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Early labour and then Vaka is born in Queen Mary Hospital

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Early labour and then Vaka is born in Queen Mary Hospital

Posted on 20 August 2014 by hulda



Birthing pool

It takes around 20 minutes to get the pool ready


Everyone participating in getting the pool ready
For labour

The boat looked like a war zone, – not a birthing unit

I had my last baby three years ago.  It was a challenging time in my life for various reasons and I had no time really to think about preparing for it.  Like everyone else who´s career and family are busy, I was juggling too many things at the same time and had to rely on family members and new staff members in my clinic to support me during these times. It worked out fine, but it was stressful and made me realise that all of what I keep preaching to other mums, really applies to myself as well.


Pre labour and preparation of the birth of Vaka

Pre labour and preparation of the birth of Vaka

I had wanted a homebirth.  The main reasons were that I wanted my family around me and I wanted no restrictions to mobility and I wanted quiet and calm surroundings.  I did not need to hear that I was a high risk case, obese with huge baby and liver problems and risks of all sorts of things, because I knew most of it (aside from the BMI) was not a problem.  Although I knew certain precautions were needed, I was hoping to get safe care but the birth environment that suited. The only midwife in Hong Kong who would support this was away for the Easter holiday but this was no problem for me, as I was not due till 10 days after Easter and with all three older kids I had been induced and very overdue.  So I told the midwife not to worry, I would wait for her.  I also had a friend of mine coming, a midwife who was doing her Phd and was going to help me and my family around the birth.


All three of my previous births had been annoyingly late and as much as I really tried not to be induced, it became reality in all births.  I will write about each of them later, but essentially, I got to feel supported during most of it, which was really important and made my birth experience more pleasant.


Vaka is born in QMH

Labour is long and boring

My office manager at work had just resigned and a new one taken over and I had so much work to finish before the Easter holiday that I was rushing that Monday morning, to go to work. It was a beautiful day and I decided to take the motorcycle in, so I was going to wear my bike boots on the way.  For the very first time in my life, I could not get my socks on.  Something kept bothering me every time I leant over and tried to squeeze my toes into the socks, so eventually I gave up.  Everyone was busy in the boat (where I live); my in-laws had just arrived the night before from Iceland, my other kids were going to school, my husband and my father were preparing to leave to China, where they were going to spend the next three days. I laid down for a few minutes, trying to comprehend what was going on.  Something totally new to me.   I was 39 weeks pregnant and it just dawned on me that likely, I was in labour.

Trying to get my motorcycle gear on was not going to work.  Trying pretend that I was not in labour was not going to work, but I did feel like I was very much in an early stage and I really did not want the whole family all over me in this early stage.  Yet, I did need to try to stop my husband from driving 300 km north of Hong Kong in the next 30 minutes.


Lying down can be great at times

Lying down can be great at times

I walked out of the room and announced that I needed some help with something in the bedroom, could my husband help me.  He yelled back that he was in a rush to leave, what is it? Well, the cabinet needs a bit of fixing.  Cabinet?  Ask the boatboy to help, I really must leave now.  By this stage my mother in law looked at me with suspicion.  She could obviously sense that I was in labour.  So I gave up soon and told them that I was having some mild contractions, and perhaps my husband should not go to China.  He looked at me, tired.  Really, sure? I told them I thought that I was not doing anything much, but I just could not go to work. So could everyone just continue what they were doing and let me potter around.  Fair enough, they all started to do some boat maintainance.  Basically, tearing down the ceiling covers.  And soon, the boat was without any electricity, the water heater was not working and there was no way to even manually warm up the water.

My father, together with my husband, 3 children, in laws and the three helpers, was not wanting to leave either.  This was a real family feast!

My older kids opted out of school (13 and 14 years old), and my 3 year old was happy to inflate the pool.

I tried frantically to find a midwife who could help me to stay at home during this early stage.

It was Easter time and no one picked up the phone.  Even my doctor friends were away or unable to help.

In any case, I was not in all that much pain, and the main project was to try to find water to fill up the birthing pool for my first stage of labour.
Everything was a beautiful chaos, it was a good day and I had a good feeling.


…to be continued…

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