1st baby, hospital birth (induction/physiological birth)
Following Gemma’s excellent course, I was all ready for a natural, pool birth, but it was not meant to be. This is because our beautiful daughter decided to arrive nearly four weeks early. My waters broke unexpectedly on Saturday night. At this stage I could have panicked but instead I breathed deeply and put the birth preparation Natal Hypnotherapy CD on to try and calm me down and manage the adrenaline spike. I was actually quite excited with the prospect of finally meeting our baby.
Off to the hospital we went. Again I listened to my CD in the waiting room. Even though my waters had gone, my contractions hadn’t actually started so after monitoring the baby and I to ensure we were both well they let us go home for 24 hours to see if my labour would start naturally. Nothing happened and in the end I had to be induced to have the baby out within 72 hours from the waters due to risk of infection. I really did not want to be induced but I tried to be as calm and pragmatic about it as possible. I was first induced with a pessary. My contractions started but not strong enough (they stayed constant at only 10 minutes apart). When I finally got a bed at the labour ward Tuesday morning I was exhausted and ready for the labour to be over. I had to be put on the oxytocin drip to move things along. Waiting for the drip to take effect, I listened to the relaxing birth music. After this the birth was fast (only 3hrs and 20mins).
Due to the speed and also with my body not producing endorphins acting as nature’s pain relief (due to the artificial oxytocin), the pain was intense, but I managed to cope with it by deep breathing and gas and air. I could not go for a water birth because my waters had broken and I was constantly monitored due to the drip. However, considering the circumstances I think I managed to get as natural a birth as possible, including no epidural, opiates, c-section, forceps/suction, episiotomy or major complications. When our daughter arrived to the world, she was a little unresponsive at first so we could not delay the cord clamping, but again her safety came first. Ultimately, even though things did not go to plan, I definitely did not have a bad birthing experience. Natal hypnotherapy helped to calm me down and take things as they come without negative thoughts working against the process.
I would thoroughly recommend the course to everyone especially with Gemma being a practicing midwife (and mum!) allowing her to explain how natal hypnotherapy can be used in your birthing process in a very practical and real way.