When things don’t go to (birth) plan

I don’t know how long it will take me to write this post since I have 2 newborn babies, am recovering from major surgery and find the whole thing troubling emotionally to go over in my mind. 

When I found out I was pregnant it was a huge shock, when I found out it was twins I was in shock again. Over the 37 weeks of my pregnancy my feelings changed so much from sheer terror and sadness to excitement and joy. One thing I desperately wanted to avoid was having a cesarean section. I knew twin births very often were c sections but I was desperate to do it naturally. The main obstacle would be the twins position, if they were both head down we could go natural and if not they would likely plan a section. 

Josh and I prayed and prayed that they would be head down and when we went to our 32 week scan we were elated to find they both were! It seemed perfect.

My induction was booked for Wednesday 10th August however from Saturday evening I began to start what is called “slow labour” and felt contractions on and off. It got to the point where they became regular and we went in to hospital in the early hours of Tuesday morning, only to be told we were only 1cm dilated. 

The next day was the day. We anxiously journeyed to the hospital knowing that when we left we’d have babies. We were told the induction process could take days… however when they checked me over they found I was already 5cm dilated by myself! It was a miracle and we were so happy knowing that my body had started the process itself. My waters were broken in the hospital and I was left on a monitor for an hour to measure my contractions. The gas and air didn’t help the pain at all and just made me feel dizzy.

Since I was having twins I wasn’t allowed to get up and move around in order to make labour more bearable as I was strapped up to a monitor. I couldn’t even roll on to my side to take the pressure off my back because one heartbeat kept getting lost when I did so. My midwife told me they wanted to start me on a drip to speed up my contractions and advised me to get an epidural. In my birth plan I had been so against an epidural… I wanted to be so natural but by this point I was in so much pain and unable to move to help myself naturally and so I decided to get the stab!

Let me tell you it was not enjoyable. Of course having a huge needle inserted in to your spine wasn’t going to be… but unfortunately for me the cord was placed wrongly twice which resulted in searing pain and me fearing I’d be paralysed! Eventually the epidural was in and the pain was beginning to ease. 

My contractions began to come more quickly and more intense and by 10pm I was fully dilated. Twin 1’s head was in a sideways position so they left me for an hour for it to change. At around midnight I began pushing and we were so excited.

I pushed with everything in me but unfortunately her head wasn’t moving. The Midwife called the doctor in and she said the words I had dreaded hearing “we will have to do a c section”. Immediately I was protesting, crying inconsolably. I felt so devastated that I’d worked so hard but I was also terrified at having surgery… terrified I was going to feel it and not cope. 

Very quickly they brought me through to the theatre… Josh was not with me but was going to be allowed in when all was ready. They put a big sheet up so I couldn’t see what was going on and various people tried and failed to keep me calm. Josh came through and talked to me whilst holding my hand…

They say you don’t feel anything but what they mean is you don’t feel pain. You feel everything… all the pulling and tugging and this weird suction sensation. And then just like that, within a few minutes we heard our baby’s beautiful cry. We looked at each other in disbelief. Is that our baby crying?! They confirmed that twin 1 was born at 2.22am and moments later we heard the next heart filling cry. They were brought round the curtain to us in towels and Josh got to hold them. I kissed their heads. It didn’t feel real. I was just lying there and one second they weren’t there and then they were. We gave them their names; Twin 1 was Dorothy and Twin 2 was Margot.

They took the babies to be weighed and suddenly I started to feel pain in the top of my abdomen. They checked a few times and the pain was still there so they decided to put me to sleep to finish off. 

The next thing I know I’m waking up in a strange room with people all around me. Completely groggy and for a minute I forget everything that just happened. Eventually they wheel me back through to my squeaky new family and my babies are put in to my arms. I’m drowsy and confused but glad to be back with them. I’d already missed so much of their first moments.

Not long after I was lying looking at my babies and a doctor came in and told me they had to be taken to special care. I was devastated that I’d only just seen my babies and they were going to be taken away again. Josh and I got some rest whist they were gone and a couple of hours later Dorothy  was brought back through but no Margot. We felt so incomplete without her but glad to have Dorothy back. She took to breast feeding without any problem and I was so glad. It was early afternoon by the time we finally got Margot back but we were so glad to be whole again. 

The recovery for me was horrible. I could barely walk, was completely swollen and had a very sore throat. I thought I’d never get better and my arms were like pin cushions from all the tests. 

I didn’t want cesarean. Nothing went to plan. Sometimes I look back on those moments when I was desperately trying to push naturally and I feel so much grief. I can’t help thinking that I did something wrong but I know that wasn’t the case. 

Sometimes things don’t go to plan. You can sit and cry about it and ask God why and feel angry and cheated by him or you can accept it and move on. Currently I’m in between the two. I can’t say I’m fully there yet but I’m on the way. We know that God works all things together for good and if I have faith in Him I must have faith that this was the right outcome for me.

I have 2 beautiful babies who are now one month old and I am so blessed!

Sorry this post was a bit long and rambly but I wanted to remember everything so I have it all documented for myself.

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4 thoughts on “When things don’t go to (birth) plan

  1. I sat here and cried whilst reading this. It is still as raw as ever for me 10, 6 and 4 years on. I can relate to everything you say, we had very much the same experiences and reading it sent me straight back to the delivery room come theatre. From having your heart set on doing it unassisted, to the grief you felt after trying so hard. That inconsolable feeling when the experience is taken from you in circumstances beyond your control. All I can say is, the memories and feelings never leave you but neither does God and at the times you feel low and start to go over it, cling to him and his word. You will still go over it in your head, quite like ptsd. BUT gradually you can start to accept it for what it was and that is just ‘didn’t go as we wanted’. It’s life. You are doing an amazing job with the girls! Joshy will be very proud of how awesome and strong his wife is I expect! Lots of love Rachel xxx

  2. I love stories like this. God has reasons for what ever, or how ever things come our way. That fact alone sure can help. Glad I found you here. We share the love of babies and wordpress 🙂 (and having an unexpected pregnancy)
    Check my blog out. You’ll see my story.

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