A little background before I begin.. I’m a second time mum with dcda twins (twins that each have their own placenta and own membrane). My first labour was around 27hrs from first contraction felt to having my little boy in my arms. It wasn’t the smoothest of labours as my son was posterior (so heaps of back pain), he got stuck and was showing signs of distress every time I had a contraction. I ended up having a forceps delivery in the theatre room just in case they had to do an emergency c-section (I was only allowed one go at a forceps delivery).
Now onto my twins labour story.. It was a Saturday and I was 37+5wks pregnant. My almost 2yr old toddler woke up at 4 in the morning so I got up and resettled him. When I got back to bed I noticed that I was getting some mild contractions. I wasn’t too alarmed as I had been getting mild contractions some mornings for the last 2wks but they usually fizzled out within a couple of hours. By 5am the contractions were starting to get more painful so I decided to get out of bed. I alternated between sitting on my fit ball and packing the last minute things for my hospital bag just in case today was the day.
At around 5.30am I decided to wake my husband and call the hospital as the contractions were starting to ramp up and become regular at 5mins apart. I should also add I was also booked in for a c-sec for 3 days time. The midwife on the phone said to come in for an assessment but there was no need to rush since my contractions were 5mins apart, my waters hadn’t broken and I hadn’t had any bloody show. Just after 6am I woke my Mum (who was conveniently staying in our spare bedroom as she lives interstate) and started my way to the hospital. By this point my contractions were about 4-5mins apart and getting quite painful (I was in about the same amount of pain now as I was in at the 17hr mark with my first born).
By the time we got to the hospital, about 20mins later, the contractions were bringing tears to my eyes and were more like 3mins apart. Things were escalating a lot quicker this time round than they did with my first born. Once at the assessment unit (sometime between 6.30 and 7am) the midwife saw me have a contraction and decided to do a vaginal examination rather than put me on the CCG monitor. She discovered, to everyone’s surprise, I was fully dilated! The midwife sprang into action and within minutes I was being pushed into the birthing suite with her announcing “Twins! Fully dilated!” to anyone on the way. Of course, there were no rooms available so into the birthing suite assessment room I went. By the time I arrived my contractions were incredibly painful and frequent with most of my pain in my back. “Oh no!” I thought, this was the same as my first labour and my son got stuck!
The obstetrician came into my room and asked if I still wanted to go ahead with a c-section. All I wanted to organise at that point was an epidural. I had one with my son and I wanted another one now as I had only had 2 paracetamol up to this point. With the midwives telling me that it was practically time to push I decided to try delivering these twins naturally. I still really wanted an epidural but given twin A’s head was starting to crown and the anaesthetist was at least 10min away I knew it wasn’t going to happen. I was going to deliver these twins with no pain relief (I threw up on the gas during my first labour so that wasn’t an option for me).
Saying I was petrified at this point was an understatement. I couldn’t push out my first born very well, how the heck was I going to push out 2 with no pain relief?! The time had come to push and yet my waters still hadn’t broken. After a few cautious pushes as the pain was so intense and I was scared I couldn’t do it, my mindset suddenly changed; I thought to myself “If I want the pain to go away, I have to push hard.” After about 20mins of pushing twin A’s head was out with only a trickle of my waters coming out. One more push and twin A was completely out – a little girl – born at 7.41am! I was so relieved.
No time to rest though it was time to focus on getting twin B out. The obstetrician came back into my room at this point to do an ultrasound to see how twin B was lying. Twin B was breech. Not ideal. They had been well positioned before and moved with the extra space. The obstetrician said he would manually try and rotate the baby. Just as the obstetrician tried to rotate the baby I got a contraction and I told the obstetrician to get off my stomach as I had the urge to push. As I pushed my waters broke and came gushing out making all the midwives jump back as they got splashed. It turns out twin A’s head was blocking all my waters from coming out, so when it did it was like Niagara Falls! At the same time as my waters came gushing out twin B’s legs came out too, or should I say “flopped out” as my husband described it! Now that twin B’s legs were out the obstetrician grabbed them and started pulling on them to help get the babies body out. He also tried to rotate the twin B as the baby was posterior – explains the back pain! Another contraction came and with one big push twin B was born at 7.49am – a little boy! I was so relieved, and so proud of myself.
The twins were born; naturally and with no drugs (which was definitely not expected) and in less than 4hrs from the very first contraction felt! I ended up having a small episiotomy and a small internal tear from the birth but by that afternoon I was sitting and moving with no problems and minimal pain (which is vastly different to how I was feeling after my first delivery).
Twin A: Lara – 2.61kg, 50cm long, 33cm head circumference
Twin B: Michael – 2.72kg, 50cm long, 33cm head circumference