"The anaesthetist was nowhere in sight!"
After insisting on an epidural to ease the pain of a natural birth, the anaethetist never came! Laurika Jacobs describes her painful, but rapid labour, and finally giving birth to her beautiful baby girl

Surprise pregnancy

We’ve never finally decided to call it quits with having children, but wasn’t sure if we were up for it again... our 2 girls were big enough to take care of their own basic needs which gave me some degree of ‘freedom’ to do things I could not do for the past 8 years.

In November last year I did a home pregnancy test after missing my period for the second time - thinking it is stress related – only to find out that I am already 3.5 months pregnant! As you can imagine, there is no time to prepare yourself mentally for the pregnancy as you are already pregnant!

The pregnancy

The pregnancy went very well and I had no health issues at all, no nausea, no aches or pains, just the normal discomfort as my tummy grew bigger and bigger.

It's a girl!

Seeing that we already have two beautiful girls we prepared ourselves that this will definitely be a boy and that his name will be Phillip... big was our surprise when the doctor confirmed over and over again that we are having another little girl!


I immediately accepted the news and started looking forward to her birth. I had given natural birth with both my previous pregnancies so I did not even consider any other option this time...except that I definitely want an epidural. (I was only given pain medication with the birth of my second child and thus remember the pain quite clearly..)


At 39 weeks I was tired (I could clearly feel the difference between being pregnant at 29 and again at age 34) I asked the doctor if he would check the babies weight and if he would possibly consider inducing me on the Monday morning, he agreed.


I arrived at the hospital on Sunday evening and had quite a good night’s rest. The next morning the nurse woke me up at 4:30 and prepared me for the birth. They moved me to the first stage labour room and started inducing me at 8:05 am – the nurse did a quick check and confirmed that my cervix was still posterior and that I have not started dilating at all yet.

Contractions began and the anaesthetist was nowhere to be seen

The contractions started within 3 minutes after the drip was introduced and the pain was extremely intense from the word go. I asked for the epidural but was told that the anaesthetist was busy in theatre and would come the minute he finished.

The pain became worse and worse by the minute. The next moment my doctor came in and manually broke my water (very painful experience in itself!) The pain then seemed to become even more intense and the anaesthetist was nowhere in sight!

I asked for something to relieve the pain but was told that the anaesthetist would be there any second and the pain would then obviously subside totally after the epidural!

Preparing me for the birth

Needless to say at 8:50 am I felt a very strong sensation to push ... my husband called the nurse and she quickly did a check again – I was 7cm dilated! She immediately pushed me to the theatre and prepared me for the birth.

Rapid labour

The next moment my doctor burst through the door and started preparing me for the episiotomy. Amay was born at 9:05am, 1 hour after the labour started and of course without a single drop of pain medication!

A beautiful baby girl

She weighed 3.333kg at birth and was 53cm tall. She is 8 weeks old now and weighs in at 5.4kg – gorgeous little girl! Although this was an extremely and intensely painful experience I am glad to say that I was up and about taking a bath within 2 hours after the birth, I went home the next day and adopted my normal routine within a week. Definitely worth the pain!

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