I wanted to share with you all the story of little Alba's arrival in the world. I had a very easy, problem free pregnancy and it ended with a very easy, problem free birth. On Saturday 1st October I woke up in the morning with my first contractions. At first I wasn't sure if they were contractions as they weren't very painful but after a while I started timing them and they were coming regularly at around 7 minutes apart. I wasn't totally convinced that it was the real thing as I was expecting to be in a bit more pain. Nonetheless, I spent the morning making last minute preparations, finishing packing my bag, cleaning up the kitchen etc. I then sat down to watch Scotland play England in the rugby world cup which took my mind off things for a couple of hours.
Throughout the afternoon the contractions were still coming regularly but not getting any more painful. By the evening I suddenly realised that they were 3 minutes apart. I still wasn't sure that it was time to go to the hospital but my husband convinced me that we should. By the time I was ready to go the contractions were starting to get a bit stronger and quite close together. At that point I started to worry that we'd maybe left it a bit late to get to the hospital, a 40 minute drive away!
However, at around 10pm we arrived at the hospital in time and I was examined. I still half expected that they'd tell me it wasn't time and to go home again. I was surprised when they told me I was already 5cm dilated! The midwife left me to get settled into my room where I stayed for about half an hour before I felt like I was ready to push. They took me to the delivery room where I laboured for another 30 minutes or so before being examined again. I was 10cm dilated and ready to go. Another 20 minutes or so of pushing and my little girl was born at half past midnight.
I am still quite amazed at what the human body is capable of. I managed the whole labour without any kind of pain medication, not even gas and air. I didn't use any particular birthing method or breathing techniques. I let my body take over and do what it had to do. I feel extremely proud of myself!! The whole experience was quite incredible and I'm so grateful to the doctors and the midwives who helped me through it. I must admit I was worried about giving birth in an Italian hospital but my fears were unfounded. I had the natural birth I wanted and the hospital staff were really supportive.
I want to thank you all for your kind words of welcome for Alba May on my last post. It means a lot to us that there are people all over the world wishing us well. For those of you wondering about our name choice, Alba is the Gaelic name for Scotland and it is also an Italian name meaning 'dawn'. It's the perfect name for our little half Scottish half Italian girl.
For obvious reasons my posts in the next weeks might be few and far between. I apologise for this and also for not being such a regular visitor to your blogs. I'm still reading but don't always manage to comment (I'm still mastering one-handed typing!!) Thank you all once again for your kind wishes and for your support throughout my pregnancy, it means a lot x x x