Beth and Richard - first baby
So it all went pretty quick!
I was at a friends house for a Christmas gathering on the 29th of December.
I felt a couple of cramp like pains during the evening at about 8pm, but didn’t
say anything to anyone as I thought they were Braxton Hicks, which meant I might
be having a baby in a few days time!
Had another more painful one on the way home about 9.30pm, then I had more so I
started timing them.
Soon after I had to let my midwife know they were real contractions as they were
every 7 minutes apart and lasting for a minute. She said to call when they were every
two minutes or less apart. It all went very quick, no chance to be bored!!
At first I could do something for the 5 minutes before the next contraction, but soon I couldn’t do anything in between contractions as the pain got so much. So I managed to move from the living room and get in the bath, and my husband, Rich, read out the script to me to try and get me to relax. It really helped. When I was relaxed the pain wasn’t so bad as when I tensed up.
Every time I had a contraction I would squeeze his hand and he would stop reading. Pretty soon we measured contractions as two minutes apart; then less than a minute apart. Whilst Rich went to pick up our midwife (and friend) I had the urge to push! Thank God when she checked me when she arrived I was 9cm dilated although she told me I was 8! I was having nightmares that I would only be 2cm.
We shot to hospital arriving about 2am. They had the pool ready for me on arrival, but I went on the bed first at which point my waters broke. The waters had meconium in, so I couldn’t use the pool and had to be monitored with a strap so had to lie on my back.
At 2.55am on the 30th William was born!
He was monitored in an incubator for about 30 minutes and we stayed in hospital during the day so he could be checked then we took home our fit and healthy perfect baby boy that evening.
Now William is 6 months old and the happiest baby I know!. Having him is the best thing to happen to me and Rich. He’s the best!.
I really do feel using the script, and going to your relaxing place and mainly just breathing deeply helped me. As well as being in the water of course.
Beth and Rich attended group classes with Birth Wight in November 2015
Real life birth stories from across the Isle of Wight
IOW birth stories 2016
While we've actually had over 40 babies born this year, we understand that having a new baby means it often takes a while for new parents to write up their stories for sharing...watch this space for more soon!
Annistasia and Jared - second baby
After an "unsuccessful sweep" on the Wednesday, we returned home to wait things out and see if anything would happen before a repeat visit for monitoring on the Friday. During that time, I lost my plug and had a show. Things were going somewhere!
On Thursday evening my surges were coming good and strong, and by 2am I had woken Jared to take me to hospital. My cottage by the sea had a permanent new resident. An hour on CTG proved my surges were 1 minute long and 5 minutes apart. We decided to go home and wait things out until I felt we needed to go back. They continued until we got back to the hospital on Friday, where being out flat on my back for monitoring ceased all surges. At this point I was 1cm dilated, so we knew we were in for the long ride. Sent home again, but with more monitoring planned for Saturday morning.
Monitoring showed that I was still having surges, and where I had been having surges an induction was reasonable, but using a balloon rather than pessaries as to reduce the risk of scar rupture from my previous c-section. Go home, get some rest, back in for 7pm for induction. We had dinner and put Aurora, our toddler, to bed at my mums then headed to the hospital.
By 9pm I had been taken to labour suite to have the balloon fitted, however, I was dilated enough not to need it and the doctor attempted to break my waters. The membranes were so stuck to baby's head he could only graze them. Fast forward 5 minutes, one big strong surge and they broke! A few giggles with the consultant and onto the birth ball, I did not want to be still!
The next 9 hours I had to switch between monitoring on the bed, birth ball and standing. I was drug free, using my hypnobirthing and Jared to get me through each ever increasing surge.
My body should have been progressing well, however we hadn't made it past 3cm. My cervix was effacing, but it felt like no real progress was being made. I'd had less than 5 hours sleep since my surges had started on the Wednesday night, I was beginning to tire and lose my focus. Luckily Jared snapped me back into shape. On went the MP3s and back in the zone. After talks with the doctors and midwives, using our BRAINS we came to the decision that the hormone drip would be the best way forward for my chance of vbac. However, this would accelerate my surges and I was already reaching my limits. We decided on the epidural. This way the pain could be monitored and kept at bay all whilst my body could progress to do its thing! Especially as I needed to be monitored in the bed now, and that what was making me lose focus.
Another few hours pass, another check! Surges coming thick and fast and my body was progressing nicely. First dose of GBS anti biotics. The next half of the day consists of the hormone drip being increased, decreased, increased because baby wasn't always reacting well to it. Another examination, and what no one expects... 7cm! We are all In shock but happy to have made it here! Another increase of the drip, another 4 hours. Things started to slowly take a wrong direction. Baby was having more blips with each surge and a feel of my tummy and internal shows that actually, baby was OP and got their head at a funny angle. That was why each surge felt so powerful, baby was back to back with nowhere to go. There was still hope for them turning though.
I was tired, so was Jared, but we tried to stay positive and rest where possible. My epidural was only lasting an hour and a half max at a time. I'd not eaten in 19 hours at this point, and was only having Polo mints in case of emergency surgery being needed. More monitoring, close monitoring for babies sake. A few more hours pass and I'm due another examination.
Poor babe. Poor mummy. Not a single cm more dilated, in fact unevenly dilated now, and baby had gotten stuck.
The call was made for a section. I cried and mourned my vbac, but I was also celebrating how far I had come, how hard I had tried and how thankful I was for the opportunity to try. We were told there would be no rush for the section, and to take our time, then all of a sudden Jared was whipped away to scrub up.
Boring paper work, a shaving, piercings out, meet the team. It took a few attempts to top up my Epi enough so I couldn't feel a thing, but soon the procedure was underway.
We asked for a gentle c-section and used our techniques to stay calm and relaxed, and were able to watch our little baby being born into this world by the drapes being dropped. Little one was taken away to go and get warm, so we waited anxiously, and finally he was placed on to my chest. Nameless, but beautiful. Into recovery with Daddy for a few hours where he latched on by himself and I had a cheese and cucumber sandwich, the best thing id ever tasted!
Jared was able to stay the night and it was fantastic because I was very numb and sore from surgery and couldn't lift our boy out of the cot. Later that night Jared got to trim his cord. Still nameless throughout the night, but feeding amazingly. In the morning our darling boy had a name; Orion Zephyr Taylor. The hunter, the God of the west wind. He didn't scream or cry and I think that's because even though he ended up a section, we remained calmed and informed at all times.
The techniques learnt and practised through hypnobirthing gave us the ability and confidence to attempt a VBAC, battle for our right to, and also make the right choices when we needed to.
Annistasia and Jared attended group classes with Birth Wight in May 2016
Kendall and Will - second baby
Friday afternoon, my hind water broke while I was out, so we made our way home and called the hospital to let them know.
I spent most of the night on my birthing ball, but nothing really progressed. The midwives called in the morning and wanted to check me since my surges weren't progressing. They said if I hadn't started to progress by 3pm, they wanted me in the hospital so they could induce me. I wasn't entirely pleased with this information and my husband and I thought about it for a bit.
But, so far the labour was becoming exactly like my first and so we decided to go into the hospital to be induced. I was induced at 6pm and the next check wasn't until midnight. While we waited we went for a walk and had some fun with the outdoor gym at the hospital!
When I felt I needed rest or to focus I shut my eyes, put my headphones in and listened to my hypnobirthing mp3. This is was helped me the most.
Once I got into delivery ward the mp3's are what got me through.
I had gas and air and an epidural (which wasn't the plan but I was happy with my decision as I couldn't have the birthing pool). I needed as much rest as I could get so I would have the energy to delivery, so I listened to my mp3's most of the time while I was in there.
I seem to have a problem with walking epidurals as they tend to numb one of my legs and so I can't walk! Therefore, I had to deliver sat in the bed. Because of all the rest I was able to get, I had the energy to delivery Walter on my own with coaching from the midwives and my husband. No forceps needed and no tearing/episiotomy (which I had with my first).
I was in so much more control with this delivery than I was with my first and the delivery room had a much greater vibe/atmosphere.
Hypnobirthing really helped me relax and get much need rest to be able to breathe/push the baby out. My husband was really good at reminding me to listen to my music and rest. We were able to ask the right questions and most decisions happened on our terms. In the end we had a happy healthy boy and that's what matters!
Kendall and Will attended group classes with Birth Wight in April 2016
Katy and Matt - being 'overdue', pressured and confident
We had planned for a home water birth, but tried to remain open-minded that things may not necessarily pan out that way. As it turned out, everything in our plan that we specifically didn't want actually happened, but we still feel we have a really positive story to tell, as for us it was the right birth on the day to ensure Seb's safe arrival.
I didn't even have a show by 18 days 'over'. Putting any form of intervention off this long over 40 weeks made the hospital really twitchy, but we were in for monitoring daily and knew that Seb was fine. His size, weight, water, placenta, cord pressure... All perfect. It however didn't do much to support our argument that he just wasn't ready, which is where our Cove of Confidence kicked in! I'd carried Seb for that long and had the perfect pregnancy - I had no reason to doubt that both he and my body knew what to do when they were ready.
Unfortunately not everyone shares this belief, but 42 weeks is still 'full term' so albeit with a bit of a fight on our hands we firmly stood our ground. We wouldn't have been able to remain as strong as we did without the confidence hypnobirthing had instilled in us.
Eventually we decided that because my body appeared to be ready, but Seb still wasn't quite low enough, he perhaps needed a little help. We didn't want to wait for a problem before helping him so we agreed to induction on the basis that if I had surges as a result of the first phase this could be enough to shift Seb into position so my body would kick in.
The first phase of induction kicked things off strong and regularly but this didn't have the effect we were hoping for. We tried it again a day later but the surges didn't feel as strong so I couldn't see how this would allow them to try phase two of the induction process. As I struggled with the examinations (not everyone does - I'm just long and an odd shape... hypnobirthing helped here too!) I decided for them not to examine me again on the basis that Seb still hadn't moved despite me having strong surges for 20+ hours and if they couldn't get to break my waters after that then the chances of them suddenly being able to get there after the second, weaker set of surges were highly unlikely.
This all made us both feel that something was wrong. Seb was fine in himself but we couldn't help but feel there's another reason why he just couldn't find his way down. So rather than be examined again then have to go for a cesarean because induction couldn't proceed any further, we elected to go straight for a cesarean. We still implemented our hypnobirthing techniques as it's not a decision that was taken lightly and although I was trying to convince myself and Matt that I was completely fine, I don't think that was actually true!
Matt continued with his reassurance and soothing strokes all of which really helped. We had an amazing midwife that day and we put a lot of our positive experience down to her. She really cared about what we'd been through and spent so much time helping us through the options. She knew what our original plan was so made sure that we still got to play our birth music in the theatre (the surgeons loved it too!), we had delayed cord clamping, Matt announced we had a son and we both had skin to skin immediately.
Eventually when Seb arrived it transpired that even though he was OK - no signs of stress - his cord was around his neck, which was preventing him from moving down. Looking back on the birth, we now know we were right to stick to our guns and that we made the right, informed decisions. Bearing in mind they try to induce you the day you reach 40 weeks, Seb came out 18 days 'over' as a perfect 40 week baby covered in Vernix. We were also right in knowing that something wasn't quite OK, so the decision to skip more examinations was a good move.
Without Matt keeping up his hypnobirthing partner techniques and keeping me on track when I was wavering I can't imagine how it would have gone.
For our story though, having the confidence and trust in ourselves and, in some cases, battling various managers, doctors and consultants who figured that perhaps we were just stupid and didn't understand, hypnobirthing really kicked in. Without that Seb would have been here way too early and it would no doubt have been a more complicated journey. Some babies take the full 42 weeks to cook! Trust your instincts. You'll never do anything to risk your baby. Make sure you get all the information so you can make a fully informed choice and stick to your guns. For something that's so statistic and guideline driven, they bank everything on an ESTIMATED date. Everything post birth is baby-led, so why not during pregnancy? Your baby has got this far, believe in yourself and in them. No statistic can make up for that.
Katy and Matt attended group classes with Birth Wight in July 2016
Louise and Ben - 10 days 'overdue' and over 10lbs
I finally had my baby.... Jude David born on the 14th September at 5.53am,weighing 10pounds 1.5oz.
I had a very long labour from what I can remember.... and went over due. I was due on the 4th (but he was well worth the wait).
I ended up having two sweeps, the second one on the Monday worked; my waters broke that afternoon. Had a few surges that evening and through the night. I used my hypnobirthing techniques and music, which helped.
They asked me to go into hospital Tuesday morning to be checked....only 1cm!!! Had to go back later that day at 3pm and I was 2cm.... They then had to break the rest of my waters. All contractions stopped after that. I then ended up being induced at 6pm that day as the rest of my waters had been broken since Monday, which was too long to be left.
I was monitored, due to being induced and I had a drip in, so couldn't move around really. So we made the best of the situation, Ben brought a coloured light in to make the room more relaxing and I had my music with me. I used the relaxation techniques practiced which really helped.
Carried on for what seemed many many hours.... only 4cm! So I asked for an epidural and soon after I was ready to push.
After 20 more minutes of pushing an emergency c-section was sugested; baby was stuck and his heart rate was dipping slightly.
When I got into theatre I ended up having a full general anaesthetic as the local didn't work for me, which meant Ben had to leave and wait outside. Eventually baby was born safe and sound and all was well.
They said that the cord had wrapped around his body during labour so that would have caused possible problems if I had continued to deliver naturally. Everything happens for a reason and I was glad I did end up having a c-section. We were just happy he was delivered safely.
Although this wasn't the 'ideal' labour or our birth plan, the hypnobirthing really helped relax us and prepared us to work together during labour. Thank you.
Louise and Ben attended group classes with Birth Wight in August 2016
Emma and Clint - baby number 2 born at home
I had a baby! And I had her at home!
It was a bit scary after she was born as she needed help with her breathing so we had to go in to hospital and then had to stay as she had an infection... but I did it!Starting to feel proud of having a home birth now.
I was doing well at staying patient till 40+8 when I had reflexology and then at 40+9 I had a sweep in the morning.
Surges started straight away every 15 minutes, but I had the family over for roast dinner which kept me distracted.
I went for a walk about 4.30 with Clint and our daughter Lottie to the seafront; it took me an hour to walk back so I knew they were stepping up a bit. Regular surges were from about 9pm, so I put the Wise Hippo instrumental music on ( which was Clint's job to keep on repeat untilI had her!) with my TENS machine.
The room was lit with a beautiful blue light and plenty of candles, it felt very serene.
I got into the pool at about 1am and she was born at 4.29am. The pushing bit was hard work as she was 9lb 11oz!!
It was just how I imagined it would be, until she was born. She's all OK, so that's all that matters.
Thank you for teaching us hypnobirthing, I really enjoyed the sessions and felt it definitely helped in the build up to Alice being born.
Emma and Clint attended group classes with Birth Wight in August 2016
April and Sean - second Birth Wight baby, first 'head down' baby - homebirth
At 38.5 weeks with baby number 2, we had planned a home birth. This was our second birth using The Wise Hippo birthing programme.
I woke in the morning (at 7.07am) to my waters breaking. I was feeling very excited to meet my baby boy.
The surges began quickly, so my husband Sean rang maternity to inform them as we had planned a home birth and my first labour was rather quick. I got into the bath to relax and listen to my Wise Hippo mp3s whilst Sean prepared everything and made the necessary phone calls.
The first midwife arrived quickly. My Mum and Mother-in-law all arrived soon after. as requested everyone remained quiet in order for me to focus on deep relaxation and i was left on my own with Sean whilst i breathed through each surge. The midwife occasionally checked on us to monitor baby's heart rate etc. I felt very close to Sean during the labour and felt extremely relaxed and supported with him by my side. I put my arms around him during surges and he helped me stay focused on my breathing.
After a couple of hours of relaxation my surges were very close together and I knew it wouldn't be long until baby arrived. When I began to have the urge to 'push', I requested gas and air to help me manage each surge. The second midwife was also present at this point.
I got out of the bath for baby's delivery. At this stage the labour began to get a little difficult! I used the gas and air and the midwife examined me to check progress. Baby was having difficulty and began to show signs of distress ,so medical intervention was required by the two very skilled midwives.
I used all my strength to push baby out and he was born at 11:07am, exactly 4 hours after my waters broke! Baby arrived in the 'back to back' position and his cord was wrapped around his neck twice; this explained the difficult delivery! Our healthy baby boy was handed to me for skin-to-skin contact immediatley and after a short while Sean cut the cord.
The hypnobirthing techniques allowed me to stay calm and preserve the energy needed for when baby was being delivered. it also allowed me to be confident in my decision making for my birth and gave me a positive mindset which kept me focused throughout. Baby Theo weighed 7lb and was born on 28th Dec 2016.
April and Sean attended private classes with Birth Wight in 2014 and a refresher workshop in 2016
Laura and Mike - second baby, following anxious first birth
I started my hypnobirthing journey at 25 weeks pregnant. It was my third pregnancy and I was very anxious. I had previously had a miscarriage and then my rainbow baby (Harriet) was born at 28 weeks, weighing 2lb 13, she spent 8 weeks in NICU. Although I was under consultant care for this pregnancy, there was still a risk that I could have another premature baby and this made me anxious and a nervous wreck.
I hadn’t been in control of my labour with Harriet and I wanted this pregnancy and labour to be more enjoyable and for me to stay in control.
As soon as I started the classes with Helen I knew this was the right thing for me and the classes would help me.
I became more relaxed and confident about being in control. I used the MP3’sto help relax each evening and to help me feel more confident when I had appointments with the midwife and consultant, as I was already feeling like I might not get my choice of using the pool for a water birth or the midwife led unit as I was considered a high risk pregnancy.
After 2 weeks of the course with Helen I had to have the dreaded GTT test to see if I had gestational diabetes; I had previously had it when pregnant with Harriet. To my disappointment I received the dreaded phone call to say 'yes' I had it again and would need to check blood sugars every day and change my diet.
At first I was really upset and annoyed that yet again I couldn’t have a normal smooth pregnancy. I listened to one of the MP3’s and thought positively about the situation. I decided I could do this and stay diet control without the intervention of medication if I thought positively and used the techniques of the course. The diabetic nurse was impressed with my positive attitude and determination to stay diet controlled.
Both my husband (Mike) and I felt the course was really beneficial and he was 100% engaged in the techniques, reading the birth partner script, relaxing me with the soothing strokes and listening to the MP3’s. He wanted me to enjoy this pregnancy and could already see the difference the course was having on my attitude.
At 27+5 weeks I met with my new consultant who looked after the diabetic ladies. I was very anxious as we were getting close to 28 weeks (Harriet’s gestation). I thought about what I had learnt from Helen and used BRAINS to help me ask questions and discuss my concerns. The consultant was very good and explained everything and was impressed that we had lots of questions. She admitted me to hospital straight away for steroids to help strengthen the babies lungs, just in case this baby decided to make an early appearance. I did panic at first, but after listening to my MP3’s I calmed myself down and saw it as a positive this would help protect my baby.
During my 2 night stay I listened to my MP3’s to ensure I stayed focused and positive on what was best for keeping my baby safe and inside for as long as possible.
We had several false starts between weeks 30-34 and several times the midwives thought I was in early labour as I was having surges and showing signs of preterm labour. One particular day I was 34 weeks I had gone in for my monitoring on the CTG machine (this was now a regular every 3 day event as I was unable to feel baby moving a lot) when on the machine it picked up I was having surges every 3 minutes and they were quite painful taking my breath away. As I listened to my MP3’s and used my breathing techniques Mike massaged my back using the soothing strokes learnt in class which helped me relax and stay focused.
After 6 hours everything stopped. The doctor carried out a special examination and test to see if I was in preterm labour which both myself and Mike used BRAINS to decide whether the examination was what we wanted. We decided to have the test and luckily it came back negative, it had just been a false start.
I continued to be monitored every 3 days on the CTG monitor and had a growth scan every 2 weeks due to the gestational diabetes. I was enjoying this pregnancy more and felt more in control. I was told that due to the gestational diabetes and my previous history I was a high risk and this ruled out the pool and midwife LED unit. At first I was disappointed but after discussing the reasons with 2 of the SOM I understood why and agreed that it wasn’t the right option this time, but they agreed that I would be able to remain mobile even if I went on the sliding scale for the diabetes. I impressed the diabetic nurse and my consultant as my positive attitude allowed me to stay diet controlled and I wasn’t put on any medication.
At 34 weeks I met with my consultant who booked my induction for 38+2 weeks this was due to the gestational diabetes and also several blood tests had shown my liver function kept rising and falling, which was a concern as this could turn into pre-eclampsia. Again I used BRAINS to discuss what the benefits and reasons for this were and what would happen if I didn’t. After discussing it at length we decided we would go ahead with the induction.
Mike couldn’t believe how I was questioning the consultant and how I had changed since completing the course. What would normal of made me an emotional mess and panic over I was taking the event in my stride and questioning if it was the best situation for me. Even family and friends had noticed a change in my attitude and my positivity, even those that made fun of me doing the hypnobirthing.
At 38 weeks, after a day at Blackgang I went up to bed to discover I was bleeding. I called maternity and they asked me to go straight up. I wasn’t concerned about leaving my 3 year old as I had organised everything to ensure my parents were looking after her and I didn’t need to worry about what was happening at home.
We arrived around 11pm and about midnight they put me onto the monitor. I started having surges every 5 minutes and was feeling a little uncomfortable. They decided to keep me in labour ward as my little girl arrived quickly last time and they wanted to make sure that like I had written in my birth plan I wanted to be calm and in control not panicked.
I listened to my MP3’s (birth affirmations and relax to nature), carried out my breathing techniques and mike massaged my back using the soothing strokes, I also walked around the room a lot and bent over the bed. I was really focused and soon couldn’t feel the surges being painful. The midwife examined me at 1am and I was 4cm and having surges every 2-3 minutes she couldn’t believe how chilled and focused I was, she said I didn’t seem to be in any discomfort and I was really focused.
At 5am I was examined again and was 6cm but my water’s were still intact. We went for a walk around the hospital to see if we could help things along. When we got back to the labour ward I told the midwife my surges didn’t seem as frequent or as uncomfortable so back on the monitor I went. At 7am they suggested I was examined again to see if I had dilated anymore. Unfortunately I was still 6cm, my surges were now every 10 minutes. They gave me the option of having my waters broken to help restart labour as it had slowed right down. We discussed the benefits and alternatives and the impact on the baby. I decided to have my waters broken.
The Midwives then swapped shifts. I was lucky as my friend is a midwife and I was able to call her and she came in and took over my care. She discussed with us that if my surges didn’t start up again then I would need the drip as an intervention, again we discussed what was the impact on the baby, what alternatives were there. By 10:15 I was on the drip as my surges had gone and there was concern baby might become distressed.
At first I was able to continue moving around the room and doing everything I had at the start allowing me to stay focused. My midwife was very good and used the word surges all the time, she didn’t ask if I wanted pain relief as she knew in my birth plan I wanted to use hypnobirthing. It helped having my friend as my midwife as I felt more relaxed. So far I had felt in control at every stage.
At 1130 the drip really kicked in and the surges became more intense and frequent. I went to the toilet and had 4 surges as soon as I got back into the room I knew baby was moving down. I didn’t want to be on my back like I had last time and I took control and decided I wanted to be on the bed on my knees leaning over the bed.
I started to hum my baby down but soon my body was telling me to push so I was doing both humming and pushing. Mike was telling me constantly that I could do it and that my body and baby knew what to do, he also used the soothing strokes. Having him tell me I was in control and was doing everything my body needed was a great support and allowed me to focus on meeting my baby. After a while I felt uncomfortable and was feeling a little dizzy (due to blood sugars), the midwife could see the head and she suggested I change position. At first I said 'no' as I didn’t want to be on my back, but after the next surge I decided I wanted to lie back. On the next surge my baby’s head could be seen but also they noticed that one of my waters was still intact and a bit of my cervix was hanging down. As they broke my waters and pushed my cervix up I continued humming and pushing and in my head going over the birth affirmations.
The next surge and baby’s head was out and then on the next surge my baby arrived. She did have her cord wrapped around her neck twice, but loosely. I asked for the cord clamping to be delayed and then Mike cut the cord and my beautiful baby girl was placed on me. Hannah was born at 12.15 weighing 6lb 12oz.
The whole experience was so different from my first daughter's. I remained in control the whole time and was focused on meeting my baby. I surprised myself and everyone that knows me that I didn’t need pain relief as I don’t usually have a high pain threshold but using the techniques helped me hum and push my baby out naturally with no medication.
The whole experience was magical and that was down to the hypnobirthing. Although I had a lot of bumps on the way and I didn’t get the original birth I wanted I couldn’t have asked for a better birth experience. I didn’t need to be induced and every step of the pregnancy I was in control and my anxieties disappeared and I could enjoy my pregnancy and labour which was what I wanted from the course. We now have a very happy and contented baby girl to complete our family.
Laura and Mike attended group classes with Birth Wight in January 2017
Stella and Tom - first baby, planned homebirth
We had planned for a homebirth, which turned our it wasn't meant to be but, I was really happy with how it all went regardless. The hypnobirthing classes were definitely a big help leading up to and during my labour.
I had my 38 week appointment onWednesday and went to my pregnancy yoga class as normal, but had to leave early as I thought my waters had started to break. I wasn't 100% sure on the colour so I called the maternity department who advised I come in to get checked out. Tom was still at work so I thought I'd just pop up to St Marys by myself as I didn't have any concerns at this point.
I was hooked up to a heart rate monitor and waited about 30 minutes whilst listening to my birth affirmations on repeat. When I pressed the buzzer to ask if I could go to the loo, the midwife came and her face dropped. The next thing I know there were 5/6 midwives running my bed down the corridor; Tom didn't even know I was in hospital! The baby's heart rate had dropped so the consultant was called and they continued to monitor me. His heart rate returned to normal but they continued to monitor me for another couple of hours.
In the meantime Tom came up to St Marys to be with me. The consultant advised that my waters hadn't broken and my cervix hadn't started to dilate yet. I was given the option of staying on the ward overnight or going home, but either way they weren't going to monitor me again until 9am the following morning. I opted to go home at that point but already had in my mind at that I would probably be going back to hospital to give birth just to put my mind at ease.
We got home around midnight and I had started to have very mild surges as we were leaving. I thought things would take a while to get going and I would get some sleep, but it didn't happen that way. I had a bath and a long shower which helped the surges. Tom played the relaxing soundtrack I had chosen and I continued to walk around and lean on the stairs or Tom as the surges came. I pretty much disappeared into my own little zone.
Around 4.30am the surges were approximately 1 min in duration and 1-2 minutes apart. Tom called the maternity unit who said it was up to us if we wanted to come in. We stayed at home a bit longer, returning to St Marys at 6am- I could just about get in the car at that point! I was examined on arrival and they were surprised that I was already 7 cm dilated. We went straight into a labour suite where I continued to keep moving while the surges built in intensity.
I asked the question about pain relief and was offered gas and air or a relaxant. I was retching intensely with most of the surges so didn't want gas and air in case I was actually sick. I didn't see the point in a muscle relaxant as I felt like things were progressing well and I would meet my baby soon, so I continued without anything.
The midwife on shift left soon after 8am and shortly after this I started to feel a bearing down and the urge to push. At 8.40am Jesse was born.
It wasn't the quiet birth I had seen in the hypno-birthing videos and it definitely wasn't pain free but I didn't ever feel like I couldn't do it.
I think the techniques I learnt in classes just really help me to focus and let my body do what it needed to do without any intervention.
I think it also helped that I had seen my osteopath earlier in the day and attended my yoga class so my body was physically prepared. It really didn't bother me being in hospital in the end and I think the time I got to spend at home whilst my surges progressed really allowed me to feel comfortable, but focused.
Its definitely something I would recommend to others and would do again for my next baby (no I'm not put off by more!) All in all I feel like I had good pregnancy even with the stress of moving house at the end and a really positive birth experience.
Stella and Tom attended group classes with Birth Wight in February 2017