Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for October, 2010

A bit of back story first. I struggled with infertility for three years before conceiving a baby. The cause of the infertility was hypothyroidism, which I began treatment for five months before conception. Unfortunately my hypothyroidism was not well managed during my pregnancy, and I miscarried at 9 weeks. I then had another miscarriage at 5 weeks right after that. The main lesson these experiences taught me was to not simply trust doctors. After doing hundreds of hours of my own research, I started my own treatment program of diet, exercise, and thyroid treatment, supported by a naturopathic thyroid doctor. Five months later I conceived.

Though the pregnancy by all indications was progressing perfectly, I nonetheless was experiencing a great amount of fear. The miscarriages had been really hard on me and my husband, and it was all I could do to keep myself in a state of mind that was best for me and my growing baby. A friend of mine had mentioned hypnosis for childbirth (Hypnobirthing), and since I knew I wanted a natural childbirth I went online and found the Hypnobabies program. I started the program at 22 weeks, and it really helped calm my fears and teach me to really relax. I loved my daily training sessions! I started sleeping better (I had had major sleeping problems ever since my first pregnancy) and learned techniques to deal with my (often irrational) fears.

At 10 am, 40w4d, my water broke. My whole pregnancy I had been terrified of being induced, and as the day went on and no signs of labour appeared I began to think I would not be having the natural childbirth I wanted (I had an OB/GYN and was planning a hospital birth). I had been listening to birthing day affirmations and ‘baby come out’ for about a week already, and that day I listened to ‘easy first stage’ as well. I talked to my doula, who is also a labour and delivery nurse and first time hypno-doula, and we decided to wait it out until the next morning and then reassess. I ate some spicy food and went to bed.

At 10 am the following day, still no sign of labour! I called my doula, who suggested that I call this wonderful midwife with a home-birth practice that we had happened to meet the previous week. I called the midwife, who was full of advice and gentle encouragement, and she said she had never had a problem with infection in women who did not give birth within 24 hours of their water breaking. I called my doula who had done more research, and she also thought that waiting it out would not pose too great a risk. It seemed that the key was avoiding germy hospitals and constant cervical checks! We also agreed to lie to the hospital about when my water had broken so that I wouldn’t be treated as high risk (I justified this to myself in part by the fact that in England, women can go to 72 hours before being induced!). Since I was willing to lie by 24 hours but not by 48, I wanted to get things started. At 12:30 pm that afternoon I tried castor oil. I went to bed and listened to ‘easy first stage’ to wait it out.

By 3 pm I was having major diarrhea. By 3:30 I was having pressure waves and thinking “this might be it!”, but still in major doubt about whether my birthing time was actually starting. The diarrhea was very unpleasant; the pressure waves felt like practice waves + menstrual cramps. I decided to call my doula to give her a heads up, and she decided to come over. By the time she got to my house, around 4:30, it was pretty clear that this was in fact it! I put on “easy first stage” and mostly used my ball. In the next hour or so it also became clear that I was experiencing a lot of pressure in my back. I was really only comfortable in hands and knees and on my birthing ball. My husband and doula took turns putting counter pressure on my back. It took a great deal of concentration to get through each wave, since I was not mentally prepared for the back pain (the baby had been anterior since 29 weeks and I had done a great deal the whole pregnancy to ensure proper positioning, but he must have turned posterior just as it started to descend). By 6:30 pressure waves were coming about 3 minutes apart and lasting around a minute. I think it was 7:30 when we decided to head to the hospital, since I had become fixated on getting in the tub.

In the car, I used the off position to great effect, since I had 3 pressure waves on the 5 minute drive. In the parking lot I and on the way in I used my ball. By this point I had my iPod on playing hypnobabies tracks. A nurse was asking me questions, and when she asked how I envisioned my labour and delivery experience, I said, “I just want to be left alone.” After the nurses had read my birthing plan, they indeed did leave me alone (which was perfect)! I spent about 2.5 hours in triage, and when they checked me I was 4-5 cm dilated. In triage I insisted on my ball, even for the monitoring, since the back pain/pressure was so intense. The one time I swore was when I tried to lie down for a while! Though I was able to use my hypnosis just fine to have my cervix checked. By this point my arms and legs were getting pretty tired, but I just had to be in forward leaning positions. I was using centre switch but longed get into a fully supported position and switch off for a while. My wonderful husband and doula continually applied counter pressure and used the ‘relax’ cues. My doula started to suggest positions that would help move the baby out of posterior position, but I was too uncomfortable to use them.

Around 11:00 we finally got to my birthing room. The nurse promptly started in on the drug spiel, and she was referred to my birth plan. When she came back she had adjusted her attitude and was great from then on (I hardly remember her being there in fact). I got in the tub and hated it! I sat on my birthing ball in the tub and my husband used the shower to spray water on my back. I was still in control as long as my wonderful, amazing birth partners were both there with me, but I was beginning to think that I just wanted a break. I had expected the pattern to be pressure wave, then break, but instead it was pressure wave with intense back pressure, then intense back pressure. About midnight I got out of the tub and laid on the bed for a bit to rest. I then remember standing by the bed and telling my doula that I didn’t think I could do this. She immediately went to get the nurse to put my saline lock in, since she expected that I was in transition (my doctor had insisted on one, and we prolonged it as long as possible). The nurse checked me and in fact I was 9 cm, and feeling pushy, though I knew I couldn’t yet push. I remembered (I think from Alexander Technique for childbirth) that panting helped to keep one from pushing, so I immediately switched to ‘hee hee ha ha’ breathing during waves. I did this for at least half an hour, but it felt like just a few minutes. Then the doctor was there and saying I was complete and could push!!!

At first I used the ‘aahhh’ breathing technique to move the baby down. Other than the constant back pressure, pushing felt great! I vocalized with grunts and sometimes my ‘ahhh’s would turn into lion’s roars. Then my doctor suggested that I hold my breath in while pushing, because she thought it might be more effective. Since she physically checked a few times to see how I was moving the baby with each push, I thought I would try it, though in principle I was against “purple pushing”. The nice thing was that it was still very “mother directed”, since no one told me when to start or stop. Occasionally the doctor would ask if I had one more push in me, which I found encouraging, since I usually wanted to push once more anyways. I had been pushing for about 2 hours when I all of a sudden felt a real loss of energy. Though I had been physically very tired for a while (especially my arms and legs), this was different. I said so and the doctor suggested that I rest during the next wave of pushing. I did that as much as possible, and was able to go back to exerting myself with the next urge to push to my fullest capacity. I tried to ignore the gigantic clock they stupidly put right at the foot of the bed. At this point my husband was holding my leg (I was side-lying) and then my hand (the nurse took over my leg), and my doula was lightly rubbing my back. I watched the whole thing in the mirror which was so encouraging! I saw my doctor stretching my perineum with each push, and my baby’s hair, and I could see exactly what I was doing with each push. I kept thinking “see how much ROOM there is that the doctor is making?” When the baby crowned I indeed did feel ONLY stretching! Amazing! The most vivid thing was the feeling of bulk as the baby sat completely in my birth canal and with his head crowned at the opening. A few pushes later, 12 hours after my first pressure wave, he was out, and I heard “it’s a boy!” He had turned in the birth canal to anterior. It took a few seconds to work out how to get him onto me, since he had a very short cord. It felt like an eternity, though my husband says it was only a few seconds, and I started to cry out “let me see him!” I then let out four years of pent-up emotions with a few sobs when they put my beautiful baby boy on me.

We let the cord pulse out, and then my husband cut it. When they moved him up from my lower abdomen to my chest, I spoke to him and he lifted his head and looked straight at me, and then did the same when my husband spoke! By far, the greatest thing about having a natural childbirth in my view is having an alert baby who is totally him- or her-self from the very beginning. He was a whopping, shocking 9 lbs. 8 oz. (my husband and I are not big people!), and 21 inches. He was in great health all through birthing and after (though he had a bit of quick breathing for about 12 hours after birth). I nursed him for an hour and felt great—like I could get up and walk home! The two nurses that had attended our early morning birth were raving about how well I did, as did all the nurses I saw (they had heard about my hypnosis) during my 36 hour hospital stay. I did tear and needed stitches.

While I didn’t end up with the pain-free childbirth I had been preparing for, without the hypnosis I definitely would have been climbing the walls! Instead, I was able to keep in control the whole time, maintain my demeanor, get through what was necessary (car ride, medical procedures), and not be tempted into using drugs. I was also able to really fight the urge to tense up during waves, and just relax into them as much as possible. One of the most useful techniques my first-time hypno-doula used was reminding me to relax my face. I think this really helped shorten my birthing time. Pushing felt great (other than the constant back pressure and very distracting hemorrhoids) and so did crowning! I really can’t remember what the pressure waves even felt like, since the constant back pressure was all consuming. My only experience of pain was the back pain. Looking back, the only thing I would have changed would have been my mental preparation for and early first stage physical management of my back labour. The “change of plans” script would have helped me I think. Also, though I had not been envisioning a middle of the night birth, I really ended up liking the peace and quiet. I did end up with the maximum 12 hour labour I had imagined!

Read Full Post »

My beautiful, mellow Hypnobaby, Quinn, was born at 1:54 am on July 9th – her due date – after about 26 hours of labor and 5 hrs after my water broke. Although Quinn was my first birth baby, we also have a 19-month-old son, Josten (now 20 months), who my partner carried. So it was an interesting experience – being pregnant and going through birth after experiencing it all with my partner just a year and a half ago.

At just around midnight on July 8, I was awoken by pressure waves, which, after I started timing them, were about 6-7 minutes apart and about a minute long. I couldn’t sleep through them so I got up to try and sleep sitting on the birthing ball, leaning over pillows on the bed. While I was up, the waves pretty much went away, but once I was on the ball they came back. Not comfortable there, I decided to try lying down again, but to no avail. All this time I was listening to ‘fear release’, ‘easy first stage’, and ‘birthing day affirmations’. Finally, I got up, went to the kitchen, ate a snack, and starting thinking, with excitement, about my birthing day, which I knew was near at hand. After awhile, I realized that the waves had all but disappeared, but knew that if I tried to lie down again they’d return. I then went into my son’s room and managed to sleep between waves on the glider, for about 2 hrs.

At about 6:30 am I called the Birth Center where I was planning to deliver, and spoke to the midwife on call, who said it could be today, it could be next week! I knew, though, in the back of my mind, that it would be happening sooner than later. After another hour of sleeping between waves back in bed, my family got up and my partner, Haidee, asked if I thought she should stay home from work. I thought not, since my sister was going to be over that day anyway to help out, so she went off to work, I called in to work to say I wouldn’t be there, and an hour or so later my sister arrived. The day was spent mainly as usual, taking care of my son with my sister’s help, peppered by bouts of regular waves followed by periods of none.

During a short walk I started experiencing intense hip pain (all of my hypnosis work did not seem to touch the hip pain, since I hadn’t really gotten the idea of directing my anesthesia to anywhere but the areas that I was thinking would be affected by PWs and birth!). I decided that it might be a good idea to get a chiropractic adjustment that afternoon, if possible, hopefully to fix the hip problem, but also just to get into prime shape for the potentially long hours ahead. After my adjustment, my hip was no better, but my outlook remained very positive, and in fact I continued to feel as I had all day – excited and ready to give birth to my baby.

I had asked Haidee to come home early, since my sister had to leave for work, and once we were all home together again she called her mom to come over and help with Josten so that she could be attentive to me and get dinner made. My PWs continued to be off and on regular and then irregular, and I was able to take a bath for about 1/2 an hour, listening to my ‘birthing day affirmations’ CD.

During dinner (pasta and lots of veggies for strength and energy), they became a bit more regular. Whenever my son was near me when a PW came, and I would stop in my tracks and say “peace” over and over until it was passed, he  whispered “pssss” right along with me. He was very attentive and sweet with me, ready, in his own way, for his little sister to arrive. After dinner I went back to the bedroom and spent about an hour on the birthing ball as my PWs became regular – about 5 minutes apart and 1 minute long. At about 8:45 or so the PWs got closer together, and at  about 9:15 my water broke as I squatted through a wave. I told Haidee, and it was definitely time to go to the Birth Center, but it took awhile to get out the door (packing up the rest of what I wanted to bring, etc). We finally set out on the 20 minute drive to the Birth Center at about 10:00.

The ride in was actually quite comfortable for me, I just rode the waves and Haidee timed them on her phone’s  stopwatch. They were now 3 minutes apart and lasting 1 minute each. I called the midwife and my parents, and texted with my sister on the way there, between PWs, and everyone was on their way (my parents were driving up from NJ and figured they’d arrive around 1 am).

Upon our arrival at the Birth Center, the wonderful midwife on duty that evening, Jill, greeted us warmly at the door and led us upstairs to the biggest of the three birthing rooms, since I was the only one laboring there so far that
night. She decided to check me before starting the IV antibiotics (I had tested GBS positive), and found me to be a very stretchy 7cm dilated. I wasn’t at all surprised – the whole experience was pretty much just as I had envisioned it to
be so far!

During the 1/2 hour it took to administer the antibiotics, my sister arrived. Haidee was applying pressure to my hips during my waves in the chair during this time, and my sister spelled her for a wave or two. It felt nice to have the pressure there, but I didn’t find it absolutely necessary, and was able to focus and breathe and chant Peace, Relax, Release as the PWs continued. Never once did I feel any sense of fear, nor did I experience pain, except in my right hip, but even that was perfectly bearable. I let Jill know that I’d like to get into the tub as soon as possible, so she started filling it, and by the time the IV was done it was ready for me to get into.

Being in the water felt wonderful. I continued listening to my Hypnobabies tracks, and soon Haidee joined me in the tub. My sister played photographer, and another midwife, Laurie, joined Jill because there was a chance that another birthing mom might be arriving before I gave birth. No one else did arrive during my time in the BC, so I had both wonderful midwives by my side the entire time, mostly being quiet and letting me do my thing, pouring warm water over my belly, and occasionally making suggestions for positioning my legs and body in the tub for optimum comfort.

After about 20 minutes in the tub, my body started feeling pushy, and I just went with it, checking with Jill, who was completely confident in my body’s ability to know when to push. As I pushed through the next bunch of waves I found myself getting more and more vocal and loud, chanting/groaning OPEN, OPEN, OPEN and Release, while Haidee whispered “Relax” into my ear.

We switched to the Pushing Baby Out CD and even though I don’t remember actually listening to it, I know that the soothing, familiar voice added to the already supportive and comforting energy that surrounded me. Although I don’t think I ever actually fully relaxed through any of my PWs, and definitely not during my pushing waves, I was able to completely relax between waves, and for the hour and 20 minutes that I pushed, I fell asleep between nearly every wave. There were times when I completely forgot that anyone but Haidee was in the room with me, since it was
so silent.

My parents arrived at about 1:20 am and added their supportive energy to the room. Finally, my pushing waves became more frequent and each one lasted long enough for me to really start feeling like I was participating again. The
midwives encouraged me to focus my energy into my core, shift my body so that I was grabbing my own legs and grunting low and gutteral sounds as I pushed, and this helped enormously in helping me move the baby under my pelvis and out.
There were quite a number of PWs that felt to me like they should lead to the head crowning, and I started to get a bit antsy for it all to be over – not because I was in pain at all, but mainly because I was very tired and just ready to meet this baby! Apparently the midwives felt the same way, although no one gave me any indication that there was anything out of the ordinary going on. The baby’s heartbeat was steady and strong each time they used the doppler on me, so there was no concern, but it was just taking longer than they’d anticipated to get the head to crown and stay put. Finally it did, and Jill encouraged me to feel the full head of hair poking out between my legs. Everyone was marveling at the long hair floating in the water! Another push or two later, and the rest was very fast – her head came out, giving me a wonderful sense of relief and joy, and then I pushed again and felt her whole body just unfolding out of me.

She was immediately on my chest; silent, calm, and as pink as could be (with Apgar scores of 9 and 10)! We all just stayed there for a while, marveling at what had just happened and looking at Quinn. It turned out that her hand had been next to her head as she emerged, and that was likely the cause of my hip pain and the longer time it took to move her out.

The cord stopped pulsing, Haidee cut it, and then it was time for me to get out of the tub to birth the placenta. I was about halfway between the tub and the bed (maybe a 12 foot distance) when I felt a mild contraction, and a second later out plopped the placenta, right onto the floor! That was apparently a first for both midwives and after I was helped the rest of the way to the bed, as the mess was cleaned up, we all joked about the crime scene of blood spattered walls that would have to explained to the cleaning staff.

I firmly believe that my ability to not just endure this birth without any pain edications or medical interventions, but to actually thrill in it (I clearly remember saying, after a few particularly intense PWs, “this is AMAZING!”), is due to my preparation using Hypnobabies, prenatal yoga, and by reading a lot of positive birth stories and childbirth research. In learning how fear and stress can affect a woman during pregnancy and birth, and about the idea that the experience of pain in (normal, uncomplicated) childbirth is a cultural construct born out of fear- and pathology-based western medicine, I was able to let go of that fear. In re-programming my brain, through self-hypnosis, to understand the experience as intense pressure, and as a positive, beautiful and exciting thing with a definite beginning, middle and end (even if the timing is unknowable), I was able to have exactly the (virtually) pain free birth that I was hoping for, and that I knew I could have.

-Jen (proud and happy mama who still marvels at the fact that this incredible child was formed in and emerged from my own body!)

Read Full Post »

Hi All,

Well. . . here’s yet another birth story. I just want to say that I’m so grateful for the Hypnobabies home study course, and for this wonderful supportive email group. Thanks to you all! I’ve especially loved reading the birth stories from other hypno-moms in this group, and feel humbled to be sharing mine with such a special group of people.

Rebecca

Reed’s Birth Story (2nd baby, first Hypnobaby)

I live in a fairly remote area of rural New Zealand. Our local hospital has a maternity ward, but facilities are basic. There is no resident OB, though they do come up here to do clinics. None of the following are available: c-sec, epidural, pitocin induction, assisted deliveries (ventouse and forceps). This means that natural and unmedicated birth is pretty common in these parts! The little maternity ward caters for water birth and allows Dad, Mum and baby to room in together after the birth. Home births are pretty popular here, too. It’s a 2 and a half hour drive to the hospital in the city. That’s where you probably give birth if you are “high risk.” In an emergency situation, they fly you from the local hospital to the city hospital in a helicopter.

I believe that the majority of births in New Zealand are now attended by midwives. Usually a woman chooses one midwife and stays with her for all the prenatal visits, the birth, and about 4-6 weeks of post-natal care. This care is all free and government funded. I think we are very lucky.
***********

I woke up a bit after 7.30am on the 7th of July. I’d been woken by a couple of strong pressure waves and had had the urge to change position and vocalise. . . but resisted the temptation in order not to disturb my husband and 2-year-old son who were sleeping on either side of me. I was 39 weeks + and had only had low-key Braxton Hicks waves so far. Perhaps this would be our baby’s birthday? I decided to get up, get organised and see if the pressure waves would vanish or establish a pattern.

By 7.50am I’d had about four more pressure waves. Due to lack of inclination, not having a stop watch, and my increasing sense of urgency regarding my preparations to get ready to leave the house, I didn’t count or time these waves. But I didn’t need a stopwatch to feel their intensity or to know that each wave was lasting a long time. I was surprised to feel some nausea, and a hot-and-cold trembly feeling when one wave caught me half-way across the kitchen with a jar of milk in my hands. I heard myself singing with the power of these waves (sounds quite lovely when I write about it. . . but probably sounded like one of our cows was stuck in a fence!). In my mind I heard some of my favourite hypnobabies affirmations – especially the one about how every powerful birthing wave was bringing our baby closer to being in my arms – and felt myself lighting up with so much love and anticipation: “Yes! This is our baby’s birthday.” I felt sure of it now, even though I’d only had a handful of pressure waves. Time to wake my husband Kevin and call Tania (our midwife).

BOP**Because our first son’s shoulders got a bit stuck on the way out, Tania had been suggesting that we might travel the 2 and a half hours down to the hospital in the city to have this baby. We’d also talked about probably birthing the baby in a hands and knees position to help him come out easily. Tania had made a point of telling me about a few of the different manoeuvres we could use to birth the shoulders, even though they’d most likely come out on their own this time. She laughed that at least I’m little (under 5’2” and about 100lb when not pregnant) and would be easy to flip over if need be. Still, it’s much easier and less traumatic to move a woman of any size if she knows what’s going on and why! Anyway, Tania now suggested over the phone that we meet at the local maternity annex first, just in case the baby was coming quickly. (She later told me that she could tell from the sound of my voice over the phone that this baby probably WAS coming quickly!) We could then decide to move on to the city if things were not progressing too fast.**End BOP

After another pressure wave, I gave up on the idea of making a quick breakfast, but drank a glass of water in hopes of staying hydrated for the birth. As I woke my husband (who works nights and was not exactly easy to rouse after only 3 hours of sleep) and son (who was in a grumpy and toxic state due to being not quite recovered from a bad case of the flu), and tried to prepare to leave, it began to seem to me that this baby would perhaps not wait to be born at the city hospital. After what seemed like a very long and trembly pressure wave, I went to the bathroom to vomit up the glass of water I’d drunk. I asked my husband to call my parents and ask them to meet us at the maternity annex as soon as possible to care for our son.

Finally we were in the car driving the 20 minutes to town. I had hoped to listen to Hypnobabies affirmations on the MP3 player on the way to town, but our son was throwing a full-scale tantrum and needed my attention. It’s not very nice to be a 2 and a half year old, not quite recovered from the flu and getting shovelled into your car seat in a big hurry one morning without having breakfast. I tried to comfort him between pressure waves. Once we had coverage for the cell phone, my husband dialled my parents’ number and handed the phone to me.

“Is Mum on her way to town?” I asked my Dad.

“No,” he answered, “She’s she’s still here. Kevin told her to wait until you called again.”

“What?? Tell her she needs to come as soon as possible,” I insisted, as I considered biting Kevin’s head off and chewing it up. After brief reflection, I decided to leave Kevin’s head on his body. He was having an intense morning too, and I really needed him to keep driving the car. Then the next pressure wave washed over me. I kept hearing soundbites from the Hypnobabies CDs in my mind – Kerri’s voice reminding me that this powerful experience was strengthening me and my baby and talking about “powerful birthing waves.”

These “waves” were starting to feel more and more like tsunamis, actually. It was hard to relax completely as the car lurched around the corners of the winding country road, but I felt myself welcoming each wave and vocalising as the intensity flooded through me. I think that with a different frame of mind I might have said those waves were “painful.” But I’m not sure. It made more sense to marvel at their power. I looked up and saw a rainbow arcing through the grey morning sky ahead of us. Our son kept up his five star tantrum performance in the back seat. Finally we reached the maternity annex at 8.30am

When I arrived, Tania asked me to pee on a stick for a urine test, but I couldn’t do it. One pressure wave came while I was on the toilet and the next found me somehow on all fours on the bathroom floor. I think my mad cow vocalisations now sounded like something from the wild animal park, but it felt so good to make these noises. I laughed and told Tania I didn’t want to stop the noise because I was connecting with my inner animal! She reassured me that since I was having a baby I was welcome to make whatever kind of noise I wanted. She also remarked that the pressure waves seemed to be just under 4 minutes apart. “They’re good strong ones, she added. That last one was more than 2 minutes long!”

We decided that Tania should give me an internal exam (the only one I ever had during this pregnancy and birth), so that we could make a fully informed decision about whether or not to try to drive to the city. It turned out that I was a “very stretchy 8cm” with a bulging bag of waters coming right down the birth canal. Tania assured me that this baby was coming soon. The waters looked on the point of bursting, and were the only thing holding back the baby. The last 2cm of cervix will be gone as soon as the membranes release, she told me, and the baby is well down into your pelvis and in a good position. No question of going to the city. Water birth was out, too, unfortunately, since there would not be enough time to fill the tub.

I was still up on the bed from the examination and didn’t want to move. I got onto my hands and knees and made powerful wild animal noises through the pressure waves. I was using the Hypnobabies “open open” and “peace” cues, though I don’t think I sounded very peaceful! I felt elated and powerful to know that our baby was so close to being born. My husband was still outside with our son, and I really didn’t want the baby to be born without him. I tried knees to chest position for a few waves. Still pretty intense, but it toned down the grunty pushy feelings that I’d been having and made me feel more grounded.

Tania said she was hoping Leeann, the other midwife, would arrive before the baby was born, too. So I kept leaning forward through the pressure waves to slow things down a bit. Since water birth was out, I asked Tania if we could use oil on my perineum. I’d read about this somewhere and thought it sounded very nice. She said that was a great idea, and no problem. She’d get the oil ready. “I liked what I saw when I examined you,” she added. “Everything’s lovely and stretchy. I think the baby will come out just fine this time.” (Tania knows nothing about Hypnobabies, but plainly she’s a natural when it comes to positive suggestions! All this talk about my “good strong” pressure waves, stretchy cervix and lovely stretchy birth canal was just what I wanted to hear!)

At last Kevin arrived and I leaned my head against him and asked him to rub my lower back during pressure waves. He put his hand on my shoulder and told me to “relax” as well. I was so happy and relieved that he was with me. After a few waves with Kevin and Leeann there, I realised that there was no need to hold back any longer. I knelt up a bit and let my body respond to that grunty feeling of fullness. The waters burst and gushed everywhere and I felt a huge sense of relief. It was 9:10am.

On the next wave, I felt the baby’s head come down and found myself tuning into various Hypnobabies cues about breathing him down and out “aaahh” and relaxing my face, arms and hands. I felt so well prepared and so much in control as I pushed our baby out, even though I think I probably sounded more feral than ever! I felt Tania putting oil on my perineum. It was warm and it felt so wonderful and comforting. After a few more waves I felt the most intense stretching. I said something like, “I’m stretching! I’m stretching so much!” “You’re doing great,” Tania encouraged me. “This is where it helps just to breathe gently and let yourself stretch before the baby’s head comes out.” I panted gently for a bit until I felt the stretching sensation subside. Then I pushed out our baby’s head. I couldn’t believe how easy and good that felt!

Next thing I knew, Tania was saying “Ok, we need to flip for the shoulders.” This really took me by surprise, since everything had gone so smoothly up until now. I was on my hands and knees. Tania and Leeann helped me over onto my back and flexed up my knees by my sides (McRoberts manoeuvre). I heard Tania say, “That’s got him. He’s turning. . . Here he is!” I felt our baby’s shoulders come out, and then the whole slippery length of his body. And then he was on my chest, warm and sticky and perfect!

Reed Brian F. was born at 9.33am on 7th of July, 23 inches long and weighing 7lb 13oz. Wow! That’s nearly 3 quarters of a pound lighter than his older brother’s birth weight of 8lb 8oz even though he’s a whole inch longer! He has long skinny arms and legs, broad shoulders and massive feet and hands. And his parents and big brother think he’s just gorgeous!!

Within 5 minutes he was helping himself to his first feed. The physiological 3rd stage happened just as I had visualised it. I felt great afterwards– the birth was smooth and practically bloodless. I didn’t have even so much as the tiniest scratch and swelling was almost nil. And who cares about “sticky shoulders” when they come unstuck so calmly and easily! We went home a few hours after Reed was born.

Hypnobabies was such an important part of this birth, even though I didn’t use the techniques and tracks the way I thought I would during the birth! I’d always expected and visualised a much slower and more mellow first stage and was really very surprised to have a baby in my arms just 2 hours after waking up in the morning.

  • I didn’t end up listening to any tracks during the birth, and didn’t use the light switch at all.
  • First, because I didn’t seem to have time.
  • Second, because I didn’t actually feel the need.
  • This birth was a wild and intense experience, but I felt so strong and positive throughout – never for a moment did I think that I couldn’t cope or didn’t want to be doing this.
  • I was really glad I listened to the birth guide CDs a few times in the week before the birth, because lots of the suggestions off those tracks came back to me right when I needed them.
  • I felt as if I had a customised birth guide CD playing inside my head!
  • Post-hypnotic suggestion is a wonderful thing!!
  • I fully believe that Hypnobabies helped to “programme” me for a positive and awesome birth experience.

Read Full Post »

This is my 3rd birth and 2nd Hypnobabies birth.  I have hired a doula (Hypnobabies one) and I have already seen how having a doula is different. :)

My first birth was not a pleasant one and was completely hospital oriented with induction, pitocin and a failing epidural :).

My second birth was with a birthing center and midwives and with using the Hypnobabies.  I have to say I was a bit naive when I went with midwives.  YES! :) they are wonderful but they are not doulas ;).  Their primary concern is and should be the health of mother and baby but most midwives are new to actually believing a comfortable mother-led birthing can be possible. My midwives really didn’t know what to think about Hypnobabies and were not at all able to add-to or interact with what me and my husband’s vision for our birth was even though we tried to share our vision and answer their questions.  ;) They did honor and respect our wishes but were more ‘hands off’ than I was expecting and were not as ‘comfort measure’ oriented as I had read about and hoped for…every birthing center and midwife is different and has different areas of strengths.

With my third birthing experience I knew I wanted a doula but didn’t think I could afford one.  Me and my husband have sacrificed for what we both believe is the best for me and our son (how often do you get to have a birth?) :)
Our doula has been wonderful and has even educated our birthing center midwives with a private in-service as to what to expect and how to be respectful during our birthing time. :)
The cost was $500 and she is Hypnobabies certified.  I’m not sure if that cost is the same for Non-Hypnobabies doulas ;). I really feel that she has already advocated for us and she will be our biggest supporter and helper.  We have not had strong family support for really any of our births so for us to just not feel ‘alone’ in our decision to birth naturally has helped with anxiety and relaxation.
And to be fair to our husbands, mine is sooooo relieved not to have to worry about food, errands or ‘getting sent out of the room to get something’ so that he can be with me….that was part of what we asked for from our doula…just help with being a third person…

I encourage you to really think about what you desire with your husband expressing his needs too.  And also what you feel you need in order to feel most comfortable and then allow yourSelf to receive help in whatever way you decide.

If finances are a concern, please call and talk with a doula and financial payment I’m sure can be worked out…i.e….3 payments versus 2, etc…

Be blessed! Mattisa

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 31 other followers