If it hadn't been for Kay, I am sure that I would have ended up having a forceps delivery! She helped us to understand our choices and that our baby was not in danger, and that meant we were able to be determined to have the kind of delivery we really wanted.
When I found out I was pregnant I had been living in Italy for the best part of ten years. Although my husband is Italian he had been working in London for some time, so I knew that we had some decisions to make about where to have our baby. In the end I decided that I would like to be close to my family and so we opted to return to the UK. I was apprehensive about coming back close to the end of my pregnancy, worried that I would not have time to build a relationship with any local midwives and knew that there was no guarantee that any of them would be there for the birth. Consistency in care was a real priority for me as I am a bit of a worrier and I was very keen to have the support of someone I felt knew and understand me and my needs.
I had heard of the idea of independent midwives but wasn't sure what it meant exactly- and I didn't know if I would be the right sort of candidate for this kind of care as I wanted to have my baby in a hospital. I found Kay's details online and got in touch with her. We spoke on Skype the same week and she answered all of my questions. She was very reassuring and professional and I felt immediately at ease with her. As soon as I got back to the UK Kay came to meet me and I was once again reassured by her knowledgeable and professional approach. As well as carrying out regular check-ups, Kay provided lots of information and helped me to fully understand all the choices I had. She also answered all our questions and took time to talk my husband through everything.
I was very fortunate to have a relatively short labour. Kay supported us through the entire experience and helped us to understand everything that went on. There was one particular incident where her help proved especially invaluable. I had been pushing for some time and the hospital midwife was under pressure from her team to begin a forceps delivery (because you are only 'allowed' to push for a certain amount of time in hospital). We were quite concerned when we heard this as we had wanted the most natural delivery possible. Kay suggested that sitting on a birth stool may help to move things along, and as the hospital didn't have one she went to her car to get hers. In the meantime, the hospital midwife convinced me to lie on the bed with my legs in the air. This was the last thing I wanted and I knew it would mean a longer and more difficult labour, but I was so exhausted by that time, I gave in. When Kay returned and saw what had happened, she was really shocked and whispered that I get off the bed and onto the stool immediately. The encouragement she provided helped us to stay determined to continue pushing. Thank goodness she did, because our beautiful daughter Eveline was born naturally shortly afterwards.
In the following weeks Kay visited us and provided help with all our new parent questions and worries. Having Kay was definitely a positive experience for us and I was extremely glad to have the consistency of one midwife I knew and trusted throughout the whole process.