Sunday, October 08, 2006

Honour - updated

Plot summary: (typed one handed while holding a non-sleepy girl)

Honour was born at 11.58 am on 30 September in the water birth pool at Taupo Maternity Hospital. Weighing 7.14 the gorgeous little chunker! Natural birth. Official duration - 4 hours!!!!

Herewith a million photos:

Helloooooo chaps! I've missed you! How have you been? So good to see you again - nice haircut by the way!

Well I've been mulling this blog posting for a few days and as a testimony to the time consuming nature of having a newborn...have only just managed to get to sit down and write it.

I've had lots of ideas for the title of the post:

My latest attachment (a very Alyn Jones kind of title I think you'll agree)

The best weight loss plan in the world - I lost 7.14lb in 4 hours, and I didn't have to eat Subway.

I can tie my own shoelaces!

But then I realised that this post is about Honour....and so I went for the straightforward title.

Sooo.....for those of you who are playing catch up here is the plot summary. Warning, some level of biological content regarding birth will be following. (But not as much as I am willing to give in a private email. Requests accepted for a truly appalling level of detail....)

Friday 29th September 2006. This was my due date and Dave had told people that Honour would start to come at 2.30pm and be here by 7.30pm. Sadly this word spread around town and - I kid you not - I walked into 2 shops the day before and was greeted with a "Oh you're the one who's giving birth on Friday at 2.30pm!". Small towns, scary places.

Well, she takes after her father on the promptness thing because in actual fact she DID start to come on her due date!! Not at 2.30pm but at about 6pm. I'd just gone for a strenuous walk down the hill to the lake and more strenuously back up the steep hill. Must have done the trick because half an hour later I started having cramps.

Dave had just bought a new car - a very snazzy Prado - and so wanted to take me on a drive into town. We went to the Merchant of Taupo and I bought a box of imported Jaffa Cakes. The cramps continued.

I started to have a craving for when we got home I lay on the couch and watched the highly edifying America's Next Top Model (ANTM) while Dave ordered me Duck Cashew from the Thai Restaurant.


Ok, I'm back. I may have only had 4 hours sleep - in 2 natty 2 hour segments....I may have a sleeping baby strapped to me in a very natty frontpack....but I am still prepared to blog. Call me crazy. Cos with all the sleep deprivation I nigh on am!

So, where were we? I was eating duck cashew and watching ANTM - a fitting way to usher one's firstborn into the world don't ya think?

Yep so basically the cramps continued all I got about 2 hours sleep. (Yes I can count the hours of sleep I had in the first week on 2 hands. That's 10 for those of you who struggle with the mathematical content of this blog).

They weren't pleasant but they weren't awful either. Just like mediumly (yes that is a word...don't argue with me) bad period pains. Ok, glad that's put everything ino focus for my male readers.

Then I had a 'show' in the middle of the night. I will say no more....but it wasn't Miss Saigon. More, Miss Richards saying 'Hellooooo, I'm coming out soon!'

So by 7am I was ready to phone my midwife and say "Batten the hatches, I'm coming in!"

Note how I considerately waited till 7am to call. Actually it may have been 6.59am cos I got a bit impatient.

Now when the cramps started the previous night I was excited. You know, crampy, but excited. It was that feeling of Christmas Eve when you are a kid and you know that the thing you have been eagerly anticipating has finally arrived.

But by 7am, I was getting a bit over the excitement of cramps and was hoping that this was The Real Thing and not some jolly false alarm. My cunning midwife Sonia said that they were 'just cramps' and not contractions.


And to wait till the pains were 45 seconds in duration and then call her again.

At this stage they were 15 seconds long but happening every 3 mins or so.

Have you ever willed pain to last longer? Boy, did I want to reach that 45 sec mark and get the freak into the hospital!

So I packed my bag and staggered around the house, stopping every few minutes to clasp a piece of furniture and groan. Harley found this fascinating and started following me around. Then I realised he was trying to bite the cord of the stopwatch every time I pulled it out of my pocket. Thanks Harley.

Within an hour the 'pains' were 37 to 40 seconds long and ok, NOW they hurt. Fortunately it was only at the peak that they REALLy hurt and that was over in about 10 seconds. But not a fun 10 seconds.

So, 40 secs was long enough for me and we called Sonia again. She suggested that I get into the bath at home - this would either stop the cramps/contractions or speed things up. Dave went to run the bath and to find me a tennis ball to squeeze mid contraction as somehow this helped!

Once I got into the bath I realised the endorphins had arrived.

Pulsating Placentas, Batman! Those endorphins are good! They are the natural equivalent of morphine and your body releases them when you are in pain.

Man, I was completely spacey. Totally relaxed. Felt amazing. Happy. Drugged. Was almost seeing double. I went into this whole other zone.

And then the contraction would start and MAN I'd be writhing with pain and kindof dry sobbing....and then it was over and the endorphins kicked back in. It was the weirdest thing. To go from absolute relaxed bliss to YEAOUCH pain within a few minutes. It makes it pretty much manageable though cos during the contraction you just focus on the fact that the endorphins are about to take you away to La La land to recover for a few minutes.

Anyway, we called Sonia and told her the contractions were getting longer and so she gave us the green flag to come in.

Having a contraction in the car while I couldn't writhe about was pretty awful....and when we arrived at the hospital (5 minute drive away!) I staggered out of the car in the middle of another one and was staggering to the door weeping and groaning like I'd lost my mind!!!

I ignored everyone and in my spacey, endorphined way headed down the corridor to the pool...they are lucky I didn't start unddressing in the corridor en route to the pool. Cos by that point. I just did not care. Really. I just DID NOT CARE about who saw what or when or how.

The midwives headed me off at the pass before I burst into the birth pool room and dived in headfirst yelling "where's my rubber duck?". Fortunate, because there was someone else in the room at the time!

So I was herded into another room and lovely Sonia arrived and lovely Denise arrived. Denise asked me a question...but I looked at her through my endorphin haze and just said, "can you take my shoes off for me?".

Dave was squirting water into my mouth from a drink bottle. Denise was putting wet flannels on the back of my neck and lower back. Sonia did a check to see how far gone I was.

This was a terrifying moment cos I thought if I'm only a few centimetres ready....I'm not sure I can keep this up for another 12 hours!! But PRAISE GOD (and I did) I was 8 centimetres already by 10am.


By this stage the contractions seemed to be shorter, extremely intense at the peak, but shorter at the peak too. So it was really fact better than the previous hour I thought.

Denise joined in with the breathing to help me pant my way through the peaks. (She later confessed to thinking she was going to pass out!).

Dave kept watering me. Denise kept up with the flannels....and finally the birth pool room was ready.

Getting into the pool was fantastic. Dave & Denise kept splashing water on my lower back and this really helped.

I felt like once I was 10cms and ready to push, my work was done. I'd worried about the first stage and figured that the pushing would sort itself out. Ha ha.

Although it kindof did. It's so true what they say about your body knowing what it is doing. As soon as I was ready to push I just couldn't hold it back. It hurt less pushing than having a contraction but it was really tiring. I couldn't believe all the weird guttural, animalistic noises I was making as soon as the urge to push came! I was so loud I was hurting my own ears!!!

It was really an out of body experience in every way!!!

The good ol' endorphins were still doing their thing so I was pretty much on another planet in between pushes.
I was aware enough to realise that I was saying some pretty ridiculous things:

"I don't think I can do it."
"I don't think she's ever going to come out"
"Can I go home now?"
"Can someone else take over please?"

Yes. I actually said those things.

So I pushed and pushed and pushed and it felt like nothing was happening. The others kept encouraging me to keep going. None of them volunteered to finish things off for me which was a bit mean i thought. Dave kept telling me how amazingly I was doing. Denise & Sonia kept assuring me that the baby really was going to come out.

Then they all started getting excited cos they could see her head. A few great big pushes, and OH MY GOODNESS the relief - she was out! The instant physical relief topped with the absolute amazement of seeing this gorgeous, chubby, purple (!) baby! So bizarre to realise that she had been inside me all along. They put her in my arms there in the pool and I was just amazed with her. Dave was grinning like a loon! It was the most surreal and fantastic moment.

I couldn't believe how big she was! How cute! How dark! And although I'd never seen her before in the flesh I knew her, and I loved her straight away.

Awww, isn't God amazing? He gave me the best job in the world. To be Honour's mum.


Blogger The Fast & the Fabulous said...

Yay! I've been waiting in breathless anticipation for one of the most anticipated blogposts of the year. And worth waiting for it was! So excited dear friend. She gets more gorgeous every day!

3:32 AM  
Blogger Andrew G said...

CONGRATS!!! She is beautiful! Well done Adele and Dave!

3:34 AM  
Blogger A.J. said...

Wohoo! Honour is gorgeous of course and YOU look fabulous!

We are so thrilled for you!

4:42 AM  
Blogger Charlene said...

Honour is very beautiful! I knew that you must have been off having a baby since I hadn't seen a post in a while.



5:55 AM  
Blogger sLeEpY*~*sArAh said...


Congrats! And I love her name!

9:11 AM  
Blogger chirobiro said...

whopping congrats to you both. She is gorgeous, and you you is Dave holding up?? he definately looke the more sleepy of you two, but i am guessing you might have slightly less sleep than him...

cool photos adele

looking forward to the following blog to be contd....


12:31 PM  
Blogger Charlie said...

wow. what a darlin. God bless you little Richards fam.

2:26 PM  
Anonymous Laura W said...

She is absolutely beautiful!! Love the pictures, keep them coming.

Laura x

4:09 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

well done, seems a strange thing to say but having done it myself recently it felt like quite an achievement. 4 hours excellent, i take it Honour keeped her arms tucked in and not on her head!
(oooh and you lost more than 7lb 14, read a break down once of fluids, placenta etc and how much they way respectively...nice.) lots of love xxx

4:56 PM  
Blogger Joy said...

I second the waiting for this post...I cannot wait to hear more...on a side note your baby is wonderful, she looks awesome and I love the name...write you

6:51 PM  
Anonymous sven and lis said... happy for you guys! She is very beautiful. You are a real family now...congratulations, we miss you guys! sven and lis

2:26 AM  
Blogger s@bd said...

OH! what can i say - i'm SO thrilled for you.

4:10 AM  
Anonymous Robbie G said...

Welcome to responsibility-ville & tireds-ville & etc etc.
Looks like Dave's taking it a bit easy...

Rob & Co...

12:15 PM  
Anonymous caroline<> said...

cutie pie miss richards is....:) and she looks a very relaxed chilled out trendy kid.
Good job on producing such adorable offspring:)
Love the fishies

2:40 PM  
Anonymous LA said...

Yay, a blog entry. I have been checking many times a day to hear news. Great first installment - more please. And put me on the list to get the "more details" email.
Congrats Mum! You are so blessed.

4:56 PM  
Anonymous Andy G said...

Wow - a whole week without a blog being posted....and now you can only do half a job cos of madam wanting feeding...sounds familiar! Congratulations all the same...I'm sure its a small sacrfice for having the second most bootiful baby this year! She does indeed look very chilled and she managed to help you get a photo of Dave sitting still...nay better than that...asleep! Like the strategic placement of flannel in the bath shots...she'll thank you for that when these photos come out at her 18th birthday, hen night, wedding day etc!

Keep up the good work - you're only just out of the traps! Though looking remarkably in control it has to be said!

love Andy, Debs and Kristen (the most beautiful baby this year...its heard it here first!)

8:38 PM  
Blogger Danielle Renee said...

SHE is SOOOOOO BEAUTIFUL!!! Go you Adele with your non med delivery. wow. I LOVE the picture of Dave and her sleeping with thier mouths open, so fitting. Keep posting there can never be enough! Congrats my friends! (I told Melis too!)I am so excited for you, you will make fantastic parents. Welcome to the world Honour :)

5:53 AM  
Anonymous caroline<> said...

excellent story update, WELL FLIPPING DONE! It does sound liek an interesting experience shall leave it for a wee while yet to join in:)
Love to you all,

4:29 PM  
Blogger Lois said...

Wow, Honour is beautiful, all three of you are beautiful! Congratulations Dave and Adele! I am so happy for you! Adele, i have to confess, I am a closet reader of your blog. I love it. Lots of love, Lois

3:52 PM  
Blogger Mimo said...

Congrats!! She's absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! love, mimosa

7:08 PM  
Blogger weegeemcschuler said...

Yipee skipee, she's sooooo cute and DANG do you look good for 10 hours sleep. I stuck it out for the whole read of events and needless to say I am more informed about what is ahead :0) But ya, not in the planned ahead :0)
Did I mentioned how fantabulously gorgeous Honour is :0)
Yeah! When's she making her N.American debut???
love to you oodles and oodles of love
Gillian and Jason (if he would ever give into reading the fablous world of blogs!)

2:11 AM  

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