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Archive for July, 2010

My sweet baby, Samuel, is a month old today! On May 23, I was getting ready for church in the morning when my water broke. I started having some pressure waves a while after, but they weren’t very regular yet. We called my in-laws to come stay with my 2 older kids, and my husband and I headed to the hospital. When we got there, the pressure waves were coming more frequently, but didn’t feel very strong. I was admitted to L&D, and when the nurse checked, I was 6 cm dilated, which was a lot more than I was expecting to be!

Our nurse was really awesome. She carefully read my birthing preferences, and followed them as much as possible, and was very supportive of my choice to do a natural birth. My husband and I walked the hospital, and did nipple stimulation for several hours to try and get the waves stronger, but they would not pick up any more, and I was not dilating any more, so the OB suggested we start a very low dose of pitocin. I was wary of this and was worried that I wouldn’t be able to deal with the increased intensity that people talk about with pitocin pressure waves, but I was pleasantly surprised that things went really well. I was put on a low dose, and that got things going right away, and the dose was never turned up. In about an hour and a half, I was almost fully dilated ready to push.

BOP – The last two pressure waves before pushing were hard for me because I felt so much pressure, and such a strong urge to push, but there was just a little cervix left, so the nurse told me to try and hold on. It reminded me of the feeling of really, really having to go to the bathroom, but having to hold it.

It was such a relief when I was given the ok to start pushing. I started out pushing on my side, but after a couple waves, switched to a supported squat/semi-upright position. Things got pretty darn intense during crowning, and I lost focus and just pushed like crazy until he was out. I didn’t realize it until he was out and the OB commented on it, but I had pushed him out posterior. Doh – if I had known that I might have tried hands and knees, and done more beforehand to try and get him to turn. I was actually surprised because the pressure waves didn’t feel like they did with my first baby, who was also posterior. This was really the only thing I wish had gone differently, but at least pushing only took about 10 minutes.

I had a small tear, but otherwise felt really great afterward! It is such an amazing feeling to have that precious, new baby placed on your chest and being able cuddle them in your arms for the first time!

All in all, I was really happy with my birthing experience, and really glad that I did the Hypnobabies program. My husband thought it was pretty weird when I first told him this is what I wanted to do, but said he was willing to give it a try. He listened to the CDs with me and read the birth partner guide, and during my birthing time he really got into it and was a great support person!

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Are you a doula wondering how to help a Hypnobabies mom?

Here is an e-mail from Carole Hypno-Doula extrodinaire!

Hi ladies,

A while back, I received these questions from a ‘regular’ doula who recently became a new hypno-doula. They are good questions, and I thought you’d appreciate my answers to her.

Here are the questions you wanted me to answer about being a hypno-doula vs. traditional doula…

Darlene asked: I have a few questions for you ladies…
How do you tailor your prenatals to help your birth hypnosis clients, especially if you are not an instructor or are assisting women who took other birth hypnosis classes?
What selling points do you use with birth hypnosis clients? Do couples usually feel pretty self sufficient since they have so many tools? Do you support the birth partners more by helping the moms with cues?
Since I’ve not attended a Hypno-birth, I’m curious to know how doulas monitor the mom’s progress. If there is less/no pain/just pressure, do you pay more attention to how often she’s having her pressure waves? Watching how they progress (length and time in between)? Do they still show some of the emotional signposts as they progress from early to active, then active labor to transformation? If you’re laboring at home, and she’s going to a birth center/hospital, how do you decide when it’s time to go?

Hi Darlene,

I only work with couples that have taken Hypnobabies classes, either the ones I have taught, or couples that other Hypnobabies instructors in the area have referred to me. The ones who have been in my classes are good friends by the time we even do prenatal visits. We don’t need a “meet and greet” to discover if we are a match in that case, so we do a birth preferences meeting is the first of three prenatal meetings.

This is what I do at an initial ‘meet and greet’ and at each of the three prenatal visits: I offer what I call an initial “meet and greet” to get acquainted with the couple, and to see if we are a match (for couples who are referred to me). (1) My first doula prenatal session is to discuss their birth preferences, and what role they would like me to play as their doula…how do they want me to support both of them during their baby’s birthing. (2) I offer a preparation for breastfeeding class once each month to the following month’s doula clients as the second of our prenatal meetings. And, (3) we hold a “birth rehearsal” visit about 3 weeks ahead of their “guess date”. At this meeting we practice their techniques, and run through when to call me, and what needs to be ready in their early birthing time, and how we will manage getting to their place of birth (if not at home), and how it will be to get mom settled into the hospital room, etc…all the while doing practice birthing waves in between the discussion. The hypnosis practice is more for my sake than the couple’s. I want to know how mom is doing with her hypnosis and if she needs to practice some aspect of it a little more in those last three weeks before baby is ‘due’.

The “selling points” for me are that I have assisted 200 Hypnobabies couples as a hypno-doula, as well as having attended 300 or so other natural birthing couples before that. And, the biggest plus to being a trained hypno-doula in general, would be that we know about their hypnosis techniques, and about keeping our language positive, and won’t undermine their hypnosis by inadvertently saying something not in line with the prompts they have instilled during classes. We NEVER tell a hypno-mom what she WILL FEEL, and we don’t let others do so either, otherwise we are giving mom a hypnotic suggestion, and we are creating what we are warning her about. No “hard work” commiserating words, or warnings of “ring of fire” or “late first stage” talk.

As for self-sufficiency… that all depends on the couple and the birth partner especially. It is different with each couple…the same as with other birthing methods. During the birth preferences meeting I always ask how the couples see the three of us filling our roles during their birthing. Usually the couple wants me to assist with the hypnosis techniques, and to fill the usual doula role of explaining options and encouraging, offering water and food, making sure mom pees, changes positions, etc…and, they typically want the emotional and physical support to come from the birth partner. And, the birth partners want the relief of being able to enjoy their baby’s birthing without having to orchestrate it…much like any other couple that hires a doula.

It IS a little tricky to monitor a hypno-mom’s progress at first, and to know when to go to the hospital… because hypno-moms are so calm, and they can talk to you all through their birthings. The usual standard of knowing mom is in active labor… “when mom isn’t able to talk through the contractions anymore” doesn’t apply to a mom in eyes-open childbirth hypnosis. So, I have to rely a whole lot more on physical signs, like bloody show, and trembling and nausea, or the whole getting hot and cold thing, and being a little short with people. Or beginning to feel a lot of pressure in their bottoms. And, yes…the timing of birthing waves. Mostly, you will simply develop a sixth sense about these things, as you gain experience with hypno-births…the same as other methods.

And, yes hypno-moms also exhibit the emotional signs, just a lot more subtly. A lot of hypno-moms don’t show the usual signs of late first stage. They’ve been told in hypnosis that “the longer, stronger and closer together your pressure waves are, the shorter they each seem to be to you…and every 20 minutes seems like only 5 minutes to you”. And we NEVER ever tell a hypno-mom anything close to “late first stage is the hardest but the shortest part of your babies birthing”…because for them, it simply isn’t so.

A hypno-mom will begin to focus a lot more intently on her hypnosis as she progresses, and not want to come to CENTER for very long, or even consider coming out of hypnosis either, as she enters late first stage, and possibly they might not want to be touched any more since it’s taking all of their attention to stay focused and deeply in hypnosis. (Very similar to other methods of natural childbirth just very, very subtle). One thing to do is to trust mom to know when she needs to leave for the hospital. She’s more in tune with her body since she is focused on sensations rather than distracting from them. This suggestions applies more to the first time mom.

AND, this is the biggest caveat to ALL of the previous stuff I have shared…this doesn’t apply so much to a second time mom who is using hypnosis for the first time with her second birthing. A LOT of those ladies just can’t believe they are as far along in their labors as they are, and then don’t make it to the hospital if we rely on their say-so! They are waiting for it to be as “HARD” or “PAINFUL” or somehow FAMILIAR feeling…and when they compare it to their first birthing (which usually was a nightmare, and that’s why they came to use hypnosis this time), sometimes it only begins to feel familiar to them when they are PUSHING! TOO late for a second timer to make the drive to a hospital.

With second timers, who are new to hypnosis for birthing…I pay very close attention to the physical signs. Since their bodies are so very relaxed and can function as nature intended them to, and second babies as a rule come a lot quicker. For instance, I have had more than one second time hypno-mom never have birthing waves get closer than 7 – 8 minutes apart and not last over 45 seconds, and still birth their babies in only a few hours! I caught one of those babies myself. Second stage was only three pressure waves for that mom, with no real bearing down by mom (and baby was OP!).

So it’s definitely rewarding to be a hypno-doula, and soooo much easier! Easier for the moms, easier for the babies, easier for the birth partners and soooo much easier for the doula. You have tools that actually work to eliminate any discomfort, not just manage it or control it! Lovely stuff!

Carole

Yours in gentle birthings…
500 sweet babies and counting!

Carole Thorpe,
Hypnotherapist (NGH), Doula (DONA)
Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis Instructor
Lactation Educator/Counselor (UCSD)
CPR for the Professional Rescuer (Red Cross)
Neonatal Resuscitation (AAP & AHA)
Homeopathy Consultant, Reiki Practitioner
Happiest Baby on the Block Instructor

BIRTH PARTNER Professional Services
http://www.hypnosis4birth.com
carole@hypnosis4birth.com

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In all sorts of medical procedures.  This one focuses on dental work, but mentions other things as well.

For example, Childbirth!  What a great idea!

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Great post from a mom about what Painless Childbirth is really about!

She points out that it is hard for many to wrap their mind around the word painless.  That really thinking of it in a different way, having a comfortable birth, helped her to achieve just that!

What do you think?

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Hypnobabies has a MP3 for that!

Click here to go to the Hypnobabies MP3 page.
Then click on the Turn Your Breech Baby, Yes You Can! link.

Hypnosis is excellent for turning a breech, since the baby is registered by the inner mind as part of the mother!

In this deep hypnosis Turn Your Breech Baby audio track, you are allowed to relax the muscles and any constriction all around your baby and use effective hypnotic suggestions for turning baby to the vertex, (head down) position, if that is the safest way for baby to be positioned. Baby will let you know!

Excellent for midwives to keep for their home birth and birth center mothers, as well as *anyone* whose baby has turned to Breech presentation in late pregnancy or labor.

For the best benefits, you can choose to listen to your Turn Your Breech Baby audio track every day until your baby turns head down. The subconscious mind is very powerful and will create more room for baby to turn while listening to your Breech Turning track, and make muscles much more relaxed as well as direct your baby to turn head down and facing your back.

You may want to look into other natural breech turning techniques as well, to augment your Hypnobabies MP3 track. (Slant board, music, the Webster Technique, acupuncture, etc.)

Testimonial!

One of our Hypno-Moms writes: “Just thought I’d share a happy story with you – my sweet babe has been lying transverse in my belly for months, and the other day I started thinking I needed to get her turned.

I’m only 27 weeks pregnant but I have a uterine septum which can increase the changes of a malpositioned baby and make it difficult to turn them later in pregnancy when space gets tight.

Plus I was feeling a bit uncomfortable having her wrapped around my sides so much. My belly actually looked funny because it was so wide.

I decided to listen to the Turn Your Breech Baby CD. I laid down while my older son was napping, listened to it, and once it was over felt moved to do one short (5 second or so) downward dog stretch and then a few pelvic tilts.

Then I got up, looked at my belly, and it was a COMPLETELY different shape – much more round and less wide. I also had more pressure lower in my pelvis and could feel immediately that she had moved.

She’s now kicking in the center of my body rather than around at my sides. I had a prenatal visit on Saturday and my midwife confirmed that baby is now head-down, with her bottom against my bellybutton, head facing my back.

Amazing results after only listening to the Breech track once! :) Hurray and thank you SO much to Kerry and the Hypnobabies team for creating this program. I am SO thankful!

~ Kristin in Oregon”

More ideas

I really like this resource for additional ideas to use for encouraging baby to turn.

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I am so happy to announce Paloma was born on the 29th of Jan. It was a beautiful, powerful, magical experience. As many of you know, I spent the second half of my pregnancy exploring the idea that pain did not have to be part of a woman’s birth experience. And as I learned more about it, I decided to take the Hypnobabies home study course. I spent time everyday for the last two-and-a-half months of my pregnancy meditating, and listening to both the hypnosis and affirmations CD’s. As my due date drew closer, I spent more and more time preparing for her arrival mentally, physically, and spiritually.

Paloma’s due date came and passed. I was 41 weeks and 1 day. My patience was dwindling. It was my third day of having contractions, but they were so far apart (every 20 min) and very mild. I was able to sleep through most of them during the night and carried on as though everything was normal during the day.

As I grew more impatient, I called my midwife and asked her if I could start taking Cohosh to try and get things going. She told me she was down the street and would swing by to check my cervix and see where we were. She arrived, checked my cervix, and told me she was going to stay. She said I already was in labor. I laughed in disbelief, told her I felt great and that I didn’t think I was in labor. Little did I know, I would be holding my little Paloma less than 5 hours later.

My mother came over (she lives next door) along with my Aunt. We called the birth team and celebrated, getting last minute things together. Jo, my 3-year-old daughter, and I sang lullabies to the baby. I would pause to breathe through my contractions comfortably. My birth team arrived, and my home was filled with love and feminine wisdom. I was surrounded by the women of my family. Those that I grew up with, and those that raised me.

As things picked up, I drew inward during my contractions, still comfortable, just more focused. Soon, I was ready to get into the birth tub. Jo got into the tub with me and poured water over my back between contractions, which grew more powerful, but still comfortable.

Soon I was in transition. I hit that wall so many women hit, and I announced I was done. I was prepared to be pregnant forever, I just wanted to stop. My body was tired. When I said this, the midwife asked, “Are you done with the tub, or the whole show?” I told her I was done with the whole show, as she put it. From my statement, the midwives and my doula knew we were almost there. They got me out of the tub and into my bed. I am so glad they did. All snuggled up, my contractions stopped for a few minutes and I took a much needed nap.

I woke up refreshed, to the most powerful contractions. I labored on my hands and knees. At one moment, I felt an energy rush from my body that was so powerful, and so pure, I knew it was the energy of Mother Goddess. I roared like a lion. And at that moment, I felt the soul Paloma and I shared since her conception split into two, and I knew she was ready to be born. There was still a lip left on one side of my cervix, which the midwife pushed out of the way. This was the only uncomfortable part of my birth. But still not painful. Her birth was free of both pain and fear. And as soon as Paloma’s head was past the lip, the birth actually felt wonderful from that moment on. Pushing was so satisfying, and I couldn’t feel the contractions anymore. I only knew I was having one because my body would start pushing by itself. In fact, everything I did was involuntary at that point. I had surrendered to the power of birth and it took over. As she was crowning, my midwives and doula coached me through pushing her head out between contractions, to protect my perineum. I let her shoulders turn, and the rest of her body slipped out of me and the midwife put her on my chest. There she stayed until the placenta was also delivered. My father came in and cut her cord (he also cut Jo’s) and then she nursed.

A few hours later I found out that the moon was full. In fact, it was a Wolf Moon, which is the brightest full moon of the year. That must have been what she was waiting for. : ) The celebration continued through the night. And, eventually we got a little shut eye. Paloma’s birth was empowering, magical, peaceful. She came into this world at home, in our family bed, surrounded by the people that love her. I am eternally grateful for the experience.

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I have posted many, many Hypnobabies Birth Stories here.  I think this is the first one I have posted from the Midwife’s point of view.

Visit Nurtured Hearts Birthing Services Blog to read this amazing birth story!

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