Cameron was due on November 21st. My doctor scheduled me to be induced on November 27th, which was Thanksgiving Day. So, instead of celebrating Thanksgiving on the 27th, we celebrated on the 26th and went out for a meal. I took photos at the meal and will post them later.
When the morning of the 27th arrived, we got to the hospital bright and early. I had forgotten my "notes" and they said they could not induce me until they had them, so Robert went back home to get them. In the meantime, I had to wait, knowing that, at any moment, they could get too busy and decide to send me home. Fortunately, it stayed quiet at the hospital.
The midwife mentioned something about all the 2s and 7s in my birthdate, and I pointed out to her that I was also having my 7th son who was the 2nd boy (and the date was the 27th).
There were two ladies in the hospital room with me. Both of them had already had their waters break the night before and had come in and were waiting for their labour to start. One of them was having her 8th baby, and the other was having her first baby (conceived through IVF after 3 years of trying). The woman who was having her 8th was annoyed that the doctors would not induce her and get her labour started, and she was really annoyed that I was going to be induced before her. She tried to talk them into taking her to the delivery suite first.
Apparently, since my doctor was the chief of obstetrics, it had already been decided that I would be induced. The midwife there at the time stated pretty much that, "If Mr. Majumdar says you are to be induced today, then you are to be induced today." I was really glad to hear that.
It still took them until almost 10:30am before they took me to the delivery suite and they administered 1mg Prostin gel to me at about ten minutes to 11:00am. It was hours before anything started happening, and even then, my labour pains were minimal. I started at about 2 centimeters dilated and 50 to 60% effaced. When they checked me hours later, I had not progressed past the 2 to 3 centimeters I started at.
They broke my water at 5:45pm. They were going to give me another dose of the Prostin gel, but decided to give me the IV drip of Syntocinon instead. My labour pains slowly began to become more and more painful and prolonged as the drip amount was increased.
We had asked earlier to have our 6 year old daughter Gabby and our 15 year old daughter Angelica there with us, and we had been told it was okay, but at around 6:00pm, the midwife changed shifts with another one and the new one was not as positive about it. She came back later and told us that Social Services had informed them that it was illegal for us to leave our 14 year old and our 15 year old home alone with the other two children (even though they were already in bed and we had neighbours who were aware of the situation and available if the girls needed them) and that meant that Gabby and Angelica couldn't come to the birth and that we had to get someone older home with the kids.
Robert called his parents and had them take a taxi over to our house, which we paid for. Our teenagers are better able to take care of their siblings than his parents, but although we were annoyed and pretty certain that we were being lied to about the issue, we still called and had his parents go over to our house. By this time, my labour pains were getting stronger and seeing Robert get stressed and annoyed about the situation didn't help my mood.
My blood pressure had already begun a slow rise earlier. I'd kept it down through diet, exercise and weight loss throughout my pregnancy and so I was surprised to see it creeping up just over borderline. The midwife had a blood pressure cuff on my right arm that was automatically checking my blood pressure every 15 minutes. After hours of it, she switched it to checking every 30 minutes.
After the midwife was certain that we had someone else going to our house, she said the Angelica and Gabby could come to the labour, so we called them and had them take a taxi out to the hospital. Robert met them outside.
I asked for an epidural, but the anesthetist who came in was unsuccessful. He kept hitting nerves and causing lots of pain, though on his third or fourth try, he seemed to be successful. Then he told me that he had inserted the needle into a vein and had to remove it because it couldn't be left there. At that point, I gave up and told him "no" to having the epidural.
It was getting late, and after having said "no" to the epidural, we decided that Gabby shouldn't be there. We had no idea how much longer my labour would take, and without pain relief, things could get ugly. I was already struggling to put on a smile for her through my pain. So Angelica took another taxi home with Gabby. Having been there for part of my labour seemed to satisfy Gabby's need to be a part of Cameron's birth anyway, so she was happy.
They brought me "gas and air" (Entenox) to breathe in for the pain during contractions. My contractions were getting closer together and lasting longer and hitting that really ugly high edge. The only thing the Entenox did was make me feel a little light-headed through it (made my head spin). I didn't use it for every contraction until the very end because I didn't like feeling like the room was spinning.
At one point, I was told they could give me Pethidine for the pain. It would just make me sleepy. They put the shot in my leg. I couldn't believe I actually felt it was painful after the other pain I was experiencing!
After that, I started having strange little mini-dreams in the seconds I had between contractions. Once I dreamed I was further along in my labour than I was, and another time I started dreaming some sort of rap song to the sound of the blood rushing in my ears. I started focusing all of my concentration during contractions on squeezing Robert's hand and breathing in the Entenox keeping my breathing slow. The only way I could bare the pain was to focus my mind as much as I could elsewhere.
At sometime during the night, the doctor came in and checked how much I had dilated and found it was at 5 centimeters. I think things went quickly from then on. Our midwife tried to put a monitor clip on the baby's head but was having trouble getting it to stick. The next time they checked me, I was fully dilated.
I couldn't believe I was actually dripping with sweat from the work of this labour! They told me to push and I really had to work at it. Cameron was born at 12:28am on the 28th. He was delivered with his left hand on his head and his umbilical cord hooked through his elbow. He was covered in vernix and he was absolutely gorgeous!
My back is bruised from the failed epidural and it still hurts a lot, and I've even got pain in my leg from the Pethidine shot. But I'm so glad it's all over and I now have my wonderful baby boy. He weighed 6 pounds 1/2 oz. and he was 20 inches long. He is the smallest baby of all seven I have given birth to.
In my doctor notes, it says that my labour started at 10:45pm, and that I was at full dilation at 12:15am, and the baby was delivered at 12:28am. 1st stage (labour) - 1 hour 30 minutes; 2nd stage (delivery) - 13 minutes; 3rd stage (placenta) - 8 minutes.
By morning, after not being able to sleep all night because of all of the hospital noises, I was so ready to go home, but it was taking the midwives and doctors ages to get to me. It got to the point where I was having to nag them a bit to get things going so they could let me go home, and eventually, I got to the point where I just told them I would be going home regardless of whether they were ready for me to leave. My blood pressure was still borderline, so they wanted to make sure it came down (it did).
Finally, at almost noon, I finally got out of there and got to go home!
Oh, and Robert and I have since checked and it was not illegal at all for our teenagers to have been the ones home with the younger children, so that had been a lie to us as we had suspected it was. But everything worked out in the end.
All of this is pretty much from memory, and Robert has posted his version of the birth story in his family blog at http://diaperblues.blogspot.com if you'd like to go and read his version of events. I'm sure he'd love to read your comments!