"Even though we went in to it quite confidently, due to misinformation about birth from media and friends, unnecessary medical interventions and being unaware of what my body was capable of naturally doing, I experienced a traumatic birth and postnatal experience with my first born son. We were pregnant three years later with our second baby and the anxiety of the impending birth was building up more and more the closer we got to the 'due date'. One of my closest friends suggested that we do this course to help. My partner and I, who tend to stick to quite a natural and wholesome lifestyle and are quite open to a lot of things, still thought it might have been a bunch of 'hippie mumbo jumbo'. Thankfully she continued to encourage us and purchased a private day course with Agnele as a baby present to us (for this we can never thank her enough!).
Agnele was fantastic! She came to our home and made us feel so comfortable from the outset. She helped us move on from our previous birth trauma by doing a Fear Release, it worked perfectly. We thought we knew everything that we needed to know about birth....after having one baby already and of course watching all of the "One Born Every Minute" programs ( hehe) we thought there wasn't much else to learn. Boy were we wrong! We learnt so much that day but the main thing was that we felt excited and empowered to birth our baby (my partner, who was the most sceptical of us, was even quoted as saying that he wished he could birth a baby LOL). We felt so calm and inspired! We realised that even reality tv shows do not portray what birth should to be like. I learnt how to relax and trust my body and my baby. My partner felt confident that he could support me in any way I needed. I "practiced" daily (it was hardly a chore), had affirmations all over my bathroom mirror and fell asleep each night listening to one of your tracks- usually Surge of the Sea, Birth affirmations or Rainbow Mist. My partner and I used your practice video a few times and we discussed what I thought would help relax me and how he would best support me when the time came. All the anxiety had gone and we were excited to meet our baby!
My estimated 'due date' was the 16th of May. I had been monitored throughout the whole pregnancy due to having low PAPP-a levels. Everything was progressing perfectly however due to hospital policy we knew that they would be pushing "due date induction" because of the low Papp-a. I was due to go in for yet another scan 5 days before my guessed due date and this was when we were to have our final meeting with the head Ob to discuss the induction. As long as our baby was healthy, my partner and I did not want an induction but we were nervous to have to fight against the hospital policies. It was the night before the scan and we had spoken to Agnele and our friend, who was also a midwife and was to be our birth support, and geared ourselves up to confidently go in the next day and convince the doctors to let us follow my bodys and babys lead. We again followed what we had learnt in the Hypnobirth course and knew that as long as our baby was happy, we would not allow for medical interventions to unnecessarily interfere with what my body was naturally wanting to do. If, on the contrary, the scan showed that we should go ahead with the induction then we prepared ourselves and also knew that we could do it confidently and calmly using the Hypnobirth techniques. We went to bed happy and confident.
Well we didn't need to worry to start with as about a half an hour after going to bed I started to feel slight surges. I didn't wake my partner and just listened to your Surge of the Sea track and breathed through each tightening. At around midnight I decided to wake my partner and let him know that things were happening and I jumped in to the shower. Each surge was coming about 3-5mins apart but I just breathed, repeated my affirmations (that were stuck up all over my bathroom mirror) and swayed my hips in the warm water. My partner woke my mum (who was staying with us), called our birth support, prepared my sons lunch for the next day and calmly packed the car. All this time I was in our room with my eyes shut, hips swaying as I leant over the foot of our bed and listened to your voice on the Hypnobirth track Affirmations for Beautiful Birthing. I calmly breathed through each surge, I was riding the waves. Within an hour or so it was time to head to the birth suite. We walked in, were greeted by our amazing midwife and got set up in our room. Our midwife saw our Hypnobirth folder and instantly supported us and our wishes, we were very lucky that she had some experience with Hypnobirth before. I was in total control the whole time. I was able to move where I wanted, the affirmations track was playing on repeat on the iPod dock the whole time, the lights were dim and no one except my partner spoke to me. I was in my own relaxation bubble. I wanted the extra calm that I had previously felt in the shower at home so quickly hopped into the birth suite shower. I rode each surge like a wave and took in each affirmation. I rocked my hips under the warm water and rested with my head against the wall between each surge, all while my partner was doing light touch massage. I then asked if their one labour pool was free and to our surprise it was. It was filled and I hopped in and felt instant relaxation come over my body. I floated on my back with my head resting against the edge with my partner constantly doing light touch massage and supporting me the whole way. Between each surge I almost felt like I could have fallen asleep, I was so quiet and relaxed. After a short period I then felt then urge to bear down. My body naturally wanted to be upright so I turned and knelt in the bath. After only a couple more surges, with my partner reminding me to relax my face and shoulders and imagine a Lotus flower, I breathed my baby out. After three big 'pops' (waters, head then shoulders) he was born in to my midwives hands and was placed up on to my back. I quickly maneuvered around and cuddled my baby boy Murphy to my chest. It was beautiful! I had done it and all so calmly.
I then walked, yes walked, back to my room to birth the placenta. There were a couple of complications with my uterus after the placenta was birthed but I was able to get through the ordeal using my Hypnobirth techniques. Murphy stayed attached to the cord on my chest, skin to skin the whole time and for few hours after and was only taken off to do skin to skin with his daddy while I had a quick shower.
Even though I had two second degree tears (to be expected after my first experience) and had a lot of blood loss after the birth, I recovered so quickly!! I was able to go home and have quality family time with my partner and two boys (big contrast to my 4 month painful and emotional recovery after my first). It was amazing!
I would really like to thank you, as well as our Hypnobirth teacher Agnele from Ready Mum, our birth support and dear friend Ingrid, our very caring and tentative midwife Lisa and my absolutely amazing partner Deon. Without the Hypnobirth course and all of you I don't know where I would have ended up :) Knowing not only that my body could do it but also knowing that my "village" was there to support me no matter what was priceless. I loved our birth!".
Birth of Murphy May 11th 2016