Birth Stories

Birthing During COVID – Shannon’s Experience

birthing during covid

In this post, Shannon shares her positive experience of birthing during COVID-19. We have developed Information for Parents and FAQs on birthing during COVID-19. We hope you find them useful. 

I gave birth to my second daughter, Bronte, on the 3rd of April. My due date was the 6th of April, a few days before Easter. I went overdue with my first baby, so my OB had already discussed booking in an induction a before the long weekend. I was originally not keen on being induced as I’d heard all sorts of scary things, but my OB assured me that second babies were usually much easier to induce than first babies. This together with the fact that I had been in a lot of pain and discomfort for much of my pregnancy was enough to convince me to schedule an induction for 40+3.

At the time that I went in for my routine 39-week appointment, the COVID situation was escalating quite quickly and I was starting to get a bit worried about what would happen if there was an outbreak at the hospital. I was also getting quite concerned about vulnerable family members, namely my mum who we were counting on to look after our toddler while I was in labour. I asked the OB if he could move my induction forward and he did by a few days for when I was 39+4.

The hospital had implemented strict rules around visitors – maternity patients were permitted 1 visitor for the duration of their stay, including during labour. Everyone had their temperature taken upon arrival. My husband and I were quizzed by our midwife to assess our risk – had we travelled overseas/interstate, been exposed to anyone with COVID, did we have any symptoms etc.

The induction went perfectly, I had the prostaglandin gel applied at 7:30am and started contracting shortly afterwards. By 10:30am I was 3cm dilated and my OB broke my waters, and 1 hour after that I gave birth. That last bit was fast and furious with no pain relief!

It was a bit strange being in hospital with no visitors. My husband had to go home to our toddler but came back each day for several hours. I was pretty sad that my toddler couldn’t come and meet her baby sister, but we FaceTimed every day which was better than nothing. It may have even worked out better as it was a low key way for the toddler to be introduced to her new sibling. Apart from no visitors, it was all business as usual in the hospital, and it was actually quite nice to have such uninterrupted bonding time with my new baby. 

As my husband wasn’t there at night the midwives were extra helpful overnight, doing whatever they could to maximise how much rest I had. I chose to stay only 3 nights (instead of the standard 4) so I could get home to my husband and toddler.

Since arriving home just over 2 weeks ago we have all been isolating except for a couple of trips out for essentials. It has actually been pretty magical to spend so much time with just our little family and soak up our beautiful newborn.

If you are seeking support for birth-related trauma, please contact our Peer2Peer Support service to connect with one of our Peer Mentors.

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