and wheeled me to my bed on the ward…. I just wanted to see my baby but I couldn’t walk and I wasn’t allowed yet as I needed observation, hubby came back and showed me pics of my boy in the neo natal ward and said he was the most gorgeous little boy, hubby kept asking the midwife if he could take me in to see him and 5 hrs later I did, I burst into tears again he was so tiny laying in his incubator with tubes all around him, I burst into tears again when hubby and my mum said they haven’t held him yet as they waited for me to have the first cuddle, he was perfect and from then on it was like I was on drugs I still hadn’t slept in over 24 hours, messaging everyone back thinking that’s what I should do, I went back to get some rest and was up again every 2 hrs expressing and taking it to my boy, with lots of skin to skin he did so well he was out with me the next day, a day later and we were discharged because he was putting on weight like trouper, a day later on my birthday and I was back in hospital as my blood pressure was through the roof… I hit my low! I never like to be the inconvenience or the problem and I felt everything then and there I cried myself to sleep in the hospital that night with my gorgeous boy next to me I had a canula in my arm that was so uncomfortable I could barely pick up my boy to feed him but it was there incase I seized, I was discharged and put on meds for the next month and had to mentally work through what had just happened over those weeks whilst trying to soak in every minute with my boy and husband and family and visitors and breastfeeding and coming to terms with my numbness my wound and birth, it was overwhelming something I could never have imagined or planned for. I then brought myself out of it and said to myself I am one of the luckiest women on earth… I gave birth regardless of how it happened and I was given choices by the medical team and I put my full trust in them, in the end we were both healthy which is all I wanted! given days or weeks it could have been a very different story. I struggled with my body at first but then I realised there are women out there that would do anything to have my scar and body for a baby of there own. In that moment the body shaming ended, I love my body it is amazing and it gave me the most precious gift, my little boy!

Today I feel like I’ve won the lotto and am so grateful for my pregnancy as it changed something in me for the better, nothing else matters apart from the health of you and your loved ones, I thank my lucky stars each and every day!

Birth story – Louis 10/05/19