Look who’s here! This is baby Alfie, who arrived on the 10th October at 2.48am weighing 9lbs 1oz.
I kept being told that the birth of my second baby would be quicker and easier than the first. I hoped this would be true. With my first pregnancy, I wrote a detailed birth plan with all of my preferences for labour, including water birth, aromatherapy, delayed cord clamping.. all of the good stuff. As it happened, first time around I was induced at 42 weeks and had a 35 hour, very painful labour, with an epidural half way through as the doctor wasn’t sure my heart could cope with second stage labour, ending in a delivery in theatre via forceps. I remember the midwife finding my birth plan amongst my notes part way through the two days we spent on labour ward and saying, ‘Oh, I’ve just found your birth plan.. I’m so sorry…’
Of course, once Frey was with us, none of that mattered, and it’s true that you soon forget the pain. However when it came to writing a birth plan for my second pregnancy, I didn’t bother. All I wanted was the safe arrival of a healthy baby.
40 weeks, and my estimated due date, came and went. At 40 weeks + 5 days my midwife booked my induction, and I settled in for another week of pregnancy, expecting the same, or a similar, experience again.
Two days later, late on the Sunday evening, I started to get a few pains. They were similar to the pains that I’d been having for the past few weeks so I didn’t think too much of it, and bounced around on my birthing ball a bit whilst watching old episodes of ‘Cold Feet’ on the computer. But this time, bouncing around on the birthing ball wasn’t really helping with the pain. I wondered if there was some sort of pattern to them, so, being in the modern age, I went straight to my phone to search for a ‘contraction’ app. There’s quite a lot of choice. I spent a good few minutes trying to choose which might be the best before deciding on the first one on the list. Feeling like I had achieved something, I went back to bouncing around and watching ‘Cold Feet’ whilst tapping away at my phone whenever a pain came. Shortly afterwards, my phone told me that I ought to consider going to hospital. What a silly phone app I thought, I’m being induced next week, this isn’t labour! Still, I was pretty uncomfortable bouncing around, so thought maybe I’d pack the last few bits into my hospital bag, just in case…
Thankfully, although I still didn’t believe I was really in labour, I thought I’d phone the hospital, just in case. After all, my new app kept telling me to! The pains were getting quite a bit more intense by then, and the midwife I spoke to said I should come in. I was so lucky to have some friends nearby who were expecting the calls that I made to them, by then around 12.30am, even though I didn’t expect to be making them! One friend arrived to collect Frey, and another arrived to take me to hospital. Baby Alfie arrived at 2.48am, about an hour after we got to the hospital. He was born in the birthing pool, with plenty of wonderful lavender oil scenting the air, and plenty of gas and air for me! I am so lucky to have had the birth that I would have chosen, with my only real panic being that it was all happening so quickly! And the best bit of course, a second, beautiful, healthy, baby boy.
Frey met his baby brother two days later when we got out of hospital, and it was love at first sight! He loves giving him kisses and cuddles, it’s heart melting!
As I write this, baby Alfie is now 10 days old and he’s doing great. He’s a big baby, just like his brother was, in the 75th centile for weight and the 90th centile for head circumference!
Welcome to our world Alfie, we’re going to have so much fun.
Back at the end of December, it was a normal early evening at our house…