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Lucy McCall: My birth story

One mum’s account of complications through pregnancy

Author Lucy McCall
Categories   Birth Stories

The Edit

So where do I begin! We decided we wanted to extend our family after having our firstborn and knew the time felt right. If there is ever such a thing!

After a very unfortunate miscarriage we felt extremely anxious about it all, but adopted a ‘what will be, will be’ attitude. Six months later I started a new job and of course, fell pregnant the same week!

The first three months were fine. Our first scan came around and, after having a horrendous time at scans with our firstborn, we were extremely nervous. During our first pregnancy we were told our baby had Fetal Hydronephrosis, and at 13 weeks were advised by the sonographer to terminate. We decided against this advice and said we would see how the pregnancy progresses.

We then got told there was a high chance of baby number one not having his lungs formed correctly and he would develop Hyperplasia. Again, we stood strong in our decisions. Fast forward to the birth and our beautiful, healthy boy was born without a single issue. We had two years of outpatient monitoring, then was discharged only to be told he was fine. Phew!

So, second pregnancy. First scan nerves set in… but of course, why would it be a breeze? We were informed baby had too much fluid on the back of his neck, and a high chance of Down’s Syndrome. We were asked if we wanted the Amniocentesis check, but again we decided not to – after all, we felt it wouldn’t change anything in terms of our decisions.

At 24 weeks, I started to bleed. We went to A&E and I was told I had to be kept in under observation as it was likely to be a kidney stone. Weekly checks began, then I had another show of blood. The second time I was admitted, I was told I needed a stent fitted internally, in order to allow my kidney and bladder to do their job for the coming months.

I was prepped for surgery, then the consultant said I needed a steroid injection to prevent early labour, which I fell to pieces over. How could I deliver this baby at 26 weeks? The consultant met with the team and decided it wasn’t as urgent as urology felt, and it was agreed that, with close monitoring, I would be allowed to go home.

Then began the weekly bloods, urine tests and stats. I was on first name terms with all the staff at my local hospital, but the good news was that I was allowed to go full term with no intervention.

It was the morning of 38+5 weeks and I went for a play date with my eldest at a friend’s house. I went to the toilet, and there was my plug. I sent a casual text to my other half, “Cancelled the dentist tomorrow, just lost my plug.” to which he called me and said, “Is that really something you text!!!”

I headed home around lunch time, when my eldest had his nap as usual. Then I started to feel mild cramping. Around 3pm I started to use my birthing ball, then made dinner, bathed my eldest and put him to bed. Then I felt it coming on strong. I called my mother-in-law who was our cover for my eldest and asked her to get ready but not to come.

Within an hour or so it was a lot stronger. By 9pm she came, and I couldn’t stand up through the contractions so off we went to the hospital. My partner dropped me at the door and went to park, I made it to the lifts and had to crouch down. A passer-by offered help, but I just wanted to wait!

By the time I got to the ward, the midwives put me into a side bay and said I would be examined. By 10:30pm, ten minutes after arriving, the midwife checked and declared, “Yep, you’re fully dilated we need to get you onto a ward.” And off we went!

A couple of hours went by and I asked Rachel, my midwife, if I could start to push, but she was a very calm person and said I wasn’t ready. I had the voice of my first midwife in my head telling me to listen to my body and, “PUSH DOWN!” so the next contraction I did exactly that. Much to the shock of Rachel, there was a head ready to come out!

I managed to deliver my baby’s head, but then the problems began. Rachel calmly asked my other half to sound the alarm, but not to panic. Another midwife came in to assist and I pushed two more times.

Then the second midwife asked my other half to sound the alarm again, and this time she told him not to worry, but the room would become busy. It was like a scene from a movie. In came a team of around 12 people, one main doctor stood at the end of the bed, pushed down on my stomach and told me to listen carefully and not to push. With that she assisted with the next two contractions and our baby entered the world.

But there was silence. The two paediatricians stood back, grabbed baby and began to resuscitate him whilst I was ordered not to move. Blake was born shortly after 1am with a shoulder dystocia delivery – which at the time we had no idea of the severity of. Fortunately, we had an amazing team surrounding us who acted fast and our baby boy was fine and handed back within minutes.

It is only now when I cross paths with people who have heard about the birth that I begin to understand how lucky we are. Our second born has no long-term injuries and did not need any medical follow up. He is just the happiest, most perfect baby boy ever!

Would we do it again? Absolutely. In a heartbeat!

Author Lucy McCall

Lucy lives with her partner Patrick and their two children and was previously a primary school teacher before taking a career break to start her family of two boys, Tate and Blake. Lucy’s social media is a total homage to life with her family.

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