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Archive for the ‘Home Birth’ Category

Thanks to Leigh Anne from Confessions of a Misplaced Alaskan for allowing us to share her birth story from her blog onto the Hypnobabies Blog. 

So here is the part of the birth that I know you’ve all been anxiously awaiting. My previous births have been pretty quick, especially Nick’s. I teach Hypnobabies, so I always enjoy telling the parents the different things they can do during their birthing time, walking, sitting on the birth ball, resting, etc. However, I have not really gotten to experience those intimate moments in birth because once things got going, it seemed like the birth was all out and fast. This time I got to enjoy a few of the things, I felt I’ve missed out on in previous births.

My husband was great, he asked what i wanted for breakfast. At this point, I was hungry, but not sure what I really wanted to eat. I think I told him to make me some eggs. I laid down in the bedroom and played around on my iPad in between waves. I sent a message to my friends on thebabywearer.com website that I had just two words….prodromal and posterior. I figured that I may be in my birthing time for a while. I knew the baby was posterior because I could still feel hands moving in the front part of my lower belly, over my pubic bone. Like I had said before, I didn’t do much during the night to try to rotate the baby because I knew I needed to rest. So, my plan for the morning was to get on all fours as much as possible and try to get the baby to turn around.

I sat on the birth ball in the kitchen while my husband cooked and my mom sat at the kitchen table. Whenever I had a pressure wave, Damon would come over and do a hip squeeze. I had to remind him how to do his hands. My mom even came over and did a hip squeeze, learning how I wanted her to put her hands. I had some pretty good pressure waves during this time. I resent my text to my boss from the day before while sitting on the ball, saying that I would not be in the office today.

After eating some eggs with salsa, I asked my husband to go for a walk with me. I took a photo of my mom with the boys right before I went for a walk. I sent a text message to Debi, to let her know how the evening had went and that I was still having pressure waves and had more show. She said she was nearby if I needed her.

We didn’t walk far in the neighborhood. It was before nine o’clock so it wasn’t miserably hot yet. We walked down a hill and then back up. I figure in our twenty-minute walk, back and forth in front of our house I had at least seven pressure waves. The part that was so cool about this was, I had always wanted to do the clutch and sway hold with my husband during a pressure wave. Since we are the same height, it was kind of funny to figure out how I could comfortably be supported by him. It was great to snuggle my face into his neck on this beautiful morning. We chatted about my mom’s dream she had in the night. She told me upon waking up that she dreamt we had went into her room and told her that Grant had been born. We did not have a name for the baby yet if it was a boy. Damon told me he had actually thought about that name last week. I said that he had vetoed that name with me in the past. I wasn’t ready to commit to any name at this point, especially because we still didn’t know if it was a boy or a girl. I loved our walk and found it was most comfortable to hold his waist during a wave. We even tried one abdominal lift while on the walk. I had not gotten to do that during birth before either.

I’m sure we were a sight to see, we even had one of our not so nice neighbors stop and check on us to see if they could do anything for us. It was during one of the waves where I was holding on to Damon’s waist. I started laughing during the wave because of how funny I know we looked. Another neighbor saw us and you could see the big smiles on their faces. I thought we might be having a baby soon but Damon told them that we would probably have a baby within the week. I loved that he was trying to protect my space for me.

We went back inside and I wanted to try doing some rebozo sifting. I had Damon pull up the Spinning Babies website so that I could show him what I wanted him to do with the wrap. I then got down on all fours in the living room and had him do some gentle sifting. It felt really good.

I then decided that I was tired and wanted to lay down again. I spread out a towel on our bed and laid down on my side. Damon came back there with me and would put counter pressure on my hips when he heard me start to moan or take a deep breath. I know I fell asleep between some of these waves because I would be feel a wave coming on, look around for Damon thinking that he was probably far away and I would need to yell for him and he was always right behind me, ready to support me and do whatever he needed. I laid there until about 9:30-9:45 am. At this point, I decided to get up and use the restroom again.

I believe around this point, Damon called Debi to let her know that things were picking up. She said that she would be here soon. I went downstairs and started to get the last-minute things I wanted ready in the birth room. I made sure that the video camera was set up properly, making sure that it would record. I asked Damon to call Amy around this time too, but he thought I had meant to just call Debi. I reminded him to call Amy and he did. Around 10 am, Debi and her daughter Rachel (her assistant) arrived. They were really great when they got there.

They brought in their supplies as we began filling up the birth pool. While I had laid down, Damon had somehow managed to get water boiling on the stove to provide extra heat if we needed it in the birth tub and had also duct taped a white sheet to the inside of the watering trough/birth pool. I was sitting on the birth ball next to the pool, waiting for the water to get higher and the right temp. I used the restroom a handful more times. Whenever I sat on it, I thought of it like a birth stool. I would almost always have a pressure wave while sitting on it.

Debi then asked to do some monitoring on the baby. I reminded her that I did not want any vaginal exams and she had no issues with that. She set up her external fetal monitor and I stood next to the birth tub while she held the monitor to my belly. She said she would monitor for six minutes and then would do so again in an hour for her intermittent monitoring. I was able to move as I needed to while she held the doppler. Once she was done monitoring, I got into the tub. The water felt wonderful.

I laughed as I saw water bubbles underneath the white sheet. I played with the water bubbles in between waves. My husband was cracking up at my simple entertainment. He took a couple of photos of me during this time.

Amy arrived shortly after I got into the pool and she took a few photos of me. Amy knew I really wanted photos during this birth since I had not gotten the opportunity with Nick’s birth and I had said no during Liam’s. The midwives and Amy were all fantastic about massaging my lower back/sacrum area during a pressure wave. Women that have had babies know exactly where to put their hands during a birth. Amy was fantastic at putting her hand on my shoulder and saying the release cue right when I needed it. I remember at one point she was sitting to my left and I was saying the words, “open, open, open” out loud during a wave. Afterward she asked me, “do you really believe those words when you say them?” I replied, “most definitely. I said those very words in that room right there,” gesturing towards the boys bedroom that I could see close by. ”I said those words when Nick was coming out of me in that room, I know they work.” She smiled.

I was joking and laughing between waves, telling the midwives stories about my recent hemorrhoids. I even was midway through a story, a wave came on, I groaned through the wave, saying “opening up, come on baby,” then as soon as the wave was over, I continued on with my story. Later on, I told Amy that we were going to be life long friends because she had rubbed my butt and I had it on video for proof. I was cracking up at myself.

I remember looking up at this board…

I had written the words, Relax, Release and Peace on it, just about thirty minutes before. I hoped that it would remind everyone in the room the cue words that I would need. Liam also had a picture that he had drawn specifically for when I had the baby put up on the board. I remember looking at the magnet board and I really thought it was about to fall. I asked someone to go catch it. My husband went over to it and asked what was behind the board. My response, which wasn’t so nice, but I started really cracking up, “Ohh, it’s just your stupid golf balls! Bwhahahahahahaha.” I have no idea why I thought that was so funny but in the moment when I was nearing transition, I thought I was hilarious.

I think around this time, I asked for some crackers and I drank some water between almost every wave. After a wave, I made sure to smile because I remember in the hypnosis scripts, it says to smile after a wave. It made me feel better to do so.

The waves were coming quicker and quicker. Debi went to monitor the baby while I was in the water. As her hand held the doppler to my belly, I said, “Wow, did you just feel the baby rotate?” She did. I have never actually felt my babies movements during birth. Another very special thing about this particular birth.

Once the baby rotated, I started to feel like I could push. Remember, I had no vaginal exams. I loved that no one said, let me check you. They could hear the sounds changing from loud moans, to lion sounds. I asked for Liam to come downstairs. I wanted to see him. He came and looked in the tub asking if the baby was coming soon. I kissed him and then he left the room as another wave sent a roar through me, roaring the words “Open.” I laughed as the wave ended because I could hear him say, “It sounds like a lion!”

A few waves later, I asked Nick to come downstairs. I kissed him and was so happy he was there too. Then he too went back upstairs.

I was getting louder and louder, the grunting roars where coming closer together. I would put my head into the towel on the edge of the tub, thinking to myself that it was the perfect replacement for a hand on the forehead (just like one of Hypnobabies physical cues for relaxation). Someone had their hand on my shoulder and during a wave someone would put their hand on my sacrum. It was starting to get uncomfortable with a hand on my lower back. I remember Rachel, the assistant midwife asking where I felt the most pressure. I took both hands and placed them into the sides of my glutes, right where the IT Band connects. I still had my head on the side of the tub. I felt like I was pointing at a big sign when I did that.

I started to push during the waves. The Hypnobabies Easy First Stage track ended and Amy asked if I wanted the pushing track on. I said I wasn’t sure, but yeah, go ahead. I had told Damon to turn off the Pushing baby out track off during Nick’s birth and then I felt pushy. Amy knew I would like to listen to it during this birth.

I remember repeating after the hypnosis track really loudly the words, “Yes, just pressure,” and kind of laughing after it. I started to push in earnest. I put my hand down on my perineum to see if the baby’s head was there yet. It wasn’t. A few more pressure waves and I put my hand down there again. I felt the sac for an instant. I said, “I feel the head.”

I was still having space between the waves, where I would just lean my head into the edge of the tub. Then during the next wave, I placed my hands in a circle around my perineum as the pushing urge became so strong. I was going to do my own perineum support.

During the waves, I really wasn’t sure if I could stand to have anyone’s hands on my back and said so. I was so confused on what I needed, the sensations were overwhelming my body. My hands were firmly placed against my perineum. Some people wonder how it is possible to support your own perineum around a belly, but I had my legs far, far apart at this point, with my legs starting to go numb in the water. The water was supporting my weight, with my head on the side. I could feel the baby moving down. The sac was right there during the next wave, I pushed back on my perineum while I pushed with all my might, the sounds in my voice being the loudest roar. I felt some of the sac bubble out in front of the babies head, like a small water bubble getting pinched, the sensations were overwhelmingly strong, I tried to stand up to get away from them. In that moment a piercing scream came from my mouth as I was so confused on how to get the head out….and then, the head slipped out.

I paused for a moment, taking a second to breathe to try to ease the baby out and then the whole body slipped into the water, the babies back to me covered in vernix. I lifted him up and saw his wonderful little testicles and shouted, “It’s a boy!” I had my baby boy. I had done it with people cheering me on around me the entire time telling me what a great job I was doing.

Liam and Nick were born with almost no vernix, but this baby was so sticky with it. He was wonderful, perfect and held to my chest.

Chunks of vernix floated in the water. Debi came over and rubbed him with a towel. Liam and Nick came down with my Mom to meet their little brother. I stayed in the tub for a little while and then noticed a lot of blood in the water. I asked Debi if it was a normal amount and it was. It was just the placenta separating from the uterus. The assistant felt the cord and said it had stopped pulsing. I was surprised at that, as it had only been about a minute. We realized later, that the cord was actually still pulsing. It was cool, even after it came out, it continued to pulse and didn’t stop for a while.The cord stayed in tact though. I soon got out of the tub after a handful of photos.

They asked if I felt the urge to push the placenta out. I tried a little push but it did not come. So I stood up with the baby in my arms. I think the midwives were surprised that I was able to stand so easily and heft my leg over the edge of the large watering trough. Just as I brought my left leg over, the placenta fell out and I grabbed the cord and lifted the placenta up to Debi. I hobbled to the nearby bedroom to lay down with my baby boy.

I couldn’t be happier with the way this birth turned out. All my wishes were respected. Not knowing Debi, I wasn’t sure if she would follow my wishes, try to do a bunch of vaginal exams, or even try to get me out of the water. All she did was monitor me as she needed to and keep the tub water warm enough. My doula, Amy was amazing in remembering to take the photos that I wanted and to use her hypno-doula tools perfectly. Rachel the assistant had great touch on my lower back and all of them said encouraging words during the birth. My husband was always where he needed to be. Keeping the water boiling to keep the tub the right temperature; being next to me as I needed him and just being all around wonderful. I was so thankful that my Mom was finally there for one of my children’s births. It wasn’t her fault that she wasn’t there for the others, but this time she along with my doula’s daughter Miriam kept my children entertained as necessary.

I got to catch my own baby again and I was so excited when Debi said that my tear was minimal and I would not need stitches. I’ve had second degree tearing with the previous two births and I was proud of myself for supporting my own perineum to get the baby out. The baby was born at 12:14 pm on Friday, June 29th, 2012. The cool thing about the number 29, is I’m born on October 29th, Liam was born on October 29th as well, my wedding anniversary is May 29th and Nick’s birthday is on April 19th. I think I like the number nine.

Grant was named after the midwives had left and we had done our herb bath and newborn checkup.

Debi asked right before he was weighed how much I thought he weighed. I said, he looks similar to my other two when they were born, probably 8 lbs at least. I was surprised with him being born at 37 weeks. Sure enough, I was close. He was 8 lbs 5 oz, 21 inches long with a head circumference of 14 inches. He did show signs of being early. His muscle tone is a little low, the cartilage on his ears is very soft and he was covered in the most vernix I’ve ever seen on a baby. He is perfect though and nursing wonderfully now.

Thanks for taking the time to read this very long birth story, but I want to keep all of these things in my memory forever. I haven’t watched the birth footage yet, but I’m so excited to have it. I know it will be interesting to hear the sounds that came out of my mouth there at the end. Afterwards, I found out my husband knows those sounds well enough that he told both my mom and that assistant that when he heard a certain sound, the baby would be out in thirty minutes. He was right.

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Thanks to Leigh Anne from Confessions of a Misplaced Alaskan for allowing us to share her birth story from her blog onto the Hypnobabies Blog. 

When I woke up from my nap, I felt very rested, like I had actually slept all night. I don’t remember if I had any pressure waves during this time. I went to the restroom and heard our garage door opening. My husband was returning home with the boys from a grocery shopping trip. He left the boys in the car and I helped put the groceries away. He surprised me with some very yummy treats, like summer sausage, cheese and crackers. After giving me a hug, he left again with the boys, leaving me time to just chill on my own. I really love that man.

I took some photos of all of the baby goodies I had made or received…you may have seen that blog post. I lanolized my wool items and laid them outside. Then made myself a snack of cheese, sausage and crackers. It was delicious. I spoke on the phone with my midwife Carolyn and her apprentice. I could hear that they were both disappointed that things were happening so early and that they may miss the birth. Carolyn and I spoke a few times, during the afternoon. At one point, she called me to tell me that Debi Church was across town and would be on her way over to check me. I quickly informed my midwife that I did not want any vaginal checks. She told me that she would call Debi back and let her know. I didn’t want a vaginal check because a number of centimeters mean nothing to me. I don’t like vaginal checks and only have had them during Liam’s birth. They give no indication when a baby might be here…in my opinion, and figured that someone having a number would just be random information.

I called my mom to let her know that I thought I might be in labor. She told me that she was free if I needed her to come. I called her back around 5 pm to ask her to travel down after she got off work. She has missed Liam and Nick’s birth. I wasn’t sure if things were going to kick into gear, but I knew we could use her help in the night if the boys woke up and I was having more pressure waves.
I decided to curl my hair because I figured I would not be pregnant on July 8th, when my maternity photos were scheduled. I had fun pampering myself, getting my hair looking nice, putting some makeup on and had fun taking some head shot photos. I knew I would have Damon take some photos of me that night, Thursday. I wasn’t sure if I would go to the river gorge where I originally wanted or if we would drive to the end of our neighborhood, to the river. It was extremely hot outside. We are having a having temps around 107 degrees fahrenheit. I posted a blog post of me having fun with my glamorous hair and was pleased to see how kind everyone was about the photos. I then sewed the binding on the babies mustache quilt, hoping that if I had the desire later, I could do the remaining hand sewing on the binding.

I was having pressure waves throughout this time, but nothing my Hypnobabies mental light switch couldn’t handle. When the boys got home, I got to hear about their enjoyable afternoon going to the mall playground. I told Damon that I wanted to take maternity photos that night, but we to get dinner ready first. I started to brown the ground beef for burritos, but the waves were picking up and I was getting nervous that I wouldn’t get to take my maternity photos. Damon finished cooking dinner while I dressed for the photos. It was around six pm at this time. I decided I did not want to go to the gorge, we would have to hike a bit for the photos and I figured being near the river was close to what I wanted.

We piled into the car and drove the short distance. Damon had asked if I wanted to walk, but the heat was too much. We took some fun photos by the river, even capturing the very close nuclear plant in the background. I bet most of you don’t have maternity photos with cooling towers in the background!

We ate dinner and then I told Damon that I thought I should go lay down for awhile. Around 9 pm, I asked him to get the boys dressed for bed. Nick wanted to nurse to sleep but I didn’t want the nipple stimulation. He was adorable and I was able to rub his back to sleep. My boys were all asleep and snoring within thirty minutes. I was needing to get up, not wanting to labor in the bedroom with all of them, possibly disturbing them. I figured at this point that the waves were coming every 5-6 minutes sometimes, then spacing out. I didn’t officially time them, it was just my guess. I decided to call my friend Amy while sitting on the couch. I told her my update and let her decide if she wanted to come over or not. I tried to call Debi Church with the phone number that Michelle had given me earlier in the day….of course, there was no answer. I sent a message via Facebook to Michelle, saying I couldn’t get in contact with Debi. She gave me her cell number and that it would be okay to call, she would be expecting my call. I did get to speak to her for the first time that evening. We had a nice long talk, me telling her how I was feeling, how close the waves were, how my previous births had went, and how I was worried about how far away she lived, if things picked up quickly. She reassured me by telling me that she would come stay in a nearby town that night. I was able to discuss my wishes for no vaginal checks, that I was wanting a water birth, that I understood she would need to monitor the babies heartbeat and that I wanted to support my own perineum when birthing and catch my own baby. Not knowing her, I wasn’t sure if I would get these things, but it made feel more comfortable letting her know what was in my birth plan.

My mom arrived around eleven pm and Amy arrived shortly thereafter with her ten year old daughter, Miriam. I had previously told Amy that I would be okay with Miriam being there, possibly helping with Liam and Nick. I told everyone that they could go to bed, I was just going to be on the couch. So my doula and her daughter went downstairs and my mom followed after we chatted for a bit. I believe I put on another Hypnobabies track when she decided to go downstairs. I had all the lights off in the living room. I knew I needed to sleep if I was to have energy to birth a baby. The night involved me alternating from left side to right side throughout the night. Having pressure waves that ranged from five minutes apart to about ten minutes a part. The only thing that would have been nice during the night would have been a pair of hands on my back, but laying on the couch, it would have been hard to get hands in the right spot. I also didn’t want my doula friend to be exhausted and I was able to handle most of it with my light switch and the peace cue. I was up every hour to pee or poop, drinking water frequently and at one point having a granola bar snack. I was starving. How anyone does a longer birth with not eating is amazing! Food is awesome during birth. I was able to get some sleep and was surprised at one point in the night to be sweating a ton and having been sure that I was talking in my sleep during waves.

Around 5:30am I decided to turn Netflix back on and watch a mindless sitcom. I felt like I had gotten enough sleep and I was tired of focusing on getting through the waves. My mom joined me in the living room around 6 am. Amy came upstairs around 6:30 am to check on me. I found out then that she had come up during the night to check on me, but I was in the dark and I guess I was asleep. I don’t remember her being there. She told me that she was going to go home and take her other daughter to a camp. I told her that was fine. I wasn’t sure if this was prodromal labor or not. I knew this could go on for days like this. She told me to call her whenever I needed her back.

To be continued…again. I know, the suspense. No worries. I’ll type up the actual birth tomorrow

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Thanks to Leigh Anne from Confessions of a Misplaced Alaskan for allowing us to share her birth story from her blog onto the Hypnobabies Blog. 

As many of you noticed, I did not share my due date with most people because I hate the, “you haven’t had that baby?” comment. However, now that the baby has arrived, I’m happy to tell you my guess date. It was July 20, 2012, but I expected to go late like I did with my other two children. I hoped that the baby would be born on my husband’s birthday, July 30th. This baby had other plans though.

I’ve had multiple hemorrhoid flare ups this pregnancy. For me hemorrhoids have happened about two weeks before I have a baby in previous pregnancy, but with the every two week frequency of hemorrhoids in the past month, I was thoroughly confused. I kept figuring this would be a big baby because of how much pressure I had down low and for the frequency of the hemorrhoids. I even sometimes wondered if I was having twins even though we had only ever heard one heart beat.

My husband has been working out of town at least three days a week, in Nashville, since before the baby was conceived. He planned to be home next week for the fourth of July holiday. I had no worries about him being out of town as I approached thirty-seven weeks because I expected to go until at least forty weeks. He even was in Oklahoma all last week for work.

I had been doing little things to prepare for the baby this week. I had done some crazy nesting, getting down and scrubbing the kitchen cabinet doors, making sure the kitchen was clean, laundry was washed and put away, etc. My hemorrhoids were still there, but no longer painful, so I was feeling pretty good this week. On Wednesday, I had talked to one of my bosses about my work plans. I had the need to tell him that day…for some reason.

We all went to bed normally on Wednesday night. I listened to three Hypnobabies hypnosis tracks, deepening, creating anesthesia and fear clearing. Around 2 am, Thursday morning, I woke up needing to use the restroom, feeling a little off. I laid down on the couch in the living room, watched a little television and tried to distract myself. Around three, I went back into the bedroom and laid down next to my four year old and two year old but couldn’t get the idea out of my head that I needed to call my husband. I kept saying to myself, my female intuition was telling me that I really needed to call him and I would be kicking myself if I did not. I grabbed my cell phone and thought about texting him, but decided instead to just call him. Good thing I did. His phone went right to voicemail. I went and sat on the toilet, peed, then wiped. Bright red spotting. I dialed my husband again, even though I knew it was pointless. I was only 37 weeks, that day. I couldn’t be spotting. I panicked. I called my Dad, hoping that he was staying in the duplex in Nashville with Damon, my husband. He picked up after about three rings. I said in a very urgent voice, “Dad, it’s Leigh Anne, go get Damon please.” He asked what was wrong. I said in a stern voice, “go get my husband, now.”

My dad, went and woke Damon up. He told me that Damon would call me back. I found out later, that my Dad had walked into Damon’s room. Damon was splayed out on his bed, with the lights on, completely out. Damon called me back a few minutes later, which seemed like so much time as I kept wiping bright red blood from myself. He called me and with a panicked voice, I said, ” I’m bleeding, please come home.” Damon, tried to ask a few questions, but I was a little too freaked. He called me back a little while later, once he was on the road and I told him that it wasn’t a ton of blood, it looked like bloody show, but I’m only thirty-seven weeks. He remained calm, and drove home. It was about 3:30 am. He told me that the reason why his phone was off was that he had purchased a new phone from Verizon and he thought he had plugged it in to charge, but it appears that it powered off instead.

I called my friend, Amy Poarch, a local doula, and asked if she could come over. I didn’t want to be by myself. Nick’s birth had went so quickly, I was nervous that this one might go fast too. I also needed her help setting up the hose attachment to possibly fill the birth tub. I had tried to use the tools to attach, but my nerves was so shot, I was afraid I would bust the water faucet.

The other, very important thing in my brain was, my midwife was across the country on vacation until July 1st, her apprentice was in Kentucky for a wedding. I called my midwife friend Michelle because I thought she was my backup midwife. I was mistaken or misinformed. Michelle helped calm me and gave me Debi Church’s phone number, she was to be my backup midwife. I had only ever met Debi once at the recent birth fair. I had heard good things about her, but it was unnerving for me to be prepared to use a midwife that I did not know.

My Dad called me to see how I was doing. He knew I was scared because of the tone when I had first talked with him. He made me laugh when he said he had googled, “bloody show.” I just couldn’t imagine what he was finding, but he knew that meant the baby would be coming soon. He asked me to please go to a doctor if I felt the need. I reassured him that at 37 weeks, I was good to have a home birth. He said he understood, but as my Dad, he was still concerned for me. He asked if he could do anything, but I told him no, I would be okay.

Amy came over and helped me get the hose attached. I was all over the house, gathering supplies and trying to keep my adrenaline up, invoking the fight or flight response so that this baby would not come quickly. I was so thankful that Amy came over. She helped keep me calm. I was having pressure waves, but nothing I could not handle. She asked if i wanted to listen to fear clearing, but I said no, not until Damon got home. I laid on the couch watching Netflix, Amy sat nearby reading. Nick woke up and asked me to go lay down with him. I did but didn’t want to stay in there. He ended up coming into the living room with us for a little while. I finally did get him back down. He would not go to Amy. I went and took a shower, figuring it might be awhile until I could. Damon arrived home around 6:30 am. I was so thankful he was home. I continued to lay on the couch, using my finger drop technique any time a wave came. Damon went and laid down with the boys.I sent a message to the babysitter that the boys would be staying home. I texted my boss saying I wouldn’t be in to work that day. I was not going to repeat Nick’s birth and have to drive home in labor. I decided to try and sleep, as it was 7 am or so. I told Amy she could go home if she wanted, nothing was really happening. I put on the deepening track, put my wet towel over my face and tried to relax. When the hypnosis track was over, I took the towel off my head and saw Amy had left me a card saying to call whenever I needed her.

Nick woke up and was banging on the bedroom door, wanting out. I hoped Damon would get up and let him out but he was asleep. I made pancakes for Nick and I to eat. I was starving. Then I called Michelle to thank her for talking to me in the middle of the night. We had a really nice chat. Around 10 am, Damon took over caring for the boys and I laid down to rest, finally listening to fear clearing again, for the second time in about thirteen hours. I slept until 12:30 pm.

To be continued…..

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On April 5th I started having consistent and different pressure waves beginning in the morning, which is not the usual for me.  My body likes to prepare ALOT so I had pressure waves every evening 3-5min apart and lasting a min to 1.30 for about a week and a half now…..talk about teasers!  So this time I thought it must be it.  I just went about my day and would time them every now and then to see that they were still very consistent.  Well, that night I couldn’t sleep.  They were stronger and it didn’t feel comfortable to lay down through them anymore.  I popped in my easy first stage and tried to sleep through them, but was excited about what was coming :) I finally decided around 1am to call my midwife and tell her that I thought I was in my early birthing time, but that I could still manage the pressure waves pretty good so she didn’t need to come yet just giving her a heads up.  An hour later I felt like I needed to call her and see if she wanted to come set up.  So Mary Anne ended up arriving around 2:15am and checking my vitals and asking questions.  The minute she walked in the door everything sllllooowwed down!  I was so confused….she said that I was normal when they show up for things to stop progressing as much for a little bit almost like my body was nervous to perform, lol.  She talked me into to going back to bed and if this was it my pressure waves would wake me.  4 hours later…….I woke up completely fine and pressure waves gone!  Sooo embarrassing! Lol Poor Mary Anne stayed up all night at my house but assured me that this wasn’t her first rodeo with false alarms :) which brings me to April 6th.

I was pretty bummed about last night since I was a week over my guess date and was starting to get anxious about if I would get to have a home birth or not (you can’t have baby at home past two weeks).  Around 2pm I started feeling the same kind of pressure waves that I did the night before.  I described them as more “firery”….I know that is not a word, but it’s the only thing that came to mind.  A slight warming sensation when they would come on. (Editor’s note: “like a big warm hug for you and your baby?!”) So I decided to go about my day and just see what happens.  I even had an out of town friend that I hadn’t seen in a couple years come by around 2:30pm to hang out for a few and catch up.  I warned her that I was probably in my birthing time but it was no biggie and I would let her know if she needed to head out ha.  So about an hour of talking and walking around with her I calmly told her that it was time for me to call my midwife that this was happening tonight….needless to say she jetted out of here!  Mary Anne showed up about an hour later and my mom, husband, and her quickly started preparing the birthing tub and getting set up while I listened to my early birthing tracks, rolled on the birth ball, and swayed around the house breathing through waves.
The timeline of everything is still pretty fuzzy to me, but after what seemed like an hour the tub was finally ready!  Ohhhh was it soooo worth every penny!  The birthing tub was amazing and was just what I needed.  I stayed it the tub for a while skipping around through birthing day tracks and positive affirmations on my iPod.  Things started getting more intense and I felt the need to low moan and have pressure on my back.  I was drinking lots of water so I had to get out of the tub about three times to use the restroom.  I didn’t mind this even though it was awkward at times because I was determined to not feel “stuck” this time and I knew the more I moved the better chance of Cole moving down and out.  I could tell when I hit transition because the pressure waves were closer together and I started feeling like I was getting the break I needed between them.  I quickly realized I needed to just stay in the present and focus on getting through one pressure wave at a time and using low moan and ooooopen.  Finally my body started pushing which felt so good! I wish I could have pushed through transition lol.  My water quickly broke and I just went with it and pushed as my body allowed.
I didn’t know it at the time, but I felt a sense of urgency fill the room to get the baby out.  Later I found out that Cole’s heart rate had dropped and they didn’t want him in there long.  So I flipped to my back and pushed like it was my job until Mary Anne said okay we are getting you out are next push and on to the bed! I was like whaaaat, lol.  You want me to move? Lol. So of course I did and a few pushes later he was out!  Bright eyed and bushy tailed and 9pounds 23 inches :)
I am so happy that I did hypnobabies……it really helped me become mentally prepared for everything :) my techniques worked amazingly.  The tracks and finger drop were my savior in this birth for sure.  So happy how it all turned out and I would do it all again in a heart beat!

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During my last pregnancy I really enjoyed reading positive birth experiences so now I want to share mine.

I have given birth twice before, if you call having a baby cut out of your stomach “giving birth”. I don’t want to go into details about my negative experiences so I’ll summarize to give you an idea of where I was coming from. During my first birth I was progressing surprisingly fast for a first time until a nurse accidentally hurt me badly and caused my body to go into shock which slowed my labor to an almost stop. After many, many hours of labor the doctors refused to wait any more (I was 9cm at this point), even though my baby’s heart showed no sign of distress, and I  received a very traumatic Cesarean. Second birth was a forced c-section because the baby came about 6 weeks early and I was 4 hours from my hospital, the one I ended up at wouldn’t allow me to have a VBAC (I threatened to give birth in the parking lot if they wouldn’t let me just push him out but I wasn’t able to waddle out there. lol.)  Both babies were perfectly health though!

Both times everyone told me “Just be thankful you have a healthy baby.” Of course I was dearly thankful for a healthy baby (I love my two little boys with all my heart) but I could have and should have been able to deliver them in a healthy way.

I was very discouraged, especially since I had planned a natural birth with both of my pregnancies. So when I became pregnant with baby #3 (another precious boy) I did extensive research and became determined to do hypnobabies, I started the course very early in my pregnancy, ate super healthy and after much prayer my husband and I felt very confident in giving birth at home. The midwife we chose had a lot of experience and also happened to be a good friend that lived only a block away.
Hypnobabies was such a HUGE help in being able to overcome my fears and as my birthing time approached I grew more and more confident in my ability to ease my baby into this world. I had many people who told us things like: “Since this is your first vaginal birth it will be a long, hard labor and many hours of pushing.” “Having it natural is great but it should be at a hospital since its a VBAC.” etc etc. Not to mention the “Your crazy!” comments from random people. But it didn’t matter what they said we were confident and knew what was right for us.

At 3:33 pm on Feb 8th, not long after my husband got home from work, I began getting mild pressure waves. I knew they were simply practice waves since I had been getting a lot of them this week but as we gathered in the kitchen to eat a late lunch the waves were getting progressively stronger and I found it easier to rest my head on the table through each one. My husband knew it was ‘that’ time but I still wasn’t convinced. It must have concerned my precious 4 year old because he reached over occasionally and tenderly rubbed my hand to offer his comfort.
My husband finally convinced me to call the midwife. She brought over her equipment and my husband filled up the birthing pool while she checked me at 4:30. I was completely effaced but only dilated to about a 4 1/2. She offered to stay but voiced her desire to return home and shower first. The kids had now gone with the babysitter so I thought it would be nice to just enjoy this time with my husband and I encouraged her to go. Not long after my midwife left I made a trip to the restroom and found it difficult to get comfortable then on my return I spotted the birthing pool. The warm water was so inviting and instead of changing into the birthing skirt and swim top I had planned on wearing, I lost any sense of modesty and stripped completely then sank into the water. It was so soothing!

The pressure waves were rapidly becoming a LOT of pressure and at one point the fear of this lasting for hours caused me to tense up and I lost my focus but my sweet husband brought me back and I can testify that relaxing makes a HUGE difference! Then for the first time I actually tuned into the hypnobabies cd that was playing in the background and it eased things up too. I tried the belly lift technique (from the book: Back labor no more) through a few of my waves but it seemed to make me more uncomfortable instead of less. I suspect that it still sped things up because suddenly I realized that my body was pushing! In complete awe I told my husband and he quickly called the midwife (good thing she was only a block away!). It was now 5:31 and my sweetheart kept telling me to stop pushing until she got there but there was no stopping my body, it had taken over.

Our midwife arrived minutes after. She moved back a slight cervical lip and gave me complete permission to push. WOW! I was amazed at the incredible power my body put into each push. I had read that in your birthing time it is very relieving when it comes time to push and I now know what those women were talking about. After a few pressure waves my midwife suggested that I reach down and feel my baby’s head in the birth canal. That was another WOW! moment. With each push I could feel his head move closer and closer, it was so amazing and exciting!! We didn’t have enough hot water to fill the birthing pool very far so it only reached up my tummy when I was on my hands and knees. My midwife had me get into a squatting position so that my bottom would be submerged for the crowning but that position stopped the baby’s progress so after a few pressure waves she had me get back onto my hands and knees. From there the babies head was soon crowning. As I was trying to slowly ease my baby’s head out I could really feel the stretch so when my midwife asked me to push I obliged her and in two pushes I felt his beautiful head emerge (I still didn’t tear at all. YAY!). It was strangely incredible to feel his head protruding from me. I could feel his wet hair and his tiny ears. I was then told to go ahead and push out his body even though I wasn’t having a pressure wave. I was surprised at how easy it was to do so with one quick push. He was born at 5:50. I immediately turned over onto my back and my little angel was placed onto my stomach. He lay there looking around at his new world, occasionally making the most beautiful sounds I had ever heard.

In less than 2 1/2 hours from when my pressure waves began and almost 20 minutes of pushing I had given birth to my baby. It was the most empowering experience of my life! He weighed exactly 6 lbs and measured 19.5 inches. I’m so in love!

~Crystal

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You can read Tiffany’s Birth Story here.    Here is her lovely birth video.

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Special thanks to Tiffany for sharing her birth story with us!  Her Birth Video to come in next post.

June 2011: Five months after my daughter, Yalana was born my husband and I found out we were expecting again. After getting past the initial shock of being pregnant again so soon we became excited. We decided to plan a home birth because Yalana was born unexpectedly at home only 22 minutes after I woke up in the morning from a great night sleep. I had used the Hypnobabies program to prepare for her birth and I of course used it again for this pregnancy!:)

 

Monday, March 12th: I was 3 days past my guess date. It was a beautiful day. I cleaned the house, took a nice long walk and listened to my Hypnobabies “Come OUT Baby” track. I was having a lot of toning contractions (my term for Braxton Hicks cxt), which was really exciting for me. I LOVED my toning pressure waves and with every one of them I would imagine my cervix opening and effacing. I had them fairly consistently throughout the day which made me think that I may start my birthing time late that evening or early morning. I made my husband, Lucas come to bed early just in case. Unfortunately, the toning pws subsided when I went to bed and I was frustrated to wake up in the morning,

Tuesday, March 13th, NOT in my birthing time. Lucas jokingly said in the morning, “I thought you promised me a baby.” I had an apt with one of my midwives, Audra, that afternoon. I decided to have her check me in hopes that it would alleviate some of my frustration and to see if my Hypnobabies visualizations were working. Finding out I was 4-5 cm dilated definitely made me feel less frustrated. I decided to have her sweep my membranes. Audra told me if it didn’t work that I could come back in tomorrow to repeat the sweep;) My toning pws came back and I was so excited once again. My friend I had not seen in over a year came over to visit then I called my mom and updated her on my apt. She said she wanted to come spend the night just in case I went into labor over night. I played with the kids, cleaned the house and took a walk. The left side of my back was aching so I put a warm rice sock on it, which made it feel so much better. My mom, Lucas and I watched a show and then off we all went to bed. I tried listening to my Hypnobabies to go to bed but it made me too excited to sleep so after a while I just set it aside. That brings us to

Wednesday, March 14th Analiese’s Birth Day. Rise and Shine! At 3 am I was wide-awake and NOT in my birthing time! My backache was completely gone and so were the toning pws. Seriously, I thought seriously. I was hungry so I went downstairs and accidentally woke up my mom. I told her that nothing was happening and that she should go in to work today. I got a fiber bar and made some raspberry leaf tea. I sat on my computer and decided to do my own “fear clearing” session. I typed out all the things that I felt might be holding me back from going into my birthing time. After my mom left for work around 6:30am, I went back to bed. When I woke up at 9am, Lucas had already left to take the kids to daycare and go to class. I got up ate breakfast, cleaned and called the birth center to let them know I would be coming in to repeat the sweep. Then I laid down to listen to my Hypnobabies “Deepening” track. Just when I was so relaxed my mom called. She told me she was going to take a half-day so she could take me to my apt. I was very glad.

My mom got to my house around 11ish. We decided going out to eat prior to my apt would be nice. Before we left my backache came back so I warmed up a rice sock to take with me. We went to Noodles & Co. and while eating my backache became increasingly more uncomfortable. I told my mom and she wondered if I was having back labor. I told her I didn’t think so but I would be more comfortable at the birth center than sitting in a booth. My mom packed up our lunches and we headed to the birth center, which was only 2 minutes away. Luckily, when we got there Shelie, one of my midwives was between apts. I told her about my back and she wondered if I might be in labor. I told her I didn’t think so cause was only having a few toning pws besides the backache. So she checked me and said something like, “Oh my gosh Tiffany you are dilated to 6 and I can stretch you to 8. And she is +2″. Now she really thought I was in labor even though I still wasn’t convinced. She thought I should stick around the birth center so I don’t deliver in the car if I tried to go home. She prepared one of the birthing rooms for me and got me the TENS unit for my back. The TENS unit was like heaven! I was thankful to have it because I didn’t have my iPOD on me that holds all my Hypnobabies tracks. I called my husband and told him not to go to his next class but to go home and get a bunch of stuff then pick up our four-year-old son, Austin from daycare.

I did start to feel pressure waves (PW’s) but they didn’t feel much stronger then toning pws so I ate the rest of my lunch while rocking in the rocking chair waiting for Lucas and Austin to arrive. The PW’s did pick up a bit till they were 4 min apart and I started to use my Hypnobabies techniques to relax through them. Lucas and Austin arrived around 2pm. My son was so excited he didn’t want to leave my side. We had to convince him to watch a movie and we would not let him miss it. I rocked on the birth ball, took a walk outside, sat on the toilet… threw up all my Noodles on the toilet (spicy noodles were not the best choice but I felt great after they came out:) Shared some laughs with my mom and hubby especially when my mom was giving Lucas the analogy that a cat is like a wave. So after my next PW Lucas asked me it I held my breath through the wave cause that’s what he would do. I laughed so hard.

I began to feel bored because my PW’s spaced and started to just feel like toning cxt again. So I decided to take a nap for a little bit and listen to my Hypnobabies, “Birth Day Affirmations”.  Around 4 pm I started feeling like I just wanted to go home. I told Audra and decided to have her check me. I was 7-8cm. She told me of course she cant recommend that I make the trip home but she agreed my labor would probably pick back up if I were home. So I decided that I would wait till my dad brought Yalana to the birth center from daycare.  Around 5:30 pm my dad arrived. It was so nice to see my daughter because I hadn’t seen her all day. After my dad left I decided that I really wanted to be at home so I could be more comfortable and so that the kids could be at home.

We arrived home around 6pm. I felt relieve to be in my own space. I went right up to my room and started arranging things. My mom helped with the kids and Lucas came up and hooked up the hose to fill the birth tub. My mom then came up to time some of my PW’s and light the candles on my dresser. I am glad I listened to my body and came home. It’s just what it needed. My PW’s started to pick up and get stronger. I put on some music. Interestingly, I learned I really didn’t enjoy the calm waterfall music. Instead I listened to the play list I made when I was studying for my step I board exam that included some of the following songs: Somewhere Over the Rainbow, My Own Two Hands, Don’t Stop Believin’, What a Wonderful World, She’s Some Kind of Wonderful among a few others. I call my friend Margo and updated her and told her to head over when she could and to let our other friend Rachel know. Then my mom told me my PW’s were about 3-4 min apart so I call the birth center message line to page my midwives. Clarice called right back and I let her know it was time to come. It was around 7:15pm. Lucas bathed Yalana and put her to bed just before everyone arrived around 7:45ish. Then he took care of Austin. My mom took pictures and Margo and Rachel took turns massaging my back during PW’s. I would not describe the PW’s as painful at all. They were strong but not painful. I used my Hypnobabies peace cue, special place technique and ‘ah’ vocalization to relax my body during each PW. With every PW I would push the button on the TENS unit which greatly enhanced my Hypnobabies techniques to relax. The stronger the PW’s got the more excited I would get and coming out of each PW I would smile knowing that soon I would be holding my baby girl. At 8:45pm I decided to have Clarice check me. I was 10 cm. At that point my husband and son had come upstairs which happened to be perfect timing. Clarice suggested that I sit on the toilet for a while. Sitting on the toilet was just what I needed. After two pressure waves my water broke. As soon as it did I felt increasingly pushy. I told everyone to get me to the birthing tub. I knew with the next PW I would be pushing her out. The transition to the tub was the most challenging part. A wave of nausea hit me and walking was not the most comfortable position with all the pressure but with help I made it to the birthing tub. I put one leg in and then up came the cookie and toast I decided to eat when I got home (it sounded good to eat at the time). Thankfully, Clarice had the trash right there for me. I felt so much better after that. I got into the tub and the water felt too warm for me especially since it was 77 degrees in the house because of the crazy March weather and our air-conditioning happen to not be working. So they added some cold water. When it felt right I got down on my knees in the water… Ahhh the water and being on my knees felt amazing. I had a little break before my next PW. Clarice checked the baby’s heart tones and my husband gave me a kiss. Then I reminded Austin that I might make some grunty noises like what dad does when he lifts heavy weights. He understood and I could see the excitement in his eyes. He had been waiting for this moment for wks asking me everyday if I was going to have the baby yet. As I started to feel the next PW I closed my eyes and put my head down on the pillow in front of me. I used my peace cue as I started to bare down with the PW. I felt lots of pressure and a slight burning sensation but that was it. I knew it would only last a second and I pushed a bit more as I kept me hand on the top of her head and out it came. I checked for a cord and so did Kendra my other midwife. With the next PW I bared down again and out she came right (9:10 pm) into my own two hands. I picked her up out of the water and held her close to my chest. We did it baby girl! I was filled with joy and excitement. I sat back in the birthing tub and enjoyed looking at her and soaking in the miracle of life. I also got to feel her pulsing cord and watch it self-clamp. After the placenta came out my mom cut the cord. Analiese was handed off to her daddy and I was helped back into bed. After some pictures Kendra did the Analiese’s newborn exam right on our bed.  The most surprising part was how much she weighed. We all guessed a weight and we were all wrong. She was 9 lbs 4 oz! We took more pictures then my mom helped Austin to bed. Lucas made me eggs and toast and Rachel helped feed me while I nursed Analiese. Kendra fixed my small tear. Clarice did the placenta prints and Margo and Rachel helped clean up. It was perfect timing for her to come just before bedtime.

In the morning we woke up to a beautiful spring morning with the sun shinning in my windows and the birds chirping. It was very peaceful.  Lana woke up and got to meet her baby sister. All she wanted to do was pat her. It was so cute.

One very awesome thing about my birth time was that I got to see all my midwives! Big thanks to them for their amazing compassionate, competent, patient centered and evidence based care. They truly provide superior care to any other providers in the area.

And thanks to Hypnobabies I was able to enjoy a completely natural pain free birth with out drugs. My birthing time was filled with lots of smiles and laughter. The relaxation techniques I learned with Hypnobabies allowed me to listen to my body; from knowing I needed to be home to give birth to when to push. Amazing that no one has to tell you when or how to push!! I only experience discomfort with 2 brief bouts of nausea and slight intense sensation when my daughter was crowning. Overall it was a very empowering and blissful experience.

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