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The Arrival of Kit

Finally on the 20th July, Kit Raistrick Tay arrived after a long 9 and a half months of waiting.

Those of you that know our family well enough will know that this has not been the easiest year for us. It was a hard pregnancy for a few reasons and it’s safe to say that I was very ready to meet our new addition and get him here safely and as soon as possible.

Both my other labours have started early in the morning so I was very much anticipating that this one would be the same. But it was not to be. After getting to ten days overdue, I was induced.

There was slight disagreement over the due date of the baby as I had charted my ovulation and knew that it was due on the 9th July but the dating scan at the 3 month mark made it due on the 15th. Whatever with all their ‘ we absolutely know our scans are correct’ … ‘cos they’re not.

Seems nothing but when you get to the end and it’s the difference between waiting another week or not – those few days suddenly become very important.

We knew the baby was big. A routine appointment with my community midwife at 32 weeks revealed that my bump was measuring large for dates by about 4 cms. The midwife set up a scan to be done so that they could take a peek in and make sure all was well. The scan revealed that the baby was in fact not just large, but very large for dates. By about a month. Not just a chubby baby or a long baby but a huge-mungous baby all over. Big head, long legs, big tummy… even big feet.

It was estimated at this point that I could be looking at delivering a 12lb baby, my pelvis was measured and I was poked and prodded and the consultant said it was likely that if the growth continued along this way, with the head already measuring 37 weeks and with still 8 weeks to go, an early induction or a c-section was a very big possibility. His concerns were that I would end up with an emergency c-section if I tried and failed to deliver a very large baby.

Obviously – when you’re heavily pregnant in the middle of the hottest summer since the last time you were heavily pregnant in the hottest summer – and someone in charge says you may have to have this baby early – you say – um OK! Yes please kthnxbai.

And I did.

So we spent the next month assuming that the baby would be here by the end of June at the latest. BN booked the first two weeks of July off in order to take two weeks PAT leave and two week holiday together and ideally get around a month at home with the new addition… and sure enough on the morning of the 24th June (as the consultant predicted may happen) I appeared to be going into spontaneous labour.

We’d had another scan, the day before in fact, which indicated the growth had plateaued and the baby was looking a healthy, large weight but not overly massive. They estimated that it was around 8lbs (give or take a lb) with a month to go, and that although labour could be triggered early by the size, they wouldn’t be considering inducing early now that it looked as though things had slowed down.

Disappointment that day, was not the word. I was huge. I was really uncomfortable. It was at this time we discovered that yet again I had higher than normal fluid around the baby as I did with Ella. I’d had enough and to hear that I now wasn’t going to be having it early was a large anti climax. Although I was nowhere near as massive, this baby felt huge to me whereas Ella never did. Although I looked it. With this baby I had been able to feel feet in my ribs and a head on my pelvis since about 18 weeks so it was no surprise to me it was a big baby.

Anyway – 24th June the following day, I woke up fine but within 15 minutes or so had an upset stomach and then very strong Braxton Hicks that didn’t seem to be going but also didn’t feel right. I had stomach pain that I couldn’t really tell where it was coming from… probably about 1 in 4 of the contractions felt wrong… more like stomach cramps you get with diarrhoea but high up and central. It got to about 10am and had been going on for about 3 hours and I was still unsure. I remember that when I went into labour with Rowan? I just knew. I recall saying to BN – I should just know – and I don’t know – which makes me think this isn’t it. But man alive it hurts!!

But almost 4 hours later and they were still coming. I took some paracetamol, but I was in pain – every 5 minutes for about 30 seconds and I decided to call the antenatal assessment centre for some advice. When you’re 8 months pregnant and you’re getting 30 second pains every 5 minutes for 6 hours? eventually it’s a good idea to get it checked out! The midwife I got through was lovely and understanding. Besides assuming it was my first baby just because I said I didn’t know if I was in labour…. I think I was going to get the lie down and rest response until I said it was my third and then I was immediately asked to go in to be checked over.

Oh! Well you best come in and we’ll take a look then…. she said. I think she had visions of me giving birth on the bathroom floor. Third baby possibly 6 hours in probably would need checking out.

I got hooked up to a monitor and the contractions were confirmed. They were registering about 60% on the monitor and the baby was happy so she decided to examine me. Nothing doing. 1cm. No signs of anything being imminent but my urine sample results were all over the place and had extraordinary amounts of ketones present so I was asked to stay for a few hours so they could ‘observe’… Turns out 5 hours later – still nothing even though two midwives and a consultant agreed they were proper uterine contractions – it was false labour. My body had the hormones, the uterus was geared up for it but no one had told my cervix so off home it was…

Eventually – after a long wait we convinced the consultant to induce me at 10 days passed my own due date and I went in on the morning of the 19th. I had one go of the Cervidil pessary and within 15 minutes or so I started to get cramps and period type pain. It carried on like this for the day and we made the most of being stuck in the hospital… It was good weather so we took a walk outside, watched TV, eavesdropped on other people in the ward and to be honest? Because I wasn’t really in any pain.. it was pretty boring. I had a birthing ball and having been told that I was 2-3cms but the baby’s head was high I was bouncing around on it and trying to encourage … um… descent.

You have to wait 6 hours for another dose and the midwives – although very lovely – were pretty pessimistic about my chances of having a baby that day. Very annoying considering that the woman on the other side of the curtain had her first dose the same time and had gone upstairs – clearly in labour – after only about 4 hours.

Typical. Reminded me of the Friends episode when Rachel is having her baby. Women coming and going having babies and being the only one left behind.

It got to 3.30 – the time for the second dose – then it got to 4pm – midwives were around but no one was coming as promised to give another gel. By 4.30, I’d had enough and I went on the look out for someone to harrass. I got quite a curt response from a granny midwife who was all ‘we’re very busy and someone will be with you as soon as they can’ …

By 5pm – I was getting the right arse but thankfully someone finally appeared … and it was the slightly curt granny midwife from earlier. I was still 2-3cms… slightly softer, slightly shorter, baby’s head slightly further in the right direction. All good signs but not really any nearer to anything happening. Another Cervidil but she was quite pessimistic about a result.

She said that after the shifts had changed at 9pm, someone would come and talk to me – see how things were going and in her very knowledgable way said that seeing as nothing much seemed to be happening that it was likely I would be given something to help me sleep through what had started and they would try again in the morning. She said it was unlikely that anyone would examine me later and that we may as well prepare ourselves for BN being sent home until the Tuesday.

Great. I’d had 3 hours sleep (nerves the night before), been contracting since 9am, nothing was happening and I was facing the prospect of a night alone in the hospital trying to sleep. Fab. I wasn’t very happy but I started to get used to the idea that it was likely to be that way… I actually started to look forward to being able to rest for the night and hopefully get some uninterrupted sleep…

9pm came and went – University Challenge had stopped and we were on to the Bruce Forsyth Who Do You Think You Are… (a month later and the music to that still makes me think I should be coping with contractions!)

The 5pm gel seemed to have done the trick by this point though. I daren’t be hopeful and to be honest I was still liking the idea of having a rest. But I was definitely more uncomfortable by this point. They had got closer and stronger and longer within minutes of the second dose and I did start to wonder how on Earth they expected me to be able to sleep through them for the night…

Abut 10pm the nightshift midwife came to see us and after a quick chat about the possibilities, I asked if I could be examined. I hated not knowing. About an hour beforehand I had tried to get comfortable on my side on the bed as opposed to walking and pacing and bouncing as I had done all day. I was getting tired and my back was hurting. As I had laid down I had the insinctive urge to push down as I had a contraction and I swear I felt the head squeeze forward a little. I was desperate to know if it had really happened or if I’d just imagined it…

The nightshift midwife was Wendy, the same lady that had looked after us on False Labour Day…. henceforth the 24th June shall be known as False Labour Day 🙂  She remembered us and was by far my favourite person of the day so far. I was 4 cms! Woohoo!

So after a few hours of expecting to be told that BN had to go home and I had to ‘sleep’ suddenly we were being told that someone was going to come and get us and we were on our way to labour ward…! I was immediately really nervous and excited and terrified … We heard her make the phone call to labour ward and she was saying that she could have broken my waters right there and I was definitely ready.

BN watched the end of Brucey on TV and within about 15 minutes Natalie appeared to take us upstairs. She was just absolutely the most lovely person I have had look after us through a delivery. She was funny and laid back, caring, young enough to be on our wavelength but experienced enough to be in control. I just loved her.

I had to be monitored once we got up there because I had been induced so they listened in to his heart beat for about 40 minutes through the contractions to make sure he was happy and at about 11pm I had some paracetamol.

As I had been examined on the ward earlier, they generally wait 4 hours apparently before having another look. I remember her joking that I looked far too happy and not in nearly enough pain and that we should think about having some tea and toast because at 1.15am she was going to examine me and see what was happening and then she was going to break my membranes to get things moving. She went through all the equipment and showed me the pokey stick that’s used to break waters and explained what would happen.

She was filling out my notes, getting things, fetching bits and pieces. She kindly got us a battery for my TENS machine as obviously we were prepared enough to have one but not actually prepared enough to have a battery for it. Typical. Did you know they can’t hand them out anymore for some reason? TENS machines that is. I can’t remember why.

Anyway she left the room for a bit. I was under instruction to drink – BN was sorting out changing our TV package over to the labour room so that we could call people when everything was over. 11.45 I think it was and my waters just popped.

I was so surprised at the sound – and the feeling. It almost hurt it was such a violent pop. Right on my pubic bone. It made me jump and I said to BN that I thought they had gone and we both kind of looked expectantly at the floor between my legs… waiting for some evidence…. nothing.

I thought I should ring the buzzer and get Natalie back to inspect and as I walked, the floodgates opened and Natalie walked through the door right on cue. All was well – clear fluid and she was happy and suddenly? I was not. Contractions started with a vengence.

Suddenly so strong – so quick and very intense. I managed for about half an hour I think and then my knees started to give way at the peak and I started on the gas and air and about 15 minutes after that I gave in and had to get on the bed. After that it’s all a bit of a blur. From BN’s perspective I know that soon after that I was examined and was 7cms but then about 15 minutes after that I started to make pushing noises and was examined again and was already 8cms. I do remember being very confused at being told to listen to my body and push if I felt the need to – I was holding back because in my head I could hear that I was 8cms – with Ella I remembered clearly needing to push at 6cms and being told to stop it because I could cause problems pushing too early. How could I push if I was only 8cms? Natalie really understood that I was having a mental block over pushing too early and was telling me this labour was different. This baby wasn’t back to back – it was progressing normally and all was well – listen to your body…

Then I was examined again during a contraction and I can vaguely picture Natalie saying to another midwife that when I pushed it was stretching to 9cms. Then I recall the consultant coming in to the room – the very same that had allowed me my early induction – he was checking the traces and having a quick chat with the midwives and then I heard him say that he would be back in a couple of hours to check how I was going.

I glanced at the clock and it was 2.15. I saw Natalie and BN have a quick glance at one another and they both kinda looked at the back of the consultant as he was leaving like he was a lunatic. I just remember thinking – there’s no way I can do this for another 2 hours….!

I could feel it all happening and I was just about biting the G&A mouthpiece in half – I just started to push like my life depended on it. The most frustrating thing I think is when you are pushing the head down but before it gets to that bend and when you relax you can feel it move backwards again.

It’s like – Noooooooo!!!! Stay there!!!!

When the head was born – I could see that there was a bit of an energy to the room. I can remember BN being told to lift my leg right up to my chest and push my knee backwards. They did the other leg and suddenly there was a huge ripping feeling between my legs … I yelped. It absolutely burned like nothing I’ve ever felt but it wasn’t what you’d think. Turns out the McRoberts position that they put me in to deliver the shoulders was because once Natalie saw the size of his head she was worried about the baby getting stuck. Turns out everyone knew to expect a bigger baby but the size of the head made them panic. The ripping feeling was the ligaments across the join in the front of my pelvis.


From my waters breaking it was 2 hours and 11 minutes of labour. And at 2.56am we welcomed little Kit into labour room 1 which was the very same room that Ella was born in 4 years before. I loved that.

We had a lovely relax with him… he cried loads which was weird because neither of the girls did at all. BN lifted him onto my tummy and cut the cord which was lovely as well …

Natalie put him on the scales we all had a guess – it was obvious he was a big baby. I guessed 10lbs 2oz ….

Natalie & Kit

10lbs 11oz!


I was a cripple for almost 2 and a half weeks afterward and I actually had to have a zimmer frame on the ward to get around because my pelvic pain from the ligament rip was so bad I couldn’t walk or even move. I couldn’t even turn over in bed. That wasn’t fun …

But the most important thing was that he was here. I had a good cry with my sister on the phone and even though I’m not remotely religious in any way… I did have a little private moment when everyone had gone and all was quiet where I just realised how lucky we are to have three beautiful healthy children.

The Girls

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 9, 2012 7:19 am

    Aww I thought I was going to read he was born on my birthday(false labor day).

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