This was it, this was my punishment! The Bible says the wage sin pays is death. I had sinned, I had gone against everything I had been brought up to believe. I had left God, I had left the religion and this was the payback; this was all my fault or so I believed - I was going to die!!
About 15 minutes after Emile had arrived (5:37am) the contractions restarted, a midwife took Emilie from me. The placenta had not come away. It felt like I had every midwife and nurse in my room, they hooked me up to a drip trying to pull on the cord and push on my stomach. I kept feeling large masses coming away the 1st time I was relieved believing that it was the placenta, it was in fact blood clots. 8am came and I was still in the same condition, contracting, panicking, in pain, and bleeding.
This was it, this was my punishment! The Bible says the wage sin pays is death. I had sinned, I had gone against everything I had been brought up to believe. I had left God, I had left the religion and this was the payback; this was all my fault or so I believed – I was going to die!!
The moment that really sticks in my mind was just before they decided I needed to go to theatre. I had 2 midwives down the sharp end, Mark next to me and I was told to push while another midwife pulled on the cord and another pushed on my stomach. I felt something come away and as I open my eyes both the midwives had blood on their uniform and one had it on her face, I looked at Mark, he looked at me and went to look at what had just come out. He tried very hard to keep an impassive look on his face and came back up and tried to reassure me.
I begged Mark to tell them not to give me any blood. This had been a fundamental belief of mine, within the religion, for the past 30 years. It was the one thing I could not bring myself to compromise on.
Finally, just before 9am, I was rushed to theatre and the last thing I remember as they tried to anaesthetise me and moved me onto the theatre bed was a large gush and a warm sensation down my legs.
As I came to I could hear someone urgently and persistently calling my name “Sarah, Sarah, Sarah” I had something covering my nose and mouth and alarm bells were ringing, these were not in my imagination. Again the familiar feeling of anxiety and panic came over me. The light was so bright I feared I had not made it.
All I could think of was Mark, I just wanted Mark, where was he?
I tried to pull at the thing covering my nose and mouth, which I now know was an oxygen mask. I wanted Mark I needed him to be with me. As tears rolled down my face all I could do was mouth the word Mark, repeatedly.
The truth of the situation, that I later found out, was that I had lost so much blood, almost 2 L, that when they put the spinal in, my blood pressure dropped off the charts leaving me unconscious and requiring them to administer 2 shots of adrenaline. I quickly realised that they were yet to carry out the procedure of manually removing my placenta until I had been stabilised.
The procedure and my time in recovery seemed to take an age. I felt confused, exhausted and deeply emotional. I could not comprehend what had happened in the last 12 hours. For a brief moment I thought I would wake up and would realise that this had all been a terrible nightmare.
Finally, I was wheeled to a private room where Mark and our newborn were waiting for me. All I could do was cry, all Mark could do was cry. He had been left holding our new baby in a blood drenched room having been told “ it wasn’t looking good for Sarah” he had prepared himself for the worst.
This was NOT how it was meant to be be! No one had had mentioned this complication and it certainly was not mentioned in any of the books I had read! I really struggled to get my had around the shock of everything that had happened! And now after being up for over 24 hour, giving birth, been to surgery and lost a lot of blood was faced to look after a newborn, with no real clue as to what I was doing!
I was unable to move for several hours, waiting for the spinal to wear off. After which I was encouraged to take a bath. I could hardly walk I felt faint, dizzy, lightheaded and breathless. The doctor visited me after I’d had a bath, she said that my blood count was 5 and should be 12. They had not given me blood during the procedure as they had been asked not to by myself and Mark. She strongly urged me to have the 2 units of blood that she felt I needed. My head and heart were in complete conflict. I could not comprehend what had happened these last few hours let alone make such a decision. My state of mind and emotions together with the drugs did not enable me to make a decision.
Mark was in tears he begged me to have the treatment…
Yours in making a tough decision,
As I came to, I could hear someone urgently and persistently calling my name “Sarah, Sarah, Sarah” I was aware that I had something covering my nose and mouth and could hear high pitched alarms ringing, these were not in my imagination. Again the familiar feeling of anxiety and panic came over me. The light was so bright I feared I had not made it.
All I could think of was Mark, I just wanted Mark, where was he?
Another vivid memory; the moment we discovered I was pregnant – the first time!
Mark and I had been together 4 months when we decided, in a tent in Hamble, that we wanted to have children and be together forever. April 29, 2007: I had been feeling a little out of sorts. That evening Mark and I went for a run, I didn’t get very far, I struggled, felt like I had no energy. Mark was worried considering I’d not been feeling myself anyhow, and insisted I saw the doctor. I managed to get seen that next morning. She asked me if I was pregnant, or if there was any chance of me being pregnant? My brain screamed ‘NO’! That can’t be! It had only been 6 weeks that I had stopped taking the pill! Surely it could not happen that quickly? I sensed a mixture of panic and excitement.
As I left the doctor’s office I apprehensively took my mobile out and nervously dialled Mark’s number. He had been expecting my call, although, needless to say, he was not expecting what I was about to tell him!
He immediately left the office detouring boots on the way home to pick up a pregnancy test. I was met by his slightly shocked and nervous expression. He voiced the very thoughts that had gone through my mind at the doctor’s office. We were both expecting for it to take a lot longer than just 6 weeks!
I nervously opened the pregnancy test and having never had to do one of these before I made Mark read the instructions, as I did not want to get this wrong! Those 2 minutes felt like a lifetime. I insisted Mark be the one to turn the test over to read the result…”POSITIVE” I had to blink several times and Mark just threw his arms around me, so excited! I had a complete mixture of feelings excited, nervous, happy, overwhelmed, sad and elated!
“OH FUCK” my brain said. Again, the reality of my situation had brought me back down with a crash. Up until this point my relationship with Mark had been hidden; carried out in secret. I now had no choice but to tell my friends and family about us. I burst into tears, what was supposed to be a time filled with joy and excitement, was overshadowed by deep sadness. The overfamiliar feeling of panic and anxiousness, that I had gotten so used to as a child, swept over me.
The weeks and months went by and I had no real problems during my pregnancy. Even after the 12 week scan, it had not completely sunk in that I was carrying a little baby in my tummy. By the 20 week scan we had decided to find out the sex, it was a girl!
At 8 weeks pregnant we moved into the house we had bought together. I had by this time gone through the trauma of telling my friends and family and no longer being part of the religion.
October 29, 2007: at 31 weeks pregnant, Mark and I got married. 2 days later we were flying to Jamaica. 2 weeks after we were married, we feared that my waters had broken. Rather alarmed and extremely panicky we arrived at our nearest maternity unit. They confirmed our fear; I was leaking water. They gave me 2 steroid shots 8 hours apart and prepared me for our baby arriving within the next 48 hours. I spent a rather sleepless night on labour ward with nothing really happening.
No one really explained what was going on. Since the initial ‘gush’ I had had no further leakage and there seem to be contradictory explanations as to what was going on. One doctor said it ‘can’ reseal, another said “maybe they didn’t go in the first place.”
To cut a long story short after hours of monitoring, various scans and differing advice it was decided, subject to frequent monitoring, I would be allowed to go to full term and at 38 weeks would see the consultant.
10 days overdue, early on Friday 18th of January 2008, Mark and I were making our way to our local maternity unit, for induction of labour. This was it! I could not quite believe this day had arrived! I had no idea what to expect, and I now know, it doesn’t matter what you expect, the reality is not the same.
I had been induced at 9 AM and the pain started straight away. By mid-afternoon I was beside myself not knowing what to do. My carefully thought out birth plan no longer seemed to matter. We were moved to labour ward around 7 PM, by which time all contractions and pain had ceased. No amount of activity or walking around brought them back on.
Midnight came and the midwife on duty decided to break my waters. The next few hours seem like a blur now. At 5:21 AM, much to my shock, Emilie Rae Davies arrived weighing in at 8lb 3. Another moment of mixed emotions, the relief of it all being over and the shock of having a tiny baby positioned on my chest. I didn’t have much time to take all this in as the next few hours, panic ensued…
To be continued…
Yours in childbirth…
So, late 2010 I found myself unexpectedly pregnant, yet again! With working fulltime in the city and 2 kiddies under 3, things have been pretty hectic, hence the lack of posts! Which also meant that I had run both 1/2 marathons whilst I was pregnant. It was only after my Cancer Research 10k in October 2010 that I started to suspect that something was wrong, as despite putting in a PB, I had really struggled to run; symptoms that I had experienced in my previous 2 pregnancies.
Much to our surprise, we discovered at our 20wk scan that we were having a little boy! I was so convinced it would be another girl that I had chosen a name and prepared myself for that outcome. Whilst I wasn’t disappointed, it came as a complete shock and choosing boys clothes, let alone a boys name, became really quite tough and a little overwhelming! I’m so glad that we found out the sex, otherwise I think it would have taken me a few weeks to get used to the idea. I think it also helped Emilie and we could prepare her for the arrival of their little brother, the minx was still a little too young to understand what was going on! The mere mention of a baby in my tummy caused her to giggle and pull up my top and say ‘baby gone’!!
To cut a long story short, 14 days over due, Baby Harry Francisco Sebastian Davies arrived at 1541, after artificial rupture of membranes and a sub 3 hour natural labour on June 21 2011, weighing in at a surprising (and shockingly painful!) 9lb 7ozs!
The recovery, however, is a whole different story, or post!
Yours in childbirth :/