Where was the birth?
I gave birth at Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester.
Can you describe where your/the birth was?
I had a planned c-section as my baby was breech. We arrived at the hospital at 8am but then waited till 4pm before suddenly being told it was happening. We’d been in an empty room on the labour ward. I quickly got into a surgical gown and my husband had to put on ‘scrubs’. We then walked down with a Midwife to the operating theatre where I met the surgical team. The room reminded me of my high school science class! I had already met my surgeon, a wonderful Arab woman who was utter calm.
Who was present at the birth?
My husband and the surgical team. I can see their faces yet can’t remember their names, which seems crazy. There were 5 staff including the midwife, the surgeon and anaesthetist who was South African. I remember him telling me he and his wife were expecting their first child.
Can you describe the experience of giving birth or watching the birth?
I sat on the operating table to have the epidural and the anaesthetist explained how it should feel. I lay back and my legs flopped to one side. I worried what if they start cutting and I feel it? A screen was then put up in front of me. My husband tried to distract me but the anaesthetist said ‘they’re cutting you now’. I’d heard a description that a c-section is like someone washing up inside you. This is quite apt. I was then told they had his legs and then all of a sudden he was there. I looked to my left and the midwife had him. I’d been asked did I want to hold him for ‘skin to skin’ when he was born and I had. He was handed to me. I was not aware at this point of what else was happening. What happened to my placenta for example! It was now just him, me and my husband. I felt euphoric. I don’t know if it was love at that point, more a kind of awe. It was surreal. 30 minutes earlier I’d been told I was going to surgery and now I was holding my son.