DH & I were ecstatic to find out we were pregnant with Jesse.
We had been trying for 6 months and we were over the moon when it finally happened!
I suffered with morning sickness from 13th February to the 10th September (I still remember the dates!) and I did have slightly high blood pressure throughout the pregnancy - other than that, I was fine!
A week before my waters broke I had an ultrasound and was told that Jesse was a healthy weight (around 7lb mark) which made me feel good because I didn't think that I was very big for only a month to go.
A week later I woke up in the morning to find that everytime I moved, I would 'wet' myself. DH had just come home from a double shift at work and we actually had a giggle over the fact that I now had placenta brain so badly that I didn't know when to go to the toilet anymore.
After going to the toilet I noticed that there was a little blood. I immediately called my best friend, "What does this mean?" I asked (a little panicked). She told me to call the hospital which I did. I answered a few questions like, "are you in any pain?" - I can't believe at the time that I actually asked, "What sort of pain am I looking for?"...
I did have some very minor period like pain so the midwife told us to time between the pains and come into hospital. I told DH to get out of bed, we're off to the hospital and we need a timer - so we grabbed his old stopwatch and off we went. When we got there the staff were surprised that we hadn't brought my suitcase along - "no, I'm not due for another 4 weeks...it's not time...I'm not ready" - oh, how naive I was!
My waters had broken and they wanted to admit me. DH went home and got all of my clothes and the baby clothes together and put them in his footy bag of all things! I was there for 2 days and nothing was happening. I would start to get contractions and then nothing. The decision was made to put me on a drip to induce me. The contractions weren't too bad, painful (and I can't believe I actually asked "what sort of pain am I looking for?" - you can't miss them!) and I had my best friend and DH in with me. After 12 hours (although I do often double it to 24!) the baby's heartrate started to drop and wasn't coming back up in between contractions. I was still only 2cm dilated and the decision was made to have an emergency c/section. The anaesthetist (who I like to call 'the butcher of Box Hill) came in and was hell bent of having me do a contortionist act during contractions so he could get the epidural in. I have never...and I stress never...felt pain like I felt when that epidural was going in. Finally that was in and we were being whisked off to theatre. I remember being very frightened. I was fine with the fact that I had to have a c/section, but I was concerned that it was 4 weeks early and that Jesse was in distress.
During the delivery, the obstetrician, anaesthetist and theatre staff were very supportive, kind and were letting us know what was happening.
I was scared stiff and DH says he still remembers my eyes darting from left to right and that he'd never seen me so frightened.
Everything went well and Jesse was shown to us immediately. We were astounded at how tiny he was (4lb 1oz - so much for the 7lb!) and how his poor little head was so cone shaped. He was taken to be checked over and his agpar scores were pretty good 8 & 9. He was so tiny but I remember thinking, "he is the most beautiful little baby I've ever set eyes on" and I was instantly in love. DH went with Jesse while I was in recovery. Recovery, to be honest, was a bit of a blur - I remember not feeling bad that Jesse wasn't with me...he was tiny, he was early and he needed help...help I wasn't able to give him at the time. Jesse was put straight into the Special Care Nursery and I was taken to a ward with 3 other women and their babies. I remember the staff putting me into a wheelchair (with my cathetar bag hooked to the side) to go and see Jesse. I desperately wanted him with me, but I desperately needed the staff to do what they do best and make sure my darling boy was going to be okay. The next day I was up, showered and shuffling off to see my little star. This helped enormously with my recovery (that I had to get up and get moving in order to see Jesse) and the other mums in my ward even commented that the c/section was like 'water off a duck's back' for me. To be honest, I had no time to sit and feel pain...my little boy needed me and I had to be there.
Before I had Jesse I was never ever going to breastfeed. I was the type of person who would get up and leave a cafe if a mother started to breastfeed in front of me...but my little boy needed the best, he needed fattening up, he needed me! So there I was, against every fibre of my being - hooked up to the 'milking machine' in front of everyone for my little boy. I went home after 3 days (I couldn't get any sleep there and I knew Jesse wasn't going to come home with me) and although I knew I had had a c/section, it wasn't very painful for me. I would get to the hospital in the morning and stay for 8-10 hours next to my hero's little 'box' - willing him to fatten up so he could come home with us.
Jesse came home with us on the 21st day - and we were so so happy.
I remember driving home from the hospital with DH doing about 20km/h the whole way! It was the one of the best days of my life.
Now 4 years (almost 5) later Jesse is an active, healthy, intelligent, remarkable little man who constantly amazes me with his love, compassion & humour.
I thank God everyday that I am lucky enough to live in a country where we are spoiled with birthing choices, where an emergency like Jesse's doesn't mean the end for mother &/or child...and I'm forever indebted to the wonderful maternity staff who looked after both of us so well.