1. The drugs.
The drugs DO work. Here’s the ones I remember.
a) Prostin – worked eventually. See also, 5. (there is no dignity in childbirth)
b) Pethidine – oh my god, this was good. I needed sleep, and god, did I get it – four hours of bliss. It completely knocked me out, and I was on a low dosage. Sadly, no amount of begging got me a second dose for more naps. Nothing particularly weird happened, and it doesn’t affect baby.
c) Entonox – oh my, this was good initially. I say initially, as nobody actually showed me what to do with this. So I started taking the gas and air all the time, as contractions came and went. Apparently you only use it when the contractions happen – me, I was just one gas and air guzzling person, this kind of crazy beat going around my head, the focus on the ceiling with a sort of Dr Who style tunnel everywhere else, until I became less out-of-it and then I’d just point at the ceiling, and go “ooh, what’s that?” and giggle uncontrollably, slurring my words, much to Shaun’s amusement. The ceiling thing I was pointing at was just a light fitting. I have no idea why it was so funny. Annoyingly, after 4 hours, a midwife said “what on EARTH are you doing?” and taught me how to take the entonox properly. Not long after that it made me feel sick. I think I od’d on it – though it leaves your system quickly, so again, no damage to madam. God, initially it was GOOD though. I can understand why (allegedly) the kids in Croydon have switched to entonox to get their highs.
d) Syntocinon – the dreaded drip. It works, contractions came on quickly, almost too quickly. Janice did tell me if I was ever to have this, that I should get an epidural. No amount of crying and sort of tantruming (I am ashamed, but it was painful) could make it happen sooner, due to the anaesathist being in an emergency c-section. I still have a nice darkened bruise on my hand. So yes, I pass on Janice’s information to any future mums-to-be. Get an epidural, and if you have to wait, muddle through it all using entonox and a TENS machine. I did it, and you can. Honest. No damage to madam, either.
e) Epidural – this arrived an hour and a half after the drip, and god, it was GOOD. Although being told to keep still when you’re mid-contraction isn’t so great. (though letting them know you are mid-contraction is recommended) – after the anasthetic took effect it was bliss, I’d have my syntocinon topped up for more contractions, and have the epidural topped up for more pain relief, then I’d just deal with the contractions with gas and air, and the tens machine, while wanting to sleep. Don’t let this put you off, in any way. Again, no damage to madam, and it made everything a ton more bearable. Once it had been decided I’d be having a c-section, I was even able to have my levels fiddled around with, and get a couple of hours sleep. Bliss!! Add to that, in my NCT classes I had epidurals as my research topic, so I had the entonox beats in my head, and the bits of knowledge I’d picked up, all coming in as random lyrics for some weird song. It was odd. Plus with the section, it meant I was ready very quickly. Thank god.
I feel like I’ve missed a drug or two, but I think I’ve the main ones covered there. I can still remember the entonox beats well, they often come back when I’m tired. Right, H needs a cuddle.