SOCIAL MEDIA

Wednesday, 31 March 2021

My Birth Story

After convincing myself that this baby would definitely arrive a couple of weeks early, he certainly kept us waiting! My due date came and went and I tried all the usual tricks to get him to budge; pineapple, hot curries, bouncing on the birth ball etc, to no avail. I even had three different midwives attempt to give me a sweep but baby just wasn't ready to come out and so an induction was booked for when I was 12 days late. A couple of days before this date I went up to the hospital for a forth and final attempt at a sweep and this time, the midwife actually managed it! As I left the hospital I could already feel some strong cramps beginning and so I was sure that this time, baby would absolutely be here by the morning! 

That evening, I started getting contractions. These lasted throughout the night but a pattern didn't emerge. Sometimes they would be three minutes apart and sometimes as many as eight. At some point, they stopped and I must have fallen asleep because I woke up the next day with baby still in the same place it had been the night before! It looked like an induction was definitely on the cards. 

The following evening, the contractions once again started but this time I strongly suspected it was the real thing. They felt stronger, more powerful and with each one my whole body started to shake; something I remembered happening with my last labour. And so it was off to the hospital we went! 

When we arrived, my waters went in the car park. That was a strange experience! I then waddled up to the ward where I met the midwife. She did an internal examination and advised that as I was only three centimetres dilated, she recommended that we went home, relaxed for a while and came back when the contractions were two minutes apart. I will be honest, I really didn't want to go home. The contractions were feeling really strong and I suspected it wouldn't be too long until baby made an appearance. I didn't much fancy being too far away from the hospital (or the gas and air!) so I asked her if there was any way we could stay and she said if we preferred, we could have a little walk around the hospital for a bit. 

We left the ward and went outside to find a bench. I started to feel a bit chilly and there was a couple having a barney on the other bench which was killing my relaxed vibe so we decided to go and sit in the car for a while. As weird as this may seem and despite being in labour, this was actually quite a relaxing and special time. There was a huge full moon which I focused on each time I had a contraction and I also made sure I breathed through each one using the methods I had learnt in my hypnobirthing books. 

I had planned to do a hypnobirthing course when I found out I was pregnant. My first labour and birth had not been easy at all- I felt a little traumatised by the experience if I'm honest and this left me nervous and anxious about giving birth for a second time. Although the second labour and birth had largely gone to plan, I'd felt tense and scared which I have no doubt made the pain significantly worse. I vowed that if I was ever lucky enough to have a third baby, I would look into hypnobirthing as I'd read such wonderful things about it. However, before I could actually book the course, the pandemic happened, my business was forced to close and so I made the decision that I would be better not parting with the money. It was certainly disappointing but I decided to read up as much as I could about hypnobirthing. Through these books, I learnt some pretty invaluble tips in how to keep calm, feel empowered and create a positive birth experience. While I didn't use every technique the books suggested, my third and final labour was truly a beautiful experience and I honestly feel this is largely down to the hypnobirthing techniques I used and I will forever be recommending it to any mums to be! 

Back to the car- the contractions were now coming thick and fast and with each one I breathed through it using the breathing techniques found in the books. This might sound an obvious thing to do but when we are in pain we can often tense up and hold our breath- I'm sure I did this with my other labours. I can't claim the pain is less by doing this, but it definitely helps you stay in control, feel relaxed and helps remove the fear from the situation and it is this that makes the pain feel more manageable. After just one an hour, the contractions were two minutes apart and it was time to go back up to the ward! 

This time, I was officially in established labour and so I was able to stay on the ward and have gas and air (hurrah!) The midwife asked if I would like to try the birthing pool so I decided to give it a try. I wasn't sure I would like it to be honest so I remember feeling a bit guilty that she took nearly an hour to fill it up! However, it was so good to get into the water. The heat instantly helped with the pain and the water supported the weight of my bump. The midwife had set up some spa lights in the room and my husband found us a radio station with some great rock tunes. It was hard not to be relaxed! 

After a while, the contractions were coming in thick and fast and were really strong. At this point, my breathing techniques went out the window as rather than breathing in for 4 seconds and out for 8, I was sucking in the gas and air for as long as I possibly could. Before I knew it, these deep and intense contractions were replaced by the urge to push. It's a little bit of a blur now but after some time pushing, our baby boy emerged into the water. I don't think he realised he had been born as he didn't cry which caused me a moment of panic. The midwife gave him a little rub and he made a beautiful little cry. He was finally here! 

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After the birth I enjoyed some skin to skin cuddles and some tea and toast (I may or may not have called the lady that bought it to me a magical tea and toast fairy)! After a while I was moved to another room and at this point my husband had to go home. As it was only the early hours of the morning, I probably should have slept but I kept staring at our new baby boy and breathing in that intoxicating newborn smell! 

And so there you have it, my third (and final!) labour and birth story. Would I do it all over again? In a heartbeat. I mean I won't (as there would be a husband shaped hole in the wall) but I would. 💕

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If you are interested in hypnobirthing, I have linked the two books I used below. 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hypnobirthing-Practical-Ways-Birth-Better/dp/0349419388/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=hypnobirthing&qid=1598097764&sr=8-3

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hypnobirthing-Book-Antenatal-Relaxation-Download/dp/1911558021/ref=sr_1_5?dchild=1&keywords=hypnobirthing&qid=1598097803&sr=8-5

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