Mom and Baby

At about 39 weeks, my maternity dress billowed, and I was ready to burst (with excitement, of course, to meet my baby!). But my doctor surprised me with a new mission: “Walk more!” This came despite managing my gestational diabetes well with diet alone – no medication needed! However, it turned out this wasn’t just about healthy habits. There was a potential complication – a baby bigger than usual, a condition called fetal macrosomia.

Fetal macrosomia can complicate vaginal delivery and put the baby at risk of injury during birth. It also increases the baby’s risk of health problems later on. So, with a mix of excitement and determination to avoid any potential issues, I took my doctor’s advice seriously. Little did I know, the walking wouldn’t last much longer.

False Alarm

I first felt the contractions around the afternoon of October 29 while working on a client’s project. I was rushing to finish the magazine articles and layout and submit them before giving birth. That night, though, the pain from the contractions became unmanageable.

Sure that I was in labor, I told Neil to go home early and take me to Perpetual Hospital. We hurried to the labor and delivery room with the emergency hospital bag, some cash, and the patient folder the hospital had asked us to bring. I was given a clean patient gown while waiting for my doctor to check me.

Admission would only happen if I reported that my water had broken.

They checked my dilation and the strength of my contractions. Though I was only 2 cm dilated, the contractions were excruciating. They checked the baby’s heart rate and the strength of my contractions with a Nonstress Test (NST). Because the baby’s heart rate was normal and my contractions did not intensify, the doctor dismissed me and asked me to return the next day for an ultrasound.

Exhausted and on Edge

Every creak of the bed, every rustle of fabric sent a jolt through me. Sleep was a distant dream, replaced by a gnawing worry that the contractions would return. By 7 am, dark circles hung beneath my eyes, mirroring Neil’s. We were a mess, but fueled by a desperate need for answers.

Perpetual Succour. The very name felt ominous this morning. We navigated the sterile halls, the fluorescent lights adding to my growing anxiety. The Outpatient Department loomed ahead, a bottleneck for hopeful mothers like me. We joined the queue, the tension thick enough to cut with a scalpel.

My turn came. The resident doctor, young and brisk, performed the internal exam. Her pronouncement echoed in the sterile room: “Two centimeters. The baby isn’t ready yet.”

Disappointment washed over me, quickly followed by a fresh wave of panic. Protocol dictated an ultrasound. Lunch could wait. Every minute felt like an eternity as I waited for the results.

Back in the Outpatient area, I practically shoved the ultrasound printout at a nearby resident. Her brow furrowed as she studied it. A beat of silence stretched into an agonizing minute. Then, the bombshell: “Your amniotic fluid levels are low.”

My mind reeled. How could I have not noticed? Panic clawed at my throat. The doctor’s voice, clipped and professional, cut through the fog. “We need to admit you. Now.”

The walk to the labor room felt like a marathon. Each step was a struggle, my fear morphing into a cold dread. As they wheeled me into the admission area, a single thought hammered into my head: this wasn’t how it was supposed to be.

The Wait and the What-Ifs

The sterile white walls of the admission area swam before my eyes. “Admit me. Now,” the doctor’s words echoed in my head, a stark reminder of the urgency.

This wasn’t just about discomfort anymore; it was about the well-being of my tiny passenger. The thought of deadlines and unfinished work became background noise. All that mattered now was getting the best care for both of us.

Neil, his hand a reassuring anchor in mine, had to stay behind with my phone and belongings. He’d wait until I delivered our child, a silent promise hanging between us. A cold knot slowly formed in my stomach.

Being whisked into a room bustling with nurses and the whir of equipment was a new experience entirely. Blood pressure checks, an IV insertion, a rapid-fire barrage of questions – I answered through a haze of worry, tinged with a sliver of something else… anticipation.

The thought of finally meeting the little life growing inside me was intoxicating. Yet, amidst the excitement, a seed of doubt lingered. My siblings’ recent birthing experiences echoed in my mind: inductions at 2 centimeters. My premonition proved true.

In the labor room, they started me on Oxytocin, a medication to help my cervix dilate. By 3 AM on Oct. 30th, I’d reached 6 centimeters. Time stretched and blurred. Then, around 11 AM on October 31st, a resident doctor made a decision – they would artificially break my water to accelerate labor. But even at 8 centimeters, the baby was not moving lower.

Relief and Uncertainty

Tired, I could barely fight the waves of pain that crashed over me. The birth I’d envisioned, a beautiful, natural beginning for our family, was slipping away, replaced by a terrifying unknown. All I craved was a sliver of relief. “Pain meds,” I croaked, my voice barely audible over the roar of pain.

But epidurals weren’t an option. Time stretched on, each minute a battle against the relentless contractions.

Finally, the doctor spoke and in the haze of pain, all I ever heard was, “C-section.”

Relief, warm and unexpected, flooded me. It wasn’t the birth I’d planned, but it was the path to getting my baby here, safely.

The operating room loomed. Fear prickled at the edges of my relief, but the promise of meeting my child eclipsed it.

The anesthesiologist’s instructions were a blur – fetal position, spine injection. My body, swollen and heavy, felt like it was rebelling against this new demand. Yet, I complied, driven by a primal urge to see my baby.

The prick of the needle was a pinprick compared to the storm raging within me. As the medication coursed through, a wave of relief and drowsiness washed over me.

Welcome to the World, Cyd!

They said I might see the baby before sleep claimed me. At precisely 12:29 in the afternoon, Cyd was born. At birth, he weighed 7 pounds, 3 ounces. He was 51 cm tall. A blurry vision swam into focus – a tiny face, wrinkled and perfect.

“Hello, baby,” I rasped, wanting to call him by his name, but the words wouldn’t come. The handsome young man knew my voice and stopped crying, instantly recognizing me. Before taking my newborn to the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) for examination, they let me give him a kiss on the cheek. Sleep swallowed me whole.

The recovery room was the next thing I registered. A nurse’s voice informed me the baby was safe in the nursery. Relief turned to a single tear that traced a path down my cheek. It was done. The ordeal was over. My baby, the tiny life I’d carried for so long, was here, healthy and strong. And I had survived. In that quiet room, a new chapter began, one etched not in the birth plan I’d envisioned, but in the raw, fierce love that bloomed in my heart for my child.

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By Issa

12 thoughts on “My Labor Story Is Something I Never Expected”
  1. Omg!! I remembered mine when I told my OB to do CS because the contractions were so brutal. But Thank God and to my OB I pushed thru Normal delivery. 12hrs labor is not easy.
    I had my mat package at Cebu Doctors.

  2. Hello Kaela, the pain we go through can’t be put in words, right?

    Thank you for reading and for affirming that this is almost every first-time mom’s experience.. 😘

  3. hi, do you have idea if they allow husband to be present in the delivery room?thank you

  4. Hi Rosemarie, I don’t know for sure. I doubt they would allow a husband inside the delivery room. But feel free to inquire by email ( or phone (032-233-8620 local 120). Take care and have a safe delivery.

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