My husband, Rob, and I felt so unbelievably lucky to be having a baby and couldn’t wait to be a little family of 3. But as a pregnant woman there is of course that niggle in the back of your mind as you’re expanding.. that the baby has to somehow come out! Eeeeek.
My friend recommended Alice and I’m over the moon she did. We booked a private hypnobirthing course and every single minute we spent with Alice was calm, informative, reassuring and comforting.
The facts of our little girl’s birth…
My waters broke at 8.30pm and our baby had done a poo so we had to go in to be monitored for an hour. Luckily they said I could go home and would only be induced in 24 hrs if I didn’t go in to labour naturally. At around 11pm the surges started! Things progressed really quickly, by 3am they were intense and I had 3 in every 10 mins. I managed to stay at home until 7am, got to the hospital and amazingly Alice was on shift so was our midwife! I was 6cm so got in the pool at around 8am. At 10am ish I started with the pushing phase. Unfortunately a little later our baby did another poo and this 1 was more of a concern so I was moved from the birth centre to delivery suite and things became more medical as they needed to monitor me and the baby for signs of infection. Our little girl arrived by a vaginal birth at 12.25 and was (still is!) absolutely perfect.
For us the hypnobirthing course with Alice did 3 main things to our above experience…
Firstly, to be a TEAM – the course opened up communication about the birth between me and Rob. It made us think about our fears and talk openly about what was going to happen and how we felt about it, not only during our time with Alice but between meet ups too. This brought us closer as expecting parents and when I did go in to labour I can honestly say we felt like a team the whole time, I couldn’t have done it without him. During labour, particularly the time at home, Rob was the best painkiller and I needed him near me at all times. He had learnt how important his support would be and responded to my every need. Whilst I had gas and air in the pool he said I was like a drunk soppy teenager at times telling him I love him. I definitely would have thought I’d be shouting very different things!
Secondly, CALMNESS – the course gave us tips and techniques. We learnt about each stage and ways to keep me calm. The breathing techniques were amazing to relax me and I used them throughout. Also, Alice talked to us about how important it is to soften your jaw and shoulders, so I tried a few things and ended up getting Rob to stand in front of me while I hung round his neck so everything could hang loose. He was an absolute star because I did this for each surge for hours while at home! I wouldn’t have even tried this position if it wasn’t for Alice and I think it is 1 of the main reasons (along with calmness and breathing through) that I dilated and progressed so quickly.
Finally, feeling SAFE – the course informed us about the labour process and different things that can happen which made me feel safe at all times. Even when I was being wheeled through the hospital in a rush.. when they attached monitors to me.. when they talked about using the ventouse.. I didn’t feel panicked at all. Everything that happened we had chatted through as a possibility and so I didn’t feel scared or as though I didn’t understand what was happening. Alice had shown me on a doll what can happen to some babies positioning and reassured me that when they use the ventouse they do not pull babies out but guide them as you push.
Birth is hard and an incredible challenge for you and for your body, but hypnobirthing helped me to realise that this is not a negative thing or something to be scared of, and that it can be empowering, beautiful and is a huge achievement!
The female body is awesome but undoubtedly your mind plays a big role. So get bonding with your birth partner, work together, calmly breathe your way through and remember that you are safe