I really loved reading this birth story, because it was from a mom who used Hypnobabies in a way that was best for her! She says it wasn’t a typical “successful” Hypnobabies birth. But I disagree, every mom who uses Hypnobabies is a success, if she feels empowered and makes the best choices for herself along the way!
Let me begin by saying that I am not your typical HB Mom. I did not decide in advance that I wanted a natural birth, rather I believed that one would be chosen for me because my previous birth was so fast. I was concerned before I began this course that so many stories talked about how they were farther along than they thought that I worried I would not know when to get to the hospital, thankfully that did not happen to me. For anyone who happens to have similar concerns, I wanted to submit my daughter’s birth story.
This was my third birth, my first two were fairly quick and easy, both with an epidural. My first birth was 8 hours but my second was only 4 hours total. For my second birth, I was at the hospital for less than 2 hours before he was born and barely had time for an epidural, which was only in place for about 15 minutes before I started pushing, so it was not at 100% effectiveness. Since my second birth went so quickly and I had heard that subsequent births get faster, I started to get worried. Going into this birth I had two primary concerns: 1. Not getting to the hospital in time, and 2. Not having time to get an epidural. So, with all that back story, here is how my birth story goes.
On Monday Morning September 21 around 7:30 AM (at 39 weeks exactly) I started having some consistent contractions, nothing too difficult, just noticeable and easily written off as BH. I had LOTS of false labor with my second birth, up to 5 hours at 3-4 minutes apart for weeks before he was born so I wasn’t too concerned at this point. They varied from 10 min to 3 min, but were averaging around 7-8 min apart, but since I hadn’t had any false labor at all with this pregnancy, I made note. I was at work and was timing them and decided that around one o’clock I should probably head home since they had been coming fairly consistently for about 4-5 hours and I should get closer to home in case this wasn’t false labor and things got more intense quickly like they did for my first two labors.
I got home around 2ish and called my Mom to ask her to come over to watch the boys since I didn’t know how long this would last or if it was the real deal, but again I anticipated that things could change quickly and I would feel better if she were here.
At home still having very manageable contractions that continued to vary from 3-12 minutes apart, still averaging around 6-7 minutes. I took a small walk (about 4 blocks) to see if it would pick up the contractions, but it didn’t. After I picked my oldest son up from the bus we all went for a walk around the neighborhood to see if that would get stuff going more. After another 1.25 miles of walking, still no change. We ordered a pizza for dinner and I spent the evening going for walks and sitting on my exercise ball to see if anything would make them more intense or closer together, but nothing changed. We put the kids to bed and talked to Mom about staying or going. Since I had been contracting all day we were pretty sure that something had to be happening soon and she decided to stay. We got ready for bed and lay down to go to sleep around 9:45 and then finally things got interesting.
At 9:50 I was laying in bed and had a really intense contraction, one that was electric through your whole body and I knew then that we had finally hit productive contractions. 10:00 another one, 10:11 and another. By 10:21 I had another very intense contraction and woke up DH. We called the doctor and decided to head in to L&D. Even though they were still spaced far apart, things moved quickly with my second birth so we were still anticipating a potentially fast birth and wanted to be in the hospital in plenty of time. Plus, I was GBS positive and needed 4 hours of IV antibiotics so we needed to keep things moving as much as possible.
I listened to my hypnosis tracks in the car ride over and it made everything very comfortable and manageable. We got into the hospital and got settled around 11:00. They did some monitoring, and started my IV for the antibiotics. I continued to labor on the birth ball and standing and was having a hard time finding a comfortable place to be. I had my hypnobabies tracks on but I really didn’t switch to off because I really needed to move through the contractions. After about 2 hours of some fairly intense contractions I was getting vocal and they were getting more difficult to manage. At around 1:00 AM I had the nurse check me when I was standing and was really surprised that I was only at 4 and a half at this point.
With my second birth, I arrived at the hospital at about the same time (11PM) and at about 1AM I was 7cm and had a baby in my arms by 1:35. I had expected this to be as fast or faster since it was a subsequent birth, but it became clear to me that this was not going to be a duplicate of my second birth. Both DH and I were getting really tired and I was losing my stamina so we decided to go for the epidural. It was put in place without incident by about 1:30 or 2AM and then we both kinda slept until about 3:15. The nurse came in to check on me around 3:15 and I had just felt a big pop and found out that my water had broken and I think they told me I was at an 8.
The nurse told me that my doctor was at home and I told her that in the past things move fast for me now so they should get her here. About 2 contractions later I was feeling ready to push and did my best to blow away the contractions. I think they called my doctor about 3 times to find out where she was, the nurse told me that they asked her to run, not walk down the hall. When the doctor arrived they broke down the bed and adjusted my mirror and we were ready to push.
Since this epidural was stronger than the previous 2 I had they needed to tell me when I was having a contraction so that I could push with it since the feeling of pressure was pretty constant. They had me push with the first contraction and told me that the baby would be born with the next contraction. They were talking and missed the next contraction on the monitor but with the next one I pushed and watched her head be born in the mirror. I saw her rotate and with the next push I delivered the rest of her. I heard everyone saying ohhh and knew before they even told me that it was a girl. All the nurses and doctors knew that we had 2 boys at home who really wanted a sister, but that we decided to be surprised. Sure enough they announced that it was a girl and set her on top of my chest while they dried her off. She was born at 3:44 AM 7lbs 5oz and 20′ long. Her brothers are over the moon in love with her and we are enjoying every minute of our new little girl.
I do have a few tips for the DH’s of Moms who have already had kids. My DH fell into old patterns (Lamaze mixed in with our version of Bradley) when things really got going. He didn’t read his HB cheat sheet or any of his notes while I was laboring, and we fell into old patterns. For those committed to a natural birth, I would recommend you essentially force your DH to practice with you, a lot. We didn’t practice together much at all, although he did read all the materials and listen to the scripts. It was just easier to fall back into old habits. He forgot all about the peace and relax cues and just asked about changing positions, or CD tracks and massaging my back etc. So for you ladies who are working with your DH for a natural birth, do your best to have him shake off his old habits and I imagine that practice with him will do wonders.
So while I know that this is not a standard HB success story, it is still a success for me. I had no false labor like I experienced with my previous births. I had plenty of “warning” that this was my birthing time, and this baby was born weeks later than any of my previous kids. I attribute all of these things to the HB course keeping my stress levels low and keeping me in tune with my body.
Like I said at the beginning, I never really wanted a drug free birth, but had assumed one would be thrust upon me. I was able to stay as comfortable as possible, and got the birth I was very happy with.
Best of luck to all the Moms waiting for their little ones!