I’m always sharing other peoples birth stories and a few of my followers have asked about mine.  I have briefly mentioned my induction on here before, but now for the full story.   So here goes……

36 weeks & the itching starts

38+5 day before induction

In February of 2010 those two little pink lines appeared on the pregnancy test and hooray, I was indeed pregnant.  I had done this once already before, had a straight forward pregnancy and birth so I decided that I wanted to have a home birth this time.  But at 8 weeks pregnant as I was in the throes of all day nausea whilst at work, I started to have some bleeding.  Luckily I was in the right place and a lovely consultant quickly scanned me in EPU and there on the screen was a tiny bean shape with a heartbeat.  The benefits of being a member of staff!  I felt so relived and continued to battle through the days at work wanting to vomit every time a woman did; I got pretty nifty at nipping into the toilet just at the right time!

The rest of the pregnancy went smoothly and as my bump started to show I was interested to see how the women and their partners reacted when a pregnant midwife was caring for them.  I was offered the birthing ball by one man who insisted his wife and I should both be bouncing on them throughout her labour.  Bed pushing and equipment moving became a no no and as the pregnancy progressed night shifts became a struggle.  I enjoyed women asking me questions like ‘What is it like being pregnant and a midwife?’  And more bizarrely ‘Are you going to deliver your own baby?’ errr I hope not!

I was just beginning to count down the last few shifts at work before I was due to go on maternity leave when the next lot of my problems began.  I was working a long day and my hands were really itchy, so itchy in fact I was rubbing them on the corner of the desk to get some relief!  But being a typical pregnant woman my brain had sort of become a bit mushy ‘placenta brain’ a term I often hear and I put it down to the heat; it was the end of August after all.  Luckily I was surrounded by more sensible people and a colleague mentioned that maybe it was a good idea to do some bloods just in case I had Obstetric Cholestasis.  I reluctantly agreed but thought there is no chance I’ve got OC it’s just the heat.

Sadly the blood results came back with the diagnosis that yes in fact I had OC, off I trundled to the Consultants office clutching my results (still itching my hands and now feet) with the reality that my beloved home birth would probably not be happening.  It was at this point that I realised that being a midwife bore no resemblance to the kind of pregnancy and birth I was hoping for.  Any control I felt I had, had gone and I had now become ‘high risk’ with twice weekly visits to MAU and lots of extra scans.  This was quite difficult for to me grasp despite my daughter enjoying all the attention she received at my hospital appointments.  All my knowledge and thinking like a midwife went out of the window and suddenly all I wanted was to be treated like any other pregnant woman.  Finally at 38 weeks pregnant and with an increasing bile acid result my induction of labour was booked for 38+6/40.  To be honest at that point the itching was so unbearable I was glad that I had a date for this all to be over.  Night time buckets of my feet submerged in ice cold water and my poor husband having to rub Aloe Vera gel over my hands was beginning to take its toll on us all.

So my induction was booked in the labour ward diary, it was strange seeing my name there but the decision was made and I spent the next few days organising childcare for my daughter, washing white baby grows and deflating my pool (sob sob).  Finally September the 27th arrived and off my husband and I went on the 468 bus to the hospital, my notes under one arm and my pillow under the other (I wasn’t going to take any chances!)