Our journey began in December 2015 when we were in Bali Indonesia on holiday and we decided to start a family but it was short lived when we were told it would not be possible for us to fall pregnant naturally. In 2016 we made an appointment with the fertility specialist to discuss our options. One morning in July 2016 I woke up and realised my menstrual cycle was late but not thinking much of it I decided to do a pregnancy test just  in case, although I did not have high hopes as it had been negative many times before. Half asleep I saw two lines on the stick and my heart started pounding. I still thought it could not be possible and woke Murray to tell him the news. He was also in shock and just to make sure we bought another pregnancy test, which was also positive. We phoned the fertility specialists rooms and I went in for a blood test which also came back positive. The day finally arrived when we could see the fertility specialist and he explained to us that Murray had Teratozoospermia but a very high sperm count and that is why I had fallen pregnant. We then did a scan and saw baby for the first time. Baby was 6 weeks at this point and attached to the wall of my uterus. We saw a little flicker on the screen which was the heart beat and I could hardly believe the miracle that happened before us. The weeks went on and the pregnancy was very smooth sailing, I had some minor symptoms like nasal congestion and constipation but I knew there was a little person growing inside. 40 weeks came on the 25th of March 2017 and there was no sign of babies’ arrival. We decided to go to the beach and walk sand dunes at Sardinia Bay to get things moving along. I remember feeling scared and anxious of the change and the upcoming birth but excited to meet our baby and find out what gender it was and what baby looked like.

On the morning of the 27th I woke up and my mucus plug came out. I didn’t think anything of it as many people had said it could be anything from a day to two weeks. I decided to buy a washing basket and have my nails done. As I was walking to plastic warehouse I started experiencing back pain but still thought nothing of it as it was in my back. It was about 10:30 when I arrived at Charne my nail lady, I had a wax and then we started on my nails. The pain started getting worse and coming in waves. We decided to time the pains and realised I was in labour. By 14:30 my nails were done and the pain had gotten worse.  As I got home I phoned Colleen our Doula and asked her what I should do. She said to just relax, go for a walk, and takes a shower and phone Murray to come home. We took our Yorky to the yorky hotel and by this stage it was 17:00 and the pain was getting stronger and more intense but manageable. We got to the hospital round 17:30, they put the belt around my belly to check the contractions and babies heart rate. Baby was still very happy and babies’ heart rate was 155 beats per minute. They then checked my cervix and I was already 4cm dilated. Baby was definitely on the way. The next part of labour became very difficult, we went for a walk around St Georges and the pain was becoming stronger and stronger. I could not talk and crouched over with each contraction. We took our final picture under the tree at St Georges which was our last preggy belly picture. As we entered the labour ward I smelt lavender oils burning, and relaxing music. A sense of peace overcame me as I saw Colleen waiting in the room with soft candles, relaxation music and birthing apparatus. I knew from then I was not alone and Colleen was there to help me through the process. The pain now started getting so bad it was like a fire in my lower back and abdomen. Murray and Colleen applied pressure to my lower back. Baby was posterior which I did not know at the time but Colleen tried to turn baby with certain techniques such as hot bean bags. Colleen gave me a foot massage to help relax me. We tried various positions to help the baby along the birth canal. I remember the pinging of a microwave and the endless bean bags coming and going to relieve the pain on my back. At this stage I went from 4 to 6cms, I remember thinking only 6 cm’s! How was I going to get to 10cm if this is how painful it was? The pain most definitely got worse I now could not stand or talk any longer, I birthed the rest of the time on my side on the bed. With each contraction I moaned and groaned, moved forwards and backwards and squeezed Murrays hand so hard that he said it hurt which was nothing compared to the pain I was experiencing. I then got to 9 cm’s and I felt as though I could not go any further, I was so tired and in so much pain my abdomen was numb. I remember saying a prayer in my mind and telling Jesus to help me get through. I thought of Jesus on the cross and how he must have suffered. I felt I wanted to die or that I was close to death. It was like a blazing fire through my entire body. Colleen pushed me along saying one more contraction but the contractions kept coming and going like there was no end. I then experienced a pressure and an urge to push. The midwife checked my cervix and I was 10 cm dilated. The midwife said its time to push and gave me a short demonstration of how to do it. The bottom of the bed was pulled out beneath me and before I knew it my legs were pulled beside me. Just then the doors flew open and the gynaecologist flew in and put his apron and rubber gloves on and was quite joyful as he said let’s get to business. He said with the next contraction you need to push. I pushed and waited and pushed and waited, holding my breath and bearing down. As the baby came down it was like another fire and burning. The pain now went from my back to my lower stomach as baby had switched positions. Baby kept moving from posterior to anterior but finally stayed anterior towards the end. Baby then kept going back so the Dr used a suction to keep her head there. He then said the last push is going to burn and with that it felt like 1000 bees stinging me below, I panicked a little but knew there was no turning back. The smell of pooh and blood combined was enough to put anyone off childbirth but just then the final push and baby was out, I had no idea how long the pushing part had been as I was so focused on getting the baby out. The baby was out and she screamed as they put baby on my stomach. The time was 2:10 am on the 28th March 2017; she weighed 3.06kgs and had a length of 50cm’s. Our miracle baby was born and although the birth had been so tough somehow it felt so worth it to see this little person lying on my stomach. This little person who had come such a long way over the last 40 weeks and finally coming into the world to meet his/her parents. Murray cut the cord! Which I do not remember as I was in ore of what lay before me. Baby was covered in blood and I realised I still did not know the gender of the baby. I asked the Dr what gender the baby was and he said a girl. I couldn’t believe it as I thought I was having a boy. I had to then deliver the placenta, just when I thought it was all over, the pain was not that bad but took some time for the placenta to detach. I remember thinking how I wished it could be all over. I was then jabbed with an injection in the leg as well as my hoo-ha to be stitched, I tore a little but only three stitches which I believe was because I was in control of my labour. I was then given my modesty back and I felt a sense of relief and accomplishment due to the fact that I had gotten through childbirth with no pain medication, epidural or gas and had pushed through a 15 hour labour. I do feel it would not have been possible without the help and assistance from Colleen. Colleen tried to latch baby but her bottom lip kept falling in, I could not stop staring at her and wondering how on earth I got her out and thinking how she was inside me for 40 weeks and 2 days. I did skin to skin and then went to shower while Murray did skin to skin. I felt like a million dollars after the shower but very sore and swollen. I returned to the labour ward while they dressed her and did her vitals. They placed her in the trolley crib and I wheeled her to the maternity ward. This was the one benefit of natural birth with no pain medication is that as soon as the baby was out the pain was gone and I could stand up, have a shower and walk with my baby from the labour ward to the maternity ward. The time was now round 4am. As I wheeled her out the labour ward I said to the nurse “I will have to talk to Adam and Eve one day”. I remember Murray looking at me in ore and being so proud of me. This is a moment I will never forget. Murray and I felt a stronger bond and our hearts overflowed with love for each other and our new baby girl. We decided to name her Amelia Morgan Jones. Amelia means “The work of the Lord”. We believe she is the work of the Lord, a perfect gift sent from above. Morgan is a Celtic name meaning “lives by the sea” Her dad loves the sea as well as her grandfather who passed some years ago. The sea is also a reminder of the beauty of the Lords creations. We are truly blessed by God to have received this miracle baby. We will love and cherish every moment of our beautiful, healthy baby girl. To end my story I want to emphasise that Colleen was one of the most amazing Doula’s and without her support before, during and after I would have struggled firstly to get through the birth with no pain medication as well as after the birth with baby and breastfeeding. The endless visits, even early hours of the morning to help and reassure us, the prayers and just being there for us in times where we weren’t coping. Thank you Colleen, We will never forget your kindness and support in bringing Amelia into the world.