2nd baby, labour ward (water birth)

It was Monday evening, and after eating the hottest curry Ive ever managed in my life I was laid on the couch with husband and my daughter. At half 8 I felt a bizarre pop sensation in my abdomen but seriously had no clue that it was the waters.

Told Simon I thought I had wind so stood up to go to the toilet, over our brand new rug (that had just been delivered that day!) and suddenly this gush of fluid came pouring out of me! Totally felt like I was peeing myself! So I yelped at Simon “my waters just broke” total Hollywood movie style  both of us started hysterically laughing in excitement and nerves!

After shaking with excitement and speaking to the midwife (who knew we planned a home birth) we decided to stay at home overnight to see if labour kicked in, and I’d go to triage to be checked at 8am if I didn’t start normally. So overnight the contractions came but were irregular between 12 minutes and 7 minutes. I managed to sleep a few hours which was amazing, listened to my CDs and had the lavender oils on, and mum travelled up in the early hours to watch M.

By 8am I had to go into triage as the contractions hadn’t kicked in properly, so they wanted to monitor baby and see progression. As soon as I got in (still incredibly calm due to hypnotherapy) contractions started regularly every 5 minutes. Baby’s heart rate was dipping and after consultant had a good watch on the trace they were going to allow me home for the birth, but advised that they were slightly concerned, and that if the midwife picked this up at home I’d be transferred anyway. So we decided it wasn’t worth risking his health to go home, admitted to the labour ward and monitored more.

We had an incredible midwife who made sure I got my birth pool after the consultant agreed (the trace was looking ok and I had the Doppler every 15 minutes in the pool room). I got to 4 cms by 1.45pm just using breathing techniques and CDs! Lisa the midwife and Simon couldn’t believe how calm I was-eating, laughing and joking between contractions! M and my mum popped in to see us and I was totally calm and able to chat and give M cuddles, it was incredible. The second midwife to come in even said how calm and relaxed a room it was!

At 2pmish the contractions geared up several notches so had to start gas and air, I went into the self doubt phase without realising and got in the pool. Began to think I couldn’t manage and kept asking for more help as I thought I would be there for several hours (contractions were so close together and lasted three minutes) I began to lose hope and thought I couldn’t do it anymore, I had no idea but I went to full dilation within that hour!

At just after 3pm Body began pushing in the pool, so I went along with it, again not realising I was fully dilated. The midwives just let me do what my body needed to do, I was completely in control of the delivery. Within a few pushes I felt his head crown, pushed one incredibly long push and birthed his head, then one more push and I brought him up to the surface myself. It has to be one of the most incredible experiences of my entire life! Despite not having the home birth I’d planned, I couldn’t have imagined a better labour and birth of our son.

He came up on my chest with the cord round his neck. We removed that and he just lay on me so very still, so after my crying of happiness I panicked and asked why he wasn’t crying- thinking he was ill-Lisa assured me he was just incredibly calm! He gave a tiny cry then stopped again, cuddled into me, skin to skin for ages. The calmest newborn I’ve ever seen!! I got out of the pool still with cord attached so had the delayed clamping. I also pushed the placenta myself without the injection, and didn’t need stitches, no tear, just a small graze. I admit the pain at the end was very overwhelming and self doubt was very hard work, but I surprised myself and the midwives with how much calmer I was this time, definitely thanks to the natal hypnotherapy. Simon was amazing too, he was so calm and no matter what he was doing he made sure every contraction he was either holding my shoulders or hugging me and deep breathing. During the self doubt he kept telling me stories of our honeymoon, and insisting that I was strong enough to keep going, totally became my coach! I even asked for epidural (I was already fully dilated so luckily I couldn’t have had one anyway!) but he was so good, he just said “give it two more contractions and we’ll see if you definitely need it”. (He knew I was about to start pushing!) His calmness and the tools from the workshops got me through the really hard part and helped me have the relaxed birth I’d hoped for.

Simon and I want to thank you so much for everything, we don’t stop raving about your workshops and the natal hypno program to everyone we know, we’re going to pass your website details to our friends who are expecting in December and hope they will use the hypnotherapy too. I talk about it whenever possible within my breastfeeding groups and among other mummies!

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