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9 November 2011

Lucas David Ryan-A birth story.

Today is my son Lucas' birthday, he has turned 3 or in his words "Big Boy now" and this is his birth story.

When I found out I was pregnant for the second time I was excited but also full of worry.  
However these are normal worries, and my pregnancy went great to start with, but it also felt completely different  I wasn't sick just felt it, I ached all over, felt grumpy and was exhausted constantly.  
I joked that I must be having a boy, as it was causing me trouble already.  
At my 20 week scan it turned out I was right.

We went through the usual processes at this time, thinking of names (I'm a One Tree Hill fan, shh don't tell Stuart), trying to explain to Maisie why Mummies tummy was getting bigger, trying to sell our house upon the realisation that a small 2 bed house maybe a tight squeeze(we managed there for another 3 years) and figuring out how money would stretch.
However another problem began that made these issues pale in comparison, at a routine midwife meeting at about 6 months they measured my bump as usual but it was coming up too big. I worried my baby would be huge as Maisie was no small potato at 9lb 60z , and your second is meant to be bigger.
I gave extra blood samples and was booked in for another appointment a week later. However at that appointment with a different midwife I measured small, very small. Much confusion followed, they got a second midwife to measure me, I was told to go for a walk and come back to do it all again, it was still small. 
The midwife took blood samples and I was booked in for a scan at hospital.

I was about 7 months pregnant when I had my next scan, it was lovely to see my little child on the screen again and to me he looked just fine, but no the hospital said he seemed too small, I was devastated and blamed myself, it must have been that glass of wine I had or not eating the right foods.
So many ways to blame yourself.
I was sent for a blood cord scan in the maternity unit a week later, where the midwife told me me everything was okay, and although my baby looked skinny he was in fact lanky and was looking grand and made me another appointment at scanning unit for 2 weeks later, told me not to worry and sent me on my way.

Ahh big sighs of relief, until at that scan I was told yet again that my baby was going to be small, I'd planned a home birth but was advised that I would be unsuitable as baby would probably need an incubator. They had no conclusions as to why he was small, I was still exhausted all the time (ahh you see it all so clearly in hindsight) but trying to eat right and rest even with another child to chase round. I was sent for another cord scan, cord and placenta was fine, midwife told me she didn't understand what they were talking about, yes my bump was measuring small but on the scan Lucas measured up fine. We were left not knowing what to believe. We had two different departments telling us two different things, and no one else to turn too.    
The consultants I saw recommended I was induced as they felt something was hindering his growth but couldn't figure out what, and he's grow better on the outside. His was the thing I dreaded yet again an other induction, a forced birth but this time with a baby that they said would be about 41/2-5 lbs max.
My induction went exactly as it did with Maisie, a long drawn out process to speed up a birth unnaturally, great fun, not. I did feel more in control this time though, and felt more confident to move birth positions. The whole process, started at 2pm was done by 8.30am the next morning.
I'm very grateful for my lovely midwife who knew I wanted out of hospital after the birth as quick as possible, so when I was in the last stage and completely lost it begging for pain relief just nipped my leg and told me I'd feel better, I did, I thought I'd had diamorphine. 
 Lucas was born 2 minutes later and I wasn't knocked out with drugs, I was wide awake and feeding what turned out to be a 6lb 11oz lanky boy, I wonder how big he would have been had he had 2 more weeks inside.
I really wished the midwife's years of experience was taken over the judgement of a consultant.  
I didn't care I had my beautiful baby, who was safe and well and I was introducing him to Maisie 3 hours later while having bacon butties at my in laws. Look at those skinny long legs.
 About 3months after his birth I went to my GP, I was still exhausted I know 2 children, family and home to deal with, but I just didn't feel right. She checked my notes and the first question she asked was what iron supplements are you taking? Well none I said, she disappeared into her notes again. Apparently the last tests taken at the midwife clinic showed I was very low in iron(the hospital had never received these results) but previous tests showed I was fine so they went on these results.  I was never asked for more. My levels were that low she was surprised I'd not been required to go to hospital, she was really shocked to find I'd given birth while that anaemic, she gave me iron tablets and felt grand and strong again in a matter of days.  I wish this problem had been sorted earlier, maybe I'd have had a whopper of a boy, maybe I'd have felt stronger and more positive in my post pregnancy period.
However I can't complain, look at my beautiful boy, he's amazing and I'm thankful he joined my family.
I love you Lucas.x.
From Mummy.

Not all pregnancy's have a happy outcome.  I was reminded of this when Stuarts cousin lost her unborn baby girl at 9months, the sadness of this event and the effect it will have on their lives is truly heartbreaking, nothing will ever make up for their missing child.
 However there are ways to support the families who go through this loss, Sands is a stillbirth and neonatal death charity, giving support to those affected by the death of a child, helping health professionals offer correct support and researching the causes of stillbirth.  
It gets no government support, relying on just donations to keep this amazing group going. 
Mia Giggle's page is here if you wish to donate http://www.justgiving.com/miagiggle
Thank you.x.





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