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Dafne's hospital birth story

My due date was 13 June 2022 so I decided to start my maternity leave on 6 June to have some time by myself just watching movies and eating popcorn on the couch.  However, Rafaela had other plans. Thursday 2 June in the morning I lost the mucus plug in the shower. I wasn't sure if it was it so I took a picture and sent it to Cara for reassurance. 'That looks like it' she says and the magic and exciting journey begins. It could have even taken a week from losing the plug until labour started, but I knew Rafaela was coming soon. I worked that Thursday normally and left everything ready for Friday as it was my last day at work. We went out for dinner that night as we knew it could be our last dinner as a family of two, it was very special. 


We went to bed around 10 pm and contractions started an hour later. I tried to sleep and managed to doze on and off until 3 am when the pain started to get more intense. I took my laptop and sent a couple of emails to my team and my boss saying I was probably going to miss my last day (haha).


I woke up Chris and he called the maternity unit at the hospital and Cara to let her know Rafaela was getting ready to meet us. As the midwife from the hospital advised, I took a bath and tried to relax. Cara was supposed to come home to keep us company during early labour but Rafaela was coming fast, so she instead met us at the hospital. The car ride to the hospital was the worst, the pain was bad and being sitting down felt like the worst position to be in. Luckily it was early in the morning so there was no traffic.


I was admitted around 4 am, they monitored the baby for what felt like an eternity as I needed to be laying down and that was increasing the pain. Once in the room I was finally able to stand up and walk around. The tens machine sometimes was amazing and other times I couldn't take it. I also tried a hot shower and kneeling, then a bit of more walking. I tried the gas but I didn't really like it as it made me feel dizzy, so I didn't use it much. Crazy how my body was taken over and letting me know exactly what I needed. My birth plan included epidural as I didn't want the pain to ruin the experience and to be honest I was terrified! So having the opportunity to use it just in case made me feel more calm.


At 6 am I was 4 cms dilated and at 8 am I was already 9! No one could believe how fast everything happened. At this point the pain was crazy! so I asked for an epidural, 'Sorry! too late!' they said. I couldn't believe I was about to meet my baby as I was prepared to labour for longer (first time mums have long labour they say) but like I said before Rafaela was coming fast. After pushing for like 7 hours (in my head), in reality I think it was less than 2 lol, Rafaela arrived in the outside world at 9:23 am on 3rd of June 2022. She was given to me immediately; touching her skin for the first time was the most incredible, surreal and happy moment of my life. Her cry was loud (good lungs) and her grap so strong, everything was perfect, she was perfect. I held her for 40 minutes until I felt the placenta was coming so daddy took over. I'm sure he felt the same way the first time he held her to his chest. An hour after she was born I breastfed her for the first time (another magical moment) and then the midwife did all the health checks while I had a quick shower. 


I had a natural/no drugs birth and now that I look back it couldn't have been better. I love every moment of it, even if it didn't seem like it on the spot lol.


I can't even begin to explain how great Chris was, always by my side and attending to my needs. Also, Cara and the midwife were absolutely amazing. I felt supported and safe the whole time. They respected our privacy and did an amazing job taking care of us.

Dafne's one piece of advice for mothers and partners about to birth:

Trust your body! It knows exactly what to do. 

From mum and dad to mum and dad:

Get a doula. The physical and emotional support Cara gave not only to me but Chris too during pregnancy, birth and postpartum was huge (please ask for the veggies lasagna!! OMG delicious). We can't thank her enough.


From dad to dad:

Listen to your partner and don't spend time worrying if you are doing ok. As long as you are there for them everything will be alright.

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