Archive for September, 2010

I posted a few months ago about wanting a home birth vs hospital birth.  Everyone on this group was so supportive  and we decided to do a home birth.  I am so glad that we did.

I thought I was going to be “overdue” but I figured that, like my first child, it would only be a few days.  Umm..nope, I was 13 days “overdue”.  At 41 w 4 d my midwife wanted me to go to the hospital and get an non-stress test.  Everything looked was great except for a couple of jabs from the on call doc about my homebirth so I went home.  At 41 w 6 d I went back for another one.   Ugh.  I was really stressed at this point because my midwife couldn’t continue my care after 42 weeks.  Everything looked amazing again.

I got home around 3:00 and took 4 T of castor oil. It wasn’t bad since I mixed it up in a root beer float 🙂 Nothing happened…and by nothing I mean none of the side effects that you hear castor oil giving you. I figured it was worthless. My mom and I walked to the store to get some stuff for dinner and we rented a movie. The boys got home from hiking and we started the movie around 8. I don’t think I made it even5 minutes into it. I was sitting on the exercise ball and pressure waves started coming every minute and a half. I started panicking thinking that this is not right, these are way too fast.   My husband Brian gave me a blessing and I got in the shower. Brian called the midwife, Kathy. She said she would be about an hour. I got out when the hot water ran out and they had spaced out to about 5 minutes apart. These were easy to handle, every time one would come I would just drop to my knees and lean on my exercise ball in front of the fan. Kathy got there and got set up and took vitals and everything. I was a little worried labor was going to stop. Finally at two am I asked Kathy to check me and she called it a generous three….I was a little discouraged. Right after her check things got intense fast. Brian was totally AMAZING.  I really don’t know what I would do without him. I got in the tub which felt great. After an hour Kathy wanted me to get out and walk around some.

I started feeling the urge to push so she checked me and I had a little lip left but said I could push if I wanted. I labored on the toilet for a little bit and then got back in the tub. I didn’t have that overwhelming urge to push with Claire but boy….I couldn’t have stopped pushing if I wanted to.  My midwife was so laid back. She just sat in the rocking chair and every 5-10 minutes (I think) came and checked the heart rate which was always great. I loved being by myself to push. I could reach and feel the head coming down. BOP It was really hard to slow down when he started crowning and I did let out a scream when his head came out…I totally felt a little tear…yuck. END  He was born in his amniotic sac which was so cool. I tested negative for GBS  but was positive for my first pregnancy so I visualized my water not breaking.  Yay!

Kathy just came over and guided him up to the surface and unwrapped the cord which was around his neck and body. I sat back and brought him up to me. It was amazing. He just looked around at everyone and didn’t cry at all. He had some stuff in his throat but Kathy said it wasn’t bad and he could work it out. No rough suctioning!! We sat in the water for a long time. I think it was over ten minutes before his cord stopped pulsating. No crying…just relaxed. Finally Brian cut the cord and took Jack…my feet were falling asleep. I couldn’t stretch out in the tub because I was a little too short to reach the other side without Jack getting too low to the water.

He was born at 6:18 am  on 6/18 so I went from  a 3 to delivered in 4 hours. He had 9/9 apgar scores. I think I nursed him in the tub and then when I got out. kathy examined the placenta which I delivered when I was in the tub. After an hour maybe? she did the newborn exam. Nothing was rushed…everything was done at the end of my bed. My baby was never taken way. I had one tear up but it wasn’t worth stitching and hasn’t hurt. Amazing considering Jack is over two lbs heavier than my first at 8 lbs 15 oz! In fact, my bleeding has been so much less compared to Claire’s birth. Pain too…I took someIbuprofen but not much and not all the time. Recovery is going so good this time.  He is three weeks old and we have moved from Washington to Utah.  I loved my homebirth and my husband, who was TOTALLY against homebirth when we were first married, loved it too.  He talks about it all the time.  Once again, Hypnobabies was amazing. I kept repeating phrases over and over.  It was intense but awesome.

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Although this birth was nothing like I had actually envisioned (a 4 hour relaxed hospital birth), it was exactly like I wanted and needed (a natural, surprise home birth – superfast about an hour of true birthing time) primarily because my birth plan was followed exactly…

  • I wanted to labor and deliver as my body directed me
  • I wanted to assist with the birth and bring her directly to me
  • I wanted to stay skin to skin
  • To initiate breastfeeding when we were ready
  • Let the placenta deliver naturally and cord stop pulsing
  • To delay procedures until I was ready to let go.

(I had these 6 things printed on a 3×5 card, that was my entire birth plan) I had planned for a hospital birth so all of those things were potential sticking points, things I was most concerned about, the birthing was least of my worries, in fact I hadn’t even tried visualizing a completely comfortable birth, I was so hung up on confrontation with the staff over my birth plan.  I also, had been very torn about child care for my daughter, I wanted my mom to be the one caring for her but I also wanted her to be there at the birth, this way she actually did that.

However perhaps the craziest part is that one thing that I had envisioned and rehearsed really did happen, and it was the best thing, water breaking and then 5 or 6 pushy waves later baby would be born.

I had envisioned, rehearsed and told everyone that would listen, that Ellie would be born on Thursday, May 6th.  The midwives delivered on Thursdays and I was hoping that delivering with a midwife at the military hospital I use, would get me the intervention free birth that I wanted. Although towards the end I started to think, that perhaps that wouldn’t guarantee my ideal birth and started to let go and accept the thought that perhaps another time might provide the optimal care provider mix to have my ideal birth.

I had not had an internal check at my 39wk visit, May 3rd.  I had had about 2 or 3 strong, practice waves a few weeks before so I thought I might be dilating but was so sure that May 6th would be the day that I was ready. I’ll admit to being anxious and not really sure though.  I was a bit anxious going to bed on the 5th, but I had totally prepared for a trip to the hospital the next morning, just like I envisioned.

Nothing…  then around 4:30pm an hour of pressure waves, not very strong but lots of stretching down low, at my pelvic bone, like I had with Clara, no pain or discomfort anywhere else just very very tight stretchy feelings down low that were uncomfortable. I could say they were painful but I know they really weren’t.

Not much more for a couple of days, then to the nurse on Monday, the 10th my official Guess Date.  I was 2cm dilated, 50% effaced and baby was at a -3 station (still high but slightly engaged).  After that exam on Monday I had more pressure waves and bloody show throughout the week. By Friday, May 14th, I was getting anxious, tense, mad, scared,  all the bad feelings.  I was mainly worried that baby was in a bad position which was preventing my body from keeping the pressure waves going and that I would indeed end up at 42 weeks with no baby and an induction.  I read a wonderful post on the HypnoBabies Yahoo Group. Susan was advising another woman in a similar situation, a woman who’s confidence was shaken thanks to some painful practice waves.  She reminded readers that those early pressure waves can be the hardest and most painful, they can be your body positioning baby and the are so irregular it can be difficult to get into good deep hypnosis. (Msg number 76966) I took that thought to heart and went to do a fear release after a what seemed like a 20 minute wave while watching a wonderfully powerful lightning storm.

I slept through the fear release script trusting that my subconscious would clear out the fear and doubt I had in my mind. I wanted to give birth joyously as I’d planned, not grumpy and angry or mean to my support team so I decided not to be that way.  I woke up feeling more settled and accepting of my birthing time, whenever that would be.

My husband came to lay down with my daughter was sleeping and my mom was relaxing in the living room, it was around 9pm when… A ‘real’ pressure wave, it was stronger than I’d been feeling, I knew something had changed and I was excited. This one I felt the stretching and discomfort move up the front of my uterus. Before they were just down low near my cervix. With this one I could feel the stretching moving up.  My husband and I stayed on the bed relaxing, I wanted him to talk to me, he was so tired, I was frustrated with him and begging him to talk to me, when another came about 10 minutes later. And then…

A third real one, that was really really pretty bad (for me anyway – I’d guess that many women, not using Hypnobabies would say it wasn’t that bad.) And a strong pop – my water had broken. I was way up high near my ribs so I was a bit concerned about baby position still.  I didn’t want to move even though I could feel the fluid seeping down onto the bed. After the pressure wave was finished I moved to the bathroom, and saw that happily the water was clear.  Mark wanted to head to the hospital, I told him no, they need to get stronger and closer together, it could be a while. I even doubted calling the doula, which we did and calling my friend Brandi to come watch Clara.

I had another wave talking to my Doula, Emily, she estimated that it was about 4-5 minutes since my water broke. I think I went through 2 on the toilet and then moved to the birthing ball. They were pretty bad and wasn’t really into hypnosis, although I had my headphones on listening to Easy First Stage, I think.  A wave on the ball and I thought I sensed that my body was pushing, just as it had with my daughter Clara, I got nervous and wanted to lay down, went to the couch, and another wave, moved during it and for sure my body was pushing!

My husband and mother wanted to go to the hospital, I said there was no time, and was insistent that I wasn’t going to move. I wasn’t sure how long it would take to move that baby out, but I knew that moving to the car and taking the 40 minute ride to the hospital was just not something I could handle at that point. I guess I felt like she was coming down, because I remember reaching up to check my cervix (I’m not sure what I thought I’d find) but I felt her head, I knew she WAS close. So I went to the toilet again, knowing that it would feel better there.  I have to say the waves were intense and I was not using hypnosis to handle them, but I was thinking about the cues and I do remember telling myself “I’m safe, my baby’s safe” during a particularly rough moment.

My husband went to move the car, although I told him again, there’s no time. My mom wanted to call the paramedics I said not to. I’m not sure why, I guess I was still in a bit of denial about it happening so fast.

Things got fuzzy here, but my mom and I estimate maybe 3 waves later baby was crowning! I felt that first wave on the toilet move her down and out of my cervix, my memory now seems like I felt her move down like I felt her just kind of pop down into my birth canal in one wave. The soreness of my pelvis for weeks seems to verify that there was not gentle stretch or movement of the pelvis.

I remember reaching down and feeling her head crowning, knowing I needed to slow down and relax, I think I did for just a few seconds. I remember looking into my mom’s eyes and saying ‘oh baby’ and she saying that back to me, not sure if she was talking about me, her baby or just about the fact that a baby was here. I pushed between waves and out came her head, I felt it tear a bit forward and back in my perineum.

I knew that it would be really hard for my mom to catch her over the toilet so we started, in a strangely lucid moment between waves, to talk about me moving to hands and knees, even down to the detail that I was going to turn my head towards the tub.  Then another wave and out she came!  I remember feeling the cord pull up a bit and tighten as my mom handed me the baby I brought her up to my chest, I have a clear memory of blood splattering the wall as my mom reached back for a towel.

I remember joy, excitement, amazement, wonder, at holding her. Ellen Judith.  I remember a moment of fright waiting for her to cry, and then MORE (could there be more? I didn’t think so) joy at the sound of her cry.  This was indeed the birth I needed to heal me, the weeks of worry, about her position, pain and frustration of ‘false labor’ and my frustration at my last birth in the hospital when baby was wisked away from and brought back like a stranger to me.
I remember double checking to be sure she was a girl.

My mom called 911 almost immediately, I remember reminding her of the address and hearing her tell me to keep the baby at a lower level than the placenta (I ignored that advice though).  I remember Mark coming in shortly after and he had a shocked look on his face, he was so upset that he missed her birth – he’d oddly been delayed because of a broken gate in our parking garage.  Sometime shortly after that Emily the Doula arrived – she’d been delayed by surprise roadwork in her neighborhood. So baby came in a 2 minute window that my mom and I were home alone together. This is amazing since this child’s middle name is my mom’s name. Judith, a complete surprise and honor to my unassuming and excited mother.

Somewhere in there the placenta delivered without any effort, I don’t even remember another pressure wave happening. I felt it come down and out of me and into the toilet.

Emily asked quite calmly if we wanted to move to the bed. Mark and my mom seemed stunned by the thought and Emily directed them to get the shower curtain and spread it on the bed. I had to remind Mark to get the curtain from the girl’s bathroom since the one in ours was not waterproof.

My mom got a bowl for the placenta, and once Emily fished it out of the toilet and put it in the bowl, I got up to move to the bed, I was sore and I could feel some pain where I know I tore while I was moving to the bed, I could feel blood running down to the carpet, my mom cleaned it up for us later, I never saw it.

The paramedics arrived at some point, lots of them, at least 8, all men. I think I was already on the bed.  They asked a few questions but were pretty hands off since I think things looked pretty stable and I knew  all the right answers, (water clear, placenta delivered, baby had cried, even down to volunteering this was second pregnancy second live birth). They told my mom at some point that we all seemed very calm for having just gone through a surprise birth.  They wanted to cut the cord, I said okay, but had to ask for my husband to do it, no malice there I think they were just looking to keep things moving alone.

It was time to move to the hospital, I was wheeled out on the stretcher, this hurt, I could feel every bump at the point of my two tears. I remember my mom coming out into the hallway with us, and holding her hand and saying goodbye, sad she couldn’t go with us but so very relieved that she’d be home if my daughter needed her.

I was really insistent that Ellie latch before we left, and so got her on in the ambulance before we left and she and I did our best the whole way to the hospital. Mark rode in the front and Emily rode with me in the back, it was nice to have her there we kind of giggled like kids, I was so excited and proud and happy and yet still needed her reassurance and guidance.  Yet more evidence that doulas are truly important people in my opinion. It seemed so strange in the ambulance, like it should be smaller, I felt odd I still had on my cami top and no pants, I was in a sheet that I guess the paramedics brought with them.  I had no idea where we were going, they told me but I wasn’t familiar with that hospital so it was just all so strange and like I’d been transported somewhere else.

We go there and I was wheeled in, through a lobby not through the ER, just in through the very quiet lobby it was around 11pm I guess.  I was checked and found to have two tares, they were afraid I tore up towards my urethra, that was scary, that would really really suck, but it turned out I didn’t.  A very uncomfortable repair later I was feeling pretty good.  Although I wish I handled the staff better, I didn’t fully surrender to them but I look back and know that I did a bit, just to go with the flow, I still feel like I was in control, asking questions, being the owner of my body and my baby.  I controlled when they took the baby out of my hands and when I got to breastfeed, I felt like, unlike with my first, Clara, that this was MY baby, I guess because I brought her to the hospital with me.

Hypnobabies was a great tool before during and after my birthing time,
a great education and preparation and certainly the confidence it gave me to deal with the hospital staff was quite welcome. I also was so glad for that bubble of peace since I got a few ridiculous comments from the doctors. They don’t realize how important their words are to women, and had I not been prepared and educated I’d be scared out of my mind at some of the things that were casually said to me, with no malice intended but still quite negative just the same.

Thank you Hypnobabies for although it was not what I envisioned, I’m certain it was the birth that I needed.

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Hi Everyone,

First of all, just a reminder that Kerry and Carole are speaking at the “Uniting for the Future of Birth” Mega Conference in Milwaukee in early October! http://www.futureofbirthconference.org/

Our session is called, The Transformative Language of Birth and will allow us to teach birth professionals how to alter their thinking and use positive wording which can positively affect birth outcomes. Please post and e-mail this to EVERYONE!

Since our session at the Mega Conference is all about helping birth professionals learn positive language that is extremely helpful to all pregnant and birthing moms, we would like to ask for everyone’s input! This includes moms and birth care professionals.

Please call our toll-free hotline at 800-350-2204 and complete any or all of the following:

“When I was pregnant my (caregiver) said ………to me and then I felt……..about childbirth”. (Doulas, doctors, midwives, nurses; any caregiver)

“My birth was awesome (or whatever adjective you’d like to use) because my (caregiver) said…….”

“My birth was going very well (or however you’d like to describe it) until my (caregiver said …….”

If you are a birth professional, you can complete the following:

“I attended a birth where a (medical caregiver) said……..to the birthing mom and it changed……..in her birth experience (explain what happened, positive or negative).

Please forward this to anyone who would like t be part of the process of changing birth language. Thanks so much for helping us educate birth care professionals how to become more positive and effective!


Kerry Tuschhoff, HCHI, CHt, CI

Founder/Director of Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis

714-952-BABY (2229)


Join us on Facebook, Twitter and our own YouTube Channel:

www.Facebook.com/Hypnobabies www.Twitter.com/Hypnobabies


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I am so pleased to be writing this post.  I haven’t posted anything since my introduction but the Hypnobabies Home Study Course and all of you have been my daily support system.  I am writing this story in complete gratitude and love for all of you.  I now know that your babies can and will be birthed in peace and love, as my Maya was.

My Maya Isadora chose last Sunday, May 30th, as her birthday.  My birthing time started exactly at the time I had imagined during my HB work.  I felt a gush of water while I was lounging in bed around 7 AM.  In the latter part of my pregnancy, I had taken to listening for birds.  I could swear that all of the birds around our house had somehow come to see Maya into the world and this gush occurred while I was doing that.

When I stood more water gushed out and I walked to the toilet to see what was going on.  More water was coming out and I wasn’t able to control it, so I knew that this was likely my birthing time.  The water was clear, as I had imagined, and I was so pleased to see that.  I told my husband and we both were remarkably calm.  I expected to be calm but my husband had initially concerned me.  While he read all of the materials and practiced scripts with me , he didn’t do any of the fear clearing sessions but in the end, he was a remarkable birthing partner and didn’t need them.  I was GBS positive and we suspected my water had broken so we didn’t choose to labor at home.  We did, however, take our time packing and I had breakfast.  I talked to my doula and she gave us great advice on how to handle checking in at the hospital so we could get the midwife we wanted to deliver our baby.

I listened to positive affirmations on our way to the hospital in the “off” position and I even knew when we had arrived and opened my eyes perfectly as we turned in.  We arrived at the birthing suites and a sweet nurse named Stephanie helped us out that first hour.  This was another good omen as my sister’s name is Stephanie and I have several other important women in my life with that name.  Stephanie was again another element I had visualized during my HB sessions.   I was told that it was indeed my birthing time so we called my doula.  Before she arrived, we were shown into our room.

I kept listening to affirmations and enjoying my husband’s company until my doula arrived.  The early hours of my birthing time were very special and sweet.  My doula knew that I wanted to move as much as possible and we combined her methodologies with whatever HB I wanted to incorporate.  We walked a lot and I sat in the rocking chair.  At some point, I wanted to listen to “Easy First Stage” so I did that.  My husband has a great video of me doing that–I was so proud when I saw it.  I truly looked like the fantastic UTube Hypnomoms I had been watching all these months.  My doula and husband thought I was asleep–I am pretty sure my husband still thinks I was asleep.

*BOP Warning* I was at 1.5 cm around this time so it was recommended that we try a low dose of Pitocin.  I asked the nurse to leave the room and talked it over with my doula and husband.  Something inside of me told me I could handle the Pit, that my body would combine with it to get my baby into my arms,  and that this was the right route for me.  So, I elected to start on a low dose.  *BOP Off*

I still moved a lot up until transformation: birthing ball, dancing with my husband, rocking chair, etc.  My pressure waves were becoming more regular and strong.  My doula talked me through most of my pressure waves but I also heard lots of affirmations like “good strong pressure waves help my baby come into the world” in my head.  After a while with the strong pressure waves, I was checked.  Everyone expected me to be around 4 cm because of the way I was acting–but no, I was 7 cm!  A classic HB moment!  We all agreed that Maya would be here soon.

I knew when I was entering transformation and I do remember being remarkably calm.  I had done a lot of fear clearing about this phase and it truly paid off.  I was happy to start pushing although I chose at that point to go with my midwife’s instructions.  In the end, my favorite midwife had come to help me birth my baby (as I had visualized), and I leaned on her knowledge.  In between pushes, the room was happy and calm and I ate ice chips.  I even laughed at some point at something funny the doula said to my husband.  In between pushes, I was able to completely surrender and rest and I completely credit HB for this.

At 8:06 PM, my body took over and I pushed so hard that Maya came into the world in one push (from head to toes).  It was very intense but the feeling of relief and joy I immediately felt was overwhelming.  I said to everyone “That was crazy!  That was crazy!” and everyone started laughing.  You have to know me to know that wasn’t a bad thing–I was wondering if everyone else noticed the natural wonder that had just occurred and I couldn’t even believe it myself.  Maya was placed on my stomach immediately and she remained skin to skin with mom and dad for her first couple hours of life.

Maya is truly a Hypnobaby.  From the beginning, she was sweet and calm far beyond what I imagined.  She even looks exactly like the baby I had imagined in my special place.  I truly believe that her entry into the world is part of why she is so sweet and calm.  We (baby, husband, and I) chose how she would enter the world–even in a hospital setting, with GBS issues, and Pitocin. Oh, and did I mention that my OB had mentioned induction during my previous visit (?) but I believed that in the end, Maya would choose her birthday.   HB helped me remain confident and calm and those little hospital concerns literally melted away.  My doula told my husband that this was one of the most amazing births she had ever witnessed.

And by the way, I now hear birds chirping at night when I feed Maya.  I have never heard them at night before.

Love and peace to you Hypnomoms–you need only to visualize, believe, and surrender.

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