Know Your Bump – In Support of Kicks Count
At Bump, Baby & You, we are passionate about raising awareness. Fetal movements and what to do in case of concern is an incredibly vital aspect of pregnancy, with organisations such as Kicks Count promoting well publicised campaigns, and with the NHS advice telling mums to seek assistance.
Yet, too many mums are still torn when it happens to them. Worried about bothering the hospital. Got a midwife appointment in the morning, so it can wait, right? Standoffish woman on the phone thinks I’m exaggerating, so I’ll just leave it as I don’t want to cause a fuss. The ladies I asked online said it’s ‘normal’, so it’ll be fine.
Lots of mummies from our private Facebook group have joined forces with the team at Bump, Baby & You to get their personal experiences out there for the sake of raising awareness and drawing attention to the correct course of action that worried mums should take.
In turn, we are working in support of the awareness organisation Kicks Count to bring this vital information to our followers.
With my first pregnancy I was so ill from 23 weeks with Gallstones, it wasn’t enjoyable in the slightest, but I still had this idea of “the perfect” birth. I wanted to feel that first contraction, I wanted to build up with my partner at home. I longed for our mad dash to the hospital to be told “you’re already 6cm, let’s go!”
Truth is, births never go to plan. I never had the first contraction at home, I never had the mad dash to the hospital and I never felt my waters go either. I was induced after three trips to the local hospital for reduced movements.
Libby (8) my stepdaughter and Luca (a few hours old)
My due date was September 21st 2012, I remember hitting August and being the last one pregnant and being super excited about meeting our little boy!
In August I hadn’t seen my midwife due to her being off sick so I had contacted the Day Assessment Unit (DAU) at the Horton Hospital Banbury due to baby not being as active as normal.
Now, yes babies are bigger but that does not mean they stop moving, in fact they still move but I remember my whole tummy moving more then just a bump here and there. Get used to your baby, remember the times they wake, move etc. Luca used to jump to Dads alarm going off in the morning and being awake in the afternoons. When he didn’t jump to Dad’s alarm I was worried.
The midwives saw me three times for reduced movements, each time I was placed on a monitor to ensure baby was ok, his heart rate and movement was monitored. They can also pick up on contractions with this monitor!
On the third visit it was a training midwife called Hayley who requested I was put in for a scan, I was monitored and he was ok but she wanted to check he was happy so at 39 weeks and 5 days I was called in for a scan.
The week Luca was due Mike had taken the week off with just in case I went into labour, the morning of the scan I had double packed my bags and told mike to put them in the boot because I had a feeling the next time I would be coming home with a baby (mums just know).
We reached the Horton and I was nervous, I was called in and popped on the bed and we could hear babies heart beat, reassuring! The sonographer looked concerned and I remember asking what was wrong. Her reply was “I need to go and get a consultant!”
Again I asked “why, what’s wrong?”
“I’m struggling to get measurements, usually we use the fluid to help measure the baby, there isn’t any fluid, I need to get the consultant!”
She popped out and returned with a consultant who too tried to get measurements but failed, there wasn’t enough fluid around Luca.
Now they asked if my waters had broken, if I was leaking fluid if I had noticed and leaks? The answer – “No!” All I had was reduced movements, he was a lot less active in the afternoons, he would go hours with out moving!
I had tried the usual;
• Cold drink and laying on your left hand side
• I had taken a bath this usually woke him
• I had tried moisturising my tummy to gently probe him to move
• Ice cubes and ice lollies
That was when the consultant said, “we are going to induce you today!”
I had not ever considered the need for induction, I was still dreaming of my perfect birth! Haha I can hear you laughing now!
I was taken round to delivery, hubby popped home to have a shower and grab some last minute bits, I phoned family to give them the update, my Mum and Dad were on holiday in Scotland and were awaiting the arrival of their 2nd grandson!
On the Wednesday afternoon of 19th September 2012, they placed a induction pessary in, we then went for a walk around the Hospital, bumping into one of mikes friends (whose brother I think looks like Tom Hardy – Mike disagrees… haha) and then we went to get food in the restaurant. I had some tightenings but nothing drastic, the two other women who were induced the same time literally went into labour within half an hour! GUTTED! Mike had to go home as nothing was progressing and the plan was to try again Thursday morning!
On Thursday morning, the induction wasn’t started until 11:30am. The pessary was popped in, and again we went for walks around the hospital played bridge, rummy and black jack! At 5:30pm our lovely midwife came to check if I was progressing!
That was it, they popped what was left of my waters and it began a waiting game, 23 hours later and I was ready to get him out, where my waters had been broken for so long Luca’s head had began to swell so they needed to cut or give me a section. I told them to do what it was they needed to do to get him out!
They opted for a ventouse and a small cut, and Luca was in my arms! We both cried, it had been a long three days. Luca was born at 4:35 on September 21st 2012 and weighed 8lb 4oz!
If it wasn’t for the staff, that training midwife and the consultants decision to induce I cannot imagine what may have happened, know your babies movements, get used to their movements and if any changes please call your midwife or the hospital, do not post on Facebook – people online are not medically trained and the hospitals and medical team would rather check and put your mind and theirs at rest and to rule out anything sinister!
Mum knows best – if it doesn’t feel right it’s probably best to get checked out, with both pregnancies I knew something was up so I pushed to get checked. I had one induction due to low fluid the second section due to a breech baby!
You know your body and your baby better than you know!
Best of Luck!
Written by Kerry Tydeman for her blog, mrstyders.
Thank you for reading Kerry’s story.
Please take her message on board; seek immediate help if you are worried about your baby. Don’t be afraid to bother your hospital, but at the same time don’t be fobbed off – listen to your baby and your body.
Get to know your baby’s pattern, and seek immediate help if your baby’s movements alter – reduced, and in less common cases, a significant increase in ‘frantic’ movements. Do NOT under any circumstances trust a home doppler.
Kicks Count, so Know Your Bump.
Together, we can help reduce the rate of stillbirth and neonatal deaths. Please support us by sharing.
Love from Katie. Xx