Welcome to the world, little Charles Benjamin! Even though I’m the last in our group of girlfriends to have one of my own, I’ve still managed to be completely overwhelmed with not just the delivery process but the actual “parenting” bit And as I’ve learned, everything I had “planned” for this baby did not necessarily happen according to MY plans…. rather, they happened according to HIS plans.
I had planned to be in & out of the hospital, spending as much time of my pre-labor at home and as little time actually delivering as possible. Instead, he was VERY late to the world (42 wks, 5 days!). I was induced during the busiest week ever in London hospital baby wards. The week I was in the hospital there was an amber alert at all London hospitals – in the UK that means that there are too many women giving birth and not enough beds to accommodate. And after trying everything else first, our little bundle FINALLY arrived at the end of it all by emergency c-section 6 days later (weighing in at 10 lbs, 6 oz – he was probably a little over-cooked).
But for all my initial apprehensions about public healthcare, my experience with the NHS for my pregnancy and Charlie’s birth was actually a very positive one. Though I felt some of the effects of under-staffing that week, I met some unbelievably hard working and capable midwives and doctors. We were so lucky that our awesome community midwife Meghan, who had seen me through the pregnancy, was coincidentally on-duty that morning and able to be in the room when they did my c-section! It was a beautiful, amazing experience.