Babies, Parenting, Popular Stuff

I did something during labour that might save a few lives

Carla McConnell by Carla McConnell
April 14th, 2017

Before having my first baby I had visions of my perfect labour. I know right. I would deliver my baby naturally, drug free with minimal pain, looking fierce and fabulous as I easily breastfed my newborn. Safe to say that didn’t go to plan at ALL. It was messy and long and sooo painful, and I begged like a starving woman for any kind of pain relief. The photos of me post birth are awful; I’m covered in poo, my baby’s or mine I’m not sure, and I looked like I had been ten rounds in a boxing ring.

I had fantasised about the moments of bonding I would have when I first saw my baby but in reality I was just so glad it was over. I loved my baby but honestly the main thing I felt was relief.

The one thing I felt really pleased about as I lay there with a screaming baby feeling battered and bruised, was that I had made the decision to donate my baby’s cord blood. When my midwife had approached me about donating my baby’s cord blood during pregnancy, my first reaction was hell NO. Especially when I found out that it required two extra people in the room at the exact moment of birth. I was already overthinking who was going to be in the room as it was.

That's me just LOOOOVING labour

That’s me just LOOOOVING labour

After reading about what cord blood could do to help other people, I agreed to do it. Cord blood is normally thrown away after the birth but it’s a source of blood stem cells for patients who need a bone marrow transplant. Cord blood that isn’t a perfect match is more effective because the body is less likely to react against it.

You can also pay to bank your baby’s cord blood should they need it at a future date. After looking into it I realised it was something I couldn’t afford so agreed to donate the cord blood.

As my baby entered the world to her screams and mine, two cord blood midwives took the cord blood. To be honest I don’t even remember them being there. You could say I had my mind on other things. They came by the next day to ask me some health questions and I didn’t even recognise them. Ha!

Twelve months later I got a call out of the blue to tell me after rigorous testing the cord blood has passed all the tests and was actually going on to help people. I was so majorly chuffed. Something I had produced, that would have otherwise been thrown away, was going to save lives. It was an incredible feeling. I can’t wait to tell my daughter what we did together from the moment we met.

This isn’t a sponsored post just something we think is an ace thing to do.

Would you donate your baby’s cord blood?