I don’t know how to start. I’m both happy and sad at the same time. I’m so happy that we’ve got a little baby girl and that the whole experience was exhilarating. The birth was pretty much exactly what happened in a dream I had before I even fell pregnant, and the dream is where I got the name Kyra from! I am sad because I want to wind back the clock and go through it again! The experience was so amazing that I miss it and wish I could experience it again. I remember how it went, but when I think about it now, it is not easy to “re-feel” what I felt at the time. All that remains is the memory of the feelings and that makes me sad. It is going to be very difficult to put Kyra’s birth in words as it was pretty much beyond description but I will do my best!

I had a visit from Marianne (midwife) on the 27th of December, and my mum was there as well. I was impatient because Ookie was supposed to be an early baby, and I had been getting signs for a week that something was going on! I joked that Mum would get a 1am call from me not knowing that she was really going to get that call that very night!!!

I had been losing mucous on and off all week, was going to the toilet a lot (bowel movements) the frequency of them being unusual for me! I had a strange niggly feeling as well that made it impossible for me to sit still and concentrate on anything. The strange period-like pressure in my pelvis and the occasional cramp or twinge was driving me nuts! Nothing was happening, yet something was! I suppose I was pretty stressed out during that week, and when Marianne said on the 27th Dec that labour would happen when I was relaxed and ready, I decided to try a massage that night!

It wasn’t easy to relax, I was very cranky and emotional, not to mention restless and tired! I had a hot shower, laid down in bed with the air-conditioning on and massaged my belly with lavender and sandalwood mixed in with almond oil. It was the first time I had tried that combination and it was the best massage I’ve ever had. The smell was so calming and I had fun rubbing my belly. It helped me to fall asleep and I slept from around 11.30pm to around 2am in the morning.

Had to pee at 2am, so I woke up all sore in the belly/pelvis and tired and went into the bathroom. As I was walking there, I felt a small gush of fluid between my legs and when I got to the toilet there was a little trickle, not much, and some more yellowish mucous. I called for Chris and was getting all excited before I realised that there wasn’t much fluid and that it had stopped like the other times. (I had the same thing happen twice during my pregnancy at around 30 and 36 weeks – probably just a small tear in the amniotic sac each time that healed itself.) So I went back to bed with Chris and went to sleep.

It was around 3am when I woke up AGAIN, sore. I went to pee again and went back to bed. I got some period cramps and I tried to ignore them and get comfortable but they didn’t go away! I tossed and turned in bed then realised that they were happening at irregular intervals. I woke Chris up again and told him I thought something could be happening… and he said he was too tired and I said to go back to sleep. I tried to sleep but finally got out of bed and got on the computer to see if there was anyone online to talk to. Had more cramps while on the computer and got up to walk around a bit. Got back on the computer and there was still nobody online so I got on Chris’s Trillian and saw that his brother was on MSN. We talked for a few minutes then I asked Nick to get Chris’s mum Susan. I told her I thought something was happening and asked her what she thought. Finally I decided to call my mum at around 3.40 because the cramps weren’t going away and I had bad heartburn every time I got a cramp! I could of dealt with the cramps if it wasn’t for the heartburn and there was no milk in the house to ease them! Mum came over with milk and I drank a fair bit which helped a lot then decided to go back to bed to try and sleep again so Mum left.

Sleeping didn’t work. It was too uncomfortable in bed so by 4 or 5am I was up again, in the lounge room lying on the rug on the floor. I think I dozed for 10 or 15 minutes in between the cramps and finally at around 6 I couldn’t take it anymore and decided that yes I was in labour and went to wake up Chris. I remember sticking my head into the Christmas tree that we had because the smell of the eucalyptus and pine helped distract me from the contractions. The tree smelt so secure so I ignored Chris’s comments about me being a tree hugger!

I was hungry so Chris got me some Rice Bubbles at around 6.30am. I had the second mouthful in my mouth when I got a contraction so I spat it out into my hand! After that I couldn’t eat anymore even though I was hungry. I think I started to get a little nauseous and sick-feeling then.

Chris mentioned maybe we should start the hot towels. (Had towelling nappies folded and sewn up so they would stay together) I didn’t want to accept that it was labour yet in case it was a false alarm! I didn’t want to get excited but the cramps were getting more intense and tight so Chris started to make up the hot lavender water in the nappy bucket. He called my mum at around 7am I think and she started to get ready to come over. I don’t know what time she got here but by the time she got here, I was getting down to work, and didn’t want to be talked at!

I was dealing with the contractions best on my hands and knees. I didn’t use any of the pelvic rocks or exercises that we used in active birth class, but all the same I am very grateful for those classes! I was on my hands and knees a lot or kneeling or on my haunches leaning forward – good thing my muscles were strong and used to the positions! I think the positions I was using helped to keep Ookie anterior – it also helped that I had been using those positions regularly during my pregnancy!

The hot towels were great on my belly. Absolutely NO back pain at all. It was all in my lower belly and I took each contraction as it came. The pain was not unbearable, just mostly uncomfortable and intense. I’ve experienced worse pains than contractions! Mum and Chris started setting up the pool and recording how far apart the contractions were. At this stage I was too busy relaxing and trying to rest in between contractions to take much notice of what was going on. I was so relaxed that when a contraction started to happen, I didn’t want to get on my hands and knees to deal with it so I just laid there until it became unbearable lying down then got up really fast, asking for hot towels and trying to deal with the tightening in my belly until I got my towel!

I got in the shower with the hot water on my back and resting my head on the shower wall. Didn’t help much but at least it was a distraction. I didn’t stay in for long because I preferred being on my hands and knees. Walked around with a towel wrapped around me for a bit because I was restless, feeling really nauseous and ended up on my hands and knees in the kitchen and made it back to the rug and Chris held a hot towel on my belly. It seemed like they took forever to get me my towels! Probably because I didn’t ask for one until the tightening pain in my belly was at its peak! I started asking for the towels sooner and was amazed at