Archive for December, 2009

I really loved reading this birth story, because it was from a mom who used Hypnobabies in a way that was best for her!   She says it wasn’t a typical “successful” Hypnobabies birth.  But I disagree, every mom who uses Hypnobabies is a success, if she feels empowered and makes the best choices for herself along the way!

Let me begin by saying that I am not your typical HB Mom. I did not decide in advance that I wanted a natural birth, rather I believed that one would be chosen for me because my previous birth was so fast. I was concerned before I began this course that so many stories talked about how they were farther along than they thought that I worried I would not know when to get to the hospital, thankfully that did not happen to me. For anyone who happens to have similar concerns, I wanted to submit my daughter’s birth story.

This was my third birth, my first two were fairly quick and easy, both with an epidural. My first birth was 8 hours but my second was only 4 hours total. For my second birth, I was at the hospital for less than 2 hours before he was born and barely had time for an epidural, which was only in place for about 15 minutes before I started pushing, so it was not at 100% effectiveness. Since my second birth went so quickly and I had heard that subsequent births get faster, I started to get worried. Going into this birth I had two primary concerns: 1. Not getting to the hospital in time, and 2. Not having time to get an epidural. So, with all that back story, here is how my birth story goes.

On Monday Morning September 21 around 7:30 AM (at 39 weeks exactly) I started having some consistent contractions, nothing too difficult, just noticeable and easily written off as BH. I had LOTS of false labor with my second birth, up to 5 hours at 3-4 minutes apart for weeks before he was born so I wasn’t too concerned at this point. They varied from 10 min to 3 min, but were averaging around 7-8 min apart, but since I hadn’t had any false labor at all with this pregnancy, I made note. I was at work and was timing them and decided that around one o’clock I should probably head home since they had been coming fairly consistently for about 4-5 hours and I should get closer to home in case this wasn’t false labor and things got more intense quickly like they did for my first two labors.

I got home around 2ish and called my Mom to ask her to come over to watch the boys since I didn’t know how long this would last or if it was the real deal, but again I anticipated that things could change quickly and I would feel better if she were here.

At home still having very manageable contractions that continued to vary from 3-12 minutes apart, still averaging around 6-7 minutes. I took a small walk (about 4 blocks) to see if it would pick up the contractions, but it didn’t. After I picked my oldest son up from the bus we all went for a walk around the neighborhood to see if that would get stuff going more. After another 1.25 miles of walking, still no change. We ordered a pizza for dinner and I spent the evening going for walks and sitting on my exercise ball to see if anything would make them more intense or closer together, but nothing changed. We put the kids to bed and talked to Mom about staying or going. Since I had been contracting all day we were pretty sure that something had to be happening soon and she decided to stay. We got ready for bed and lay down to go to sleep around 9:45 and then finally things got interesting.

At 9:50 I was laying in bed and had a really intense contraction, one that was electric through your whole body and I knew then that we had finally hit productive contractions. 10:00 another one, 10:11 and another. By 10:21 I had another very intense contraction and woke up DH. We called the doctor and decided to head in to L&D. Even though they were still spaced far apart, things moved quickly with my second birth so we were still anticipating a potentially fast birth and wanted to be in the hospital in plenty of time. Plus, I was GBS positive and needed 4 hours of IV antibiotics so we needed to keep things moving as much as possible.

I listened to my hypnosis tracks in the car ride over and it made everything very comfortable and manageable. We got into the hospital and got settled around 11:00. They did some monitoring, and started my IV for the antibiotics. I continued to labor on the birth ball and standing and was having a hard time finding a comfortable place to be. I had my hypnobabies tracks on but I really didn’t switch to off because I really needed to move through the contractions. After about 2 hours of some fairly intense contractions I was getting vocal and they were getting more difficult to manage. At around 1:00 AM I had the nurse check me when I was standing and was really surprised that I was only at 4 and a half at this point.

With my second birth, I arrived at the hospital at about the same time (11PM) and at about 1AM I was 7cm and had a baby in my arms by 1:35. I had expected this to be as fast or faster since it was a subsequent birth, but it became clear to me that this was not going to be a duplicate of my second birth. Both DH and I were getting really tired and I was losing my stamina so we decided to go for the epidural. It was put in place without incident by about 1:30 or 2AM and then we both kinda slept until about 3:15. The nurse came in to check on me around 3:15 and I had just felt a big pop and found out that my water had broken and I think they told me I was at an 8.

The nurse told me that my doctor was at home and I told her that in the past things move fast for me now so they should get her here. About 2 contractions later I was feeling ready to push and did my best to blow away the contractions. I think they called my doctor about 3 times to find out where she was, the nurse told me that they asked her to run, not walk down the hall. When the doctor arrived they broke down the bed and adjusted my mirror and we were ready to push.

Since this epidural was stronger than the previous 2 I had they needed to tell me when I was having a contraction so that I could push with it since the feeling of pressure was pretty constant. They had me push with the first contraction and told me that the baby would be born with the next contraction. They were talking and missed the next contraction on the monitor but with the next one I pushed and watched her head be born in the mirror. I saw her rotate and with the next push I delivered the rest of her. I heard everyone saying ohhh and knew before they even told me that it was a girl. All the nurses and doctors knew that we had 2 boys at home who really wanted a sister, but that we decided to be surprised. Sure enough they announced that it was a girl and set her on top of my chest while they dried her off. She was born at 3:44 AM 7lbs 5oz and 20′ long. Her brothers are over the moon in love with her and we are enjoying every minute of our new little girl.

I do have a few tips for the DH’s of Moms who have already had kids. My DH fell into old patterns (Lamaze mixed in with our version of Bradley) when things really got going. He didn’t read his HB cheat sheet or any of his notes while I was laboring, and we fell into old patterns. For those committed to a natural birth, I would recommend you essentially force your DH to practice with you, a lot. We didn’t practice together much at all, although he did read all the materials and listen to the scripts. It was just easier to fall back into old habits. He forgot all about the peace and relax cues and just asked about changing positions, or CD tracks and massaging my back etc. So for you ladies who are working with your DH for a natural birth, do your best to have him shake off his old habits and I imagine that practice with him will do wonders.

So while I know that this is not a standard HB success story, it is still a success for me. I had no false labor like I experienced with my previous births. I had plenty of “warning” that this was my birthing time, and this baby was born weeks later than any of my previous kids. I attribute all of these things to the HB course keeping my stress levels low and keeping me in tune with my body.

Like I said at the beginning, I never really wanted a drug free birth, but had assumed one would be thrust upon me. I was able to stay as comfortable as possible, and got the birth I was very happy with.

Best of luck to all the Moms waiting for their little ones!


DS 8/18/03

DS 6/1/06

DD 9/22/06

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I haven’t posted much here but got such comfort from reading positive birth stories I wanted to post mine. This is really long but it was such a great experience I couldn’t stop writing about it! The thing that really amazed me was how I never actually thought about my lightswitch once during my birthing time, but looking back on it I realize I was in center or off the whole time, it just happened automatically. Amazing!

I had been having prodromal labor for about a week before my due date, with pressure waves that started and stopped over and over again. I was trying to be patient but feeling very tired and was so ready to meet my little girl! I worked up until I was 39 weeks and three days, but over the weekend I really felt like I was too uncomfortable and exhausted to keep working, so called in and let them know I was done. That Monday was Columbus Day so my husband and son were home with me, and we spent the day just hanging around the house. The next day was my due date, I had a midwife appointment that morning and had my cervix checked, more out of curiosity than anything, and was 2 cm dilated and “soft”. I had agreed for her to strip my membranes but my cervix was too high for her to even reach. I was a little discouraged but tried to keep in mind that things can change quickly! On the way home from the midwife, I stopped at the grocery store and stocked up on basics as well as some treats for myself. I planned to spend the day resting and focusing on listening to my body, and that’s just what I did.

I spent most of the afternoon on the couch, just having the sense that my body needed rest. I was actually having almost no pressure waves all day, which was unusual after the many days of prodromal labor, but I tried not to think about it and just go with the flow. I decided to download the “Come OUT baby” track, and listened to it at about 3 pm. My husband and son got home shortly after I finished listening to the track, and I noticed that my back was aching some, which wasn’t unusual with all the prodromal labor. I fixed dinner and we ate, and by then my back was aching more, feeling just like period cramps, but I didn’t notice any pressure waves at all. At about 6:15 pm we had finished dinner and I sat down on the couch with a warm buckwheat pillow on my back. Almost as soon as I sat down I felt a trickle between my legs, I stood up quickly and ran to the bathroom, and as soon as I sat down on the toilet there was a huge gush of fluid. I was so surprised and I yelled to my husband “I think my water just broke!” He was just as surprised, but brought me a dry pair of pants and underwear. I called the midwife who said I needed to come in since I was GBS positive, so I called my mother who was going to come up to stay with my son. She lives about an hour and 20 minutes away but I was feeling fine at that point and figured that would be plenty of time. I also called my sisters who were going to come for the birth. I wanted to get my son into bed before I left, so we started his bedtime routine and got him into bed by a little before 7pm. By then I was having regular pressure waves that were getting more uncomfortable and I was having to really concentrate through them.

I told my husband he needed to get things ready, and I went down into the living room and starting timing pressure waves, I was so surprised to realize they were 2 minutes apart. I put on my headphones and started the “Easy First Stage” track. I found the most comfortable position was on my hands and knees resting my head on the couch during each pressure wave, and found myself moaning through each one, which really helped me control my breathing and get through each wave. Meanwhile my husband was running around getting things into the car and calling my mother to make sure she was coming soon since things were moving so fast! Eventually, I told my husband I really needed him, and he came and sat with me, using the “Relax” cues which worked really well. I threw up once and was so proud of my husband for not getting sick himself (which he usually does!)

Finally my mother and sister arrived, I made it out to the car while having multiple waves on the way out. During the drive I mostly kept my eyes closed and my husband did the best he could with the “Relax” cues as he drove. My sister followed us to the hospital, and once we got there brought me up the OB floor in a wheelchair while my husband parked our car. I was concentrating so hard I was hardly even aware of where I was or what was going on, just going with the flow and breathing/moaning my way through each pressure wave. They had a room ready for me and as soon as I got in there they put the monitors on. The nurses were wonderful and had clearly read my birth plan in advance, they had the lights low, never asked me about my pain, called them pressure waves, etc. I still had my headphones on, and had been listening to “Easy First Stage” and “Birthing Day affirmations” alternating since things had really picked up. I could hear them commenting on how relaxed I was, they were so impressed! The nurse tried to start an IV for the antibiotics but couldn’t get it, and after looking at both of my arms felt that the IV specialists would be more likely to get it in. Meanwhile, I finished my 20 minutes on the monitor, and was just reclining in the bed with my legs bent, eyes closed, with my husband right by my side, hand on his shoulder and whispering “Relax” with every pressure wave. I felt so supported and loved! I decided to try sitting up in the rocking chair but only lasted about 2 pressure waves because sitting up made things so intense. I moved to a chair next to the bed and tried leaning forward on some pillows but the waves were just getting more and more intense. As this was going on the IV specialist was trying to start another IV in between waves, but after a few tries the midwife asked her to stop because it was obvious things were moving too fast to make it worthwhile.

Suddenly, during a wave, my beautiful controlled moaning turned into a push, and I had the overwhelming sensation of needing to move my bowels. At the time, it didn’t even occur to me that it was the baby! I ran to the bathroom, practically throwing my iPod at my sister on the way. I sat on the toilet and pushed without even trying to, and this was the only time I felt a little out of control, I yelled a little bit because the pressure was so intense and I couldn’t stop it. My midwife was so great, and asked if she could check to make sure it was the baby’s head coming down, and it definitely was! She pulled my pants off for me and said “We need to move out of the bathroom if you can.” I basically jumped off the toilet and ran to the bed, and started kneeling on the bed on my hands and knees. I decided to try to lie on my side but after about one second in that position felt much more comfortable kneeling so went back to that. I was still panicking a little bit until my midwife said “You can do this, you’re doing fine, push gently now to let yourself stretch”. This was exactly what I needed to hear, and felt an immediate calm settle over me, I even said right out loud “Okay, I’m okay, I can do this”. One push later and I had the most amazing feeling of release as she was born. The midwife passed her to me through my legs and I looked at my baby girl for the first time. 8 lbs even, 21 inches long, born with no tears less than three and half hours after my water broke.

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First time mom who always slept through her Hypnobabies scripts, had a wonderful hospital birth and amazed all who were a part of it!

My guess date was August 30th and I was starting to get nervous about my upcoming OB app’t on August 29th, not knowing what my OB would recommend.  I had been having Braxton Hicks for about 3 weeks that would progress throughout the day while I was at work, only to subside when I got home and rested.  I kept hoping and wishing that “today was the day” and kept telling “sweetpea” that we were ready for him/her whenever he/she was ready to come join us.

I woke on August 28th around 2 am with a different sensation in my lower back than what I had previously been feeling with the BH’s.  It was more intense and crampy feeling.  I layed in bed for a few hours and decided that this was probably the day we were going to meet sweetpea as things just felt different.  I went into the living room and started to time my contractions as well as listen to my birthing day affirmations.  I sat on my birth ball and tried getting comfortable between pressure waves but the birth ball wasn’t providing me any extra comfort.

At 6:30 I woke my husband up and told him he wouldn’t need to be going into work as we would be going to the hospital instead.  I got into the warm tub and then a hot shower before getting dressed, eating some toast and drinking lots of gatorade.  My pressure waves were about 1-1 ½ minutes long and about 4-5 minutes apart.  I called the OB’s office at 8 am and the MD on call didn’t get back to me – ugh.  I waited another ½ hour and called the office back again and they recommended I go to the hospital.

We arrived at 9am and they admitted me to labor and delivery.  At that point, I was having bloody show and quickly changed from my clothes into a hospital gown.  The pressure waves were intensifying but I was able to stay comfortable thru them.  The OB on call came in and we reviewed my birth plan and he said everything on it was fine – no hep-well/IV, able to eat/drink as I wanted, mother directed pushing, etc.

He checked me and asked if I wanted to know how far along I was – I was hesitant to say yes as I didn’t want to be disappointed but my curiosity got the better of me.  I had envisioned arriving at the hospital at 6/7 cm but he told me I was at 3 cm.  Although a little discouraged, I knew things were progressing quickly based on the increased intensity of my pressure waves and was encouraged that we were finally going to meet our little one soon.  I listened to my deepening cd mostly and turned my switch to off when a pressure wave started.

Quickly after arriving, I vomited (which I never visualized in my birthing day) and my nurse said that is typical for some moms when they are dilating between 4/5 cm.  My nurse was excellent – she had used hypnosis for the births of her 4 children and was amazing in helping me to relax.  I had thought that I would like to keep moving – walking, rocking in a rocking chair, sitting on a birthing ball, sitting on the toilet – but when I tried all of these I became more uncomfortable and so I settled into the hospital bed alternating between lying on my sides.  My husband read mini-scripts and used the relax cue throughout the first stage when needed.

Time frames escape me as the last thing I was interested in doing was looking at the clock, but my guess would be around 12/1 pm, I was feeling a little pushy.  My nurse checked me at that point and said I was at 8 cm – the intensity at this point was getting ahead of me and I was having increased trouble relaxing.  My husband kept reminding me that I only had to deal with one pressure wave at a time and that we were getting closer to meeting our new baby.  I found the peace cue to be helpful at this point during pressure waves and I vocalized in a low moan as I exhaled.

Another thing I hadn’t heard about or visualized as happening during my birthing time was involuntary shaking during pressure waves.  As much as I tried to relax, turn off and go to my special place, my entire body was shaking and therefor I had a harder time I think at this point dealing with the intensity.  I quickly told the nurse that I wanted to start pushing so she told me to go ahead (they never checked me again to make sure I was fully dilated – I guess they just trusted me that my body knew what it was doing and I was so thankful for this, especially being a first time mother)!

Pushing was by far the most comfortable part of my birthing day – it felt so good to bear down and get things moving forward.  I started to push on my side but wasn’t entirely comfortable in this position.  My nurse recommended trying kneeling with the head of the bed elevated so that my backside was facing out into the room and I was able to rest my arms and upper chest on the top of the elevated bed.  I stayed in this position for the entire time I pushed and my OB delivered with me in this position which I was impressed with.  It was helpful for me to be focused on myself and not on things going on around me out in the room.

I pushed for about 1 ½ – 2 hours and no-one ever started counting or directed me in any way in how to push.  My body just took over and pushed during pressure waves – I tried to push between pressure waves but it didn’t feel right to me.  I was able to converse with the nurses and my husband between pushing but was very focused and inside myself.  The nurse and OB thought I wouldn’t tear because of the slow descent of the baby but at some point, I think I had had enough of pushing, got impatient and seriously beared down so that I could meet my baby.  I felt intense stretching/burning at this point that lasted for a very short time and at 3:55 pm, Amelia Mae was born.

My husband was able to cut the cord and the respiratory therapist had to suction her stomach right away because of the presence of meconium.  After that was done, she was given to me and was allowed to stay with me for at least 2 hours while we breastfed and enjoyed skin to skin contact. Right after delivering Amelia, the OB was pretty funny as I was still kneeling with my butt facing him while watching the respiratory therapist attend to my baby.  At some point I said “should I change position?” and he said, “that would be helpful as I’m having a hard time trying to figure out your anatomy from this angle”.  I quickly delivered the placenta (don’t really remember it as I was holding my bundle of joy and staring into her eyes) and had to be sewn up as I had a 2nd degree tear.

I had a successful first time hospital birth with no interventions and I am so thankful to Hypnobabies for this.  I was surprised by the intensity of the pressure waves and did experience some discomfort but I feel that is because I wasn’t able to focus 100% when my body started involuntarily shaking.  I also wish I had a better plan for my birth day as to what I would listen to on my ipod (I just kept going back to the deepening cd as I was looking for more relaxation but feel like I could have benefitted from other tracks as well).

During my pregnancy, I listened to my scripts religiously but always (I mean always) fell asleep while listening to them.  I always looked forward to coming home from work, lying down in my bed, turning on my ipod and waking up 30-60 minutes later feeling refreshed.  The one thing I wish I had done was spend more time practicing my finger drops and directing my anesthesia as I wasn’t as religious about doing these.  I was so thankful for the daily pregnancy affirmations – they empowered me so much and helped me relax throughout the pregnancy.

My OB wanted to keep doing ultrasounds because I was measuring small throughout the pregnancy.  I started to decline them, knowing I was healthy and that my baby was safe.  Turns out she was born at 6lbs 13oz – definitely not too small and just the right size in my opinion :) We went home after 24 hours and every one was amazed at how well the baby and myself were doing.  Thank you Hypnobabies!!

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